Scientists Map Key Component of World Economy

“We present the first investigation of the architecture of the international ownership network, along with the computation of the control held by each global player. We find that transnational corporations form a giant bow-tie structure and that a large portion of control flows to a small tightly-knit core of financial institutions. This core can be seen as an economic “super-entity” that raises new important issues both for researchers and policy makers. [from the abstract]

Remarkably, the existence of such a core in the global market was never documented before and thus, so far, no scientific study demonstrates or excludes that this international “super-entity” has ever acted as a bloc. However, some examples suggest that this is not an unlikely scenario. For instance, previous studies have shown how even small cross-shareholding structures, at a national level, can affect market competition in sectors such as airline, automobile and steel, as well as the financial one.”

Stefania Vitali, James B. Glattfelder, Stefano Battiston, The network of global corporate control,, July 2011


“‘This is empirical evidence of what’s been understood anecdotally for years,’ says information theorist Brandy Aven of the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh.”

Rachel Ehrenberg,  Financial world dominated by a few deep pockets, ScienceNews, September 24th, 2011; Vol.180 #7 (p. 13)


This study does not show that the allocation of investments that create employment opportunities for the world’s people is managed almost exclusively for the benefit of the members of this super-entity and their managerial minions and political allies.

It does not show that this super-entity uses its power to pressure governments around the world, including U.S. federal and state governments, to implement policies that are not in the best interests of the people who must live under and with the policies of those governments.

It does show that there is an entity with the power to do such things.

Note: the study examined relationships among 43,000 transnational corporations and 600,508 economic actors connected by more than a million ownership ties.