Financial sector decisions have a decisive impact on economic performance. Financial affairs used to be reported on the back pages of newspapers but are front page news today. The authors present a primer on how financial markets are conventionally analyzed. They present the basic models and approaches to understanding banking, finance and monetary management in both closed and open economies and some of the pressing policy concerns. Readers are provided with a more knowledgeable base on which to evaluate financial market performance and global financial instability issues.