Texas Financial Group

Texas Financial Group

 

a powerful group in the financial oligarchy of the United States. The Texas financial group, which was formed after World War II, unites the monopolistic holdings of various Texas magnates (Dallas, Murchison-Kirby, Post-Ling, and Houston). Most of the shares are owned by family members of the companies’ founders; enormous personal fortunes, ranging from $200 million to $1 billion, are a hallmark of the group. As of the early 1970’s, the assets controlled by the Texas financial group exceeded $20 billion.

The postwar oil boom in Texas, the development of the aerospace and electronics industries and the cattle and cotton trade, and land speculation in that state all served to enrich the Hunts, the Richardsons, the Murchisons, the Kecks, and the Mecoms. However, the Texas oil magnates occupy a subordinate position in relation to the giant oil monopolies controlled by the Rockefellers, Morgans, and Mellons that dominate the refining, transport, and sale of oil in the United States.

The aerospace and electronics industries in Texas are typified by the industrial concerns Ling-Temco-Vought Inc. and Texas Instruments Inc., which produce rockets, military aircraft, and electronic equipment. The rapid development of defense industries in Texas is associated with the wars of American imperialism in South Korea and Vietnam. The growth of the Post-Ling group has been due in large part to defense contracts.

The Texas financial group controls a network of financial institutions, such as commercial banks and insurance companies. The main financial centers are Dallas, which has the commercial Republic National Bank (assets of $4.2 billion in 1973), and Houston. However, as a rule, Texas industrialists turn to New York and other financial centers of the country for large long-term loans and investments in securities.

In the postwar years, insurance companies in Texas developed at a faster rate than banks. By the early 1970’s, the total assets of the insurance companies controlled by the Texas financial group exceeded $4 billion. The largest of these, the American National Insurance Company, had assets of $1.6 billion in 1973. Insurance companies’ stocks form a basic part of the fortunes of such Texas multimillionaires as the Posts and Worths. Local insurance companies played an important role in financing oil production and defense industries in Texas. A number of monopolistic groups, such as the Post-Ling group, were formed through a merger of insurance companies and other industries.

The Texas financial group does not have an elaborate network of foreign branches and companies. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, there has been some merging of the industrial and financial interests of the Texas financial group and California financial groups.

REFERENCES

Beglov, I. I. SShA: sobstvennost’ i vlast’. Moscow, 1971. Pages 263–74.
Zhukov, E. F. Strakhovye monopolii v ekonomike SShA. Moscow, 1971. Pages 142–43.
Lundberg, F. Bogachi i sverkhbogachi. Moscow, 1971. Pages 76–88.

E. F. ZHUKOV

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