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Predictable Financial Crises

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Listed:
  • Robin Greenwood
  • Samuel G. Hanson
  • Andrei Shleifer
  • Jakob Ahm Sørensen

Abstract

Using historical data on post-war financial crises around the world, we show that crises are substantially predictable. The combination of rapid credit and asset price growth over the prior three years, whether in the nonfinancial business or the household sector, is associated with about a 40% probability of entering a financial crisis within the next three years. This compares with a roughly 7% probability in normal times, when neither credit nor asset price growth has been elevated. Our evidence cuts against the view that financial crises are unpredictable “bolts from the sky” and points toward the Kindleberger-Minsky view that crises are the byproduct of predictable, boom-bust credit cycles. The predictability we document favors macro-financial policies that “lean against the wind” of credit market booms.

Suggested Citation

  • Robin Greenwood & Samuel G. Hanson & Andrei Shleifer & Jakob Ahm Sørensen, 2020. "Predictable Financial Crises," NBER Working Papers 27396, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:27396
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    2. Gregor Boehl & Cars Hommes, 2021. "Rational vs. Irrational Beliefs in a Complex World," CRC TR 224 Discussion Paper Series crctr224_2021_287, University of Bonn and University of Mannheim, Germany.
    3. Kristian Blickle & Markus Brunnermeier & Stephan Luck, 2021. "Who Can Tell Which Banks Will Fail?," Working Papers 2021-5, Princeton University. Economics Department..
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    6. Carlos Esteban Posada Posada, 2020. "Crecimiento y ciclos de la economía colombiana (2005 – 2019)," Documentos de Trabajo CIEF 018255, Universidad EAFIT.

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    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • E7 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macro-Based Behavioral Economics
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G4 - Financial Economics - - Behavioral Finance

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