This book puts economics to work on the daily problems faced by investors, traders, speculators and brokers as they wrestle with increasingly complex financial markets. Drawing on data direct from the financial behavior of households, corporations, and governments, through to the prices of individual securities, the authors show how accessible but rigorous economics can help the players make sense of the hour-by-hour reality of the way financial markets move. Many of the twists and turns that might seem random at first sight are, they contend, rational and often predictable. But inefficiencies do exist, and the authors also demonstrate how these can become unique profit opportunities. By bringing together information on the daily workings of financial markets with the concepts and tools of economics, Houthakker and Williamson have provided a valuable resource for practitioners and students alike.