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How the Pandemic Crash Compares With Slumps of the Last Century

A solitary pedestrian wearing a protective face mask crosses the Charles Bridge in Prague, on March 18.
A solitary pedestrian wearing a protective face mask crosses the Charles Bridge in Prague, on March 18.Photographer: Milan Jaros/Bloomberg

The economic destruction wrought by the coronavirus has been swift, broad and deep, with manufacturing seizing up across the globe and consumers increasingly stuck at home in government-imposed isolation.

So how will the ongoing slump compare with previous downturns? Here’s a brief rundown of the events over the past century that triggered the most severe economic hardship.