Hitler's Germany


What impact did the Nazis have on the economy?

Aims of the economic miracle-

  • Increase employment (6 million by 1933)
  • Rearm and enlarge the army, navy and the airforce (rebuild German industry)
  • Make Germany independant/ self-sufficient
  • Keep the population happy
  • Prioritise German business


  • Restrictions of the Treaty of Versailles e.g. The SAAR
  • World depression - Wall Street Crash
  • Lacking raw materials
  • Can't afford imports
  • Difficult to find people to buy exports
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New plan and the 4 year plan

New plan

  • 1934
  • Hjalmar Schacht
  • Aimed to improve Germany's level of raw materials by making trade deals with LEDCs
  • The countries would be paid in German manufactured goods. Also gave priority to those raw materials that were vital for rearmament
  • This enabled Germany to pay for rearmament and it made Germany more dependant on imported raw materials

4 year plan

  • 1937
  • Herman Goering
  • This set higher targets for rearmament and also wanted to make sure that Germany moved much closer to acheiving autarky
  • Experiments were begun to try and produce artificial replacements for those raw materials
  • The experiments created jobs - didn't reduce the amount of goods that Germany imported
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Nazi economic policies

  • Labour service corps - Scheme to provide young men with manual labour jobs (cumpulsory for men aged 18-25)
  • Public works - Unemployed men were used to build public services (roads,hospitals e.c.t)
  • Conscription - All men aged 18-25 were made to do military service for 2 years
  • Rearmament - To 'bring-back' the army and to have more weapons
  • German labour front - looked after workers' interests (working conditions) - Dr Robert Ley
  • Beauty of Labour - improved working conditions
  • Strength through joy - provided opportunities to imrove leisure activities for low-paid workers
  • Autarky - Hitler wanted to make Germany self-sufficient
  • Hjalmar Schacht - Aimed to improve Germany's level of raw materials by making trade deals
  • Herman Goering - set much higher targets for rearmament
  • Volkswagen - used in the 'strength for joy' and was designed by Ferdinand Porsche
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Economic miracle and not an economic miracle

Economic Miracle-

  • Umployement decreased significantly from 1933
  • Production had increased - coal (1935-1938)
  • 1938-1939 - investment had stealily increased

Not an economic miracle-

  • Debt levels increased as expenditure was more than income - increased significantly by 1938
  • People are buying cheaper foods by 1937 - families had less money to spend on food
  • Nazis were spending the most money on rearmament from 1935
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Aryans - 'master race'

  • Nazis belived that Aryans were the 'master race'
  • The Nazis blamed Jewish people for the problems in German society
  • Nazis wanted a German population of only 'pure' Aryan people who fitted their ideal
  • They wanted to eliminate people who were disabled, homosexual,held different beliefs, or who werent 'Aryan'

Nuremburg Laws-

  • These laws stopped Jews being German citizens
  • They banned marriage between Jews and non-Jews in Germany
  • These laws were later extended to cover both Romani and black people
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