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Deja vu? The Greek crisis experience, the 2010s versus the 1930s. Lessons from history

Author

Listed:
  • George Chouliarakis

    (The University of Manchester and Bank of Greece)

  • Sophia Lazaretou

    () (Bank of Greece)

Abstract

The past Greek crisis experience is more or less terra incognita. In all historical empirical studies Greece is systematically neglected or included only sporadically in their cross-country samples. In the national literature too there is little on this topic. In this paper we focus on the Greek experience of the Great Depression and use it as a benchmark against which to assess the policy choices and constraints that Greece faces today, with the ultimate aim to draw policy lessons from history and warn against a repeat of the same outcome. The 1930s crisis episode is used as a useful testing ground to compare the two crises episodes, ‘then’ and ‘now’; detect differences and similarities, discuss the policy facts and assess the impact of policy pursued on output. To the best of our knowledge, this paper is the first attempt to study the Greek crisis experience over the two historical episodes and detect similarities and differences. Comparisons with the interwar period show that the current crisis of the Greek economy should be classified a great depression rather than a great recession and that the inability of the national authorities to credibly adhere to their commitment to a nominal anchor was at the root of the country’s failure.

Suggested Citation

  • George Chouliarakis & Sophia Lazaretou, 2014. "Deja vu? The Greek crisis experience, the 2010s versus the 1930s. Lessons from history," Working Papers 176, Bank of Greece.
  • Handle: RePEc:bog:wpaper:176
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    economic crisis; economic policy; interwar Greece;

    JEL classification:

    • F33 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Monetary Arrangements and Institutions
    • H6 - Public Economics - - National Budget, Deficit, and Debt
    • N14 - Economic History - - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics; Industrial Structure; Growth; Fluctuations - - - Europe: 1913-
    • N24 - Economic History - - Financial Markets and Institutions - - - Europe: 1913-

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