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What was the purpose of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890?

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evablakey | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 22, 2012 at 12:32 AM via web

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What was the purpose of the Sherman Antitrust Act of 1890?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 22, 2012 at 12:45 AM (Answer #1)

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The purpose of the Sherman Antitrust Act was to destroy monopolies that were using their power to harm society.

In the late 1800s, the US economy had come to be dominated by huge companies that controlled the vast majority of certain markets.  People felt that the companies were using their monopoly power to hurt society.  The companies did so by forcing people to pay excessively high prices for the goods or services they provided.  Because of this, there was pressure on the government to break up monopolies, which is what the purpose of the Sherman Act was.

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