Did Impending War in Europe Help Destroy the Gold Bloc in 1936? An Internal Inconsistency Hypothesis
This paper investigates the gold bloc operated between France, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Belgium, especially over the period after the USA left the gold standard in March 1933 to its end in September 1936. It enquires into the effect of military-political developments in Germany and Italy on the sustainability of the gold bloc between its members. Juxtaposed is the view of leading political scientists, such as Henry Kissinger, who see impending war in Europe as deeply and adversely affecting psychology in Europe, and what may be called the standard "economists' view" that sees the demise of the gold bloc as being caused almost exclusively by economic factors. Developing concepts of external and internal inconsistency of the gold bloc, this investigation concludes that both economic and military-political developments played important roles in destroying the last vestiges of the gold standard.
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