In the late nineteenth century a new form of capitalism emerged in Great Britain and the United States. Before the revolutions in communication and transportation, the owners of firms managed the processes of production, distribution, transportation and communication personally. By the end of the century, however, technological innovation and mass markets fostered the development of large-scale corporate structures, leading to a separation between owners and operators. In this new form of capitalist enterprise managers were increasingly the principal decision makers. This economic transformation spawned social and political tensions which compelled the public and policy makers to decide upon an appropriate response to big business. A primary focus of public discourse was antitrust. This book explores the development of big business and the antitrust response in a comparative context.
• First book to deal in depth with antitrust in both USA and UK • Market with historians, lawyers and business studies
Introduction; 1. The response to big business: the formative era, 1880–1914; 2. The divergence of economic thought; 3. The political response; 4. The courts respond to big business; 5. The impact of World War I, 1914–1921; 6. Tentative convergence, 1921–1948; 7. A British antimonopoly policy emerges, 1940–1948; 8. Uneven convergence since World War II; Conclusion.