On Memorial Day we honored the fallen heroes that have served and sacrificed for our country. How was our economy influenced by military conflict?
STARTING WITH WORLD WAR II (1941-45), HOW DID IT IMPACT OUR ECONOMY AND AMERICAN FAMILIES?
- World War II pulled us out of the Great Depression.
- American industry was revitalized by the war as we mobilized human and physical resources.
- Unemployment dipped to only 1.2%.
- War bonds financed over half the cost of the war. Paid about 3% for 10 years.
IT WASN’T MUCH LATER THAT WE ENTERED THE KOREAN WAR (1950-53).
- Communism became a household word.
- Taxes were raised significantly.
- Inflation rose to 11% until Uncle Sam issued price controls.
- The early wave of the Baby Boomers were born.
- The growth of suburban life (WWII veterans used the GI Bill to buy a home).
A DECADE LATER, HOW WAS OUR ECONOMY DOING DURING THE VIETNAM WAR (1964-75)?
- The extended conflict strained the nation’s factories.
- International monetary crisis.
- High inflation on food and oil.
- In 1973-74, we experienced a deep recession and stock market crash.
FINALLY, WE COME TO MODERN HISTORY (1990-2018) WHERE MILITARY CONFLICT HAS CHANGED (not big global conflicts dominating the public square).
- Gulf Wars and War on Terrorism.
- Global economy.
- Slow economic growth.
- Low unemployment.
- Low inflation.
- Major technology advances.
Thank you to all the men and women serving our country: past, present, and future. We should never take for granted the freedoms that we enjoy: freedom to work, to own a business, to raise a family, to vote, and so much more!