University of Notre Dame

The Story of Notre Dame

America - Europe

A Transatlantic Diary 1961 - 1989

Klaus Lanzinger

Monday, October 19, 1987

Black Monday

On today’s Monday, which rightly can be called “Black Monday,” the Dow Jones Index fell by 508 points. This is the biggest loss which has ever been quoted on Wall Street in a single day, worse than the stock market crash of October 29, 1929, the infamous “Black Friday” that led to the Great Depression in the 1930s. The news of this enormous loss of value in stocks on Wall Street spread within hours throughout the world. The stock exchanges in London, Tokyo, and Sidney have already reported heavy losses, while the stock exchange in Hong Kong remained closed for the day.

Within a few days, the Dow Jones Index plunged from 2,700 to 1,700. The stock market suddenly lost 500 billion dollars. This sizeable loss of investment value will soon trickle down through many branches of the economy. The stock market crash raises the specter of a new recession. The disquieting question is being put forward: Will the economic crisis of the 1930s repeat itself?


[The effects of the stock market crash of October 19, 1987, cannot be compared with those of the crash of October 29, 1929. After a short recession, the American economy quickly recovered and reached its highest boost ever recorded in the 1990s.]

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