In 1938 Adolf Hitler dismissed Hjalmar Schacht, the president of the Reichsbank, who had been in office ever since the stabilisation of the German currency following the First World War. Hitler then prepared a law governing the German Reichsbank, which gave him unlimited powers of direction and control over the state's finances. This had dire consequences, since the Nazis regarded the German currency simply as a tool to finance the war they were planning. As a result, all 50-pfennig and 1-mark pieces were withdrawn from circulation at the beginning of the war in 1939. They were made of nickel – and Hitler needed nickel for war production.