The Major Causes Of The Great Depression

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After the first World War, the United States launched into a decade of prosperity during the 1920s. Cities and consumer culture rose, along with mass entertainment like movies and music(Mintz, S & Mcneil, S, 1). All these factors and “the so-called “revolution in morals and manners” represented liberation from the restrictions of the country 's Victorian past”(Mintz, S & Mcneil, S, 1) led to the 1920s gaining the nickname the “Roaring 20s”.However this decade of prosperity did come to a tragic end. October 29,1929 marks the start of the period that the greed of the people in the 1920s, especially the top 1%, created the worst economic depression in history, the Great Depression.
The Great Depression is one of the most important time periods
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The History Connection claims that, “ the main causes were the unequal distribution of wealth and extensive stock market speculation. Money was distributed unequally between the rich and middle-class, between industry and agriculture within the United States”(2). In 1929 the US entered a recession as consumer spending dropped. Despite this, stock prices continued to rise until they “could not be justified by anticipated future earnings”, as reported by the staff (1). After Black Tuesday, millions of shares became worthless and investors who had bought on margin were “wiped out”(1). During the 1920s, Americans were always wanting more and more which lead to them buying things on credit that they could not afford to pay back. The greed of the American people led them to make reckless budgeting decisions that got them in huge debt that would weaken the American economy. The uneven distribution of income among the working class also contributed to the depression. According to Sarah Carroll, the average person’s wages stayed the same, despite the climb in prices for goods (3). Carroll also states that “The 1920s were prosperous period for businesses, but most farmers did not prosper. Prices of farm product fell about …show more content…
According to Shlaes, “The government modified taxes to tap wealthy people the most, who could take it in stride easily. The rich, conservatives, numerous businessmen- and those who were all 3- vigorously opposed the New Deal”(2). The New Deal was President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “unprecedented number of reforms addressing the catastrophic effects of the Great Depression” (PBS,1). The New Deal interfered with the business of the rich businessmen, and they were not happy about that. The wealthy businessmen argued that they had worked hard for their wealth and deserved to be rich, they refused to pay their fair share of taxes to help out the rest of the American people and the American economy. Rich businessmen did not like the establishment of a minimum wage because it took money from their great wealth, despite the fact that the establishment of a minimum wage helped to balance out the uneven distribution of wealth that the US economy was having. According to Sarah Carroll, “There was a major unequal distribution of income that led to the richest 1% of Americans owning approximately 40% of the country’s wealth”(3). The establishment of the minimum wage ensured that the wealth was trickling down instead of just accumulating all at the top with the upper class, which in turn helped the uneven distribution of

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