Perhaps the worst economic downturn in the history of the United States occurred from 1930-1939. The Great Depression led to domestic and international crises effecting the poor and wealthy alike. Many financial experts today continue to debate the cause of The Depression, although most agree that several events led to the economic decline. The famous stock market crash on October 29, 1929 is just one of many causes economists believe led to The Great Depression. Known also as Black Tuesday, October 29th left stockholders shattered with recorded losses reaching $40 billion dollars (Kelly, n.d.).
The middle class was nearly non-existent. This occurs often in the world, but the Great Depression was the worst economic downfall in the history of the U.S. It spread and affected all of the industrialized world. The depression began with Black Tuesday, and lasted for nearly a decade. According to Paul Alexander Gusmorino, the main cause of the drastic downfall was the combination of unequal distribution of wealth and the extensive stock market speculation that took place in the later years of that decade.
Other major causes and symptoms of such a severe economic crisis were the quantities of gold stockpiled by particular countries, large number of banks failing during the 1930s, the reduction in money spent by people and huge international trade barriers placed by governments. During this period it is estimated that international trade reduced by as much as 33% because of various factors. Even though the mentioning of the Great Depression indicates and is connected mostly with the USA it was a global event and a global economic depression. Every nation was in some way affected by the Great Depression, some more, some less, but it is considered that China’s silver standard contributed to making this country almost completely avoid the Great Depression. Countries in Europe experienced the depression differently and tried to fight it off differently.
APS Social Studies Causes of the Great Depression DBQ Historical Context: The Great Depression in the United States started in 1929 when the stock market crashed. It caused an economic depression. The depression last over ten years and had long-term social, economic, and political effects on American society. It is still one of the greatest defining eras in US History. In general, we know what caused the Great Depression, but these causes are still debated even today.
The Causes of the Great Depression The Great Depression was an economic downfall that to this day is the worst economic downfall in U.S history. The depression started in the United States. People all over the world were affected by it, especially in Europe, Germany, Great Britain and other industrialized areas of the world. Mainly because America was a big creditor to those countries after World War I. The Great Depression lasted in America for at least ten years, but it took twenty-seven years to get the economy back above depression levels.
It did not only affect Americans, but also the whole world. The Great Depression was caused by the crash of the stock market or the lack of real investment opportunities in the 1920’s, product innovation that caused less labor, President Roosevelt believed that it was caused by the structural problems and doubted simulative spending will solve the problem, and some argued it was caused by the shift toward modern employment relation that was made by the Great War. A Depression in the economy can start by raising taxes and dismissing government’s employees and both of these actions can start a depression and both of these were done by the government in 1929. Once this is done, it will have a chain reaction where it will get to the point where the economy will fall and cause its people to live in poverty. The prices of the products will either increase or stay the same but the wages of the people will always decrease.
The Great Depression was a severe period of poverty and tragedy. It effected many other countries not just America; especially in Europe, where many countries had not fully recovered from the aftermath of World War I. The cost of World War I weakened the ability of the world to respond to a major crisis. America alone had ten billon dollars of debt from the war. In Germany America’s economic failure contributed to the rise of Adolf Hiltler, so the Stock Market Crash had a domino effect on our country and others.
Only six months after Hoover took office, the economy collapsed and the Great Depression began. Many factors caused and contributed to the Great Depression of 1929. One factor would be the overproductions of many goods in the 1920s led to worker layoffs Another factor was that easy credit led to people spending more than they had, and it led to a rapid inflation that eventually caused people to stop buying. The Federal Reserve Bank, created in 1913, did a poor job which also led to the great depression. It did not monitor interest rates to help regulate the economy when overproduction and inflation had started to cause unemployment in 1928-29 and the economy seemed likely headed toward collapse.
Effectively, then, almost one out of every two U.S. households directly experienced unemployment or underemployment. For workers' families already facing hard times, the Depression's unemployment woes wreaked unprecedented, catastrophic havoc. The Great Depression was a worldwide economic contraction which brought about economic hardship and in some nations, political instability. In the United States a general banking failure brought about increased government regulation of the financial sector along with the broadening of the social safety net through the introduction of Social Security. Unemployment, which reached 25%, was relieved partially by Public Works (The WPA).
We inevitably saw the classical model challenged. John Maynard Keynes ideas caused a shift which saw the Keynesian model come into place in the late 1930s. For many economists, it was the Great Depression that helped the confirmation of Keynes’s ideas. For example, a sudden decrease in aggregate demand was thought that caused the macroeconomic problems. This caused a ‘Recessionary gap’ where a fall in aggregate demand took an economy from above its potential output to below its potential output.