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robber barons monopoly
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By the late 1800s, the term was typically applied to businessmen who used exploitative practices to amass their wealth.[2] These practices included exerting control over natural resources, influencing high levels of government, paying subsistence wages, squashing competition by acquiring their competitors to create monopolies and raise prices, and schemes to sell stock at inflated prices to unsuspecting investors.[2] The term combines the sense of criminal ("robber") and illegitimate aristocracy (a baron is an illegitimate role in a republic).