It requires government interference to turn a recession into a depression. That is to say, a government must interact with an economy, changing the fundamental landscape of that economy in a negative manner to cause a depression. The First Great Depression started because of land speculation. It turned into a depression when the various nation-states of the world enacted tariffs, reducing the complexities of the overall global economy. The Second Great Depression started because of housing speculation. It turned into a depression due to the high cost of education, drastically shrinking the overall adult population of the country capable of borrowing credit.
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