The Spectre of Price Inflation:
by Max Gillman
December 8, 2022: Agenda Publishing UK ebook available

“Yet again, inflation has returned. Rather than searching for historical parallels, this book provides an extremely important exploration that links the past to contemporary inflation. This is an extremely useful book for central bankers, macroeconomists and readers who wish to deepen their understanding of the causes – and effects – of inflation.” – Elisa Newby, Bank of Finland

“Central bankers of the world are hereby put on notice: Based on impeccable scholarship, Max Gillman’s devastating indictment of their policies explains why distortionary interest rates impose severe damage on economies by misallocating the financial investment resources needed to fuel productive growth. He makes a compelling case against the Federal Reserve’s price-fixing approach to determining the cost of capital – and illuminates the unhealthy relationship between the Fed and the US Treasury Department. Gillman’s analysis will be riveting for monetary policy experts, even as it will prove eye-opening for non-specialists who have long sensed that government-engineered inflation and manipulated money betray the principles of democratic capitalism.” – Judy L. Shelton, Senior Fellow, The Independent Institute, former Chairman of the National Endowment for Democracy, and former US Director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development

“Professor Gillman’s book is important and ambitious. Since the link between money and gold was broken in 1971, the world’s major economies have suffered repeated inflation outbreaks. Why? Gillman asks this fundamental question – and insists, against the latest fashions, that the behaviour of the quantity of money is crucial to the answer. His views are challenging, thought-provoking and central to current debates on economic policy.” – Tim Congdon, Chair and Founder of the Institute of International Monetary Research

“This is a thought-provoking journey through monetary and financial history, asking how we got into some of our current monetary messes and banking binds; and wondering how our forebears have helped or hindered us in getting here.” – Charles Nolan, University of Glasgow

“An insightful journey through the history of inflation and its master, the Central Bank. Gillman explains how the Fed suppressed inflation, flooding the financial system with money since 2008 and imposing significant distortions. This equilibrium has now ended to the relief of Chicago-trained Gillman and all of us who believe that the fundamental principles of economics still work.” – Lorenzo Forni, University of Padova and author of The Magic Money Tree and Other Economic Tales

“Inflation is back, and this book is a timely account of how this happened and how it can be cured. On the way Professor Gillman provides a learned history of the origins and development of money across the world since the very beginnings of the ancient world.” – Patrick Minford, Cardiff Business School

February 2023 in US: Columbia University Press:

The Spectre of Price Inflation, Max Gillman, Columbia University Press, US; Newgen Publishing, UK; for Agenda Publishing, 2022. 

Publisher Description:

Inflation, hyperinflation and deflation have all had profound effects on societies, especially during periods of war and crisis. Today’s approach to managing inflation has been shaped by these episodes and informed by debates between different schools of economic thought from Fisher and Hayek to Keynes and the monetarists. This accessible and authoritative overview explores the role of inflation in the modern economy, from its place in monetary policy and in money supply to its effects on everyday business.

In a compelling analysis, the book shows that since the financial crisis in 2008–09, inflation rates have remained persistently higher than interest rates worldwide, which is the inverse of our basic understanding of how inflation normally affects markets. The result of this inversion has been that the effective real return on investment has become negative, and consequently, the investment rate has dropped across western economies. At a time when inflation once again challenges the world’s leading economies, the book offers valuable insight into the monetary policy of central banks.



Part I: Innocence: when principles guided policy

1. Drs Fisher, Friedman and no inflation

2. The rise of inflation

3. The end of metal for money

4. War, peace, deflation and recession

5. Seigniorage versus hyperinflation

6. Blaming the victim

7. Inflation and unemployment

Part II: Ignominy: central banks, insurance and inflation

8. The rise of central banks

9. Fractured insurance

10. Bank failure and crisis

11. The problem of excess reserves

12. Giving away the inflation tax

Part III: Purgatory: capital markets, interest and inflation

13. Fed price-fixing

14. A plague of negative interest rates

15. Shifting money demand

16. The new usury prohibition?

17. Money, inflation and banking reform


1. Principles of Economics: An Evolutionary Approach, Kendall Hunt Publishing, US, 2017. Paperback or ebook: weblink. Excellent Study Guide for text written by Stephen Scheid, published by Kendall Hunt.

2. Collected Papers in Monetary Economics by Bob Lucas, Editor, Max Gillman, Harvard University Press; 2013: HUP Collected Papers of R. E. Lucas, Jr.: weblink

3. Advanced Modern Macroeconomics: Theory and Application, Pearson Financial Times Press, 2011; UK. Advanced Modern Macro by Gillman; Pearson: weblink

4. Inflation Theory in Economics: Routeledge pub, 2009; UK; Paperback weblink


  1. Advanced Modern Macroeconomics: Theory and Application: Consider Macro elements without compromise: AS-AD as consistent with Frank Ramsey’s (1928) model that is the basis of all Modern Macroeconomics.
  2. Principles of Economics: An Evolutionary Approach: AS-AD shown in my  Principles is exactly consistent with the mathematical derivation in my Pearson Financial Times Advanced Modern Macroeconomics: Theory and Application. What could be better than a properly derived Aggregate Supply and Demand that can be applied to illustrate modern Business Cycle Theory, Solow Economic Growth, and that indicates the basic comparative static exercises that go along with such analysis?
  3. Inflation Theory in Economics: research paper collection; how inflation affects growth, velocity and business cycles.
  4. Collected Papers in Monetary Economics by Bob Lucas: Tom Sargent provided an insightful review in the Journal of Economic Literature. Sargent’s JEL Review: weblink Don’t miss these from the masters of economics who have laid foundations for our science.


1. Principles of Macroeconomics: An Evolutionary Approach

OUT NOW: Kendall Hunt Publishing, January 2017; by Max Gillman

Go to Kendall Hunt Website

2. Advanced Modern Macroeconomics: Theory and Application

Pearson Education, Financial Times Press, 2011; by Max Gillman

Go to Amazon Website

3. Inflation Theory in Economics: Welfare, Velocity, Growth and Business Cycles

Routledge International Studies in Money and Banking, 2009; by Max Gillman

Go to Amazon Website

4. Collected Papers in Monetary Theory, by Robert E. Lucas, Jr.

Harvard University Press, January 2013; Edited by Max Gillman

Amazon Link

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