I had no formal training in economics when I was sent this book at the start of a course on business economics, and it has proven an excellent companion to the course notes. This is very much a practical exposition as to how mainstream economic theory may aid business people - it does not explore the history of economic thought, nor does it explain the distinctive thoughts of or even refer to any of the great economists - not Smith, Ricardo, Keynes nor Friedman.
The book's 14 chapters include subjects as diverse as the production possibility frontier, price and demand elasticity, market operation, competition, monopoly and strategic rivalry before going on to consider macroeconomics and the global economy.
There are all the diagrams beloved of economics lecturers, excellent examples, all of which are reasonably contemporaneous, this edition of the book having been published in 2006. At the end of each chapter there are summaries, checklists, questions and exercises, and the whole thing is backed up by an "online learning centre" with additional materials. It is written with a sense of humour - you get a sense that Messrs Begg and Ward's lectures must be quite entertaining. The section on credit creation, for example, is based around a scenario of over-expensive nights out clubbing, and student overdrafts in the morning being funded from the club owner's takings from the night before.
This is an interesting book that will equip readers with a practical economic understanding and vocabulary. For me, a chapter on the development of economic thought, of Keynsianism, monetarism, Austrian libertarianism and perhaps even Marxism would have rounded it off. The authors may well have considered those subjects to be beyond the requirements of business practitioners, but it would have helped readers to understand the world in late 2008 where we are being told that "we are all Keynsians now", and given a national debt to match!
on 9 December 2008
An easy to read, concise guide to essential economics for business and MBA students. Explains such gems as why there are lots of kebab and pizza shops around universities.
Only complaint I could possibly have is that it glosses over some topics, but it's hard to combine conciseness with thoroughness.
on 12 January 2012
I have got this book from my friend MBA student, read it and enjoyed it. What I liked about the book is that it is relatively easy to read and also it is full of British examples which I can refer to.
Even better ifs:
* I must admit following some graphs & a few ideas was very difficult;
* It would benefit from more practical cases and advice.
But, on balance, it is still a 'five' because I took lots of interesting ideas from the book and had lots of 'Ha' moments.
on 26 January 2012
This textbook is amazing. It is very easy to understand and economic concepts are clearly explained through real-world examples and graphs which make the whole studying process a real pleasure. It'd be perfect if it treated topics a little bit in more depth, but I would definitely recommend it as an introductory text. Really helpful and a great study-buddy!