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Why deflation trends are here to stay: Expert

A lack of inflation and lower interest rates could be here to stay, one expert said Thursday.

Technological advances have driven pricing power and efficiency, contributing to lower prices in a range of items from oil to consumer goods, said Ken Moelis, CEO of investment bank Moelis and Co. That holds long-term implications for both interest rates and corporate strategy, he argued.

"If we're in a technologically driven deflationary market, I think you'll see it last longer than people think. And that's why I think you'll see rates stay low for a long period of time," he said on CNBC's "Closing Bell."

Ken Moelis
David A. Grogan | CNBC
Ken Moelis

The Federal Reserve has looked for an uptick in inflation as it decides when to move from near-zero interest rate policy. But the central bank and companies may have to deal with a lack of inflation for longer than they expect, Moelis contended.

He added that the trends may have a prolonged effect on merger and acquisition activity, because "everybody has to look for cost synergies."