What role do social clubs play in the facilitation of cooperative relationships between economic actors? By studying the historical networks of investment bankers in the United States pre-World War II, we propose that social ties in the form of shared social club memberships facilitate the strategic creation of interfirm and intrafirm cohesion that guides economic transactions. The focus of our paper is the New York firm of J. P. Morgan & Co., the leading American investment bank before the Second World War. Through statistical and qualitative analyses we demonstrate that social club ties influenced firm ownership, syndicate participation, and interlocking directorate board memberships. Our study advances the literature on social elites by identifying the strategic interplay between social embeddedness and economic action through social organizations, highlighting the unique role of social clubs as historical sites of economic collaboration during the Progressive Era in the United States.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© Revista de Historia Industrial-Industrial History Review, 2023.
- investment banks
- J. P. Morgan
- social clubs
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Business, Management and Accounting (miscellaneous)
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
- Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)
- History and Philosophy of Science