The writer, Morgan Stanley Investment Management’s chief global strategist, is author of ‘The Ten Rules of Successful Nations’
Amid much loose talk of “bubbles” popping all over the financial markets, it’s worth pausing to consider if these upheavals really qualify as bubbles. If so, what does history tell us about how far they might deflate from here? It turns out the answers are quite a few, and quite far.
As bubbles peak, they combine objective signs of excess — prices rising much faster than earnings can justify — with subjective signs of mania, such as frenzied trading and borrowing. To some the entire US stock market looks bubbly given its dizzying run-up, but earnings growth has also been extraordinarily strong through the pandemic. Beneath the surface, however, sectors of the market from green tech to cryptocurrency show tell-tale bubble signs.
My research on the 10 biggest bubbles of the…