Public ownership of the means of production is a basic principle of Soviet economy. Private ownership of property is now limited to ownership of consumer's goods, and private trading is confined to the narrowest areas and subjected to such rigid control that it has been reduced to the limitations of street peddling.

With the emphasis on public ownership, the management, protection and development of property belonging to the state has become a major activity of the Soviet government. Production, distribution and consumption of property are aspects of this activity.

Development of a mechanism of management has occupied Soviet jurists and economists. It will be the purpose of this paper to outline the major instruments of this mechanism of management and to explain their development. Reference to the manner in which the state plan for the use of state property is conceived will be only incidental. State planning is a problem too large for the purposes of the present paper.