The Great Depression and its Global Impact

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By HonorableHorse

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3 Questions

What event is widely believed to be the catalyst for the Great Depression?

What impact did the Great Depression have on global trade?

What led to the Nazi Party becoming the top political actor in Germany after the 1932 elections?

Summary

  • The Great Depression was a global economic crisis that started in 1929 and continued until the late 1930s.
  • The US stock market collapse in October 1929 is widely believed to be the catalyst for the depression.
  • By 1932, US stocks were worth only 20% of their pre-crisis value.
  • Nearly half of all US banks had failed by 1935.
  • Approximately 750,000 farms were lost to bankruptcy or distressed sales during the depression.
  • Unemployment in Europe reached 25% and many countries dealt with both the depression and a sovereign debt crisis.
  • In Germany, for example, unemployment led to the Nazi Party becoming the top political actor after the 1932 elections.
  • Worldwide trade was severely impacted by the Great Depression, leading to "trade wars" where countries limited imports and engaged in protectionist policies.
  • By 1932, global trade had crashed to half of its pre-crisis volume.
  • Unfortunately, trade wars degenerated into actual armed conflicts, causing over 16 million deaths during World War II.
  • Economic factors have historically played a significant role in causing wars.

Description

Explore the global economic crisis known as the Great Depression, its causes, impact on different countries, and its relation to World War II. Learn about the collapse of the US stock market, widespread unemployment, and the subsequent trade wars that led to significant global repercussions.

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