Dr. Mansharamani is a Lecturer at Yale University and is scheduled to be teaching two courses (descriptions below) during the 2012-2013 academic year. In addition to teaching at Yale, he has also been a guest lecturer at Columbia, Northeastern, Blair Academy, and numerous private clubs around the country.
Financial Booms and Busts
This course is intended to provide an overview of extremes (characterized by both extraordinary optimism and severe despair) that have taken place in financial markets. Although the course can best be thought of as a survey, particular attention will be paid to 20th and 21st century events as well as the underlying commonalities that seem to recur in booms and busts.
Although the course is focused upon bubbles, crashes, manias, panics, and crises, it begins by evaluating the academic literature that dismisses the likelihood of these events—namely the efficient market hypothesis. A critical review of the theory is presented, as well as some competing theories. Academic and managerial perspectives are simultaneously evaluated. Possible explanations for the existence of financial extremes are then evaluated (psychological factors, monetary policy, etc.) before the course turns to the ramifications of and policy responses to financial extremes. The goal for the first half of the course will be for the class to develop a multi-disciplinary theoretical framework through which to evaluate and contextualize financial market extremes.
The second half of the course will focus on case studies of financial market booms and busts. Each example will be evaluated via the multidisciplinary theoretical lens developed in the first half of the course. The course concludes with the class collectively developing the “anatomy” of a “typical” financial market extreme. While each of the studied cases will have had unique elements, the objective for the course will be to coalesce these findings into an understanding of the general characteristics that precede, promote, and ultimately reverse bubbles and manias into crashes, panics, or crises. The semester will end with student groups presenting what they believe to be the most likely next “boom-bust” cycle.
While the course will serve as useful preparation for students interested in further academic work on the topic of asset pricing, behavioral finance, or monetary policy, it is also designed to given students an appreciation for the complexities of financial market extremes and policy responses to them. Upon completion of the course, students will be more informed participants in (as investors) and regulators of (as voting citizens) financial markets.
Adventures in Business Ethics (co-taught with Charley Ellis)