Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Naked Economics Study Guide

Naked Economics Study Guide
Here are the major areas of Naked Economics to take a look at. This is not a shortcut around reading the entire book - it is meant to help you concentrate on important points. The points that are mentioned are things that you should feel comfortable wtih - have a passing knowledge of them ("Oh, yeah, I remember was ____"). There are some study questions at the end in blue to help you, also. This is all for your assistance in understanding the book; none of it will be collected and graded.

If anyone wants to borrow my book (with notes/highlighting, etc) throughout a school day or overnight, come on by and let me know!

We will be discussing the book the first few days of class as a precursor to Unit 1. There will be a quiz on the critical content as well as information from the book on your Unit 1 Test.

Enjoy! :)



Economic way of thinking - pxiii

Chapter 1 - The Power of Markets

Market Allocation - p3
Invisible Hand of the Economy - p4
Utility - p6+
Opportunity Cost - p9
Demand/Externalities - p10
Cost/Benefit Analysis - p11
Profit Motive - p11
Human Capital - p12+
Barriers to Entry - p14
Market price, pricing decisions & price discrimination - p15+
Lessons of markets - p18+
Globalization - p20+

Chapter 2 - Incentives Matter

Incentive - p23
Command vs. private property - p24
Free Rider problem - p24+
Incentives in Economic Systems - p27
Law of Unintended Consequences & Disincentives - p29+
Behavioral Economics - p34
Game theory & Prisoner's Dilemma - p34+
Externalities - p35
Trade & Quotas - p37
Taxation & Laffer curve - p38+
Deadweight Loss - p40
Tax Systems - p41

Chapter 3 - Government and the Economy

Externalities - p43+
Government solutions to externalities - p48+
Government makes market economies possible - p51+
Property Rights - p54
Public Goods & Free Riders - p57+
Redistribution - p59
Equity vs. Efficiency - p60

Chapter 4 - Government and the Economy II

Government inefficiency - p63
Gov't allocation vs. private allocation - p67
Effects of regulation - p69+
Economic Thinking - p72
Deadweight loss - p74
Taxes as regulation/Effects of taxation - p74+
Laffer Curve - p76
Effect of minimum wage - p77+

Chapter 5 - Economics of Information

Adverse Selection - p82+
Economics of Discrimination - p83+
Assymetry of Information - p84+
Screening mechanism - p89
Equality of information - p90+
Branding - p91
Perfect Competition - p92
Monopolistic Competition/Oligopoly - p92
Signaling - p93+

Chapter 6 - Productivity & Human Capital

Fantasy Spending - p98
Income Inequality - p99
Human Capital - p99+
Scarcity - p100
Human capital and job creation - p102+
Displacement - p104+
Productivity - p107
Standard of Living - p108
Rule of 72 - p109
Income Inequality - p111+
Zero sum game - p115

Chapter 7 - Financial Markets

Purposes of financial market - p118
Rules for investing - p119
Basis of financial instruments - p120+
Efficient Market theory - p129
Investment guidelines - p132+
Diversification - p134

Chapter 8 - The Power of Organized Interests

Incentives for interest groups - p138
Consumer/Producer Surplus & Taxes - p142
Price Ceilings and Floors - p142
Laissez faire economics - p143
Trade - p144+

Chapter 9 - Keeping Score

**Is not micro, will not be part of this course**

Chapter 10 - The Federal Reserve

**Is not micro, will not be part of this course**

Chapter 11 - Trade and Globalization

Benefits of trade - p187+
Globalization - p189
Economic interdependence - p189+
Absolute & Comparative Advantage - p190+
Losers from trade - p191
Protectionism - p193
Trade raises real income - p195
Tariffs - p195
Cultural Homogenization - p199
Externalities from trade - p200
Sweatshops - p201
Comp Adv of poor countries - p201

Chapter 12 - Development Economics

Wealth & Poverty of nations - p206+
What makes one country wealthy whan another isn't? - p208+
Property Rights - p209

Study Questions: (Feel free to answer here if you'd like some feedback from me and/or peers) :)

1) How has competition affected your life and in what ways? (p37) Are you better or worse off than your parents?

2) Name 5 underground economies created as a result of taxes. (p37)

3) "We know that people seek to make themselves better off, however they may define that. Our best hope for improving the human condition is to understand why we act the way twe do and then plan accordingly. Programs, organizations and systems work better when they get the incentives right." (p42). To predict outcomes in economics, we need to understand human behavior. What are some other "laws" of human behavior (like self-interest) that might help us understand the workings of the economy better?

4) On p56, the author describes government's institutions that "form the tracks on which capitalism runs". Find 5 of these institutions and describe their role in facilitating capitalist rules.

5) What are some other examples of information assymetry? (p85)

6) In a competitive market, there should be no profits. T/F and why?

7) What human capital do you possess?

8) Does our free-market economy make poverty inevitable?

Tuesday, November 06, 2007 students! :)

If you made it here, that means that you got the letter informing you of the need to read a book before class starts in January. This will give us more time to stay on the more difficult material in the class, rather than spending a lot of time at the beginning with unit one (which is only about 10% of the national exam material).

The blog is set up for my AP Micro students to chat and respond to problems that we might not have time for in class. You can also respond to each other.

The links over on the side might be helpful as we go through the semester. The blog will be part of your grade in the class.

I have added some links to give some info on the book. As of today, I still have many books available for chekcout. You may keep them through the national exam in May, but please don't write in them. The book is called "Naked Economics" by Charles Wheelan, and you are expected to have the book read by the time class starts, except for the two chapters on macro stuff...which I can't recall off the top of my head...

I'll post the study guide within a couple of weeks - this can help guide you through what's important to know in the book. You are also welcome to check out my book and see what I have highlighted as important, as well as any notes I've written in there. That might help you focus on important points.

The most important part is getting the information. I am not "tricking" you into reading parts of the book that aren't necessarily important. You'll have a quiz on content the first week of school. It would be virtually impossible for you to read the book the first few days of classes - it's just too much.

Enjoy! I'ts a pretty well-written layperson book that's pretty easy to read for an econ book. Don't get too used to the style...that's not how your text is. :) :)