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Macroeconomic Issues Finance Library

Finance Library

The canon of finance literature is vast, with hundreds more publications emerging every year. This section distills the main lessons from most influential finance books both past and present, from the cornerstones to the most popular reads. Each summary includes a concise overview and analysis of the book's most distinctive contributions to management thinking and practice, along with bibliographic information for the featured title and related works by the author.

  • A Farewell to Alms: A Brief Economic History of the World
    Gregory Clark (2007)
    Attempts to answer why some countries have become developed and comparatively rich while others have not and remain poor. Finds that income inequality between societies has increased in recent years. Proposes the theory that social evolution explains economic growth, and that stability and security were essential to the development of a thriving economy.
  • Animal Spirits: How Human Psychology Drives the Economy, and Why It Matters for Global Capitalism
    George A. Akerlof and Robert J. Shiller (2009)
    Anyone interested in seeking to understand the causes of the global financial crisis should read this book. Akerlof and Shiller seek to explain the functioning of the economy and financial markets by showing the critical influence of human emotions. Critically, they show how “animal spirits” led to a blind faith in ever-rising house prices as well as plummeting confidence in capital markets.
  • Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy
    Raghuram G. Rajan (2010)
    A powerful investigation into the initial causes of the global economic crisis, explaining them as being caused by rising inequality and stagnant wages. Analyzes the inherent problems of a global market system that is dependent on US consumerism for growth and reliability. Argues that the fault lines in the international economic system are more hidden and widespread than previously thought. Winner of the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs...
  • Globalization and Its Discontents
    Joseph Stiglitz (2002)
    One of the main authorities on the global economy and international finance examines the impact of economic policies and development in an easy-to-understand manner. Focuses on the real impact that economic theory has on people’s lives. Offers solutions as well as criticisms, rather than just being an attack on the effects of globalization.
  • Good Value: Reflections on Money, Morality, and an Uncertain World
    Stephen Green (2009)
    Stephen Green is an unusual bank chief. A priest, he can offer a rare moral, ethical, and religious insight into the world of finance. The author has credibility as a commentator on the current state of the banking world. HSBC, the bank he leads, did not require any government bailouts during the credit crisis. Rather than preaching, Green asks some important questions which the banking industry must address if it is to regain the public’s...
  • Macroeconomics
    N. Gregory Mankiw (8th ed 2012, originally 1992)
    It explains concepts clearly and uses relevant examples to convey meaning. Covers all the main macroeconomic topics, including science, data, money, inflation, unemployment, short-run and long-run factors, and the business cycle. Incorporates real-world issues and data throughout, rather than being overly academic.
  • Poor Economics: A Radical Rethinking of the Way to Fight Global Poverty
    Abhijit V. Banerjee and Esther Duflo (2011)
    Examines individual rationality and daily existence for the poor, highlighting issues including the potential detrimental effects of healthcare for the poor, and why they are less likely to take up financial services such as health insurance.Based on the authors’ fieldwork in 18 countries, it explains why traditional anti-poverty policies are failing due to a lack of real insight, and avoids standard generalizations of either the pro-aid,...
  • Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power
    Steve Coll (2012)
    Examines the history, growth, and cult-like corporate culture of the ExxonMobil Corporation since its formation in 1999.Looks inside its corporate headquarters and lobbying offices, particularly at its CEO Lee Raymond and his replacement Rex Tillerson, and at a culture based on discipline and secrecy.Includes analysis of the lead-up and consequences of the Exxon Valdez accident in 1989, when hundreds of thousands of barrels of crude oil were...
  • The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World
    Niall Ferguson (2009)
    Provides a comprehensive guide to the history of money, banking, and credit from the ancient world to the modern day. Ferguson provides fascinating insights into earlier financial crises such as the South Sea Bubble. The author seeks to draw parallels from the past to suggest what might happen following the recent global financial crisis, and asks whether the rise of China might lead to a conflict with the United States.
  • The Bottom Billion: Why the Poorest Countries Are Failing and What Can Be Done About It
    Paul Collier (2007)
    A number of the poorest countries have problems that defy traditional approaches to alleviating poverty. Describes the failure of current policies to help these countries and proposes new solutions to unlock the poverty trap. Looks at how some countries have developed well, and what policies can get the poorest to replicate their success.
  • The Competitive Advantage of Nations
    Michael E. Porter (1990)
    Builds on Porter’s earlier books on competition among companies, to introduce a theory on how nations compete against each other and how skills and success can become clustered in different areas. Re-examines the nation state, suggesting that its basic role is now an economic one, and that it has a key role to play in ensuring the competitive success of the companies operating within its borders. Gives useful examples from 10 countries to...
  • The Wealth of Nations
    Adam Smith (1776)
    A classic and seminal work, it is a broad-ranging exploration of commercial and economic first principles that has influenced Western economics ever since it was written. Was the first comprehensive exploration of the foundations, workings, and machinations of a free market economy, concepts that are still relevant today. Proposes that the invisible hand of free-market competition ensures both the vitality of commercial activity and the ultimate...
  • This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly
    Carmen M. Reinhart and Kenneth S. Rogoff (2009)
    Provides a comprehensive guide to a wide range of financial crises across the world over the past eight centuries and argues that these events are universal rites of passage for emerging and advanced economies. The authors draw upon the lessons of history to show how much (and how little) we have learned. Using clear and sharp analysis the authors explain that crises occur in clusters, and strike with surprisingly consistent frequency, duration,...

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