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- DescriptionThe ecomy [isn t] a bunch of rather dull statistics with names like GDP (gross domestic product), tes Tim Harford, columnist and regular guest on NPR s Marketplace, ecomics is about who gets what and why. In this acclaimed and riveting book part expose, part user s manual the astute and entertaining columnist from the Financial Times demystifies the ways in which money works in the world. From why the coffee in your cup costs so much to why efficiency is t necessarily the answer to ensuring a fair society, from improving health care to curing crosstown traffic all the dirty little secrets of dollars and cents are delightfully revealed by The Undercover Ecomist. A rare specimen: a book on ecomics that will enthrall its readers . . . It brings the power of ecomics to life. Steven D. Levitt, coauthor of Freakomics A playful guide to the ecomics of everyday life, and as such is something of an elder sibling to Steven Levitt s wild child, the hugely successful Freakomics. The Ecomist A tour de force . . . If you need to be convinced of the everrelevant and fascinating nature of ecomics, read this insightful and witty book. Jagdish Bhagwati, author of In Defense of Globalization This is a book to savor. The New York Times Harford writes like a dream. From his book I found out why there s a Starbucks on every corner [and] how t to get duped in an auction. Reading The Undercover Ecomist is like spending an ordinary day wearing X-ray goggles. David Bodanis, author of Electric Universe Much wit and wisdom. The Houston ChronicleFrom Publishers Weekly Nattily packaged-the cover sports a Roy Lichtensteinesque image of an ecomist in Dick Tracy garb-and cleverly written, this book applies basic ecomic theory to such modern phemena as Starbucks' pricing system and Microsoft's stock values. While the concepts explored are those encountered in Microecomics 101, Harford gracefully explains abstruse ideas like pricing along the demand curve and game theory using real world examples without relying on graphs or jargon. The book addresses free market ecomic theory, but Harford is t a complete apologist for capitalism; he shows how companies from Amazon.com to Whole Foods to Starbucks have gouged consumers through guerrilla pricing techniques and explains the high rents in London (it has more to do with agriculture than one might think). Harford comes down soft on Chinese sweatshops, ackwledging conditions in factories are terrible, but sweatshops are better than the horrors that came before them, and a step on the road to something better. Perhaps, but Harford doesn't question whether communism or a capitalist-style industrial revolution are the only two choices available in modern ecomies. That aside, the book is unequaled in its accessibility and ability to show how free market ecomic forces affect readers' day-to-day.Copyright (c) Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. From Bookmarks MagazineHarford exposes the dark underbelly of capitalism in Undercover Ecomist. Compared with Steven Levitt s and Stephen J. Dubner s popular Freakomics (*** July/Aug 2005), the book uses simple, playful examples (written in plain English) to elucidate complex ecomic theories. Critics agree that the book will grip readers interested in understanding free-market forces but disagree about Harford s approach. Some thought the author mastered the small ideas while keeping in sight the larger context of globalization; others faulted Harford for failing to criticize certain ecomic theories and to ground his arguments in political, organizational structures. Either way, his case studies some entertaining, others indicative of times to come will make you think twice about that cup of coffee. Copyright (c) 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.
- Author BiographyTim Harford is an editorial writer at the Financial Times, where he also writes the newspaper s Dear Economist column and The Undercover Economist column, which also appears in Slate. He lives in London.
- Author(s)Tim Harford
- PublisherRandom House USA Inc
- FormatPaperback / softback
- SubjectEconomics: Professional & General
- Place of PublicationNew York
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintRandom House Inc
- Content Noteillustrations
- Weight213 g
- Width133 mm
- Height202 mm
- Spine15 mm
- Format DetailsTrade paperback (US),Unsewn / adhesive bound
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