The Bubble Economy: Japan's Extraordinary Speculative Boom of the '80s and the Dramatic Bust of the '90s

Christopher Wood, Author
Christopher Wood, Author Atlantic Monthly Press $21 (210p) ISBN 978-0-87113-485-1
Paperback - 224 pages - 978-979-3780-12-2
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Japan's recent stock market crash and economic troubles may not portend catastrophe, according to Wood ( Boom and Bust ) in this analysis of Japan's current crisis. The situation will bring needed banking and market reforms, will correct the 1980s ' wildly overvalued assets, will further open Japanese markets to the West and will force the country closer to Western - style capitalism. In the process, however, there are likely to be further devaluations, higher unemployment and possibly serious political unrest. Wood vividly details Japan's feudal structures in banking, insurance, real estate and investment , which upended the world's most impressive economy and brought about the recent scandals. He analyzes the country's international buying sprees, which he views as misconceived, and foresees additional implosions. He is nevertheless optimistic that Japan's effects on the West will be less horrendous than predicted. Wood criticizes current popular notions that Japan's unique culture permits it to play successfully by different rules. This is an important and accessible study. (Oct.)
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