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The part and the whole
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Economic History.
2014 (English)In: Business History, ISSN 0007-6791, E-ISSN 1743-7938, Vol. 56, no 1, 84-100 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The basis for this paper is that all firms are children of their time. They all depend on their environment: on technology and available markets, on prevailing attitudes, in short, on all institutions at hand. This means that the individual firm with the help of theory might be linked to the macro level and analysed as an expression of contemporary trends. This approach is exemplified by the study of AB angstrom tvidabergs forenade industrier during World War I. Developments in this company were part of broad industrial trends. Before the war, the company expanded on international markets; during the war, expansion on the stock exchange opened up for a shift in management in 1918; and in the deflationary crisis, in the early 1920s, the company went bankrupt. The war meant the loss of foreign markets and inflation that brought new institutions to be handled. As a member of the managerial elite, the founder of the angstrom tvidaberg company considered it his duty to work not only for his company, but also for Sweden. In the war he tried in various ways to influence politics. It turns out that the company's bankruptcy during the deflationary crisis had a background in an inability to account for inflation. Inflationary book profits spurred high dividends and heavy investments in 1918-19 - investments that could not be supported when the prices fell in the early 1920s. A recalculation of the accounts of the angstrom tvidaberg company using a method elaborated in the 1920s turns the book profit of 1918 into a loss. Thus, the lack of methods for accounting for inflation meant inflationary profits that in the war and the following years stimulated heavy investments not only in the angstrom tvidaberg company, but also in quite a number of Swedish companies. In professional circles it was stressed in the 1920s that this sharpened the deflationary crisis.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2014. Vol. 56, no 1, 84-100 p.
National Category
Social Sciences
Research subject
Economic History
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-214076DOI: 10.1080/00076791.2013.818424ISI: 000328465800007OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-214076DiVA: diva2:683959
Note

Special Issue. Scholarship in business history

Available from: 2014-01-07 Created: 2014-01-07 Last updated: 2017-12-06Bibliographically approved

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Ullenhag, Kersti

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