Financial Crises - ECON6030

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2024 to 2025.


The aim of the module is to introduce the students to the evolution of the financial crises from a historical perspective. Since financial crises are infrequent (though often occurring) events, a long-run perspective is necessary to understand their causes and consequences. This module will look at financial crises from the Tulip mania in 1636 to the financial crisis of 2008, and combine theoretical approaches to understanding financial crises with critical discussion of historical episodes.

The module will cover the following topics:

1. Financial crises in historical perspective: long-run facts
2. Theories of financial crises
3. The severity of financial crises in historical perspective
4. Financial crises in the 17th and 18th Centuries
5. Early 19th century financial crises
6. The 1890s
7. The banking panic of 1907 and the emergence of Fed
8. The Great Depression I – Florida housing bubble, FED and 1931 banking crises
9. The Great Depression II – US banking crisis
10. The Great Depression III – Germany, Eastern European crisis, sterling crisis
11. Financial crises in the 1990s
12. The Great Recessions – housing bubble, contagion, banking crisis.


Contact hours

Private Study: 128
Contact Hours: 22
Total: 150


This is an elective module for all Single Honours Economics Courses and Joint Honours Courses

The module is NOT available to students across other degree courses in the University

Method of assessment

First assignment, (1500 words) (30%)
Second assignment, (3000 words) (60%)
Group project, (500 words) (10%)

Reassessment Instrument: 100% coursework

Indicative reading

The University is committed to ensuring that core reading materials are in accessible electronic format in line with the Kent Inclusive Practices.

The most up to date reading list for each module can be found on the university's reading list pages.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1 Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the evolution of financial crises over the past 300 years
2 Identify causes of financial crises and the various sources of their origins and use these to describe or comment upon aspects of current research
3 Understand the nature of speculative booms and recurrent nature of financial crises and explain and evaluate relevant examples
4 Critically analyse the connection among currency crises, banking crises, debt crises, and balance of payment crises
5 Demonstrate systematic knowledge and understanding of the importance of the lender of last resort and the role of regulation
6 Critically evaluate the costs of financial crises and efficacy of policy responses.


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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