Over the last 6 centuries, financial crises occur for almost always the same reason: we increase our debts to unsustainable levels, be it in the government, corporate or households sectors. The problem is that no financial institution is willing to tackle credit bubbles before they burst into severe recessions. Central Banks are only ready to intervene once financial crises take place rather than prior to them.
Their main justification for doing so lies in the difficulty of measuring excessive indebtedness. The problem is that there is no guarantee whatsoever that the massive liquidity injections by the Central Banks post financial crisis will be effective in jumpstarting the economies away from recession. Detecting bubbles is no easy task but not an impossible one. In this talk, I show some simple measures to assert whether debt has indeed become unsustainable.
A dual Swiss and French citizen, Michel Girardin teaches Economics and Finance at the University of Geneva. His video course on investment management ranks no 1 in popularity out of 980 Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) in Business on Coursera’s platform and has been followed by more than 650’000 students worldwide since 2016. He holds a PhD and a B.A in Economics from the University of Lausanne as well as a Master of Science in Economics from the London School of Economics. Michel has more than 25 years’ experience as Chief Economist and Chief Investment Officer in the Swiss private banking sector. In 2012, he was included in Bilan magazine’s ranking of the 50 most influential personalities of the Swiss financial sector.