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A Guide to 2021’s Bizarro Markets and Wild Investing Trends

Why is finance so weird right now? Here’s how to make sense of meme stocks, Dogecoin, SPACs, NFTs, and more.

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What is even happening with money right now? In January, amateur investors introduced the world to the idea of “meme stocks,” bidding up shares in struggling brick-and-mortar video game retailer Gamestop not because it was a good company, but because it was hilarious. Meanwhile, investors have been spending millions on digital GIFs, images, and videos known as NFTs. In April, Dogecoin—a cryptocurrency that was started in 2013 as a joke—somehow became valued higher than Ford Motor Company.

To make sense of it all, we’ve curated some of the best financial writing attempting to explain why markets and investors have seemingly gone bonkers.