Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

Can Great Depression Theories Explain the Great Recession?

Contents:

Author Info

  • Schlenkhoff, Georg
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    The recent recession has brought a sharp decrease in income, output, and world trade, as well as an increase in unemployment in developed and underdeveloped countries. Experts such as Paul Krugman, Christina Romer, or Barry Eichengreen, compare the current situation with the Great Depression of the 1930s. However, the current debate is whether that comparison is even applicable. Since policy makers have to understand the roots and the dimension of the crisis in order to seize the fiscal stimulus package, adjust the level of taxes, and change regulation of the financial sector, the debate is of course a reasonable one to have. The Great Depression is the archetype of a recession, so it provides policy makers with valuable insights into right and wrong reaction methods. However, if policy makers orientate at the Great Depression, they have to make sure that the roots of the crisis are similar. So this paper addresses the question: Is the current financial crisis similar to the Great Depression? For that purpose I will systematically compare the Great Recession with the Great Depression. First, by examining the theories that commonly explain the Great Depression. Subsequently I will apply these theories to the Great Recession and discuss if they are applicable. I will argue that some theories are still applicable. For example, which flaws in the monetary system contributed to the Great Recession as well as to the Great Depression? However, the economic environment has changed and applying the same policy reactions today as in the Great Depression will be a policy error. Finally I will briefly present policy recommendations that are based on the findings.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/19781/
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no

    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 19781.

    as in new window
    Length:
    Date of creation: 24 Nov 2009
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:19781

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: Schackstr. 4, D-80539 Munich, Germany
    Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-2219
    Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-3900
    Web page: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
    More information through EDIRC

    Related research

    Keywords: Great Depression; Great Recession; Crisis; Bretton Woods II; Fiscal Policy; Monetary Policy; Shocks;

    Find related papers by JEL classification:

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    References

    References listed on IDEAS
    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
    as in new window
    1. Frederic S. Mishkin, 1990. "Asymmetric Information and Financial Crises: A Historical Perspective," NBER Working Papers 3400, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Nicholas Bloom, 2007. "The Impact of Uncertainty Shocks," NBER Working Papers 13385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Bernanke, Ben S, 1983. "Nonmonetary Effects of the Financial Crisis in Propagation of the Great Depression," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 257-76, June.
    4. Reinhart, Carmen, 2008. "Reflections on the International Dimensions and Policy Lessons of the U.S. Subprime Crisis," MPRA Paper 11863, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Nicholas Bloom & Max Floetotto & Nir Jaimovich & Itay Saporta-Eksten & Stephen J. Terry, 2014. "Really Uncertain Business Cycles," Working Papers 14-18, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    6. John Van Reenen & Nick Bloom & Steve Bond, 2006. "Uncertainty and investment dynamics," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 2645, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    7. King, Gary & Rosen, Ori & Tanner, Martin & Wagner, Alexander F., 2008. "Ordinary Economic Voting Behavior in the Extraordinary Election of Adolf Hitler," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 68(04), pages 951-996, December.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:19781. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.