In the past decade of rapid change in the world economy, Randy Charles Epping's Beginner’s Guide to the World Economy has been the most reliable tool for keeping track of what's happening. The third edition updates the information in previous editions and explains many new concepts.
What is the new economy? What is globalization? Is the euro the final seal on European Union? How is e-commerce transforming our world beyond economics? What is virtual money, and does it have real value? How do social concerns and societal ills (drugs, poverty, AIDS, endangered natural resources) play a part in the rapidly changing world economy. What are multinationals, and do they signal the end of nationalism? These and many other pertinent issues are concisely addressed in the most accessible primer for those who want to be economically literate (and who doesn't?).