Book Bits | 28 July 2018

Investing in the Trump Era: How Economic Policies Impact Financial Markets
By Nicholas P. Sargen
Summary via publisher (Palgrave Macmillan)
In the wake of the 2016 U.S. presidential election, investors and the electorate alike are seeking clarity on a wide range of macro policy issues that will impact the economy and markets in the years ahead. The primary goal of this book is to provide an objective source for investors to learn about economic policy issues that surfaced. Topics include long-term growth, the federal budget deficit, healthcare reform, tax reform, regulatory policies affecting the financial system and environment, the nexus of monetary, exchange rate and trade policies, and globalization. The book explains how these issues have evolved, considers arguments from both sides of the political divide, and draws upon evidence from studies by experts in the respective areas.

Precarious Lives: Job Insecurity and Well-Being in Rich Democracies
By Arne L. Kalleberg
Summary via publisher (Polity)
Employment relations in advanced, post-industrial democracies have become increasingly insecure and uncertain as the risks associated with work are being shifted from employers and governments to workers.Arne L. Kalleberg sets out to examine the impact of the liberalization of labor markets and welfare systems on the growth of precarious work and job insecurity for indicators of well-being such as economic insecurity, family formation and happiness, in six advanced capitalist democracies: the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Spain, and Denmark. This insightful cross-national analysis demonstrates how active labor market policies and generous social welfare systems can help to protect workers and give employers latitude as they seek to adapt to the rise of national and global competition and the rapidity of sweeping technological changes.

Life After Google: The Fall of Big Data and the Rise of the Blockchain Economy
By George Gilder
Review via FT
“Google is not just a company,” writes Gilder, “it is a system of the world and it is cracking under the weight of this ideology.”
Gilder states that his book makes the opposing case to the “hyperventilating haruspices” Yuval Harari, historian and author of Homo Sapiens, Google’s founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, and Tesla founder Elon Musk. They, he says, see a world-changing AI juggernaut. But it is “an industrial regime at the end of its rope”.

The Case for a Maximum Wage
By Sam Pizzigati
Summary via publisher (Polity)
Modern societies set limits, on everything from how fast motorists can drive to how much waste factory owners can dump in our rivers. But incomes in our deeply unequal world have no limits. Many of our largest corporations pay their executives more in a morning than their workers can earn in a year.Could capping top incomes tackle our rising inequality more effectively than conventional approaches to narrowing our vast economic divides? In this engaging book, leading analyst Sam Pizzigati details how egalitarians worldwide are demonstrating that a “maximum wage” could be both economically viable and politically practical.

Technical Analysis of Stock Trends (11th ed.)
By Robert D. Edwards, John Magee, W.H.C. Bassetti
Summary via publisher (CRC Press)
This revised and updated version of the best-selling book, Technical Analysis of Stock Trends, 10th Edition, presents proven long- and short-term stock trend analysis enabling investors to make smart, profitable trading decisions. The book covers technical theory such as The Dow Theory, reversal patterns, consolidation formations, trends and channels, technical analysis of commodity charts, and advances in investment technology. The book also includes a comprehensive guide to trading tactics from long and short goals, stock selection, charting, low and high risk, trend recognition tools, balancing and diversifying the stock portfolio, application of capital, and risk management. This sharpened and updated new edition offers patterns and charts that are tighter and more illustrative, including modifiable charts. Expanded material will be offered on Pragmatic Portfolio Theory as a more elegant alternative to Modern Portfolio Theory; and a newer, simpler, and more powerful alternative to Dow Theory is presented.

Monopoly Restored: How the Super-Rich Robbed Main Street
By Jack Lawrence Luzkow
Summary via publisher (Polity)
This book is a work of contemporary economic history focusing primarily on the US and the UK. It shows that, historically, much of the wealth of the ultra-wealthy has been based on inheritance, tax evasion, political influence, or wage theft. Today, much of the wealth of the rentier class—the super-rich—is based on income from ownership or control of scarce assets, or assets artificially made scarce. As a result, the super-rich reap much of their wealth from patents, monopolies, and subsidies. Their banks retain the right to speculate on risky derivatives, and their credit-card companies are not limited by usury laws that reduce interest rates. The super-rich have lowered (or escaped) inheritance taxes, shifted much of their income to lower taxed capital gains, practiced wage theft, fought minimum wage laws, outsourced jobs, and resorted to temps and contract labor to avoid unions and decent wages. They use tax havens where trillions of dollars remain untaxed, transfer profits of their intellectual and financial property to subsidiaries in low-tax regimes, and defend for-profit health insurance that is unaffordable and inequitable for millions.

Principles of Financial Modelling: Model Design and Best Practices Using Excel and VBA
By Michael Rees
Summary via publisher (Wiley)
Principles of Financial Modelling – Model Design and Best Practices Using Excel and VBAcovers the full spectrum of financial modelling tools and techniques in order to provide practical skills that are grounded in real-world applications. Based on rigorously-tested materials created for consulting projects and for training courses, this book demonstrates how to plan, design and build financial models that are flexible, robust, transparent, and highly applicable to a wide range of planning, forecasting and decision-support contexts. This book integrates theory and practice to provide a high-value resource for anyone wanting to gain a practical understanding of this complex and nuanced topic.