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American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics: Vol. 4 No. 3 (July 2012)

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Speculative Bubbles and Financial Crises

Article Citation

Wang, Pengfei, and Yi Wen. 2012. "Speculative Bubbles and Financial Crises." American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, 4(3): 184-221.

DOI: 10.1257/mac.4.3.184

Abstract

Are asset prices unduly volatile and often detached from their fundamentals? Does the bursting of financial bubbles depress the real economy? This paper addresses these issues by constructing a DSGE model with speculative bubbles. We characterize conditions under which storable goods, regardless of their intrinsic values, can carry bubbles, and agents are willing to invest in such bubbles despite their positive probability of bursting. The results show that systemic risk, commonly perceived changes in the bubble's probability of bursting, can generate boom-bust cycles with hump-shaped output dynamics and produce asset price movements many times more volatile than the economy's fundamentals. (JEL E13, E23, E32, E44, G01, G12).

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Authors

Wang, Pengfei (Hong Kong U Science and Technology)
Wen, Yi (Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis)

JEL Classifications

E13: General Aggregative Models: Neoclassical
E23: Macroeconomics: Production
E32: Business Fluctuations; Cycles
E44: Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
G01: Financial Crises
G12: Asset Pricing; Trading volume; Bond Interest Rates

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