In this paper, we document the disintegration of international commodity markets between 1913 and 1938. There was dramatic disintegration during World War I, gradual reintegration during the 1920s, and then a substantial disintegration after 1929. The period saw the unravelling of many of the integration gains of 1870-1913. While increased transport costs help explain the wartime disintegration, they cannot explain the post-1929 increase in trade costs. The proliferation of tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade, the collapse of the interwar gold standard, and the evaporation of commercial credit loom large as suspects.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)