This paper examines the value of connections between German industry and
the Nazi movement in early 1933. Drawing on previously unused contemporary
sources about management and supervisory board composition and stock returns,
we find that one out of seven firms, and a large proportion of the biggest companies,
had substantive links with the National Socialist German Workers’ Party. Firms
supporting the Nazi movement experienced unusually high returns, outperforming
unconnected ones by 5% to 8% between January and March 1933. These results
are not driven by sectoral composition and are robust to alternative estimators
and definitions of affiliation.
“The Failure of Democracy” – “The weaknesses of Weimar”
Do headlines such as these suggest that the whole architecture of the first German republic was wrong, that it was doomed right from the start, that the “collapse” was unavoidable?
In the paper that we present this afternoon, Soren Johansen, Anders Rahbek, Morten Tabor, and I introduce the Qualitative Expectations Hypothesis (QEH) as a new approach to modeling macroeconomic and financial outcomes.
After re-iterating five well-known theorems about the properties of conditional expectations in
stationary settings—such as providing unbiased minimum mean square error predictions despite in-
complete information, and the law of iterated expectations—we clarify unpredictability and illustrate
its prevalence empirically.
I have read the various conference papers and am struck by the fact that many use the (omnipresent New-Keynesian) model of an aggregate loanable funds market to diagnose secular stagnation and investigate possible remedies.
The prevailing wisdom that aggregate demand ‘shocks’ determine short-run cyclical fluctuations around a supply-determined equilibrium growth rate and an associated equilibrium unemployment rate (or NAIRU) has been called into question by various streams of literature in the last decades. Specifically, a recently revived literature on hysteresis finds significant persistence in the effects of recessions and negative aggregate demand shocks (Blanchard et al. 2015; Martin et al. 2015).