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Principles of Microeconomics 4th Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0324319163
ISBN-10: 0324319169
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"The book's strengths include its ability to explain in plain language the beauty of economic theory; the concise manner in which real world examples are integrated into the text; and, the online assistance that does an effective job in complementing the text."

"I think that the greatest strengths are that it is clear (written in a student-friendly language), relatively concise, and provides a good coverage of what I think students need to know about principles of economics. I think that the style of the text is personable and is easy for students to read without being condescending. In terms of the coverage, as I noted above, we cover the entire text in my one-semester class, and cover just about exactly the entire text - no more, and only a little (two chapters) less."

"I find navigation process very simple. I am very impressed with Meet your tutor - Master the Learning Objectives section (that is so well planned out and organized). If students are having problems with any of the material and they're serious about being successful in this class, it is impossible for them not to understand the material after doing suggested activities in this section. "Ask the Author" video clips are interesting and clever. "Economic Applications" section also has good navigation system and can be useful for teachers and students both."

About the Author

N. Gregory Mankiw is Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics and Chair of the Department of Economics at Harvard University. He studied economics at Princeton University and MIT. He has taught macroeconomics, microeconomics, statistics, and principles of economics. Professor Mankiw is a prolific writer and a regular participant in academic and policy debates. His research includes work on price adjustment, consumer behavior, financial markets, monetary and fiscal policy, and economic growth. His published articles have appeared in academic journals such as the AMERICAN ECONOMIC REVIEW, JOURNAL OF POLITICAL ECONOMY, and QUARTERLY JOURNAL OF ECONOMICS and in more widely accessible forums including THE NEW YORK TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, and FORTUNE. In addition to his teaching, research, and writing, Professor Mankiw has been a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, an adviser to the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and the Congressional Budget Office, and a member of the ETS test development committee for the advanced placement exam in economics. From 2003 to 2005, he served as chairman of the President's Council of Economic Advisers. In addition, he maintains a very popular blog for students of economics at http://www.gregmankiw.blogspot.com.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 533 pages
  • Publisher: Thompson South-Western; 4th edition (January 27, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0324319169
  • ISBN-13: 978-0324319163
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 8.5 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,567 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this text in order to test out of a microeconomics class back in college with the CLEP system. I had never studied microeconomics before, knew very little of the terminology, and knew only the most basic of the concepts. I read through this book only once, taking notes as I went along, and paid special attention to chapter one in which the principles were laid out, upon which the rest of the book would elaborate.

I found it very easy to read and understand. The information was presented with clear examples, and chunked well into parts that were easily bullet-pointed for study purposes. In the end I took my CLEP test and passed with flying colors, and was able to bypass a 3 credit course saving me hundreds of dollars. Seems like good economics to me.
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Format: Paperback
I would have given it 5 stars if the price was lower, but that's what you get for text books these days. It was still cheaper than buying it at Berkeley's bookstore.

I found this book to be very informative and well written whith good flow and easy to understand examples. The author brings current events into the world of Microeconomics, and allows the reader to understand the underlying mechanism that drives the decisions we make. When used in conjunction with a class, or by itself, this book provides the novice with a thorough understanding of the principles of Microeconomics.
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Joseph Schumpeter once encouraged his readers to make up their mind whether they wanted simple or useful answers, because both could not be had at the same time. Mankiw opts for the former option. A student who knows little about economics and who will be exposed to the discipline for the first time by using this textbook will get a very narrow view of economics. He or she will have no idea that there are strong disagreements about economic phenomena and even different schools of thought. This can be expected: Mankiw is a neoclassical economist, that school is dominant for one reason or another, so few would expect him to go out of his way to point out that there are different intellectual traditions in economics. However, Mankiw does not even bother much to point out disagreements within the mainstream either. For him, economics is a quasi-scientific discipline that clearly explains how things are; thus, economists disagree solely because of values.

That is a gross mischaracterization: neoclassical economists disagree a lot on theoretical issues, too. Mankiw's own colleague at Harvard - Dani Rodrik - described these disagreements mainly springing from the division between "first-best economists" and "second-best economists". The former group (Becker, Cowen, Mankiw) almost always finds a solution in the supply-demand framework and competitive markets. The latter group (Stiglitz, Rodrik, Akerlof) search for more nuanced and contextual explanations. Mankiw's only reference to "second-best" issues like imperfect information and behavioral economics is relegated to a couple paltry pages in the end of the book where it can be safely forgotten. The minimum wage is a case in point: Mankiw uses the simple supply-demand framework to "prove" that minimum wage causes unemployment.
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12 Comments 58 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
For ten bucks, potentially the best buy I've ever made. Instead of spending hundreds on the newest edition, I bought this one, and it has the exact same graphs and material as the new one. Don't waste your money on the new one, buy this one!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is informative and easy to read, and a fine substitute for the 5th edition. You'll find, in micro- and macro economics, that the basic information doesn't really change so it's not much of a risk to go back an edition. My professor actually encouraged us to buy this edition and save ourselves a hundred bucks. Mind the chapter numbers and the question numbers if he/she assigns out of the book. All of the questions are exactly the same but some are switched around. Welcome to Economics!
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Format: Paperback
One of the best textbooks I've ever read. Mankiw adopts the "spoonfeed" approach, explaining every single concept with crystal clarity, using such tools as charts, diagrams, real-life examples, articles, case studies. I find it hard to imagine a better book to introduce someone to all the basic economic principles: inflation, unemployment, GDP, monopolies, supply & demand, taxes & deadweight loss, investment, exchange rates, monetary and fiscal policy, etc. etc. etc. Scholarly yet should appeal to a popular audience. Writing style a pleasure. I so enjoyed it that I just bought Mankiw's book on Macroeconomics and have begun it too.
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By Mitchster on September 15, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Its not the best beginners microeconomics book. I wasn't a fan of learning through this book. I would suggest professors to not use this book in class. I basically passed the class with a B by using [...] google . com as research material for my micro class.
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Format: Paperback
So upon buying this book I did not know what to think it was used of couse but it. Was in still great condition. I recommend if you need to cram read this book all the way though you will get what you need out of it.
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