The first Labour Government and New Zealand's recovery from depression
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Commerce
The scope of this study of the New Zealand economy during the late 1930s has been delineated by two factors - the availability of statistical information, and the title of the thesis. There is a lack of useful statistical information about the New Zealand economy in the 1930s. In particular, there are no figures available for the tertiary industries, including the wholesale and retail trade, and so a study of this sector of the economy, important though it is, has not been attempted. Similarly, the direction that each sector study takes differs from one sector to another, and was determined by what statistics were available for each particular. ar sector. All the figures presented have been taken from the original sources quoted, except for the series for the volume of production, and the productivity, of secondary industry. Both of these were supplied by Mr.W.Rosenberg, the former being supplied to him by the Department of Statistics, and the latter being calculated by Mr Rosenberg on the basis of the former series. No sector studied in the course of this thesis has been studied in great detail, firstly because of the lack of available information, and secondly because an estimation of the effectiveness or otherwise of the Labour Government's policy for economic recovery does not require a highly detailed sector study. Similarly, no attempt has been made to find parallelisms between economic situations or policy in the 130s and the '6os, as this too would be irrelevant. It has been necessary, however, to extend the overall study back to about 1930, in order to get a suitable base year. Neither the end of 1935, (when the Labour Government came to power) nor 1932 (the trough of the depression) were suitable dates from which to start a study of economic recovery, in that there would have been no indication of how complete recovery was. The thesis has been presented in three sections - the narrative, supported by graphs, and by tables. The narrative comes first, followed by the graphs and tables in that order. Each section has been cross-referenced to the other two, and no difficulty should be experienced in moving freely from one section to another as required.