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Financial Centres and International Capital Flows in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries$
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Laure Quennouëlle-Corre and Youssef Cassis

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199603503

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199603503.001.0001

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London as the Global Market for Corporate Securities before 1914

London as the Global Market for Corporate Securities before 1914

Chapter:
(p.126) 6 London as the Global Market for Corporate Securities before 1914
Source:
Financial Centres and International Capital Flows in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries
Author(s):

Leslie Hannah

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199603503.003.0006

The London Stock Exchange before 1914 was the largest in the world in terms of the number and value of its quoted securities. The ratio of quoted domestic corporate securities to UK GDP, perhaps as high as 250%, was substantially higher than other major economies at the time or than many today. London was also a global market and increasing its share of world listings: by 1912 more than two-thirds of the world’s largest companies (most of them headquartered abroad) had securities quoted there. By this measure it was as dominant globally as the NYSE was within the USA, though national and regional exchanges had a higher share of smaller overseas corporate issues. After 1914 financial repression caused a ‘Great Reversal:’ with the ratio of the UK’s quoted (foreign or domestic) securities to GDP falling by the 1970s to below the level of the 1850s.

Keywords:   stock exchanges, listing, multinationals, overseas investment, financial repression, international comparisons

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