BR/ “naked economics” by Charles Wheelan

naked_economicsFrom what I was exposed, learning Economics from University isn’t unfortunately the best way to understand it. Sure I was presented with the classical theories of demand and supply, the effects of policy and showed to all sorts of graphs but to be honest it mostly alienate me from the Science because of the layers of abstraction. It seriously incentivized all good willed people to leave and sleep.

Learning isn’t always fun if it’s presented poorly.

So in that pursuit after spending endless hours on the subject I researched and found this book “Naked Economics” that ticked all the boxes.

1. The book was written by someone who knew that he was talking about (the Author worked with Gary Becker, Paul Volcker,…)

2. It is a more real day-to-day approach of Economics

And yes after a full read, the book didn’t disappoint! What a great book. The author managed the art of  providing insight to all my University classes by finally making them more “tangible”.




There are obviously many insightful knowledge within the book but since there is no point is pointing them all out, I  will briefly quote the best insights I have captured:

  •    The power of markets : “Most markets don’t work by market price but by maximizing revenue”
  •    Incentives matter: “Stock options are ‘managerial heroin’ (short-term high)”
  •    Productivity and human growth: “Human capital is strongly linked to productivity”
  •    Financial markets: “Financial instruments must create some value”
  •    Economics of Information: “Branding helps provide an element of trust that is necessary for a complex economy to function”
  •    The Power of organized interests: “groups seek themselves to get licensed”
  •    Keeping score: “A simple measure of the size of government is its spending to GDP”
  •    The Federal Reserve: “Borrowing directly from the central bank has a certain stigma it was not able to raise funds privately” (discount rate)
  •    International Economics: “In a modern economy ¾ of goods and services are not tradable”
  •    Trade and Globalization: “Human capital can never be taken away”

There is still plenty to learn, some time ago thanks to the beauty of the Internet I started the lectures of Prof. Shiller from Yale (Yale  course – Financial Markets (2011) with Robert Shiller) before he received his Nobel memorial prize in 2013.  I’m sure to keep people posted if it’s worth attending!

Works Cited


WHEELAN, C. naked economics. [S.l.]: Norton paperback, 2010.



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