A Brief History of U.S. Banking Return to Quick Notes History of Political Economy Print Landscape 2 pages
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1791 First Bank of the United States was funded by taxes and supported by Northern merchants, but not Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson and Representative James Madison both of whom believed the South would not benefit.
1816 Second Bank of the United States, charted due to difficulty financing the War of 1812 and inflation, President Andrew Jackson opposed its financier president Nicholas Biddle, 20 year charter ran out.
1819 Panic the first major financial crisis occurred when the Embargo Act and War of 1812 caused foreclosures, bank failures, unemployment, and a slump in agriculture and manufacturing.
1825 Panic was not in the US. but is important to the current banking systems. See The Most Fantastic Financial Swindle-of-All-Time from the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank.
1837 Panic the first financial crisis caused by speculative fever started in NY City when banks began would only accept specie (gold and silver coinage) because they questioned the value of state currencies.
1857 Panic was caused by people's over-consumption of Europe goods so that the Union's Specie was drained off, overbuilding by competing railroads, and rampant land speculation in the west..
1869 Americas First Black Friday from the FED
The First Bank of the United States was chartered for 20 years by the United States Congress in 1791. Officially proposed by Alexander Hamilton, Secretary of the Treasury, to the first session of the First Congress in 1790, the concept for the Bank had both its support and origin in and among Northern merchants and more than a few New England state governments.
Neither Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson nor Representative James Madison had any particular interest in the chartering of the Bank of the United States or a proposed mint. They believed the South would not benefit from either a central mint or bank as these were mostly to the benefit of business interests in the commercial north. They didn't like Hamilton's desire to increase the excise tax on imported and domestic spirits to pay for the bank. Southern congressmen feared the tax burden would fall dispro- portionately heavily on the South, where, declared Jackson, 'hard liquor was a necessity of life'. After Hamilton left office in 1795, the new Secretary of the Treasury Oliver Wolcott, Jr. informed Congress that more money was needed. Selling the government's shares of stock in the Bank, or raising taxes was the choice and Congress quickly, above Hamilton objection, agreed. The bank's charter expired in 1811. First Bank of the United States
Second Bank of the United States was
chartered in 1816 resulted
because of the U.S. had
and had difficult financing the
War of 1812.
Subsequently, the credit and borrowing
status of the United States were at
their lowest levels since its founding.
The B.U.S. was in no sense a national bank but rather a privately held banking corporation. The bank's relationship with the federal government that gave it access to substantial profits. Its role as the depository of the federal government's revenues made it a political target of banks chartered by the individual states. partisan politics highlighted the debate over the renewal of the charter.
"The classic statement by Arthur Schlesinger was that the partisan politics during the Jacksonian period was grounded in class conflict. Viewed through the lens of party elite discourse, Schlesinger saw inter-party conflict as a clash between wealthy Whigs and working class Democrats "(Grynaviski) President Andrew Jackson strongly opposed the renewal of its charter, and built his platform for the election of 1832 around doing away with the Second Bank of the United States. Jackson's political target was y the very wealthy Nicholas Biddle, financier, politician, and president of the Bank of the United States. Apart from a general hostility to banking and the belief that specie (gold and/or silver) was the only true money, Jackson's reasons for opposing the renewal of the charter revolved around his belief that bestowing power and responsibility upon a single bank was the cause of inflation and other perceived evils.
Second Bank of the United States thrived
from the tax revenue that the federal
government regularly deposited. Jackson
struck at this vital source of funds in
1833 by instructing his Secretary of the
Treasury to deposit federal tax revenues
in state banks, soon nicknamed "pet
because of their loyalty to Jackson's
party. The Second Bank of the United
States was left with little money and,
in 1836, its charter expired and it
turned into an ordinary bank. Five years
later, the former Second Bank of the
United States went bankrupt.
Red is from the editor.
|Panic of 1819 was the first major financial crisis in the United States. It occurred because the Embargo Act and War of 1812 had caused widespread foreclosures, bank failures, unemployment, and a slump in agriculture and manufacturing. Economists who adhere to Keynesian economic theory suggest that the Panic of 1819 was the early Republic's first experience with the boom-bust cycles common to all modern economies. Austrian school economists view the nationwide recession that resulted from the Panic of 1819 as the first failure of expansionary monetary policy. Proposed remedies included increase of tariffs (largely proposed by Northern manufacturing interests), reduction of tariffs (largely proposed by Southerners, who believed free trade would stimulate the economy and increase demand), monetary expansion; i.e., restriction or suspension of specie payment, rigid enforcement of specie payment, restriction of bank credit, direct relief of debtors, public works proposals, stricter enforcement of anti-usury laws. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panic_of_1819||
Panic of 1837
was a financial crisis caused
burst in 1837 NY City when every bank
began to accept payment only in
policy of both the previous
administration of Andrew Jackson and
recently elected current administration
of Martin Van Buren, were blamed as
well as bank excesses. Within
two months the losses from bank failures
in New York alone aggregated nearly $100
million. "Out of 850 banks in the United
States, 343 closed entirely, 62 failed
partially, and the system of State banks
received a shock from which it never
fully recovered." The publishing
industry was particularly hurt by the
ensuing depression. According to most
accounts, the economy did not recover
Most economists also agree that there
was a brief recovery from 1838 to 1839,
which then ended as the Bank of England
and Dutch creditors raised interest
However, economic historian
Peter Temin has argued that, when
corrected for deflation, the economy
actually grew after 1838.
