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With mainstream economics cloaking itself with mathematical formulae to give the appearance of science, leave it to one of the numbers guys to offer a more human – and realistic – explanation for one of economics’ significant events.

The economist to whom I refer is Robert J. Shiller, Sterling Professor of Economics at Yale University. Shiller’s work on home prices with fellow economist Karl Case led to the creation of the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices. That work, which was obviously mathematical and statistical in nature, also led him to believe, and publicly comment on, the bubble-like run up on home prices that contributed to the financial crisis of 2008.

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