Lest we forget life

November 11, 2012

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As the Brits celebrate the young men how have fallen for the crown, numerous touching stories are told in the papers. This one by Caroline Green in The Telegraph caught my eye.

All too often, life is crowded out of war stories. We concentrate on dramatic events such as battles, sieges, the absence of the men at home, the huge traumas when they do march back and other such things but we forget often totally the background. Specially the economic one.

I, for one, was completely stunned when I read this paragraph in the article dedicated to Gordon Eltham (positively dashing young fellow), the writer’s grand father, who had been declared missing presumed dead by White Hall during the First World War:

Surprisingly, there were also a series of letters from Gordon’s bank, diligently reporting to his father that various cheques signed by their “missing” son had begun to turn up at the Berlin office, suggesting that he must still be alive.

I have no clue what bank it was but apparently while countries were at war some business kept on as usual and information could still flow back and forth. I wonder if it was still the case during WWII. That would be a story worth telling.


Mitchener K. and Ohnuki M. (2009) Capital integration in Japan

March 15, 2009

Mitchener, Kris James and Ohnuki, Mari (2009) “Institutions, competition and capital market integration in Japan”, The Journal of Economic History, 69/1, 138-171.

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Introduction

The causal relationship between finance and economic growth makes “understanding the factors that encourage capital market development […] a key question” (p.138). Meiji-era policy-maker recognized that “the geographical mobility of capital [was] critical to allocative efficiency” and that to modernize the economy they had to forge an integrated capital market (p.139). Read the rest of this entry »