MISSISSIPPI BUBBLE refers to the disastrous failure of John Law's scheme for exploiting the resources of French Louisiana. Law, a Scot who had previously gained an enviable reputation in France as a successful banker and financier, organized a trading company to assume control of Louisiana. In 1719, the company founded a colony at New Biloxi, Mississippi. Law's reputation and aggressive promotion of the company's stock led to wild speculation that drove the price of shares to high figures without any sound basis in tangible assets. In December 1720 the company failed and the "bubble" burst, wiping out investors throughout Europe. By then, many of the colonists had also lost their lives. Those who remained waited for relief ships to take them back to France.