A mania or panic is a transient event in a society, triggered by a series of events that are poorly understood at the time and which quickly gets out of control.

In a mania people become obsessed with owning or buying something, which may be driven by greed or fear of being beaten out by an opponent.


In a panic people become obsessed with selling or buying things out of fear or desperation.


A mania or panic may occur with something that is:

(1) a necessity that is reported to be in short supply

(2) something in demand with a limited supply


The event usually starts simply enough, but then spirals out of control. It lasts until something collapses, at which point it ends.


People engaged in the behavior may:

(1) be willing to tolerate a level of inconvenience or discomfort not normally tolerated

(2) have delusional beliefs, including a belief that nothing can go right or go wrong

(3) take on more risk than is safe or reasonable


Consequences of a mania or panic:

(1) marked change in the value of an asset or service

(2) ability to make or lose a large amount of money

(3) increased risk for fraud

(4) risk of violence, including suicide

(5) increased stress and mental illness

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