How Speculation Affects the Market and Outcome-Based Values of Innovation

Abstract: nnovation booms often coincide with speculative bubbles. Using data on over 1 million patents, we document two ways in which speculation creates a disconnect between the market valuation of innovation and its actual economic impact. First, an innovation during bubbles raises the stock price of its creator by 40 percent more than is justified by future outcomes. Next, competitors' stock prices move little during bubbles despite their profits suffering. We present a theory of investor disagreement about which firms will succeed that reconciles both facts. Policymakers should account for the disconnect.

Keywords: innovation; markets; investing; speculation;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond

Part of Series: Richmond Fed Economic Brief

Publication Date: 2022-08

Volume: 22

Issue: 35