Money: It is the root of all evil but it also makes the world go round. People with a lot of money are uncomfortable talking about it, but those who have inherited it understand that having money without some purpose is soul sapping. Three new books in the Ford Library show how money changes ourselves and our world.
Sullivan, Paul. The thin green line : the money secrets of the super wealthy. Simon & Schuster, 2015.
According to business journalist Paul Sullivan, the thin green line is the difference between being rich (having a large income) and being wealthy (having more money than you need to live as you wish). He explains that someone who earns a high salary but spends it all in an extravagant lifestyle is not as well off as someone who lives in financial comfort and security, regardless of income. His book advises people on how to weigh the options in spending, saving, investing, paying taxes and giving money away (to children and to charities) — making financial choices that help people feel wealthy and secure.
This book is also available as an audiobook on Overdrive.
Vigna, Paul and Michael J. Casey. The age of cryptocurrency : how Bitcoin and digital money are challenging the global economic order. St. Martin’s Press, 2015.
Two Wall Street Journalists explain cryptocurrency as an open-source computer protocol, a new digital foundation for conducting business. Best known is six year old bitcoin, which has the potential to radically change the banking sector, allowing users to bypass traditional institutions, with their high fees, powerful elites and political corruption. Bitcoin eliminates the financial middleman in business transactions, reduces costs and increases transparency. Bitcoin also allows people without access to banks at all – women in developing countries, for example — to engage in commerce to improve their standard of living. While unlikely to replace traditional banking entirely, an unregulated and decentralized financial system is destined to be another option in the world’s payment infrastructure.
Sehgal, Kabir. Coined : the rich life of money and how its history has shaped us. Grand Central Publishing, 2015.
In 2008 author Kabir Sehgal worked on J.P.Morgan’s emerging markets desk in New York when the global financial crisis hit. As a personal project, he decided to learn about the root causes of the financial crisis, which led him to the work of well-known behavioral economists to help explain why money makes us act in bizarre and irrational ways. Sehgal’s research resulted in a new book, where he explains why we use money as a form of exchange; what physical forms money has taken through the ages; and how we use money as a symbol of value. The chapter on religion and money is especially enlightening.
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