was brought on
mostly by the people's over-consumption
of goods from Europe to such an extent
that the Union's
was drained off, overbuilding by
competing railroads, and rampant land
speculation in the west.. The
recession ended a period of prosperity
and speculation that had followed the
(1846-1848) and the discovery of gold in
California. Gold poured into
the economy causing inflated.
After a large increase in state banks in
the early 1850's, by July 1856, state
banks began to lend far more money than
they could back up in
even as deposits began to fall. The
panic began with a loss of confidence in
an Ohio bank, spread as railroads
failed, and fears that the US Federal
Government would be unable to pay
More than 5,000 American businesses
failed, the stock market declined
by 66% compared with inflation, and
unemployment resulted in urban protests.
bank holiday was declared in England and
New York to avert runs on those
Tariff Act of 1857
reduced the average tariff
rate to about 20%. Written by
Southerners and supported by most
economic interests nationwide, except
for sheep farmers and some Pennsylvania
iron companies, it had the effect of
removing the tariff issue as a major
source of North-South contention. The
South was much less hard-hit than other
regions, because of the stability of the
market. No recovery was evident in the
northern parts of the United States for
a year and a half, and the full impact
did not dissipate until the
American Civil War.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panic_of_1857 and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Buchanan#Panic_of_1857
began when the he
post civil war rail road boom ended and
the passage of the
Coinage Act of 1873, which
took the United off a bimetallic (gold
and silver) money standard. The
immediate effect was to depress silver
prices which hurt Western mining
interests, who labeled the Act "The
Crime of '73." It also reduced the
money supply raising interest rates
and hurting farmers and other large
resulting outcry created the fear of an
unstable money supply and investor
shunned bonds and other long-term
obligations. This lack of confidence in
bonds slowed the
railroad boom and exacerbated the
economic situation. For example, Jay
Cooke & Company, a major component
of the United States banking
establishment, cancelled plans for a
second transcontinental railroad as two
major funding sources disappeared.
In 1873 he was unable to market several
million dollars in
bonds and lost out on a $300 million
government loan as reports circulated
that his firm's credit was worthless.
The firm declared
in September of 1873.
failure of the Jay Cooke bank, followed
quickly by that of
set off a chain reaction of bank
failures and temporarily closed the New
York stock market on September 20 for 10
days. Factories began to lay off workers
and the effects of the panic were
quickly felt in New York, more slowly in
Chicago, Virginia City, Nevada and San
Francisco. Of the country's 364
railroads, 89 went bankrupt. A total of
18,000 businesses failed between 1873
reached 14% by 1876. Construction work
halted, wages were cut, real estate
values fell and corporate profits
Panic of 1893
was a serious
United States because of railroad
overbuilding and shaky railroad
financing which set off a series of bank
failures. Compounding market
overbuilding and a railroad bubble was a
run on the
supply and a policy of using both gold
and silver metals as a peg for the US
In 1896 the Cross of Gold speech delivered by William Jennings Bryan at the Democratic National Convention in Chicago. advocated bimetallism. Following the Coinage Act (1873) the U.S. was on a de facto Gold Standard. In 1896, the Democratic Party wanted to standardize the value of the dollar to silver and opposed a monometallic gold standard. The inflation that would result from the silver standard would make it easier for farmers and other debtors to pay off their debts by increasing their revenue dollars. It would also reverse the deflation which the U.S. experienced from 1873 to 1896. Backers of a monometallic gold standard felt that protection against inflation was of paramount importance, and they believed that a monometallic gold standard was the best way to achieve this end. Inflation is disadvantageous for creditors, and degrades the value of savings. Saving represents deferred spending and a source of capital for lending. William Jennings Bryan secured the Democratic Party nomination at the convention, but was beaten in the presidential election by William McKinley. This situation was repeated in the year 1900 and the United States adopted the monometallic gold standard de jure in that year. By the first decade of the twentieth century, only Kong remained on the silver standard. Cross of Gold speech
Panic of 1901 resulted when
the first NY Stock Exchange crashed
as financiers struggled over control
of the of the Northern Pacific
