Business: New Supports

Furthermore, the economy has a great many built-in supports — mostly devised by the New Deal — to keep up buying power and cushion the severity of a slump. Government price supports keep the farmer's income relatively stable ; federal deposit insurance helps prevent any 1932-type bank panics. Strong unions keep a floor under wages; unemployment insurance tides the jobless over short layoffs. While only 15% of the U.S. labor force was covered by pension systems in the '30s, today 90% are covered, and private pension plans have grown from 720 in 1930 to 14,000, covering more than 10 million...

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