The Financial Crisis Explained...in English

If you want the lowdown on what exactly has happened in the global economy to cause the panic and strain we’ve been seeing over the past few weeks in finance markets worldwide, you could do a lot worse than the following links:

In The Giant Pool of Money, This American Life producer Alex Blumberg teams up with NPR’s Adam Davidson to tell the surprisingly entertaining story of how the U.S. got itself into a housing crisis.

In the follow up show, Another Frightening Show About the Economy, Alex Blumberg and Adam Davidson recount what happened when the credit markets froze, and how the housing crisis started impacting the markets as a whole through the ‘evils’ of unregulated credit default swaps.

In plain spoken English these guys do a great job of informing the rest of us exactly what the hell happened.

As an added bonus, they’ve now started the Planet Money Podcast and Planet Money Blog, essential material for anyone who wants to keep abreast of what is happening in the world of money.