Wars and Markets: How Bond Values Reflect World War II
Historical events are reflected in asset prices. In this paper, we analyse government bond prices of Germany and Austria traded on the Swiss bourse during WWII. Some war events that are generally considered crucial are clearly reflected in government bond prices. This holds, in particular, for the official outbreak of the war and the loss and gain of national sovereignty. Other events to which historians attach great importance are not reflected in bond prices: The most prominent example is Germany's capitulation in 1945. The analysis of financial markets provides a fruitful method to evaluate the importance contemporaries attached to historical events.
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