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I guess we all know that for investments, inflation is a key thing to beat. If you're beating inflation, you're making money in real terms, otherwise you're not. This has been a serious concern for the entire post WWII period, since prices have risen considerably (far more than they have at any other time in history).
What I would like to ask the community is this: Is this inflationary period representative of the future landscape or not?

I'll mention some things that have influenced me, not because I'm an expert, but because I'm trying to understand more long term trends.

David Dreman in Contrarian Investment Strategies asserts that the massive deficit spending by governments all over the world is a massive drive towards ever increasing prices. Since no real wealth is created by spending these billions of dollars, it must have a powerful inflationary effect on the world.

On the other hand, even one of the largest economies in the world, Japan, has experienced a tough deflationary period since virtually 1989. If prices can have a cyclical type behavior even in very large economies, what is to say that the United States cannot experience a long deflationary period.

So if someone could give me a lesson on what happened in Japan, or explain in more detail the reason that inflation is very likely to be a continued reality, or whether you just don't think that you can rely on this type of information at all, I would be extemely grateful. I'm just trying to keep thinking and learning as much as I can, especially since inflation seems to be a critical factor in judging all investments.

Thank you all and Fool on!
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