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“The back story on front page economics.” These accessible essays cover the basics of economic topics, with a separate version for use in the classroom. Special “Focus on Finance” essays cover personal finance.

Posted 2015-12-01

College: Learning the Skills To Pay the Bills?

by Scott A. Wolla

It’s often said that a college degree is the key to future success. Choosing to attend college is a major decision for young people. But why is a degree so important? This issue of Page One Economics examines two economic models used to study how education, productivity, and income are related.

Posted 2015-11-02

Peer-to-Peer Lending

by Katherine Ren

This lesson received the 2017 Excellence in Financial Literacy Education (EIFLE) Award for Education Program of the Year.

Where can borrowers get loans when banks and credit unions aren’t an option? Maybe a low credit score, lack of collateral, or small loan amount don’t fit with large lending sources. The November issue of Page One Economics: Focus on Finance describes a growing trend—peer-to-peer lending—as an alternative for borrowers and potential investment opportunity for lenders.

Posted 2015-10-01

What’s in Your Market Basket? Why Your Inflation Rate Might Differ from the Average

by Scott A. Wolla

Does it feel like your dollars go as far as they used to? If not, how does that mesh when reports say inflation rates are lower than average? The October issue of Page One Economics explains the disconnect between what you might experience as a consumer and what the data show.

Posted 2015-05-01

Falling Oil Prices Create Winners and Losers

by Scott A. Wolla

Oil prices affect the U.S. economy in many ways. For example, fluctuations in the price of oil can influence inflation, unemployment, and disposable income. Some local economies with close ties to the oil industry, however, are affected even more directly in both positive and negative ways. This essay covers one recent example of the local impact of oil prices.

Posted 2015-04-01

From Coins to Big Bucks: The Evolution of General-Purpose Reloadable Prepaid Cards

by Jeannette N. Bennett

This lesson received the 2017 Excellence in Financial Literacy Education (EIFLE) Award for Education Program of the Year.

Prepaid cards were invented to solve a problem: replacing coin usage in pay telephones. Since then, prepaid cards have evolved into a huge competitive market for general-purpose reloadable (GPR) prepaid cards. Read more about GPR prepaid cards in the inaugural edition of Page One Economics: Focus on Finance.

Posted 2015-03-01

Is a Strong Dollar Better than a Weak Dollar?

by Scott A. Wolla

"Strong" is usually preferred over "weak." But for the value of a country's currency, it's not that simple. "Strong" isn't always better, and "weak" isn't always worse. Learn more about foreign exchange rates in the March 2015 newsletter—”"Is a Strong Dollar Better than a Weak Dollar?"

Posted 2015-01-01

Would a Gold Standard Brighten Economic Outcomes?

by Scott A. Wolla

This lesson received the 2016 Curriculum Gold Award from the National Association of Economic Educators.

Historically, money was made of either valuable commodities such as gold or silver coins or pieces of paper (bills) representing these commodities. The United States severed its last official monetary link to gold in 1971. The January 2015 Page One Economics Newsletter describes some of the advantages and disadvantages of the gold standard.

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