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Past financial crises, the current financial turmoil, and the need for a new macrofinancial stability framework

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Abstract

While it is tempting to focus on new financial innovations in helping explain recent financial turmoil, more traditional causes should not be overlooked. As on many previous occasions, very rapid credit growth led to major increases in asset prices, which in turn encouraged consumption and investment decisions which could yet prove unsustainable. The natural "procyclicality" of the financial system could perhaps be contained through the introduction of a "new macrofinancial stability framework". There are many practical impediments to realising such a suggestion, but there are also grounds for belief that these impediments could be removed.

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