Japan: Just Like Old Times

The postwar U.S. breakup of Japan's zaibatsu, the huge and powerful prewar cartels that controlled practically all of Japanese industry, was the most ambitious antitrust action in history. The reemergence of the zaibatsu has been hardly less ambitious. With scarcely a murmur to mark it, the steady reconcentration of the three biggest zaibatsu —Mitsui, Mitsubishi and Sumitomo—has been going on quietly but steadily since 1952. The three now account for more than one-third of Japan's total industrial and commercial business—and they are not finished yet. Last week executives from three big prewar...

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