Top 10 movies to watch to improve your Finance Knowledge!

Jan 25, 2021
 |  1 min read
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Personal finance management was an important lesson learnt during the COVID crisis. As we have already stepped into 2021 with high hopes, let's make this year better than the last one. If you're among the ones to whom money and finance seem confusing and boring, we suggest making it entertaining through finance movies.

We have curated a list comprising the top 10 movies to watch to improve your Finance knowledge.

The Top Picks of All Time!

1. Wall Street (1987)

Wall Street is an American dramatic film and one of the most popular finance movies. The movie showcases Oscar-winning performances by stars Michael Douglas, Charlie Sheen, and Daryl Hannah. Charlie plays the character of Bud Fox, a young and ambitious stockbroker inspired by the wealthy corporate raider Gordon Gekko played by Michael. Fox aspires to be rich and wanted to be mentored by Gekko, he resorts to insider trading to entice Gekko into mentoring him. The important lessons to learn from Wall Street movie are – Money either works for you or against you, and time is as precious as money. It has been over three decades, but the movie and its insights are still relevant today.

2. Margin Call (2011)

Margin Call is the most insightful finance-related movie ever. Written and directed by J. C. Chandor, the movie narrates 24 hours in the life of a fictional investment firm. The story places you amidst the chaos of a crumbling Wall Street firm, mirroring the 2008 financial collapse. Margin Call explains the benefits of portfolio diversification for real-life companies and how to leverage investing comes with additional risks. Another important lesson is – stock markets fluctuate and are corrected after each monumental gain or loss. The movie has a pleasantly unbiased approach, which makes it the best stock market movies of all time.

3. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

Directed by Martin Scorsese, The Wolf of Wall Street is the biopic of Jordan Belfort. The famous stock scammer was portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio and was one of his best performances. Based on true events, the movie circles around stock fraud and money laundering. It will improve your knowledge about the stock market before you plan to invest your hard-earned cash. Besides the importance of diversifying your investment, the movie reflects on the prominence of research before investing and how cautious buying based on company fundamentals is essential. Long-term success needs experimenting is another valuable lesson from this masterpiece of stock market movies.

4. Trading Places (1983)

Trading Places is an American comedy film that addresses key issues of the financial markets in a light mood. Louis Winthorpe (Dan Aykroyd) is a wealthy stock trader, while Billy Ray Valentine (Eddie Murphy) is a criminal. In the course of the movie, Billy is appointed as the Managing Director of the firm Duke & Duke, while Winthorpe is convicted on false charges of fraud and drug dealing. Being one of the top movies on the stock market it deals with the financial concepts of commodity markets. It closely depicts the impact of demand and supply in the stock market. You can also catch a glimpse of manual trading through ‘open outcry' on a traditional trading floor setup.

5. Boiler Room (2000)

Ranked among the iconic finance movies, Boiler Room offers action-filled sequences for day traders and investors. The story portrays Seth Davis (Giovanni Ribisi) as a college drop-out who joins a stock brokerage firm and convinces people to invest in pump and dump schemes. Boiler Room raises alarm against these schemes, which are prevalent in the markets even twenty years from when the movie was released. It warns inexperienced traders of the unprecedented outcomes of investing in penny stocks.

6. Rogue Trader (1999)

Rogue Trader is a great lesson in risk management and financial oversight. It is the story of an ambitious investment broker, Nick Leeson (Ewan McGregor) whose greed led to the insolvency of Barings Bank, one of the most important banks in Britain. He used malpractices and took advantage of the weak compliance practices of the bank leading to its downfall. The movie lays down the importance of implementing a logical trading plan and establishes doubling down as a bad trading strategy. Another important lesson is to not consider random success as talent and skill, like in the case of Leeson, who was driving 10 percent of the bank's profits through sheer luck.

7. Bazaar (2018)

Bazaar is one of the best Bollywood movies on the stock market. The thriller revolves around Rizwan Ahmed, a stock trader from Allahabad. He arrived in Mumbai with the determination to join the trading firm of Gujarati financial maven Shakun Kothar. The movie gives us important trading lessons like fact-checking, and not going carried away while investing. Also, for sustainable returns keep track of company fundamentals and avoid quick money tips. Rizwan's character also shows us that without proper research you cannot excel in the market by copying others.

8. Gafla (2006)

Gafla was directed by Sameer Hanchate and was released in 2006. It is one of the most popular Bollywood movies on the stock market. It is inspired by the stock market scam of 1992 involving Harshad Mehta. The movie outlines the loopholes in the system and showcases how Harshad took advantage of the situation. The matter was blown out of proportion by the Government's response while the Indian public suffered huge losses.

9. The Big Short (2015)

The Big Short is based on a nonfiction book by Michael Lewis. ‘The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine' was the inspiration for this movie. The story revolves around a group of traders, played by stars like Steve Carrell, Ryan Gosling, and Christian Bale. These characters predicted the US housing bubble and planned to make money from it. It explains how the financial crisis in 2007-2008 was triggered. The main learnings from the movie are – ratings and rumors must not be believed. It also establishes the importance of grabbing opportunities, even during a market collapse.

10. Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)

The classical cult, Glengarry Glen Ross, was written and directed by David Mamet. The Broadway award-winning story revolves around four salespersons working in the cutthroat real estate business. These desperate men con the weakest by selling properties to them at rates higher than their valuation. The sales race got ugly when they started conspiring against each other and Jack Lemmon even broke into Glengarry's office to steal sales leads. Their sales attitude wasn't rewarding, and they were far from the principles of honest living.

Facing Money Crunch?

You must watch these finance-related movies to brush up your knowledge through these entertaining resources. They will help you gain insights into personal finance management and manage your money better. In case you are facing a money crunch, remember to make informed decisions and avoid falling in for scams and fraud.

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Gaurav Jalan

Gaurav Jalan is the Founder and CEO of mPokket, a digital lending platform serving underserved Indian youth. He leverages technology and experience to deliver cost-effective credit to marginalized populations. In his role, he provides strategic direction and oversees execution to fulfill mPokket's mission.