The Whiteboard - Most Commented

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Explaining proprietary trading and its risks

Feb 23, 2012
Prop trading, as it’s called on Wall Street, is the target of the Volcker Rule, a centerpiece of the Dodd-Frank financial reform act. Marketplace’s Paddy Hirsch explains what proprietary trading is, and why it’s potentially dangerous for our savings and the financial system.
Posted In: proprietary trading, Volcker Rule, Jamie Dimon, Banks
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What’s an IPO?

Feb 2, 2012
So Facebook has filed to go public. How exactly does an initial public offering work? Marketplace's Paddy Hirsch explains.
Posted In: Facebook, IPO, stocks
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What's the difference: Secured vs. unsecured bonds

Jan 26, 2012
Learn the difference between secured and unsecured debt -- a lesson that Irish taxpayers could use as they face the prospect of footing the bill for the bailout of state-owned Anglo Irish Bank.
Posted In: bonds, Investing, Ireland
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Private equity explained

Jan 13, 2012
Private equity funds are groups of investors that flip companies for a profit. It’s the technique they use that makes them special, as senior producer Paddy Hirsch explains.
Posted In: private equity, investment
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Re-hypothecation: How it's related to MF Global

Jan 4, 2012
If ever there was a word that you’d expect to find in a Harry Potter novel, it’s re-hypothecation. But it's not just a magic trick.
Posted In: MF Global
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What is a junk bond?

Dec 16, 2011
Junk. Not a nice word. And when it comes to bonds, not a particularly accurate word, either. Junk is something useless, right? Well, "junk" bonds are definitely not useless. In fact they're extremely useful. Sometimes. Marketplace Senior Producer Paddy Hirsch explains what a junk bond really is.
Posted In: junk bonds, bonds
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Why does the EU want U.S. dollars?

Dec 2, 2011
Marketplace Money Senior Producer Paddy Hirsch explains why Europe needs dollars instead of euros as the EU tries to sort out its financial problems.
Posted In: EU, Eurozone, dollar, Europe debt crisis, European Central Bank
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Ring-fencing Italy

Nov 29, 2011
There's been a lot of talk recently about the need to ring-fence certain economies in Europe. These aren't the economies that have defaulted or been bailed out; these are the economies that are too big to fail. Italy is the most glaring example.
Posted In: whiteboard, Europe debt crisis, Eurozone, italy
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The root of Italy's problems

Nov 14, 2011
Berlusconi may be gone, but Italia's problems persists. Senior Editor Paddy Hirsch explains how Italy got into the mess it's in today.
Posted In: debt, italy, bonds, default, Berlusconi, Monte, credit, euro, Eurozone
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Why seven percent may not be such a big deal

Nov 11, 2011
When you climb very high mountains, at about 26,000 feet you enter the Death Zone. At that altitude, there's simply not enough oxygen in the air to...

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Financial mysteries explained! Watch the latest video explaining capital adequacy requirements in Paddy Hirsch's Whiteboard series. 

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NickMullins's picture

When the coal layoffs trickle down

My great grandfather started in the coal mines of Southwestern Virginia in 1936 during a time when logging companies such as W.M. Ritter were...

PMG's picture

The loaded meaning behind 'What do you do?'

A great passage from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil:

“If you go to Atlanta, the first question people ask you is, "What'...

LLB's picture

When being cheap isn't worth it

Every time I try to fix my bike, I make the problem worse and have to go to the bike shop anyway. It doesn't matter how many books and...

mormuno01's picture

The secret life of a food stamp

Your article makes a lot of sense. Without the help of food stamps these people that are spending money at Walmart would be on the streets,...