chapter  72
5 Pages

THE THEORY OF WAGES

When professional speculators of equal power confront each other, speculation will perform its economic service more effectively. But even in these circles the power of large capital makes itself felt. Under certain circumstances an individual speculator or an allied group may subject the market in certain articles and for a definite time to their power. On all the large exchanges from time to time such combinations of speculators, the so-called pools, are formed with the intention of creating such a power over one or other business territory. They are akin to the kartels in that they strive to gain a monopolistic power. They differ from the latter in that they have no other purpose than the control of prices. Pools are especially made use of to control the market when production is too extensive to allow of any but indirect means of influencing the market, as, for example, is the case with agricultural staples. Pools are among the most reprehensible abuses of speculation. Their profits have nothing of the character of entrepreneur's profits. They are unearned, call for no services of leadership and are extorted merely by the application of superior external means of force.