Boom and Bust

Boom and Bust

A Global History of Financial Bubbles

Author(s): William Quinn, John D. Turner
Publication Date: 06-08-2020

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Why do stock and housing markets sometimes experience amazing booms followed by massive busts and why is this happening more and more frequently? In order to answer these questions, William Quinn and John D. Turner take us on a riveting ride through the history of financial bubbles, visiting, among other places, Paris and London in 1720, Latin America in the 1820s, Melbourne in the 1880s, New York in the 1920s, Tokyo in the 1980s, Silicon Valley in the 1990s and Shanghai in the 2000s. As they do so, they help us understand why bubbles happen, and why some have catastrophic economic, social and political consequences whilst others have actually benefited society. They reveal that bubbles start when investors and speculators react to new technology or political initiatives, showing that our ability to predict future bubbles will ultimately come down to being able to predict these sparks.

'Quinn and Turner have made a major contribution to the literature on financial speculation and the bubbles to which they contribute. Not only do they provide an analytical dissection of ten salient episodes over some 300 years, they embed these narratives in an explanatory framework – the 'bubble triangle' – that links the relative marketability of financial assets and the supply of credit to speculative excess. Thus, Boom and Bust shows how to mine history for meaning, with lessons relevant today for investors and policy-makers alike.'

Bill Janeway, author of Doing Capitalism in the Innovation Economy


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