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Foreign ownership of U.S. corporations

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This article is part of the Coal Issues portal on SourceWatch, a project of CoalSwarm and the Center for Media and Democracy. See here for help on adding material to CoalSwarm.

Foreign Ownership

According to the website Economy in Crisis, "Foreign ownership refers to ownership of assets of a particular industry by foreign controlled domestic U.S. Corporations (FDC) 50% or more owned by a foreign entity."[1]

By that definition, the percentage of foreign ownership as of 2002 by industrial sector was as follows:[2]

  • Sound recording industries - 97%
  • Commodity contracts dealing and brokerage - 79%
  • Motion picture and sound recording industries - 75%
  • Metal ore mining - 65%
  • Motion picture and video industries - 64%
  • Wineries and distilleries - 64%
  • Database, directory, and other publishers - 63%
  • Book publishers - 63%
  • Cement, concrete, lime, and gypsum product - 62%
  • Engine, turbine and power transmission equipment - 57%
  • Rubber product - 53%
  • Nonmetallic mineral product manufacturing - 53%
  • Plastics and rubber products manufacturing - 52%
  • Plastics product - 51%
  • Other insurance related activities - 51%
  • Boiler, tank, and shipping container - 50%
  • Glass and glass product - 48%
  • Coal mining - 48%
  • Sugar and confectionery product - 48%
  • Nonmetallic mineral mining and quarrying - 47%
  • Advertising and related services - 41%
  • Pharmaceutical and medicine - 40%
  • Clay, refractory, and other nonmetallic mineral products - 40%
  • Securities brokerage - 38%
  • Other general purpose machinery - 37%
  • Audio and video equipment mfg and reproducing magnetic and optical media -

36%

  • Support activities for mining - 36%
  • Soap, cleaning compound, and toilet preparation - 32%
  • Chemical manufacturing - 30%
  • Industrial machinery - 30%
  • Securities, commodity contracts, and other financial investments and

related activities - 30%

  • Other food - 29%
  • Motor vehicles and parts - 29%
  • Machinery manufacturing - 28%
  • Other electrical equipment and component - 28%
  • Securities and commodity exchanges and other financial investment

activities - 27%

  • Architectural, engineering, and related services - 26%
  • Credit card issuing and other consumer credit - 26%
  • Petroleum refineries (including integrated) - 25%
  • Navigational, measuring, electromedical, and control instruments - 25%
  • Petroleum and coal products manufacturing - 25%
  • Transportation equipment manufacturing - 25%
  • Commercial and service industry machinery - 25%
  • Basic chemical - 24%
  • Investment banking and securities dealing - 24%
  • Semiconductor and other electronic component - 23%
  • Paint, coating, and adhesive - 22%
  • Printing and related support activities - 21%
  • Chemical product and preparation - 20%
  • Iron, steel mills, and steel products - 20%
  • Agriculture, construction, and mining machinery - 20%
  • Publishing industries - 20%
  • Medical equipment and supplies - 20%

Foreign Direct Investment

Not to be confused with the more general topic of foreign ownership of shares of American corporations, "foreign direct investment" is a specific legal term that refers to "ownership or control, directly or indirectly, by one foreign investor of 10 percent or more of the voting securities of an incorporated U.S. business enterprise or the equivalent interest in an unincorporated U.S. business enterprise (or asset). Ownership or control of less than 10 percent of the voting securities of a business is not considered to be direct investment."[3]

Section 657, Subpart 8 of the U.S. Department of Energy Organization Act (Public Law 95-91) requires an annual report to Congress which presents: “a summary of activities in the United States by companies which are foreign owned or controlled and which own or control United States energy sources and supplies ….”[4]


Resources

References

  1. Economy in Crisis, website, accessed July 2008
  2. Economy in Crisis, website, accessed July 2008
  3. "Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in U.S. Energy 2005" United States Energy Information Agency (PDF)
  4. "Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in U.S. Energy 2005" United States Energy Information Agency (PDF)

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