—panicky, adj./pan"ik/, n., adj., v., panicked, panicking.n.1. a sudden overwhelming fear, with or without cause, that produces hysterical or irrational behavior, and that often spreads quickly through a group of persons or animals.2. an instance, outbreak, or period of such fear.3. Finance. a sudden widespread fear concerning financial affairs leading to credit contraction and widespread sale of securities at depressed prices in an effort to acquire cash.4. Slang. someone or something that is considered hilariously funny: The comedian was an absolute panic.adj.5. of the nature of, caused by, or indicating panic: A wave of panic buying shook the stock market.6. (of fear, terror, etc.) suddenly destroying the self-control and impelling to some frantic action.7. (cap.) of or pertaining to the god Pan.v.t.8. to affect with panic; terrify and cause to flee or lose self-control.9. Slang. to keep (an audience or the like) highly amused.v.i.10. to be stricken with panic; become frantic with fear: The herd panicked and stampeded.[1595-1605; earlier panique < F < Gk Panikós of PAN; see -IC]panic2/pan"ik/, n.1. Also called panic grass. any grass of the genus Panicum, many species of which bear edible grain.2. the grain.[1375-1425; late ME < L panicum a kind of millet]
* * *In economics, a severe financial disturbance, such as widespread bank failures, feverish stock speculation followed by a market crash, or a climate of fear caused by economic crisis or anticipation of such a crisis.The term is applied only to the initial, violent stage of financial upheaval rather than the whole decline in the business cycle (see depression and recession). Until the 19th century, economic fluctuations were largely connected with shortages of goods, market expansion, and speculation (as in the South Sea Bubble). Panics in the industrialized societies of the 19th–20th centuries have reflected the increasing complexity of advanced economies. The Panic of 1857 in the U.S. had its seeds in the railroads' defaulting on their bonds and in the decline in the value of railroad securities; its effects were complex, including not only the closing of many banks but also severe unemployment in the U.S. and a money-market panic in Europe. The Panic of 1873, which began with financial crises in Vienna and New York, marked the start of a long-term contraction in the world economy. The most infamous panic began with the U.S. stock-market crash of 1929 (see Great Depression).
* * *in economics, acute financial disturbance, such as widespread bank failures, feverish stock speculation followed by a market crash, or a climate of fear caused by economic crisis or the anticipation of such crisis. The term is applied only to the violent stage of financial convulsion and does not extend to the whole period of a decline in the business cycle.Until the 19th century, economic fluctuations were largely connected with shortages of goods, market expansion, and speculation, as in the incident known as the South Sea Bubble (1720), when stock speculation reached panic proportions in both France and England. Panics in the industrialized societies of the 19th and 20th centuries, however, have reflected the increasing complexity of advanced economies and the changed character of their instability. A financial panic has quite often been a prelude to a crisis that extended beyond commercial activities into sectors of consumption and capital-goods industries. The Panic of 1857 in the United States, for example, was the outcome of a number of developments, including the railroads' defaulting on their bonds, the resultant decline in the value of rail securities, and the tying up of bank assets in nonliquid railroad investments. Its effects were also complex, including not only the closing of many banks but also a sharp increase in unemployment in the United States and a money-market panic on the European continent. The Panic of 1873, which began with financial crises in Vienna in June and in New York City in September, marked the end of the long-term expansion in the world economy that had begun in the late 1840s. An even greater panic, however, was the stock market crash of 1929, which bankrupted many U.S. stock investors and presaged the Great Depression.
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