Bubble

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Definition of 'Bubble'

A bubble is a situation in which the price of an asset, such as a stock, bond, or real estate, rises rapidly to a level that is far above its actual value. This can be caused by a number of factors, such as speculation, low interest rates, or a lack of supply. Bubbles often end with a sudden and dramatic collapse in prices, which can lead to financial losses for investors.

There are a number of different types of bubbles. One common type is a **speculative bubble**, which occurs when investors buy an asset in the hopes of selling it for a higher price later. This can be driven by a number of factors, such as a belief that the asset is undervalued, or by the expectation that prices will continue to rise.

Another type of bubble is a **credit bubble**, which occurs when banks lend money to borrowers who are unable to repay it. This can be caused by low interest rates, which make it more affordable for borrowers to take on debt. Credit bubbles can lead to a housing bubble, as banks lend money to borrowers who are unable to afford the homes they are buying.

Bubbles can have a number of negative consequences. They can lead to financial losses for investors, and they can also damage the economy. When a bubble bursts, it can cause a sharp decline in asset prices, which can lead to a recession. Bubbles can also make it difficult for businesses to get loans, as banks may be reluctant to lend money to borrowers who are at risk of default.

There are a number of things that can be done to prevent bubbles. One important step is to educate investors about the risks of speculation. Regulators can also take steps to limit speculation, such as by imposing margin requirements on investors.

Bubbles are a complex phenomenon, and there is no surefire way to prevent them. However, by understanding the risks of bubbles and taking steps to mitigate them, we can help to reduce the likelihood of a financial crisis.

Here are some additional resources that you may find helpful:

* [The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission: The Causes of the Financial Crisis](https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/GPO-FCIC/pdf/GPO-FCIC.pdf)
* [The Federal Reserve: Bubbles](https://www.federalreserve.gov/newsevents/pressreleases/other20130515a.htm)
* [The Securities and Exchange Commission: Bubble Watch](https://www.sec.gov/news/pressreleases/2017-12-12.html)

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