As an Economics student, I am often asked ‘as an Economist, what do you think about..?’. This question feels me with dread because, even though I’ve studied Economics for the past 5 three years, I still feel like I have no idea what I’m talking about when it comes to discussing current affairs from an Economics point of view. The two standout times this has happened to me is during the 2015 UK General Election and during the EU Referendum, more commonly known as ‘Brexit’.
However, as I am now in my third year, I think it’s pretty important that I start embracing the question and learn more about Economics current affairs. Economics is a pretty exciting subject in terms of it is literally happening around you on a day-to-day basis.
This could be on a microeconomics level; when you buy your morning coffee on the way to university, that £3.50 is going towards someones wages, the resources used to make the coffee and keep the lights on in the actual shop, or maybe even towards the profit projection for the business.
Or real world situations can affect the economy on a much larger scale, known as macroeconomics. For example, how the £ exchange rate reacted to Brexit, or the US stock market reacting to the election of Donald Trump. On a more personal level, it can even be your income tax payments going toward Government revenue, and then being turned into finds for the NHS.
The point is, no matter what you’re currently learning in Economics, there is almost most definitely a real world example to help you understand. This is especially true for Macroeconomics, on a core level, but also in courses such as International Trade and Development Economics. However, if you really want to get an idea of Economics in the real world, rather than learning mainly theory, studying Economic History is the best way to go.
So, I am going to subscribe to a few newspapers, rather than obsessively reading Buzzfeeds recipe page every day, and finally be able to answer to question,’as an Economist, what do you think about..?‘.