Business & Finance: Integration Inches Forward

Long have investors and other well-wishers of the U. S. economy wondered when the electric utility industry (total assets: $17,220,617,000) was going to resume its pre-depression rate of growth. Once good for nearly a billion dollars' worth of plant expansion a year, it has averaged only $300,000.000 a year for almost a decade. Two obstacles are 1) the still waterlogged financial structures of many a holding company, 2) uncertainty as to how the various systems will emerge from SEC's application of the holding-company "death sentence." Last March, SEC (after five years of litigation...

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