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American Big Business in Britain and GermanyA Comparative History of Two "Special Relationships" in the 20th Century$
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Volker R. Berghahn

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780691161099

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691161099.001.0001

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(p.355) Conclusions
American Big Business in Britain and Germany

Volker R. Berghahn

Princeton University Press

This concluding chapter summarizes the major points of the preceding chapters. For the period up to World War I, it became clear that the elites of the United States, and its businessmen on the East and West coasts in particular, saw their country as a highly dynamic and modern industrial and financial power. Based on the idea of a competitive capitalism, American big business, in the wake of the great merger wave of the late nineteenth century and congressional legislation that had banned the formation of cartels and monopolies, developed in the direction of an oligopolistic market organization. These developments shaped corporate attitudes and practices toward the domestic and international economy from 1900 onward. No less important, the emergence of the United States as a major industrial power stirred Britain and Germany into responses to the American challenge.

Keywords:   American big business, United States, Britain, Germany, competitive capitalism, oligopolistic market organization, corporate practices, international economy, industrial powers

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