How did goldsmiths become bankers? And what did it take to build a flourishing business? This chapter charts the fortunes of 17C predecessors to the goldsmith banks of the 18C. Goldsmith banking after 1800 was a dynamic industry, with many entrants and exits. The chapter analyses how some banks turned initial chaos into the basis for solid growth. They had to learn how to lend, and to price their loans. The banks’ profitability is assessed.
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