ESPN 30 for 30: Broke — Paying Self First

 

Athletes become broke after retirement because of overspending, unexpected expenses, poor financial advice, but also feeling guilty about not helping others around them. One of the early tips of financial advice was to pay oneself before paying others. It’s easy to look at the purchase of houses or unexpected as something that can be prevented, but helping family and friends is something that isn’t as easy to give up.

Abdullah Al-Bahrani and Darshak Patel have a great paper in the Southern Economic Journal that looks at using ESPN 30 for 30 to teach economics.

ESPN 30 for 30: Broke — Financial Literacy

 

The growth of professional sports over the past few decades has also meant that athlete salaries have grown as well. The issue? Professional athletes fresh out of high school and college (most under the age of 22) are become overnight millionaires, and most lack the financial literacy to handle that adjustment. Surprising to most, a large percentage of professional athletes declare bankruptcy within a few years because of their inability to manage their finances. Nearly 16% of NFL players file for bankruptcy within 12 years of retirement and ESPN’s Broke looked at the prevalence of financial stress for professional athletes.

Abdullah Al-Bahrani and Darshak Patel have a great paper in the Southern Economic Journal that looks at using ESPN 30 for 30 to teach economics.

Sesame Street — Earning Money

Elmo wants to earn some money, but he isn’t exactly sure how. Luis offers him a chance to earn some money by helping him repair the ice cream machine.

Bloomberg — How Much Money Do You Need to Be Wealthy in America?

Relative values of wealth are often difficult for students to analyze, primarily given our focus on income. Income is the flow of money while wealth is an accumulation of assets. Different generations perceive the concept of “wealthy” differently, but this video includes nonpecuniary aspects like spending time with family or being able to vacations as markers of wealthy. It would be interesting to survey students what they feel is a level of wealth that they would identify as being “wealthy.” I suspect it could also be a good opportunity to talk about the differences between means and medians.

Superstore — Winning the Lottery

What would you do if you won the lottery? This clip fits nicely with two different sections of an economics course. The first is how people respond to income increases in terms of purchasing normal goods or luxury goods. For labor economics, this discussion is a good segue to discussion how increases in income decrease the time people devote to work assuming leisure is a normal good.

Vox — Homer Simpson: An Economic Analysis

Homer has had about 100 jobs during his many years on television and Vox writers have analyzed his work life. If you plan on using a lot of Simpsons clips throughout your course, they may be a good introduction for students unfamiliar with the show.

Swing Vote — Drink Less Beer

Molly (Madeline Carroll) and her dad Bud (Kevin Costner) are driving down the road, but Bud is unhappy with egg salad sandwich as a lunch option. Molly quickly points out that they are on a budget and that if he wants to eat better then he needs to drink less beer. This tradeoff can be illustrated with a budget constraint in economics. Given a fixed level of income, the only way to get more (or better) food, is to give up something else.

Life in Pieces — The Sleepover

Sam is ready for her sleepover, but didn’t pack a toothbrush. She’s already realized that when her teeth fall out, she gets money from the Tooth Fairy. She’s connected the dots and realized that by not brushing she could get the income sooner. Her parents aren’t amused.

This scene was brought to my attention by a regular #TeachEcon contributor, Courtney Conrad.

Thanks to James Tierney for actually posting the video on Critical Commons.

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