IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Speculative Bubbles and Financial Crises


  • Pengfei Wang
  • Yi Wen


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).

Suggested Citation

  • Pengfei Wang & Yi Wen, 2012. "Speculative Bubbles and Financial Crises," American Economic Journal: Macroeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 4(3), pages 184-221, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejmac:v:4:y:2012:i:3:p:184-221 Note: DOI: 10.1257/mac.4.3.184

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to AEA members and institutional subscribers.

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kocherlakota, Narayana R., 1992. "Bubbles and constraints on debt accumulation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 245-256.
    2. Emmanuel Farhi & Jean Tirole, 2008. "Competing Liquidities: Corporate Securities, Real Bonds and Bubbles," NBER Working Papers 13955, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. John Kareken & Neil Wallace, 1981. "On the Indeterminacy of Equilibrium Exchange Rates," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 96(2), pages 207-222.
    4. Cass, David & Shell, Karl, 1983. "Do Sunspots Matter?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(2), pages 193-227, April.
    5. Tirole, Jean, 1985. "Asset Bubbles and Overlapping Generations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(6), pages 1499-1528, November.
    6. Lucas, Robert E, Jr, 1980. "Equilibrium in a Pure Currency Economy," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 18(2), pages 203-220, April.
    7. Patrick-Antoine Pintus & Yi Weng, 2009. "Leveraged financing, over investment, and boom-bust cycles," Working Papers halshs-00439245, HAL.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Miao, Jianjun, 2014. "Introduction to economic theory of bubbles," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 130-136.
    2. Jianjun Miao & Pengfei Wang & Lifang Xu, 2016. "Stock market bubbles and unemployment," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 61(2), pages 273-307, February.
    3. Pengfei Wang & Jianjun Miao, 2011. "Bubbles and Credit Constraints," 2011 Meeting Papers 94, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Jianjun Miao & PENGFEI WANG, 2011. "Sectoral Bubbles and Endogenous Growth," Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series WP2011-032, Boston University - Department of Economics.
    5. Pengfei Wang & Yi Wen & Zhiwei Xu, . "Financial Development and Long-Run Volatility Trends"," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics.
    6. Benhabib, Jess & Wang, Pengfei, 2013. "Financial constraints, endogenous markups, and self-fulfilling equilibria," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(7), pages 789-805.
    7. Kauko, Karlo, 2014. "How to foresee banking crises? A survey of the empirical literature," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 289-308.
    8. Bo Zhao, 2015. "Rational housing bubble," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 60(1), pages 141-201, September.
    9. Areal, Francisco José & Balcombe, Kevin & Rapsomanikis, George, 2016. "Testing for bubbles in agriculture commodity markets," Economia Agraria y Recursos Naturales, Spanish Association of Agricultural Economists, vol. 16(1).
    10. Kunieda, Takuma & Shibata, Akihisa, 2012. "Asset bubbles, economic growth, and a self-fulfilling financial crisis: a dynamic general equilibrium model of infinitely lived heterogeneous agents," MPRA Paper 37309, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Miao, Jianjun & Wang, Pengfei, 2015. "Banking bubbles and financial crises," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 157(C), pages 763-792.
    12. Miao, Jianjun & Wang, Pengfei & Zhou, Jing, 2015. "Asset bubbles, collateral, and policy analysis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(S), pages 57-70.
    13. Kunieda, Takuma & Shibata, Akihisa, 2016. "Asset bubbles, economic growth, and a self-fulfilling financial crisis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 70-84.
    14. Luik, Marc-André & Wesselbaum, Dennis, 2014. "Bubbles over the U.S. business cycle: A macroeconometric approach," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 27-41.
    15. Clain-Chamosset-Yvrard, Lise & Seegmuller, Thomas, 2015. "Rational bubbles and macroeconomic fluctuations: The (de-)stabilizing role of monetary policy," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 1-15.
    16. Kunieda, Takuma, 2014. "A note on the crowd-in effect of asset bubbles in the perpetual youth model," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 50-54.
    17. Dumitriu, Ramona & Stefanescu, Razvan, 2014. "Perspective ale ţintirii inflaţiei
      [Perspectives of the Inflation Targeting]
      ," MPRA Paper 52943, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 14 Jan 2014.
    18. Ren, Yu & Xiong, Cong & Yuan, Yufei, 2012. "House price bubbles in China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 786-800.
    19. Mathieu Boullot, 2017. "Secular Stagnation, Liquidity Trap and Rational Asset Price Bubbles," Working Papers halshs-01295012, HAL.
    20. Narayan, Paresh Kumar & Sharma, Susan Sunila & Phan, Dinh Hoang Bach, 2016. "Asset price bubbles and economic welfare," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 44(C), pages 139-148.
    21. Pengfei Wang & Yi Wen & Zhiwei Xu, . "Financial Development and Long-Run Volatility Trends"," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics.
    22. Miao, Jianjun & Wang, Pengfei, 2014. "Sectoral bubbles, misallocation, and endogenous growth," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 53(C), pages 153-163.
    23. repec:wyi:journl:002167 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E13 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - General Aggregative Models - - - Neoclassical
    • E23 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Production
    • E32 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - Business Fluctuations; Cycles
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G12 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Asset Pricing; Trading Volume; Bond Interest Rates


    This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
    1. Speculative Bubbles and Financial Crises (AEJ:MA 2012) in ReplicationWiki


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:aea:aejmac:v:4:y:2012:i:3:p:184-221. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jane Voros) or (Michael P. Albert). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.