B09.2317 - Understanding the World Macroeconomy
Professor Nouriel Roubini
Office: MEC 7-83
Phone: (212) 998-0886
E-Mail: nroubini@stern.nyu.edu

Overview of the Course (Objectives Texbook and Materials Requirements Assignments Office Hours and Tutorials Rules Important Dates Online Bulletin Board Suggested Grade Distribution)

Reading List 

"MBA Lectures in Macroeconomics" by Roubini and Backus 

Handouts Distributed in Class

Major Macroeconomic Controversies and Current Policy Debates 

Links to WEB materials complementing the topics in the lecture notes

Links to Macroeconomic Data and Information

Hypertext Glossary of Business Cycle Indicators

Business Cycle Indicators 


Interactive Charts and Graphs of Macroeconomic Series
(the Economic Chart Dispenser of Ted Bos at UAB)
Interactive quizes and practice tests

Homepage on Asia's Economic and Currency Crisis 

Homepage on European Monetary Union and the Euro 

A Macro Forecasting Game: test your ability to forecast the stock market, interest rates, the U.S.$ exchange rate, GDP growth and inflation 

Macroeconomics Discussion Group 

Search Engine for the Macroeconomics Home Page 

Virtual Office Hours 

My Guestbook:  sign and give your feedback on this page 

The following tools will be available in the future:

Interactive Java Applets

Online assignments 

Scout Report for Business and EconomicsSelection

1. Overview


Review and analysis of current macroeconomic issues and events from the perspective of the business community and government policymakers, including: strategies for growth; forecasting business cycles, interest rates and exchange rates; causes of trade deficits; consequences of government deficits; short- and long-term effects of monetary policy; and the globalization of financial markets. These topics are integrated into a theoretical framework that introduces international factors from the start. Examples from the US, Europe, Japan and developing countries are used to enhance knowledge of the world economy and skills in solving practical problems. Lectures are complemented with group projects.

This year we will make intensive use of the WEB and Internet resources as a learning tool in the course.

Textbook and Materials


On-line lectures notes: Nouriel Roubini and David Backus MBA Lectures in Macroeconomics, New York University, 1998.


Gregory Mankiw, Macroeconomics, Worth Publishers, 3rd edition, 1996.

We will also use the following materials in the course:

      1. Krugman, Paul The Age of Diminished Expectations (3rd edition), Cambridge: MIT Press, 1997.
      2. Case package
      3. Reading package
The Mankiw textbook will be available in the bookstore. The Roubini and Backus "MBA Lectures in Macroeconomics" are available on-line at the course home page; a printed version can be bought at the bokstore. Note that the on-line version includes the links to other WEB materials that are missing in the printed version. The book by Krugman is available in the bookstore. The reading package and the case package will be distributed in class. Let me also recommend very strongly The Economist, the best single source of international business news and commentary; call (800) 456-6086 and ask for the student rate; and the on-line WEB version of the Financial Times available for free to registered users. 


Grades will be based on six assignments and two examinations according to the formula:
Assignments 35 percent
Midterm 30 percent
Final 35 percent
Class participation will be rewarded as part of the 35% of the grade that goes to the assignments.

Assignments (click here to download the assignments).

Assignments alternate between practice problems and projects, all of which are included in this package. They are due roughly every second or third week, as noted below and at the top of each assignment. The lowest of the six grades will be dropped but you need to hand in all six assignments. All assignments should be done as part of a group; the first assignment includes a component, a macro forecasting game, to be performed individually. 

Office Hours and Tutorials

My office hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays 2.00-3.30pm, or by appointment. I can also be reached through e-mail at nroubini@stern.nyu.edu  Also, if you install NetMeeting, a collaborative software by Microsoft, you can reach me via audio and video in my office for discussion of class materials. Click HERE for more details on my virtual office hours.

There will also be a Teaching Assistant for each section of the course, who you will find very helpful.
Michael Ronen (mr2@stern.nyu.edu) will be the teaching assistant  for the 8.30am class
while Alberto Alvarez (e-mail: aa8@stern.nyu.edu) will be the teaching assistant for the 10.00am class.
Michael Ronen's office hours will be Tuesdays and Thursdays 4.00pm to 5.00pm.
Alberto Alvarez's office hours will be Mondays and Wednesdays 4.00pm to 5.00pm.


Important Dates

February 4: Assignment # 1 due plus class debate on FOMC meeting.

February 23: Assignment # 2 due 

March 9: Assignment # 3 due.

March 11: Mid-Term Exam in class. Click here for info on Mid-Term Exam

Information on the Class Visits by Professor Solow

March 23: Guest Lecture by Professor Robert Solow, Nobel Prize winner.

March 25: Class discussion (for 10.00am Section) with participation of Professor Solow.

March 30: Class discussion (for 8.30am Section) with participation of Professor Solow.

April 8: Assignment # 4 due

April 22: Assignment # 5 due.

May 4: Assignment # 6 due.

May 6: Final  Exam for the 8.30am Section

May 11: Final Exam for the 10.00am Section

Online Discussion Group for the Class

I have setup an online discussion group where we can discuss the topics of the course outside of the classroom. I invite all the students in the class to actively participate in this online discussion forum. We can share together ideas and information about interesting new articles on the WEB, discuss current policy issues and elaborate on materials presented in class. I will regularly contribute to the discussion and reply to questions/remarks/comments offered in this forum.

Suggested Grade Distribution

Although sections may vary somewhat, the Economics Department suggests a grade distribution of
A/A- 20-25%
Bís 55-70%
C & below  10-15%
This distribution is intended to make standards comparable across sections, as required by the school. 

Other Links and Information:

- The Stern School of Business Economics Department

- Nouriel Roubini's Home Page: http://www.stern.nyu.edu/~nroubini