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When Everyone Runs for the Exit

  • Lasse Pedersen

    (New York University, CEPR, and NBER)

The dangers of shouting “fire” in a crowded theater are well understood, but the dangers of rushing to the exit in the financial markets are more complex. Yet, the two events share several features, and I analyze why people crowd into theaters and trades, why they run, what determines the risk, whether to return to the theater or trade when the dust settles, and how much to pay for assets (or tickets) in light of this risk. These theoretical considerations shed light on the recent global liquidity crisis and, in particular, the quant event of 2007.

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Article provided by International Journal of Central Banking in its journal International Journal of Central Banking.

Volume (Year): 5 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 177-199

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Handle: RePEc:ijc:ijcjou:y:2009:q:4:a:10
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  1. Ricardo Lagos & Guillaume Rocheteau & Pierre-Olivier Weill, 2007. "Crashes and recoveries in illiquid markets," Working Paper 0708, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  2. Vasco Cúrdia & Michael Woodford, 2008. "Credit frictions and optimal monetary policy," Working Paper Research 146, National Bank of Belgium.
  3. Stefan Nagel, 2011. "Evaporating Liquidity," NBER Working Papers 17653, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Diamond, Douglas W & Dybvig, Philip H, 1983. "Bank Runs, Deposit Insurance, and Liquidity," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 91(3), pages 401-19, June.
  5. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Lasse Heje Pedersen, 2009. "Market Liquidity and Funding Liquidity," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 22(6), pages 2201-2238, June.
  6. Darrell Duffie & Nicolae Garleanu & Lasse Heje Pedersen, 2006. "Valuation in Over-the-Counter Markets," NBER Working Papers 12020, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Markus K. Brunnermeier & Stefan Nagel & Lasse H. Pedersen, 2008. "Carry Trades and Currency Crashes," NBER Working Papers 14473, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Lasse H. Pedersen & Markus Brunnermeier, 2004. "Predatory Trading," Econometric Society 2004 North American Winter Meetings 425, Econometric Society.
  9. Lasse Heje Pedersen & Mark Mitchell & Todd Pulvino, 2007. "Slow Moving Capital," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 215-220, May.
  10. Andrei Shleifer ad Robert W. Vishny, 1995. "The Limits of Arbitrage," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1725, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  11. Bruce Ian Carlin & Miguel Sousa Lobo & S. Viswanathan, 2007. "Episodic Liquidity Crises: Cooperative and Predatory Trading," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 62(5), pages 2235-2274, October.
  12. Bengt Holmstrom & Jean Tirole, 1994. "Financial Intermediation, Loanable Funds and the Real Sector," Working papers 95-1, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
  13. Amihud, Yakov, 2002. "Illiquidity and stock returns: cross-section and time-series effects," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 5(1), pages 31-56, January.
  14. Pastor, Lubos & Stambaugh, Robert F., 2003. "Liquidity Risk and Expected Stock Returns," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 642-685, June.
  15. Gromb, Denis & Vayanos, Dimitri, 2002. "Equilibrium and welfare in markets with financially constrained arbitrageurs," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(2-3), pages 361-407.
  16. Markus K. Brunnermeier, 2009. "Deciphering the Liquidity and Credit Crunch 2007-2008," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(1), pages 77-100, Winter.
  17. Viral V. Acharya & Douglas Gale & Tanju Yorulmazer, 2010. "Rollover Risk and Market Freezes," NBER Working Papers 15674, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  18. Tobias Adrian & Hyun Song Shin, 2008. "Liquidity and leverage," Staff Reports 328, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  19. Arvind Krishnamurthy, 2009. "Amplification Mechanisms in Liquidity Crises," NBER Working Papers 15040, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Jeffrey Wurgler & Ekaterina Zhuravskaya, 2002. "Does Arbitrage Flatten Demand Curves for Stocks?," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 75(4), pages 583-608, October.
  21. Coughenour, Jay F. & Saad, Mohsen M., 2004. "Common market makers and commonality in liquidity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(1), pages 37-69, July.
  22. Tarun Chordia & Asani Sarkar & Avanidhar Subrahmanyam, 2003. "An empirical analysis of stock and bond market liquidity," Staff Reports 164, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  23. Huberman, G. & Halka, D., 1999. "Systematic Liquidity," Papers 99-9, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
  24. Acharya, Viral V. & Pedersen, Lasse Heje, 2005. "Asset pricing with liquidity risk," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(2), pages 375-410, August.
  25. Dimitri Vayanos, 2004. "Flight to Quality, Flight to Liquidity, and the Pricing of Risk," NBER Working Papers 10327, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  26. Nicolae B. Garleanu & Lasse H. Pedersen, 2007. "Liquidity and Risk Management," NBER Working Papers 12887, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  27. Hasbrouck, Joel & Seppi, Duane J., 2001. "Common factors in prices, order flows, and liquidity," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(3), pages 383-411, March.
  28. Chenghuan Sean Chu & Andreas Lehnert & Wayne Passmore, 2009. "Strategic Trading in Multiple Assets and the Effects on Market Volatiliy," International Journal of Central Banking, International Journal of Central Banking, vol. 5(4), pages 143-172, December.
  29. Shleifer, Andrei, 1986. " Do Demand Curves for Stocks Slope Down?," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 41(3), pages 579-90, July.
  30. Gertler, Mark & Karadi, Peter, 2011. "A model of unconventional monetary policy," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 17-34, January.
  31. Tarun Chordia, 2005. "An Empirical Analysis of Stock and Bond Market Liquidity," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 18(1), pages 85-129.
  32. Amihud, Yakov & Mendelson, Haim, 1986. "Asset pricing and the bid-ask spread," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 223-249, December.
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