Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Angela Vossmeyer

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© 2017 Jack R. Brown

OCLC Record Number



There is a longstanding academic debate regarding the role of financial networks. There is a tradeoff between improving the flow of funds and acting as a channel for contagion. This paper investigates the impact of banking networks on the real economy during the Great Depression. Building permit values are used as a proxy for real economic activity as implemented in previous research. A simple linear regression model estimated by ordinary least squares is used such that locational networks are differentiated from networks links to money centers and non-money centers. The results demonstrate that financial networks have both positive and negative effects on real economic activity and building permits. Positive network effects are observed when linkages to money centers are supported by strong locational networks.