We examine whether a three-regime model that allows for dormant, explosive and collapsing speculative behaviour can explain the dynamics of the S&P 500. We extend existing models of speculative behaviour by including a third regime that allows a bubble to grow at a steady rate, and propose abnormal volume as an indicator of the probable time of bubble collapse. We also examine the financial usefulness of the three-regime model by studying a trading rule formed using inferences from it, whose use leads to higher Sharpe ratios and end of period wealth than from employing existing models or a buy-and-hold strategy.