Recommended Books

Please take a look at these outstanding business books.

The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumphs in the West and Fails Everywhere Else  by Hernando De Soto

“The hour of capitalism’s greatest triumph,” writes Hernando de Soto, “is, in the eyes of four-fifths of humanity, its hour of crisis.” In The Mystery of Capital, the world-famous Peruvian economist takes up the question that, more than any other, is central to one of the most crucial problems the world faces today: Why do some countries succeed at capitalism while others fail? In strong opposition to the popular view that success is determined by cultural differences, de Soto finds that it actually has everything to do with the legal structure of property and property rights. Every developed nation in the world at one time went through the transformation from predominantly informal, extralegal ownership to a formal, unified legal property system. In the West we’ve forgotten that creating this system is also what allowed people everywhere to leverage property into wealth. This persuasive book will revolutionize our understanding of capital and point the way to a major transformation of the world economy. ISBN-10: 0465016154

Aftershock: The Next Economy and America’s Future by Robert B. Reich

Aftershock is a brilliant reading of the causes of our current economic crisis, with a plan for dealing with its challenging aftermath. When the nation’s economy foundered in 2008, blame was directed almost universally at Wall Street bankers. But Robert B. Reich, one of our most experienced and trusted voices on public policy, suggests another reason for the meltdown. Our real problem, he argues, lies in the increasing concentration of wealth in the hands of the richest Americans, while stagnant wages and rising costs have forced the middle class to go deep into debt. Reich’s thoughtful and detailed account of where we are headed over the next decades—and how we can fix our economic system—is a practical, humane, and much-needed blueprint for restoring America’s economy and rebuilding our society. ISBN-10: 0307476332

Aftershock: Protect Yourself and Profit in the Next Global Financial Meltdown by  Robert A. Wiedemer

From the authors who accurately predicted the domino fall of the conjoined real estate, stock, and private debt bubbles that led to the financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, now comes the definitive look at what is still ahead in 2012 and beyond—and what investors can do right now to protect themselves.

Based on the authors’ unmatched track record of precise predictions in the two landmark books America’s Bubble Economy and Aftershock, this Second Edition of Aftershock updates the original book by more than 35 percent with fresh analysis of the latest economic developments, plus offers new in-depth advice for how readers can prepare now for protection and profits in the next global money meltdown. ISBN-10: 0470918144

Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism by Ha-Joon Chang

Using irreverent wit, an engagingly personal style, and a battery of examples, Chang blasts holes in the “World I s Flat” orthodoxy of T homas Friedman and other liberal economists who argue that only unfettered capitalism and wide-open international trade can lift struggling nations out of poverty. On the contrary, Chang shows, today’s economic superpowers—from the U .S. to Britain to his native Korea—all attained prosperity by shameless protectionism and government intervention in industry. We have conveniently forgotten this fact, telling ourselves a fairy tale about the magic of free trade and—via our proxies such as the World Bank, I nternational Monetary Fund, and World T rade Organization—ramming policies that suit ourselves down the throat of the developing world. ISBN-10: 1596915986

The Lights in the Tunnel: Automation, Accelerating Technology and the Economy of the Future by Martin Ford

What will the economy of the future look like? Where will advancing technology, job automation, outsourcing and globalization lead? This groundbreaking book by a Silicon Valley computer engineer explores these questions and shows how accelerating technology is likely to have a highly disruptive influence on our economy in the near future–and may well already be a significant factor in the current global crisis. THE LIGHTS IN THE TUNNEL employs a powerful thought experiment to explore the economy of the future. An imaginary “tunnel of lights” is used to visualize the economic implications of the new technologies that are likely to appear in the coming years and decades. The book directly challenges conventional views of the future and illuminates the danger that lies ahead if we do not plan for the impact of rapidly advancing technology. It also shows how the economic realities of the future might offer solutions to issues such as poverty and climate change. ISBN-10: 1448659817

Crisis Economics: A Crash Course in the Future of Finance by Nouriel Roubini

Renowned economist Nouriel Roubini electrified the financial community by predicting the current crisis before others in his field saw it coming. This myth-shattering book reveals the methods he used to foretell the current crisis and shows how those methods can help us make sense of the present and prepare for the future. Using an unconventional blend of historical analysis with masterful knowledge of global economics, Nouriel Roubini and Stephen Mihm, a journalist and professor of economic history, present a vital and timeless book that proves calamities to be not only predictable but also preventable and, with the right medicine, curable. SBN-10: 014311963X

Race Against the Machine: How the Digital Revolution is Accelerating Innovation, Driving Productivity, and Irreversibly Transforming Employment and the Economy by Erik Brynjoifsson

A popular explanation right now is that the root cause underlying these symptoms is technological stagnation– a slowdown in the kinds of ideas and inventions that bring progress and prosperity. In Race Against the Machine, MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee present a very different explanation. Drawing on research by their team at the Center for Digital Business, they show that there’s been no stagnation in technology — in fact, the digital revolution is accelerating. Recent advances are the stuff of science fiction: computers now drive cars in traffic, translate between human languages effectively, and beat the best human Jeopardy! players.

As these examples show, digital technologies are rapidly encroaching on skills that used to belong to humans alone. This phenomenon is both broad and deep, and has profound economic implications. Many of these implications are positive; digital innovation increases productivity, reduces prices (sometimes to zero), and grows the overall economic pie.

But digital innovation has also changed how the economic pie is distributed, and here the news is not good for the median worker. As technology races ahead, it can leave many people behind. Workers whose skills have been mastered by computers have less to offer the job market, and see their wages and prospects shrink. Entrepreneurial business models, new organizational structures and different institutions are needed to ensure that the average worker is not left behind by cutting-edge machines.

In Race Against the Machine Brynjolfsson and McAfee bring together a range of statistics, examples, and arguments to show that technological progress is accelerating, and that this trend has deep consequences for skills, wages, and jobs. The book makes the case that employment prospects are grim for many today not because there’s been technology has stagnated, but instead because we humans and our organizations aren’t keeping up. ISBN-10: 0984725113