Penang Institute held the fifth event in its “Penang in Asia” lecture series on March 17, 2014. The honoured speaker was Prof Kiyohiko Nishimura, who is currently the dean of the Faculty of Economics at the University of Tokyo and before that, was the deputy governor of the Bank of Japan where he was also a member of the Bank’s policy board.
Nishimura sought to explain Japan’s bubble economy in the 1980s by considering the effects changing population demographics have on asset markets. Instead of the conventional credit channels through which bubbles are explained, Nishimura found that Japan’s ageing population and the inherent need of the old to save for retirement contributed to the property bubble in the 1980s.
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