Summary of 19th Century Globalization

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Summary of 19th Century Globalization Globalization had been in development since the Napoleonic Wars. European empires found themselves expanding throughout the world. This expansion was based on "increasing transfers of commodities, people, capital, and ideas between and within continents" (Broadberry, O'Rourke, 2010, p. 6). An increase in integration among the nations of the world can be measured by studying increases in international trade. Empirical evidence suggests that globalization was well under way from the period 1870-1914 as price gaps in items like wheat, cotton, copper, etc. fell drastically, indicating a greater competition in the international marketplace. Thanks to technical and industrial improvements, shipping made globalization through trade more possible than ever before. The opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 played a huge role in globalization but so too did the railroads, which made freight shipping across continents more expedient (Broadberry, O'Rourke, 2010, p. 8). A relative peace at the end of the 19th and early 20th centuries among the most powerful nations also facilitated trade and globalization. The gold standard became more accepted around the world and currency unions helped diminish "uncertainty in trade" (Broadberry, O'Rourke, 2010, p. 8). The UK specialized in exporting manufactures and services. It primarily imported "food and raw materials" (Broadberry, O'Rourke, 2010, p. 9). France and Germany followed suit though not quite as
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