• On Tulips and Bitcoin: Financial Bubbles Then and Now

    The more I hear Bitcoin discussed in everyday conversation as I'm standing in line at the store, the more I am convinced we've gotten ourselves stuck in a crazy time machine and have been plunked down onto the streets of Amsterdam in the 17th...
  • How Do Investment Banks Make Money?

    This video explains how Goldman Sachs made money back in 2010. Several financial issues are raised here: 1. What is the goal of the firm? What is the goal of an investment banking firm like Goldman Sachs? 2. What does it mean for Goldman Sachs to...
  • Why the Weakening US Dollar?

    This Financial Times video shows that the US dollar (USD) has been declining significantly this year, but the reason for the decline is not straightforward. The video offers one possible reason for the weak dollar: the Fed's low probability of raising...
  • Impact of Rising Rates on Financial Markets

    We've been in a low interest rate environment for so long that we aren't really sure what to expect when rates do finally start to rise. This infographic shows the historical impact of rising rates on stock and bond markets. For discussion:...
  • Nobel Laureate Richard Thaler on Nudges, Shoves, and Risk Management

    Richard Thaler is the winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize in Economics. From the NY Times (Oct 9, 2017): Richard H. Thaler, whose work has persuaded many economists to pay more attention to human behavior, and many governments to pay more attention to...
  • What Makes Markets Tick: The Rules of Adam Smith

    This Financial Times video reviews the rules of Adam Smith and what makes markets successful Rule #1. Markets work best when as many people as possible are involved Rule #2. Markets are most efficient when prices are transparent to many participants...
  • Should You Invest In This Market?

    The equity market has been climbing, and this video tells how investors are finally getting used to the idea. In fact, it claims that investors are learning to love this market where they have been nervous to join it so far For discussion What is...
  • The Tulip Bubble...Again

    Bonds have been going up, up, up. Just like tulips did back in the 1600s. From Investopedia: In 1593 tulips were brought from Turkey and introduced to the Dutch. The novelty of the new flower made it widely sought after and therefore fairly pricey...
  • How To Predict The Next Financial Crisis?

    Have we learned anything from the last 10 years? How can we protect ourselves from the next financial bubble? This Financial Times video points out a few rules of thumb to predict the next banking crisis: For discussion: What "myths" does...
  • Investing Long Term Rather than Focusing on Short Term Changes

    In this video interview, legendary investor Warren Buffett talks about the principles of investing for the long term rather than watching daily, short-term valuations. He also discusses the impact of negative rates and how these rates distort everything...
  • Wealth Distribution of American Families

    The new Fed Survey of Consumer Finances shows: 1. growth in family income and wealth since 2013 2. mean family income is higher than median income For discussion : What do the differences between mean and median family income tell us about how...
  • History of Retail Banks

    Back when the earth was young, banks were traditional brick-and-mortar institutions with many, many restrictions on how and where they could operate. Banks could not operate across state lines and could not pay market interest rates. Then came the deregulation...
  • The Meeting That Started the Federal Reserve

    This video from 2011 describes the meeting that took place on Jekyll Island, Georgia where the decentralized Federal Reserve system was mapped out. The controversial meeting had to be held in a remote location like Jekyll Island. For discussion What...
  • Functions of the Federal Reserve

    In the complex financial markets in which we operate, the central bank of the U.S., the Federal Reserve system, faces the great challenge of promoting the stability of the U.S. financial system. This video explains the primary responsibilities of the...
  • What is the IMF?

    From the IMF website: About the IMF The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an organization of 189 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable...
  • The Financial Crisis: Ten Years Later

    The last ten years of financial history are quite a blur. First, the rise of borrowing and structured products, followed by the fall of hedge funds and financial credit markets. This video from the Financial Times shows the story of financial market...
  • Financial Markets Over the Last 10 Years

    The low interest rates that we've seen over the last ten years were designed to get the economy back on its feet. To encourage consumers to borrow and spend, the Federal Reserve has been on a low interest rate path that has only recently begun its...
  • The Puzzle that is Inflation

    The Fed has a problem with inflation--that is a low inflation. This video explains the puzzle that is inflation. For discussion : 1. What is the Fed's goal with respect to inflation? 2. Why does inflation matter? 3. What factors might be causing...
  • The Financial Crisis: 10 Years Later

    This video is a series of snapshots of the financial crisis that shook the global financial markets in 2007. In it, you'll find sound bites of the failure of Northern Rock, the big British mortgage lender, Lehman Brothers, and more. From USA...
  • Black Swan Events in Recent History

    According to Nassim Taleb, people had always believed that swans were white. That is, until the discovery of Australia, when the first black swan was sighted. Taleb uses the metaphor of the bird to describe events that are so improbably, no one would...
  • The Coming Retirement Crisis

    Today, several factors contribute to the coming crisis in retirement systems: 1. People are living longer 2. We have smaller workforces to support retirees 3. Individual savings are lower than they should be 4. Individuals are not equipped to...
  • Struggling to Make Ends Meet at $90,000 Per Year

    Middle class is the families that earn between $50,000 and $150,000 per year, and though they should be earning enough to live comfortably they are actually living paycheck to paycheck. In the video below, two teachers earn a family income of approximately...
  • Why So Many Americans Have No Savings

    Could you meet a $400 emergency? 47% of respondents say that they can't meet the emergency without borrowing money. And they're embarrassed about it. This video with author Neal Gabler shows that this is a common situation among the American...
  • The Cost of Financial Stress

    Financial stress is one of the key destroyers of marriages and is the root of anxiety for many. The infographic below shows the behaviors surrounding financial stress, including: no savings no budget late payments of bills For discussion ...
  • What Does the Fed Do?

    The Federal Reserve follows two key goals, known as the "dual mandate." This dual mandate is explained by the Chicago Fed like this: Our two goals of price stability and maximum sustainable employment are known collectively as the "dual...