Economic Works Masterlist

The following is a list of works that anyone who is interested in the field of economics should read in order to understand events, ideologies, and models.

The Essentials

  • The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
  • Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest & Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics by Henry Hazlitt
  • The General Theory of Employment, Interest, and Money by John Maynard Keynes
  • Human Action by Ludwig von Mises
  • Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman
  • Das Kapital by Karl Marx
  • Principles of Political Economy and Taxation by David Ricarcdo
  • The Road to Serfdom by F.A. Hayek
  • Basic Economics by Thomas Sowell
  • Free to Choose: A Personal Statement by Milton Friedman

The Ideas

  • “The Nature of the Firm” by Ronald Coase
  • Essays in Positive Economics by Milton Friedman
  • “The Problem of Social Cost” by Ronald Coase
  • Progress and Poverty by Henry George
  • “I, Pencil” by Leonard Read
  • Irrational Exuberance by Robert J. Shiller
  • Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty
  • Theory of Games and Economic Behaviour by John von Neumann and Oskar Morgenstern
  • In Defence of Global Capitalism by Johan Norberg
  • “Capital asset prices: A theory of market equilibrium under conditions of risk” by William F. Sharpe
  • The Theory of Industrial Organization by Jean Tirole
  • Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again by Donald J. Trump
  • Foundations of Economic Analysis by Paul A. Samuelson

The History

  • A Monetary History of the United States, 1867–1960 by Milton Friedman
  • The Forgotten Depression: 1921: The Crash That Cured Itself by James Grant
  • Hidden in Plain Sight: What Really Caused the World’s Worst Financial Crisis and Why It Could Happen Again by Peter J. Wallison
  • “The [Grossly Inaccurate] Financial Crisis Inquiry Report” by the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission
  • The Great Stagnation by Tyler Cowen
  • Average Is Over by Tyler Cowen
  • Bad History, Worse Policy: How a False Narrative About the Financial Crisis Led to the Dodd-Frank Act by Peter J. Wallison
  • Meltdown by Thomas E. Woods

The Fun

  • An Economist Gets Lunch: New Rules for Everyday Foodies by Tyler Cowen
  • The Art of the Deal by Donald J. Trump
  • Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner
  • Naked Economics: Undressing the Dismal Science by Charles Wheelan and Burton G. Malkiel
  • The Armchair Economist: Economics and Everyday Life by Steven E. Landsburg