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Guide to Economic Indicators: Making Sense of Economics Hardcover – November 9, 2010
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It is even more essential—and complicated—than in the past to have a thorough understanding of economic information. Written for the non-specialist, this highly accessible guide provides the key to understanding all the major and many lesser economic indicators: what they are; the areas they cover; their reliability; and how and why to interpret them.
Fully updated and revised, this guide is invaluable for anyone who needs or simply wants to have the underlying economic realities of the world we live in clearly explained.
From the Publisher
A blueprint for understanding economic information from all over the world. There is a critical need today for business executives, investors, and students to have a thorough knowledge of the economic indicators that are released every day and used throughout the world. This comprehensive primer addresses that need. Clearly explaining each major indicator and how to interpret it, The Economist Guide to Economic Indicators enables readers to not only understand the facts and grasp their significance, but to relate them to their individual situations. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
In fact the book is more a reference tool for things TV reporters and journalists refer to, to support their theories. I found it insightful and will keep coming back to this book when I need an explanation of these indicators. It probably is essential for students and a good starting point for others.
Some examples: "In the long term, the growth in economic output depends on the number of people working and output per worker (productivity)" (Page 41); Or "In general, the more optimistic consumers are, the more likely they are to spend money. This boosts consumer spending and economic output" (Page 93)...
...One begins to yearn for the days where economics was more of an explanatory and less a mathematical science.
The guide is divided into a number of chapters discussing issues and examples related to
- How economic activity is calculated, and what the main indicators GDP/GNP/NNI capture and do not capture, as well as what changes in these indicators or their components mean.
- Employment indicators such as employment by sector or the unemployment rate
- Balance of payments and fiscal indicators, such as tax revenue or budget deficit
- Consumer indicators, such as disposable income or consumer confidence and their significance
- Investment and savings indicators, such as investment intentions or sales/inventory ratios
- Business indicators, including business conditions, auto sales, construction orders and other common stats
- Exchange rates and financial market indicators, such as interest rates and money supply.
- Prices and wages, like the effect of oil price changes, among others
Coverage of the most common and widely available indicators is fairly comprehensive. Given the simplicity of the book, it is better to have a certain level of economic knowledge and opinion to be able to put the content in context. Not much different to reading The Economist, really.