Our Own Finance Professor Brad Barber Quoted in the NY Times
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Our Own Finance Professor Brad Barber Quoted in the NY Times

So I was just sitting here, studying like crazy for next week’s finals, when I got an e-mail from a classmate informing us all that our own finance professor Brad Barber was quoted in today’s New York Times. For those of you admitted students who were here Friday, he’s the one who facilitated the lecture and discussion on the financial crisis.

What makes Barber’s quotes in the Times particularly interesting, however, is how they actually make sense to me. For once, in a rather “inside-baseball” kind of business article, I understand all the terms, concepts, causes, effects and implications. You see, before coming to the UC Davis Graduate School of Business, I was a reporter and editor of a business journal — meaning, I was the one on the other end of the phone interviewing guys like Barber. I always found myself a little self-conscious in those situations, as I had zero business training before taking on the job and had to learn about subjects like finance, accounting, marketing and venture capital as I went along. I was always worried that I wouldn’t know which questions to ask or understand the deeper implications of what my interviewee was saying. After taking just two quarters of classes at the GSM, everything has started to click. Things that I used to write about but never understood, such as P/E ratios and market capitalization, are now well rooted into my mind. And not only do I understand all these once-foreign concepts, but professors like Barber have made them interesting, and intrigued me to learn more.

For those of you who have been in my shoes and, perhaps, not fully understood a conversation about investments or flipped briskly past a magazine article about interest rates, I challenge you to learn about these subjects. Not only will you discover that they’re interesting, but you’ll also find they have very real implications, as the NY Times story shows.