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Publisher's Summary

From the chief economic commentator for the Financial Times, a brilliant tour d’horizon of the new global economy and its trajectory. There have been many books that have sought to explain the causes and courses of the financial and economic crisis which began in 2007-2008. The Shifts and the Shocks is not another detailed history of the crisis, but the most persuasive and complete account yet published of what the crisis should teach us about modern economies and economics. The audiobook identifies the origin of the crisis in the complex interaction between globalization, hugely destabilizing global imbalances and our dangerously fragile financial system. In the eurozone, these sources of instability were multiplied by the tragically defective architecture of the monetary union. It also shows how much of the orthodoxy that shaped monetary and financial policy before the crisis occurred was complacent and wrong. In doing so, it mercilessly reveals the failures of the financial, political and intellectual elites who ran the system. The book also examines what has been done to reform the financial and monetary systems since the worst of the crisis passed. "Are we now on a sustainable course?" Wolf asks. "The answer is no." He explains with great clarity why "further crises seem certain" and why the management of the eurozone in particular "guarantees a huge political crisis at some point in the future." Wolf provides far more ambitious and comprehensive plans for reform than any currently being implemented. Written with all the intellectual command and trenchant judgment that have made Martin Wolf one of the world’s most influential economic commentators, The Shifts and the Shocks matches impressive analysis with no-holds-barred criticism and persuasive prescription for a more stable future. It is a book no one with an interest in global affairs will want to neglect.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your My Library section along with the audio.
©2014 Martin Wolf (P)2014 Gildan Media LLC

What members say

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Philo
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • 01-08-15

Good on Europe's problems, fair global update

The Gordian knot entangling the Euro members is fascinating and well explicated. This author's prescriptions strike me as pretty straightforward neo-(neo-) Keynesian, but I wouldn't let that dissuade me from hearing him out. He does at least roughly map a lot of areas that need vigilance -- we are not (ever) out of the woods.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

We have lots of problems

Although I found this book harder to read and understand compared with Thomas Pikettys Capital in the 21st century, it does a good job of explaining realistic approaches to try and solve the worlds economic problems. In large parts its solutions are based on Keynesian growth models and does a good job destroying the myths about why doing nothing to solve financial crises do not work. However as a reader with only an average understanding of financial markets, I found the book at times difficult to understand and boring.
The book has however made me feel depressed as its solutions seem along way from being introduced throughout the world and so instability, violence and turmoil seem likely.

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Good book, well written as usual.

Well written, as one can expect from Martin Wolf. He is an excellent synthesizer of different schools of thought. However, he does have the typical Englishman view of European integration: doesn't understamd what binds Europeans together. It's the Politics, silly.

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Powerful analysis

definitive analysis of the crisis. Hard to follow for the nonexpert. But crucial read on how the crisis started and what to do now.

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Don't waist your time on this book

Would you try another book from Martin Wolf and/or Sean Pratt?

No.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Some insightful great biographic books

Would you be willing to try another one of Sean Pratt’s performances?

No. Not at all.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Shifts and the Shocks?

Do more homework to analyze and probe the reasons / fundamental of financial crises .rather than gather old news , repeat phenomenons with useless critics. A book with no depth

1 of 8 people found this review helpful