Working Paper

Learning, Expectations, and the Financial Instability Hypothesis

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This paper analyzes what assumptions on formation of expectations are consistent with Minsky’s Financial Instability Hypothesis (FIH) and its corollaries.

The FIH establishes that financial relations evolve over time turning a stable system into an unstable one. Financial crises would be more likely to occur, and more severe if they occur, the longer the previous crisis recedes into the past. We show that the hypothesis is consistent with assumptions on formation of expectations that imply learning from realization of states and inconsistent with the assumption of full information rational expectations.