Ask a new question and you will learn new things

Wall St. & Main St., 2008

Our initial questions, week 4:

  • What do we need to learn in order to learn?
  • What in the relationship between the economy, Wall St., and Main St.?
  • What kind of rippling effect is it going to have?
  • What is the relationship  between now and the Great Depression?
  • If capitalism is dead, now what?
  • What is capitalism?  Is it creative destruction?

a  10/7/08 update: Committee to Hold Hearings on Collapse of Lehman Brothers and AIG; live streaming and archived video available via

a  Some sites for updates & reading: The Nation (progressive commentary); Cato (“public policy based on individual liberty, limited government, free markets, and peaceful international relations”); Wall Street Journal; BBC (UK/European); Washington Post; the Pope.

a  On our ongoing question — what does a “point” mean on the DJIA? If the Dow Jones drops 399 “points,” what does that mean, exactly? —

Dow Jones Industrial Average – DJIA
The DJIA is calculated by adding the closing prices of the component stocks and using a divisor that is adjusted for splits and stock dividends equal to 10% or more of the market value of an issue as well as substitutions and mergers. The average is quoted in points, not in dollars.

NYSE Composite Index – NYSE
The NYSE Composite Index – (NYSE) is a market value-weighted index which relates all NYSE stocks to an aggregate market value as of Dec. 31, 1965, adjusted for capitalization changes. The base value of the index is $50 and point changes are expressed in dollars and cents.

a  From Liz: This isn’t nearly as high-class as the Wall Street Journal, or informative as NPR, but it vaguely pertains to the writing we just did.

a  From Frank: Below is the link for the episode of “This American Life” for Wednesday. you can listen to the episode for free online, or read the transcript. Copy and paste it into your browser.
The episode is number 355, and entitled “The Giant Pool of Money”
Here is the link for the transcript

a  From James“Subprime woes to hit student loans” hope it is useful!
[also see “With no way out of trouble, more students likely to default” from the Seattle Times — mm]

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