The credit crunch and ensuing financial crisis showed just how volatile the financial markets can be. Even slight movements in market prices can have substantial effects on national economies, businesses and institutional investors such as pension funds. Individual investors, meanwhile, face choices among highly complex financial products that are increasingly difficult to get to grips with. Astute use of the financial markets can make all the difference to the bottom line. But in order to act astutely you must understand what you are doing.
The Guide to Financial Markets provides a clear explanation of the different markets. It goes well beyond stocks and bonds to explain the purposes and uses of equity futures and options, securitised instruments, and innovations such as the credit derivatives that can help manage risk but can also prove toxic when not used carefully. And so for anyone who wants a good understanding of:
why markets matter
international fixed-income markets
futures and options markets
there is no better reference source than this fully revised and updated fifth edition of the Guide to Financial Markets.
Marc Levinson is a former finance and economics editor of The Economist. He was previously a senior writer at Newsweek and more recently spent ten years as an economist at JPMorgan Chase. He has published widely on economic subjects in such journals as Harvard Business Review and Foreign Affairs, and is currently senior fellow in international business at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.