Logistics, Market Size and Giant Plants in the Early 20th Century: A Global View
Around 1900, the businesses of developed Europe - transporting freight by a more advantageous mix of ships, trains and horses - encountered logistic barriers to trade lower than the tyranny of distance imposed on the sparsely populated United States. Highly urbanized, economically integrated and compact northwest Europe was a market space larger than, and - factoring in other determinants besides its (low) tariffs - not less open to inter-country trade than the contemporary American market was to interstate trade. By the early twentieth century, the First European Integration enabled mines and factories - in small, as well as large, countries - to match the size of United States plants, where factor endowments, consumer demand or scale economies required that.
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