MBA 201B: MACROECONOMICS IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY
What makes interest, inflation, unemployment, and foreign exchange rates go up and down? And, what was that financial crisis all about – and when will its effects be over? In this course, we will learn how these and other aspects of macroeconomies come to be what they are, and where they are likely to be going. To do so, we will examine how consumer and business practices affect and are affected by the current condition and outlook for the future of the U.S. and other economies. We will analyze how governments' monetary, fiscal, and trade policies affect, and are affected by macroeconomies. This course uses past events and current predicaments to help understand how macroeconomies operate and how they influence business and public policies, and vice versa.
We will use the tools and approach of demand and supply to help understand which real and financial goods and services are produced, bought and sold in a macroeconomy, at what prices and in what volumes. The models that we use build upon what you already know (and, indeed, what you do!) and will introduce you to some analyses that you probably haven't seen before. We will use real-time case studies from the Financial Times to check the usefulness of the perspectives we develop: Does our framework help us understand current events around the globe?
The perspectives that emerge from our understanding of theory and evidence will sharpen our abilities to analyze and (in some cases) forecast:
•interest rates and inflation rates
•wages, salaries, and unemployment rates
•consumer spending and housing construction
•business profits and business investment in equipment and structures
•the government budget deficit, the trade deficit, and exchange rates
•economic growth rates over the long run and across countries
The course meets twice a week (either on Monday & Wednesday or Tuesday & Thursday), in 2-hour classes, for the first 7 weeks of the Spring semester. In addition, there is an optional 80-minute discussion section each Friday (though contact with the GSIs at other times is available by appointment).
The seventh edition of Macroeconomics by N. Gregory Mankiw..
Waiver Exam Overview
The waiver exam will ask questions about both theories and applications of the concepts that are useful for understanding the macroeconomics of consumer spending, business investment, fiscal and monetary policies, imports and exports, and rates of interest, inflation, exchange, and economic growth. To prepare, be sure that you are comfortable with the concepts and applications above at the level of conventional intermediate-level macroeconomics textbooks and that you can apply the concepts to discuss current events.
Here are some sample exam questions to help you assess your ability and as a study guide.
MBA 204: OPERATIONS
This course introduces you to concepts and techniques related to matching supply with demand in manufacturing and service operations. The goals are to make you conversant in the language of operations management; provide you with quantitative and qualitative tools to analyze basic operations issues; and allow you to see the role of operations management in the overall strategy of the firm. The course covers topics in process and capacity analysis, inventory management, demand uncertainty, supply chain management, and service operations. In each module, you are introduced to tools for analyzing operations problems and methods of managing that aspect of operations. You will prepare cases for class discussion, analyze cases and problem sets, participate in simulations/exercises, and take mid-term and final exams. Our objective is to create as much interaction with operations issues as possible, allowing you to examine how they affect an organization’s overall performance.
The course meets twice a week in 110-minute classes for the first seven weeks of the Spring semester. There also is an optional 80-minute discussion section each Friday.
The course will use readings and cases that are made available electronically or through a course reader. If you want additional background, you may consult one of the many operations management textbooks that are available including: Matching Supply and Demand: An Introduction to Operations Management by Gerard Cachon and Christian Terwiesch.
Waiver Exam Overview
If you have a background in industrial engineering or very strong analytical experience in manufacturing or operations management, you should consider taking the waiver exam. If you have questions about the format of the waiver exam, please direct them to the MBA Program Office (not the instructor).
The Cachon and Terwiesch text (on reserve at Haas’ Long Library) provides a good review of basic operations principles. Many other operations management textbooks would serve equally well. You should be familiar with process and capacity analysis, service operations (including queueing phenomena), inventory control, demand uncertainty, and supply chain management. If you plan to take the exam, you are encouraged to review the course syllabus from last year. The syllabus includes references to sections of the Cachon and Terwiesch text that are relevant; the text also includes practice problems.