Foreign Buying Spree Reaches Deep Into US

With weak dollar driving acqusitions, lawmakers get skittish
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Jan 28, 2008 7:01 PM CST
The growing trend of Chinese owned businesses on American soil is raising political concerns as the weakening dollar makes it an increasingly affordable option for international entrepreneurs.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – As the dollar drops, foreign investors are buying up US enterprises large and small, from multi-billion-dollar stakes in Wall Street banks to ownership of chemical factories and construction companies in the likes of North Carolina. Canadian, British and German companies have been expanding their portfolios in the US for years, but the Middle East and China are quickly catching up. And it makes some politicians queasy, the Washington Post reports.

Foreign acquisitions have risen 93% over the past year to $407 billion, and much of the capital is tied to state-run sovereign wealth funds. The US has historically favored these investments as safe and long-term, and has taken a hands-off approach, but some lawmakers are warning against the trend. "The specter of control and undue influence looms," said one senator.