The first banks established with head offices in London, but specifically intended to operate abroad, date from the 1830's. They were set up to serve a world in which London was a principal centre of trade, much of it between the United Kingdom and what were then its dependent territories. This country was the leading industrial nation, with a large domestic market for raw materials and food, favourably placed on the shipping routes between the primary producing countries and Europe; and its interest in the development of resources overseas encouraged the provision of both long-term capital and short-term finance which, in the circumstances of the time, helped to generate a large surplus on current account.
Published on 01 September 1961
Other Quarterly Bulletin 1961 Q3 articles
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