3. Inflation (and deflation) won't rear its ugly head Surging oil production — along with slower global growth — has caused the price of petroleum to collapse from more than $100 a barrel last summer to barely $50 a barrel at the end of 2014. The effect has been to reverse an uptick in U.S. inflation earlier in the year.
5. China saw its population grow last year, along with an improved male-female ratio and the level of education, according to a survey from the National Bureau of Statistics that was released on last Wednesday.