This is the first full-length study of five US banking panics of the Great Depression. Previous studies of the Depression have approached the banking panics from a macroeconomic viewpoint; Professor Wicker fills a lacuna in current knowledge by reconstructing a close historical narrative of each of the panics, investigating their origins, magnitude, and effects. He makes a detailed analysis of the geographical incidence of the disturbances using the Federal Reserve District as the basic unit, and reappraises the role of Federal Reserve officials in the panics. His findings challenge many of the commonly held assumptions about the events of 1930 and 1931, for example the belief that the increase in the discount rate in October 1931 initiated a wave of bank suspensions and hoarding. This meticulous account will be of wide interest to students of the Great Depression, monetary and financial historians, financial economists and macroeconomists.
• First full-length study of the five banking panics of the Great Depression in the US • The only complete historical narrative of these events • Reappraises the role of the Federal Reserve during the banking crises of the Great Depression
1. The Banking Situation in the United States, 1921–33.
'An important contribution to our understanding of the interactions between the banking system and the course of the Great Depression.' John H. Wood, H-Net Reviews
'This book substantially advances the literature on banks and money during the Great Depression.' David C. Wheelock, Journal of Economic History
' … he assembles a commendable representation of the major incidents that will be a springboard for a great deal of future research … a valuable addition to scholarly work on the causes and consequences of Depression-era bank failures and panics'. Economica
'Wicker's meticulous, in many respects exemplary, account is essential reading for the financial history of the Great Depression.' The History Journal