We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Was the Crash of 1929?

Tricia Christensen
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
America Explained is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At America Explained, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The Crash of 1929 is often thought of as heralding the Great Depression in the United States. Though historians debate this point, the sudden, swift and significant downturn of the stock market took the fortunes of many and left many in huge debt because they had borrowed to obtain stock. Some people are under the mistaken impression that the Crash of 1929 refers to a single day, but in fact, several days and their aftermath encompass the Crash.

The 1920s had been a time of growing prosperity, and interest in the stock market, prospecting and investing grew because so many owed their prosperity to investments that paid off big. Not only the wealthy, but also many people of average income saw the stock market as a way to get rich quick, so investment of all or most of people's funds was extremely high. Then came Black Tuesday on 24 October 1929, considered the first day of the Crash of 1929.

On Black Tuesday, stock prices plummeted, which created considerable panic among investors. Some chose to wait it out, while others quickly sold. This combination of investors staying put, and others selling quickly, or even buying stocks sold at lower prices, meant the remaining week was filled with considerable instability in the stock market. By the next week, panic was extreme, resulting in the morbidly named Black Monday on 28 October 1929, where people sold as much as they could, creating lower and lower valued stock.

By the next day, with people still anxiously selling what they could get rid of, many were “ruined” financially. Those who kept their stock ended up with stock that might take a lifetime to recover in price, and sometimes never did when companies issuing such stock went out of business. Since many businesses had considerable holdings in the stock market, businesses and individuals were both affected.

Through most of November, prices continued to decline, and if people hadn’t panicked by the end of October, they were certainly well on their way to financial ruin by mid-November. By then it was too late for most. By the end of Black Monday, the stock market has lost approximately $14 billion US Dollars (USD) of its value. Total loss in the first week of the Crash of 1929 was roughly $30 billion USD.

Did the Crash of 1929 result in the Great Depression? You may never get a single answer from historians or economists. Many believe that the considerable economic boom of the 1920s led to an inevitable “bust,” and that this was merely part of a standard economic cycle.

It is true that the Crash of 1929 caused many people to lose their savings and their homes due to the inability to meet loans. Moreover, businesses folded at a rapid rate, affecting even non-investors who were suddenly faced with high unemployment rates. It certainly can’t be viewed as the single reason for the Depression, though it was definitely, no matter how interpreted, a major contributing factor to the very rough economic times that followed.

America Explained is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a America Explained contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
Tricia Christensen
Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a America Explained contributor, Tricia...
Learn more
America Explained, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

America Explained, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.