Magazine article Economic Trends

The Economy in Perspective

Magazine article Economic Trends

The Economy in Perspective

Article excerpt

People often ask me to recommend books about economics but now, with the onset of summer, I am getting requests for "beach books" on the dismal science. I certainly can relate--you can't just take a pass on macroeconomics for an entire season, yet you want something that won't give you a headache when you are out all afternoon in the sun. So here are my recommendations for books with an economics theme--for your summer reading pleasure:

Quayle's Quandary is the eighth novel in Chris Cournot's thriller series about everyone's favorite government crusader, Casey Quayle. The story opens with a ceremony at which the Treasury Department bestows on the hero its highest honor for valor, which he earned by thwarting a hedge fund managers' plot to slip self-serving language into pending tax legislation (read book seven, Quayle's Query). Through a series of circumstances not to be divulged here, the president decides to nominate Quayle as the next Secretary of the Treasury.

The night before his Senate hearing, Quayle sits at his desk, reminiscing about his career and looking back at his numerous studies. He skims through his path-breaking report on foreign exchange markets, the study that propelled him into prominence (read book one, Qualye's Quagmire), and there he finds--egad!--a computational flaw. He double-checks his calculations, but there is no escape--his original conclusion is simply wrong. Like the ethical man that he is, he vows to come clean in tomorrow's hearing. But there is a problem: He knows that the day after the hearing, the Republic of China plans to announce its decision to freely float the renminbi instead of pegging it to the dollar--and that their decision rests on the persuasiveness of his report. If he disavows the report's conclusion, the Chinese government will surely change its plan. How will Quayle resolve the tension between his country's welfare and his own honor? This spellbinding story of intrigue and deception features a complex web of characters engaged in naked trades and dirty floats. As Cournot turns up the heat, make sure you keep applying your sunblock--the time will fly

Another novel on my beach-reading list is Legally Bland, by Elinor Ely. …

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