Helmut Schmidt was born in Hamburg in 1918. He finished school in 1937 with the Abitur. Afterwards he had to join the working service and later the army. At the end of World War II, he was a First Lieutenant. He became a prisoner of war in 1945.
After he was set free, he started to study macro economy. He finished his studies in 1949. Then he started to work for the administration of Hamburg.