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Irrational Exuberance

Narrated by: Robert J. Shiller
Length: 5 hrs and 53 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (39 ratings)

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Summary

In this bold and potentially urgent volume, Robert J. Shiller, a respected expert on market volatility, offers an unconventional interpretation of recent U.S. stock market highs and shows that Alan Greenspan's term "irrational exuberance" is a good description of the mood behind the market. He warns that poorer performance may be in the offing and tells us how we - as a society and individually - can respond.

Shiller credits an unprecedented confluence of events with driving stocks to uncharted heights. He analyzes the structural and psychological factors that explain why the Dow Jones Industrial Average tripled between 1994 and 1999, a level of growth not reflected in any other sector of the economy. In contrast to many analysts, Shiller stresses circumstances that alter investors' perceptions of the market. These include the entry of the Internet into American homes, the misimpression that the aging of the baby-boom generation builds long-term protection into the market, and herd behavior, such as day-trading. He also examines cultural factors, including sports-style media coverage of the Dow's ups and downs and "new era" thinking about the economy. He considers - and challenges - efforts to rationalize exuberance that are based on either efficient-markets theory, narrowly construed, or the claim that investors have only recently learned the true value of the market.

Irrational Exuberance is a must-listen for individual investors as well as investment professionals, pension-plan sponsors, and endowment managers everywhere. It will be studied by policy makers and anyone from Wall Street to Main Street who doesn't want to be caught sitting on the speculative bubble if (or when) it bursts.

©2000 Robert J. Shiller
(P)2000 Random House, Inc

Critic reviews

Nominee for Audio Publishers Association 2001 Audie Award, Business Information
"No one has explored the strange behavior of the American investor in the 1990s with more authority..." The New York Times

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My mistake - audioer beware!

I clicked this into my library without realising a) that it was abridged and b) that it is the 2000 edition not the 2005 revised edition. In other words, in my appreciation this purchase is a complete mistake. Why would the 2000 edition even still be in stock, once the post-2001 crash version is available? I'm going to try and send this book back.

22 people found this helpful

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  • Mr
  • 18-01-18

Sensible and thought-proviking analysis of markets

This book was written just before the dot com crash of 2000-2002, which lends force to it's prophetic arguments against the complacent assumptions that dominated discussion of the markets at that time. Although inevitably much has changed since then, it's still worth a buy and a listen since many of the ideas that were fueling excess optimism in 2000 have started to be heard again, and whether or not you think there are direct parallels to be drawn to the present, the book is a persuasive caution against group-think in investing.

The author reads his own work, which IMO was perhaps not the best choice.

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  • Timothy
  • 23-09-04

Very academic, but thorough and informative

This audiobook is not for the faint of heart!

This is an academic overiew of behavioral finance. Not as thorough as a textbook, but it has the same flavor. With the acadmic perspective without the thoroughnes of an academic text, it reads like a litnay of hypothesis about the 'irrationality' of the stock market interspersed with anecdotal statistics and historical examples.

The book has a very one-sided view of the central controversy in the economics of Finance, which is the rationlity of the financial markets. His strong endorsement of behavorial finance and emphatic rejection of Efficient Market Theory detract from the power of some of the hypothesis he puts forward.

Because it is abridged, I cannot say if the book lost much in the abridgement. Being read by the author (a Yale economics professor), I would hope that this version keeps the essence of the unabridged text.

If you can survive what seems, at times, an interminable academic lecture, this book does offer lots of facts and insights useful to understanding how the financial markets funtion.

7 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • chris m.
  • 18-04-05

in plain english

great explanation of "what happened" during the bubble years and a must hear for anyone that invests.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Ramesh
  • 28-02-05

A good introduction to Market behaviour

I listened to the book twice, only to digest the material once again.
It was very captivating to see how complex things are and how people
try to explain in very simplistic terms. I wish I had listened to
this book even earlier as it is a necessary book (in my opinion) to
one's own understanding of investing and its rewards.

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  • Dan Murphy
  • 07-03-20

Annoying glitch 80% in

Near the 5 hrs mark, the audible version gets choppy and scratchy. It was pretty annoying, so I downloaded the book again and I still had the same issue:/

It also doesn’t help that Dr. Schiller speaks with barely any personality.

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  • eclass
  • 13-05-20

Excellent

Excellent book to learn about market fundamentals and bubbles. Must read for any investor who wants to learn more about the market.

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  • Robert J. Kuster
  • 20-03-20

A very timely book

As I have been listening to Shiller’s book I’m blown away by its relevance to what’s going on today.
When will we learn!

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  • Nas
  • 19-03-20

The best book I have ever heard on investing

Is Robert Shiller a modern day Nostradamus? Given how things have played out since he wrote this book in March 2000, it certainly seems like it.

The writing and reading are excellent. He has a dry wit that is very enjoyable and a thorough academic style that digs in right to the heart of the issues.

He elegantly dismantles the efficient market hypothesis.

This is a must read book.

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  • Rikard Öhman
  • 10-02-20

Great content, ok but not great narration.

This book is a must read/listen for all investors and/or economists. Robert Shiller describes in a very rational way the occational folly by the masses which creates investing bubbels in the economy.
During certain sections the narration is a bit lackluster but overall a decent performance.

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  • Philip S.
  • 06-12-18

Great insights

Professor Shiller provides insights that are as applicable today as they were 18 years ago. While a brilliant mind, he is not the most engaging with his reading performance.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-09-18

A new perspective

the author presents great data supports his conclusions. most of his claims are well informed and makes for an interesting book.

could have used a better narrator