BARUCH did not browbeat the British in his conduct of the War Industries Board. He did not beat them down to the last penny in any of the deals. There were loud screams, of course, but actually it would appear that he applied the same formula for fixing prices to them that he did to American producers--a fair profit on top of an allowance for the advance in prices already in effect when the Board was set up. But this was not easy. It took a shrewd stock-market Yankee-type trader--if Baruch will forgive the word "Yankee"--to do it. For instance, he forced the British to cut the price of jute when they had claimed they could not control prices in India. This was a triumph, since everyone knows that the most sensitive spot in the British pocketbook is that concerning profits on their overseas investments.
He cajoled the neutrals, getting Spain to sell us mules, when she did not even want gold, by finding something she had to have, ammonium sulphate, to trade her. The ramifications of War Industries Board dealings, intrigues, and manipulations were on a global basis. Negotiations for a needed Chinese product were followed by more dealings for Japanese ships to bring that product to America.
Most of the really exciting stories of Baruch and the Board will never be told, unfortunately, unless, some years hence, Herbert Bayard Swope should take pen in hand and tell all. The