Book Bits | 5.04.13

The Coming Bond Market Collapse: How to Survive the Demise of the U.S. Debt Market
By Michael G. Pento
Summary via publisher, Wiley
America is rapidly approaching a financial apocalypse far exceeding the devastation caused by the 2007 housing bubble burst and subsequent Great Recession. The country is in the final stages of the biggest asset bubble in history: U.S. Treasury debt. When this bubble bursts, a massive interest rate shock will send the U.S. government and the consumer economy into bankruptcy, an event with repercussions that will be felt throughout the global economy. In this economic expert’s new book, The Coming Bond Market Collapse: How to Survive the Demise of the U.S. Debt Market, Michael G. Pento explains how the bubble was created, what we can do to ameliorate the crisis and how investors can protect themselves regardless of what economic condition prevails.

What I Learned Losing a Million Dollars
By Jim Paul and Brendan Moynihan
Summary via publisher, Columbia University Press
Jim Paul’s meteoric rise took him from a small town in Northern Kentucky to Governor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, yet he lost it all—his fortune, his reputation, and his job—in one fatal moment of excessive economic hubris. In this honest, frank analysis, Paul and Brendan Moynihan revisit the events that led up to Paul’s disastrous decision and examine the psychological factors behind bad financial practices in a number of economic sectors.
Any Way You Slice It: The Past, Present, and Future of Rationing
By Stan Cox
Interview with author via WNYC/The Brian Lehrer Show
Stan Cox, a senior scientist at The Land Institute in Salina, Kansas and the author of Any Way You Slice It: The Past, Present, and Future of Rationing, looks at how goods and services have been, and are now, rationed and asks if we can limit consumption fairly.
The Art of Value Investing: How the World’s Best Investors Beat the Market
By John Heins and Whitney Tilson
Summary via publisher, Wiley
Based on interviews with the world’s most-successful value investors, The Art of Value Investing offers a comprehensive set of answers to the questions every equity money manager should have thought through clearly before holding himself or herself out as a worthy steward of other people’s money. What market inefficiencies will I try to exploit? How will I generate ideas? What will be my geographic focus? What analytical edge will I hope to have? What valuation methodologies will I use? What time horizon will I typically employ? How many stocks will I own? How specifically will I decide to buy or sell? Will I hedge, and how? How will I keep my emotions from getting the best of me?
The Power Surge: Energy, Opportunity, and the Battle for America’s Future
By Michael Levi
Reference via Quartz
In Michael Levi’s new book, The Power Surge: Energy, Opportunity, and the Battle for America’s Future, we read that much of the passion behind today’s US mantra of “energy independence” is an effort to claw back a remembered sense of control from the pre-1973 days. Americans wish to “get off foreign oil” because they believe that the good old days will follow. But, cautions Levi, events aren’t necessarily going to turn out that way.
The US seems likely to produce a lot more oil, perhaps even a volume nearing or meeting self-sufficiency, Levi says. If so, it will be thanks to a boom in volumes from two sources—the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, and shale in places like North Dakota. But an age of plenty will trigger corresponding steps by other nations to neutralize perceived adverse impacts on themselves. Geopolitically–in terms of the financial burden of patrolling the world’s sea lanes, for instance—Americans are likely to be right back where they started, meaning footing the bill for a global Navy. The Pacific is the same—the US is highly unlikely to pull back from its robust security presence despite China’s wish that it stop.
The End of Ethics and A Way Back: How To Fix A Fundamentally Broken Global Financial System
By Theodore Roosevelt Malloch and Jordan Mamorsky
Summary via publisher, Wiley
From Ponzi schemes to the credit crisis to the real estate bubble, the financial industry seems to have lost its way on the road to riches. As private greed continues to undermine the public good, one might wonder what ever happened to business ethics. And how can we reform the global financial system to benefit everyone, rather than just the very lucky few? In The End of Ethics and the Way Back, the bestselling author of Doing Virtuous Business teams up with attorney and Yale University Postdoctoral Fellow, Jordan Mamorsky to examine the most recent failures of business virtue, prudence, and governance—from Bernie Madoff to Jon Corzine and MF Global—before offering a set of structural and holistic solutions for our current ethical crisis in global finance.
The Economic Impacts of Natural Disasters
Edited by Debarati Guha-Sapir, et al.
Summary via publisher, Oxford University Press
Since the turn of the millennium, more than one million people have been killed and 2.3 billion others have been directly affected by natural disasters around the world. In cases like the 2010 Haiti earthquake or the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami, these disasters have time and time again wrecked large populations and national infrastructures. While recognizing that improved rescue, evacuation, and disease control are crucial to reducing the effects of natural disasters, in the final analysis, poverty remains the main risk factor determining the long-term impact of natural hazards. Furthermore, natural disasters have themselves a tremendous impact on the poorest of the poor, who are often ill-prepared to deal with natural hazards and for whom a hurricane, an earthquake, or a drought can mean a permanent submersion in poverty. The Economic Impacts of Natural Disasters focuses on these concerns for poverty and vulnerability. Written by a collection of esteemed scholars in disaster management and sustainable development, the report provides an overview of the general trends in natural disasters and their effects by focusing on a critical analysis of different methodologies used to assess the economic impact of natural disasters.