Scams that Broke the Economy

There are many financial schemes run by fraudsters to part people from their money, but some schemes are so successful that they do serious damage to the whole economy. The South Sea Bubble that burst in 1720 is a good example, as is the sub-prime mortgage boom that led to the 2008 crash.

Simon Ritchie's talk covers a number of these scams, concentrating on some common themes, in particular a piece of magic technology that few people understand and which promises unlimited wealth.

Background notes for the talk can be found here.