DCPLive is a blog by library staff at the DeKalb County Public Library!
May 1 2009

Connecting the dots

by Jesse M

connecting-the-dots-imf-diagram2Do you have questions about the economy? Are you confused by terms like sub-prime, credit default swap, and collateralized debt obligation? Wondering about the relationship between the troubles on Wall Street and lay-offs on Main Street? Resources are available at the Library, and online, to help you connect the dots and get a glimpse of the bigger economic picture.

Several recently published books are available in the DCPL catalog which attempt to construct a narrative to illustrate the roots of the global financial crisis. Chain of blame : how Wall Street caused the mortgage and credit crisis and House of cards : a tale of hubris and wretched excess on Wall Street both chronicle the role Wall Street firms played in causing the recession, while The subprime solution : How today’s global financial crisis happened and what to do about it offers prescriptions on solving the crisis in addition to detailing how we got where we are today.

In addition to materials available through the Library, the weekly public radio program This American Life has produced a number of shows focusing on various aspects of the economic crisis, including the housing market, credit default swaps, and “bad banks“, all of which can be streamed for free from their website.

Still hungry for more? There are a number of websites that provide coverage and analysis of both global and domestic economic news, including many articles focusing on the causes, and effects, of the global financial crisis. The Economist is the online version of the long-running British publication of the same name (which is available at many DCPL branches). It is an excellent resource for both U.S. and global economic news, and I find it invaluable for the international perspective it provides. Another useful resource is Marketplace, which is the companion website for the public radio program Marketplace, a business and economics show that broadcasts twice daily on weekdays and once on weekends. All shows can be streamed for free, and there are other offerings on the site as well. And last but not least, I highly recommend taking a look at Planet Money, a frequently updated multimedia blog with many contributors (including the two responsible for the three This American Life episodes I mentioned above) which covers all aspects of the economy.

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