How did the free enterprise system lead to technological innovations in the late 1800s? And was the rise of big business good or bad for the United States?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The free enterprise system led to technological innovations in the late 1800s. Because there were few government rules and regulations at this time, a person could take risks by investing money in developing new inventions. If the invention was successful, the investor could make a lot of money knowing the government would not interfere in the process. This policy, called laissez-faire, meant the government would take a hands-off approach to business and economic activities.

When investors know there will be little government control or interference, they are more willing to take risks. They know the government won’t get too involved with the development of the new invention. When government becomes too involved, investors tend to be more hesitant to take risks.

Big business growth was good for the economy of the United States. It allowed our economy to grow and to meet the demands of the people. The expansion of businesses helped with the expansion of our country. With a hands-off policy by the government, our big business grew significantly at during this time. This helped the United States develop into an economic power.

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