The Undercover Economist

The Undercover Economist

Exposing Why the Rich Are Rich, the Poor Are Poor--and Why You Can Never Buy A Decent Used Car!

Book - 2006
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An economist's version of The Way Things Work, this engaging volume is part field guide to economics and part expose of the economic principles lurking behind daily events, explaining everything from traffic jams to high coffee prices.
The Undercover Economist is for anyone who's wondered why the gap between rich and poor nations is so great, or why they can't seem to find a decent second-hand car, or how to outwit Starbucks. This book offers the hidden story behind these and other questions, as economist Tim Harford ranges from Africa, Asia, Europe, and of course the United States to reveal how supermarkets, airlines, and coffee chains--to name just a few--are vacuuming money from our wallets. Harford punctures the myths surrounding some of today's biggest controversies, including the high cost of health-care; he reveals why certain environmental laws can put a smile on a landlord's face; and he explains why some industries can have high profits for innocent reasons, while in other industries something sinister is going on. Covering an array of economic concepts including scarce resources, market power, efficiency, price gouging, market failure, inside information, and game theory, Harford sheds light on how these forces shape our day-to-day lives, often without our knowing it.
Showing us the world through the eyes of an economist, Tim Harford reveals that everyday events are intricate games of negotiations, contests of strength, and battles of wits. Written with a light touch and sly wit, The Undercover Economist turns "the dismal science" into a true delight.
Publisher: Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2006.
ISBN: 9780195189773
Branch Call Number: 330.9051 HARFORD
Characteristics: x, 276 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.


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Jan 31, 2018

The author, Tim Harford, instead of list all of the equations, models and theories, who gives a point of view from a street corner café, supermarket shelves, and drugs for HIV/AIDS. He travels from Cameroon to China to discover economical issues or solutions. Why he had a Duvel beer at Antwerp, which can remind him its taste at Washington DC? Why a tropical juice at Wholefoods store is cheaper than at Safeway? Why the poor are poor, the rich are richer and richer? It is an easy reading buook, but it delivers very important concepts, and even gives out some economical solutions for our daily life. A joy to read it and learn from it. Wha is economics, that is about who gets what and why!

Jun 30, 2009

worthwhile read, the practical side of (micro) economics and how it explains market actions, chapter 5 on asymmetric information is quite insightful


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