This book, first published in 1992, explores the role of the Federal Reserve System in the Great Depression. Several theories of the causes of the Great Depression are discussed. What the Federal Reserve did, how they defended their actions, and how business writers, businessmen and economists viewed these actions are important. Analysis of these opinions sheds light on how aware of the appropriateness of Federal Reserve policy concerned participants of that time period were.
Part 1. Historical Overview 1. The Prosperity of the 1920s 2. Price Stability 3. The Fundamental Weakness of the 1920s Economy 4. Agriculture and Construction Industry Weakness 5. The Uneven Distribution of Income 6. Investments Made by Business 7. Stock Market Speculation and Foreign Investments 8. The Instability of Banking (1920-29) 9. The Course of Federal Reserve Policy in the 1920s 10. Summary 11. The Great Depression 12. The Stock Market Crash 13. Bank Failures and the Federal Reserve Attitude 14. Theories of the Great Depression 15. Conclusion Part 2. Opinion of the Period Part 3. Conclusion