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Der späte Fluch des Dritten Reichs: Pfadabhängigkeiten in der Entstehung der bundesdeutschen Wirtschaftsordnung

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  • Albrecht Ritschl

Abstract

According to a popular belief, West Germany's post-war economic system constituted a clean break with the structures of the Third Reich. The present article takes a critical look at this myth, and examines the continuity between the economic framework of the Third Reich and the Social Market Economy. In a whole array of sectors of the German economy, regulations from the Nazi period continued to be in force after the war, or were even reintroduced. To accommodate these regulations, the Anti-Cartel Act of 1957 defined these areas as exempt from its general ban on cartels. In this sense, Germany's current reforms may be viewed as the laborious transformation of an economic system whose substance originated not in the Social Market Economy of the 1950s, but rather in the command economy of the 1930s. The findings of this article confirm that the impact of the Third Reich on the economic policies of post-war Germany was significantly greater than hitherto known. Copyright Verein für Socialpolitik und Blackwell Publishers Ltd, 2005

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Verein für Socialpolitik in its journal Perspektiven der Wirtschaftspolitik.

Volume (Year): 6 (2005)
Issue (Month): 2 (05)
Pages: 151-170

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Handle: RePEc:bla:perwir:v:6:y:2005:i:2:p:151-170

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  1. Garvy, George, 1975. "Keynes and the Economic Activists of Pre-Hitler Germany," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 83(2), pages 391-405, April.
  2. Crafts, Nicholas & Toniolo, Gianni, 1995. "Post-war Growth: An Overview," CEPR Discussion Papers 1095, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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