Over at Yahoo! Finance there's a little quiz: How much greater was the U.S. cost of living in 1914 than it was in 1865? a) 3% b) 30% c) 300% d) 3000% Answer: 3% "Americans born in the 20th century, and especially after World War II, have generally only seen prices go up. But significant, sustained inflation in the U.S. is largely a late 20th-century phenomenon. An American born at the end of the Civil War, would, in the course of their lifetime, have seen prices go mostly down from year to year:" In 1865 the CPI was 9.763 In 1875 the CPI was 8.036 In 1885 the CPI was 7.154 In 1895 the CPI was 6.958 In 1905 the CPI was 8.134 In 1914 the CPI was 10.100 In 1920 the CPI was 19.400 With that in mind, anyone ever see the forecasts some investment advisors are putting out in terms of what one has to save to retire comfortably? Check this out: http://money.cnn.com/2003/12/01/retirement/costs_2030/index.htm The article says Reality Check (so take it seriously!?!?!??!?!?) In 2030: "$130, for two tickets and a modest dinner. And a box of prescription pills that runs $170 today is more likely to cost close to $1,000 in 27 years, given a 6.7 percent annual growth rate, according to the BLS. If you're still into artery clogging, a dozen Krispy Kreme doughnuts could cost you nearly $13, double the $6.50 you'll pay today. $200,000 house today will cost $1,040,946 in 2030...." SO Is inflation a 20th century anomally and we'll enjoy low inflation from here to say 2030 or are going to pay $100 for a movie, $7 for a Big Mac, etc.. in the years to come?