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Capital formation in the United States is currently in the midst of a significant transition with largely unexplored consequences for the ownership and control of American business, as well as significant implications for the future of the public equity markets. Although public equity markets remain vast and important, they are no longer the primary source of capital for business formation and growth. Increasingly, capital for business formation and growth is being raised — and held — privately from a relatively new set of institutional investors (most importantly, venture capital and private equity funds). As a result, ownership and control over significant swaths of American business has shifted from participants in public markets to participants in the private markets.