The Cotton Kings: Capitalism and Corruption in Turn-of-the-Century New York and New Orleans EBOOK Tooltip Capitalism and Corruption in Turn-of-the-Century New York and New Orleans

Auteur: Bruce E. Baker
Taal: Engels
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Uitgever: Oxford University Press

  • Engels
  • E-book
  • 9780190211677
  • november 2015
  • Adobe ePub
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The Cotton Kings relates a colorful economic drama with striking parallels to contemporary American economic debates. At the turn of the twentieth century, dishonest cotton brokers used bad information to lower prices on the futures market, impoverishing millions of farmers. To fight this corruption, a small group of brokers sought to control the price of cotton on unregulated exchanges in New York and New Orleans. They triumphed, cornering the world market in cotton and raising its price for years. However, the structural problems of self-regulation by market participants continued to threaten the cotton trade until eventually political pressure inspired federal regulation. In the form of the Cotton Futures Act of 1914, the federal government stamped out corruption on the exchanges, helping millions of farmers and textile manufacturers. Combining a gripping narrative with the controversial argument that markets work better when placed under federal regulation, The Cotton Kings brings to light a rarely told story that speaks directly to contemporary conflicts between free markets and regulation.


An insightful, useful, and interesting book that blends the histories of business, the South, society, politics, and the environment...Rather than being a dull book on a dull subject...The Cotton a book that shows that real people influenced history but also worked within institutional constraints...A great read that is a terrific example of how history should be done. --American Historical Review An instant classic. Baker and Hahn show us the gambling, fraud, and tragedy at the heart of American capitalism. In this gripping narrative we learn how a futures market worked, how one man could influence cotton prices by controlling information, and how a modern state crushed the operation, ruining thousands. This book is vital for understanding the paradoxes at the heart of the Progressive Era. --Scott Reynolds Nelson, author of A Nation of Deadbeats: An Uncommon History of America's Financial Disasters This is a wonderful study, exemplary of the New Financial History: rigorously attentive to market microstructure while richly contextualized with wider implications for those of us concerned with the political economy of financial markets regulation. And they've given us a rip-roaring good read to boot! With skill and imagination, the authors have brought those 'bloodless statistics and tiresome technicalities' to life. --D'Maris Coffman, University College London Entrepreneurs' greatest dream is to corner the market--and no market was a more tempting target in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century United States than the cotton market. In this fascinating history, Bruce Baker and Barbara Hahn tell the story of the cotton bears and bulls, and how a more assertive federal government eventually tamed their epic struggles. --Sven Beckert, author of Empire of Cotton: A Global History A carefully researched and skillfully narrated account of an important episode in the history of the cotton trade which provides new and relevant insights into the development of American financial markets and their regulation. --Catherine Davies, Global Urban History An important and wonderfully entertaining book. --Eli Cook, Business History Review It would be a disservice to The Cotton Kings to label it as just an economic history...It is also a work of social history, labor history, urban history, cultural history, and Southern history. The authors' interdisciplinary approach draws upon the rich sub-focuses within nineteenth and twentieth century history and results in a book that enriches our understanding of the symbiotic relationship between commodities and the marketplace. The clear and nontechnical explanations of financial terminology and processes augment this well-researched book...ensuring that it will be featured on many reading lists and be useful to numerous scholars. --Carin Peller-Semmens, Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era

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23,5 x 15,6 x 2,9 cm
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Adobe ePub
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Bruce E. Baker Barbara Hahn
Barbara Hahn
Oxford University Press

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