How Trust Increased During Pandemic And Supported Economy : The Indicator from Planet Money Political upheaval! Conspiracy theories! Global spread of disease! Sounds like a recipe for... trust? Today on the show, how 2020 increased trust, and how that trust underpins so much of our economy.

Trust Us, 2020 Brought Us Together

Trust Us, 2020 Brought Us Together

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DEA / ICAS94/De Agostini via Getty Images
The run on the Birkbeck Bank, Southampton Buildings, Chancery Lane, London, United Kingdom, engraving from The Illustrated London News, No 2787, September 17, 1892.
DEA / ICAS94/De Agostini via Getty Images

Following a year of political turmoil, rampant conspiracy theories and a pandemic, it's easy to see why we might be more isolated, divided, and less trusting—of institutions and strangers—than ever. But that's not what economist Ben Ho found.

Ben, the author of "Why Trust Matters: An Economist's Guide to the Ties That Bind Us" says while it may seem like trust is in short supply, if you take a look at trust throughout history, we're actually much more trusting now than ever before.

Ben and his team are Star Wars fans. They wanted to see if what Yoda says is true: "Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering." Particularly in the wake of a pandemic, what was fear and trust's impact on charitable giving?

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