CONTROLS: Cotton Chaos

In the nation's cotton exchanges last week, it was quiet enough to hear a weevil nibbling a boll. In Manhattan, New Orleans and Chicago, cotton traders stayed home; in Memphis, the cotton exchange's big quotation board was bare, and brokers sat around their Front Street offices playing gin rummy and dominoes. Cotton mills held their goods off the market, refusing to bid even on military contracts until they got at least a faint inkling of the score. In four weeks, the marketing system of the U.S. cotton industry had been slowly paralyzed by the price freeze.

The freeze, the cotton...

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