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Corporations

Types Of Corporations

Corporations can be private, nonprofit, municipal, or quasi-public. Private corporations are in business to make money, whereas nonprofit corporations generally are designed to benefit the general public. Municipal corporations are typically cities and towns that help the state to function at the local level. Quasi-public corporations would be considered private, but their business serves the public's needs, such as by offering utilities or telephone service.

There are two types of private corporations. One is the public corporation, which has a large number of investors, called shareholders. Corporations that trade their shares, or investment stakes, on SECURITIES exchanges or that regularly publish share prices are typical publicly held corporations.

The other type of private corporation is the closely held corporation. Closely held corporations have relatively few shareholders (usually 15 to 35 or fewer), often all in a single family; little or no outside market exists for sale of the shares; all or most of the shareholders help run the business; and the sale or transfer of shares is restricted. The vast majority of corporations are closely held.

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Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationFree Legal Encyclopedia: Constituency to CosignerCorporations - History, Types Of Corporations, Getting A Corporation Started, Delaware: The Mighty Mite Of Corporations