• Christopher Columbus arrives in the Americas, commencing a period of conquest throughout South and Central America. The acquisition of these lands helps Spain to become the prominent power in Europe throughout the 16th and 17th centuries.
  • French troops led by Napoleon occupy Spain until Nationalist resistance, along with the British intervention, force French troops out in 1814. The French occupation rendered Spain both politically and economically unstable.

  • Cuba, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines are lost after a Spanish defeat in the Spanish-American War. Spain no longer controls any colonies in Latin America.

  • Spain becomes one of the largest suppliers of foodstuffs and raw materials during World War I, resulting in a massive trade boom for the nation.
  • Francisco Franco leads Spanish Nationalists to victory in the Spanish Civil War. Spain's economy is devastated as a result of the war and Franco's economic policy of self-sufficiency, which cut off international trade.
  • Spain's manufacturing and tourism industries expand rapidly as a result of state controls being lifted.

  • Spain joins the European Economic Community, which later becomes the European Union.

  • The peseta is replaced by the euro as Spain's currency.
  • Spain's unemployment rate soars to over 20%, prompting parliament to approve a 15 billion-euro austerity package.

  • Spain's unemployment rate soars to a new record of 27.2% of the workforce in the first quarter, passing the six million figure, although the rate of increase slows.

  • Madrid imposes direct rule in Catalonia after voters in a referendum back separation from Spain.

  • Pedro Sánchez forms minority coalition government with left-wing Podemos party after winning a narrow parliamentary vote of confidence.


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