In March 2000, Yale economist Robert Shiller published Irrational Exuberance, a book that warned that the long-running bull market was a bubble. Weeks later, the market cracked and Shiller was the new guru. Fast forward a few years, and Shiller released a second edition of the same book, this time arguing that the housing market was the latest and greatest bubble. We all know how that prediction played out.
Unlike most of the financial industry, Shiller isn't locked into a perennially bullish view, bent on pumping the market despite what the real numbers suggest. And that should give students, whether young or old, some confidence in his free course simply called "Financial Markets." Available on the web in multiple formats (YouTube – iTunes Audio – iTunes Video - Yale Web Site), the 26 lecture-course covers the inner-workings of financial institutions that ideally "support people in their productive ventures" and help them manage economic risks. You can start with Lecture 1 here. Above, we present his introductory lecture on Stocks.
Finally (and separately) you can get Shiller's thoughts on how to handle America's big debt mess here. It was recorded in recent days.
Shiller's course appears in the Economics section of our big collection of Free Online Courses. 385 courses in total. Don't miss them.