crony capitalism


: an economic system in which individuals and businesses with political connections and influence are favored (as through tax breaks, grants, and other forms of government assistance) in ways seen as suppressing open competition in a free market
If there's one thing that populists on the left and right can agree upon, it is disdain for crony capitalism.Neil Irwin
… the go-go growth was illusory, built on a corrupt crony capitalism that might have been exposed earlier by a robust and aggressive press.Editor & Publisher
As a condition for the loan, demand that they reform their economies, eliminating the worst excesses of crony capitalism.Paul Krugman
crony capitalist noun
plural crony capitalists
Real business people, who make their money in open, competitive markets, are entitled to their vast wealth but crony capitalists, who rely on state privileges, don't deserve our support. Allister Heath

Examples of crony capitalism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The legacy financial system of trust imposes implicit taxes on the economy, through bank failure, government bailouts, crony capitalism, and inflation. Korok Ray, Forbes, 15 Feb. 2024 Critics say Adani’s comeback rests heavily on crony capitalism, as he is seen as a close ally of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Diksha Madhok, CNN, 8 Feb. 2024 As a part of that notorious exercise in crony capitalism, Parliament gave the EIC for the first time the right to sell tea directly in America. The Editors, National Review, 16 Dec. 2023 In our current free market economy rife with short-termism, crony capitalism, greed, and dishonest marketing, values should occupy concerted space in our social impact agendas. Daniel Lubetzky, Fortune, 8 Aug. 2023 And so the irony is Ron DeSantis, who’s now railing against crony capitalism and rolling that back, was the one who actually passed that into law for the case of Disney. Nbc Universal, NBC News, 30 Apr. 2023 But such criticisms in an open society help minimize the risk of crony capitalism. Ro Khanna, Foreign Affairs, 20 Dec. 2022 But, Wolf warns, that self-reinforcing harmony has now given way to an equally self-reinforcing collapse characterized by crony capitalism and thuggish autocratic rule that threatens our freedoms and our prosperity. Steven Pearlstein, Washington Post, 9 Feb. 2023 Adani and Modi rise together While the Indian public market has always been dominated by family-run conglomerates and the country is no stranger to crony capitalism, experts say the scale of Adani Group’s growth and its acquisition of assets over the past decade have been astounding. Sarita Santoshini, The Christian Science Monitor, 27 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'crony capitalism.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1981, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of crony capitalism was in 1981

Dictionary Entries Near crony capitalism

Cite this Entry

“Crony capitalism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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