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An Analysis of Shareholders' Lists for 60 Cotton Spinning Companies in 1898

Yoichi Kobayakawa, Suzuki Tsuneo and Kazuo Wada
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Yoichi Kobayakawa: Department of Management, College of Business, Administration and Information Science, Chubu University
Suzuki Tsuneo: Department of Economics, Gakushuin University
Kazuo Wada: Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo

No CARF-J-010, CARF J-Series from Center for Advanced Research in Finance, Faculty of Economics, The University of Tokyo

Abstract: The cotton spinning companies played an important role in Japanese economic development during the Meiji era. Setting up these businesses required large capital investments. Who financed these companies? More concretely, who were their shareholders? This paper aims to identify shareholders' characteristics at 60 cotton spinning companies in 1898. In order to do this, we have created a database of all shareholders in these companies in 1898, as well as a database of all merchants and industrialists listed in the National Directory of Commerce and Industry (1898 edition). Our main findings are as follows: 1) Most of the shares were owned by people who lived outside the Tokyo or Osaka areas, in the local areas where a company was established. 2) The income level of most shareholders was mainly in the range of 500 - 2000 yen. The role of those with very high incomes as shareholder should not be overemphasized.

Pages: 41 pages
Date: 2005-08
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