Markets and a British WW2 poster from the Ministry of Information.
InvestmentOffice, March 2023
At the InvestmentOffice we get creatively nerdy by making parallels between financial markets and natural phenomena, in physics, the arts, history, sports, and any discipline that triggers our imagination, usually to be found in the sub-section Beyond Finance, within the section ObservationsLab.
So, you can imagine our enthusiasm when a friend mentioned a poster designed by Britain’s Ministry of Information at the onset of WW2, the same Ministry made famous as the Ministry of Truth in George Orwell’s dystopic novel, 1984.
”Keep Calm and Carry On” was one of three posters that would be issued in the event of war; the others read ”Your Courage, Your Cheerfulness, Your Resolution; Will Bring Us Victory”, and ”Freedom is in Peril; Defend it with all Your Might”.
Although 2.45 million copies of ”Keep Calm and Carry On” were printed, they were never issued, neither were any of the other two slogans, only to be pulped and recycled in 1940 to help deal with a paper shortage.
Only a very small number of originals have survived to the present day. That is, until a copy reemerged some 60 years later, in 2000, and made its way into the meme culture.
Readers will know what to do of it when it comes to financial markets and the economy, as it is a recuring feeling every decade or so, and maybe we are going through one of these at the time of this writing (March 2023), or it is just another false alarm...time will tell...
Digital scan of original KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON poster owned by wartimeposters.co.uk.
This work created by the United Kingdom Government is in the public domain.