Panic of 1907, known as the 1907 Bankers' Panic, was a financial crisis that occurred when the New York Stock Exchange fell close to 50% from its peak the previous year. There were runs on banks and trust companies. Many state and local banks and businesses entered into bankruptcy. New York City bank liquidity problems, loss of confidence among depositor, exacerbated by unregulated side bets at bucket shops caused the panic. The crisis was Triggered by the failed attempt in October 1907 to corner the market on stock of the United Copper Company, lending banks suffered runs that later spread to affiliated banks and trusts, leading a week later to the downfall of the Knickerbockers Trust Company—New York City's third-largest trust. The collapse of the Knickerbockers spread fear throughout the city's trusts as regional banks withdrew reserves from New York City banks. Panic extended across the nation as vast numbers of people withdrew deposits from their regional banks. Industrial production dropped further than after any bank run before then, while 1907 saw the second-highest volume of bankruptcies to that date. Production fell by 11%, imports by 26%, while unemployment rose to 8% from under 3%. Immigration dropped to 750,000 people in 1909, from 1.2 million two years earlier. The panic may have deepened if not for the intervention of financier J. P. Morgan, who pledged large sums of his own money, and convinced other New York bankers to do the same, to shore up the banking system. At the time, the United States did not have a central bank to inject liquidity back into the market. By November the financial contagion had largely ended, yet a further crisis emerged when a large brokerage firm borrowed heavily using the stock of Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company (TC&I) as collateral. Collapse of TC&I's stock price was averted by an emergency takeover by Morgan's U.S. Steel Corporation—a move approved by anti-monopolist president Theodore Roosevelt. A commission investigation lead to the Federal Reserve System. See Panic_of_1907
1929 The Great Depression
was a severe worldwide economic
depression that began sudden and total
collapse of US stock market prices on
October 29. As for causes, historians
emphasize structural factors like
massive bank failures and the stock
market crash, while economists point to
monetary factors such as actions by the
US Federal Reserve that contracted the
money supply, and Britain's decision to
return to the Gold Standard at pre-World
War I parities (US$4.86:£1).
Demand-driven causes include Keynesian economics, the breakdown of international trade, and Institutional Economists who point to under consumption, an over-investment economic bubble, malfeasance by bankers and industrialists, and incompetence by government officials.
Monetarists believe what started as an ordinary recession was made worse by significant policy mistakes by monetary authorities (especially the Federal Reserve which shrink the money supply which greatly exacerbated the economic situation).
Recovery began in the spring of 1933 with unemployment at 25%. However, the U.S. did not return to 1929 GNP for over a decade and still had an unemployment rate of about 15% in 1940, and entry into WWII brought unemployment under 10%. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Depression
was severe and occurred when the
Federal Reserve to began lowering
inflation by drastically lowered the
In the wake of
1973 oil crisis
began to afflict the economy of the
Banks had a tough time as a recent wave of deregulation had phased out a number of restrictions on banks' financial practices, broadened their lending powers, and raised the deposit insurance limit from $40,000 to $100,000 (raising the problem of moral hazard). Banks rushed into real estate lending, speculative lending, and other ventures just as the economy soured. In 1982 Congress further deregulated banks as well as savings and loans letting banks offer money market accounts in an attempt to encourage deposit in-flows, removed additional statutory restrictions in real estate lending, and relaxed loans-to-one-borrower limits. This encouraged a rapid expansion in real estate lending at a time when the real estate market was collapsing, increased the unhealthy competition between banks and savings and loans, and encouraged overbuilding of branch banks.
In 1984, Continental Illinois National Bank, the nation's seventh-largest bank failed and, federal regulators were willing to let the bank fail in order to reduce moral hazard and encourage safer practices but Congress and the press felt Continental Illinois was "too big to fail." and a $4.5 billion rescue package resulted.
Unemployment gradually improved from 10.8% in Dec of 1982 to 7.2% in November of 1984 Inflation fell from 10.3% in 1981 to 3.2% in 1983. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_1980s_recession
|1980s and 1990s S&L crisis was the failure of 747 S&Ls aka thrifts that cost about $160 billion, of which about $125 billion was paid for by a US government bailout. Causes included the Tax Reform Act of 1986 which removed many real estate tax shelters thus decreasing real estate values tied to said shelters, the deregulation of S&Ls which gave them many of the capabilities of banks, without the same regulations as banks, the "moral hazard" of insuring already troubled institutions who in order to improve liquidity, made unsound real estate loans on riskier assets, particularly land and a "asset-liability mismatch" at S & L's, who having made long-term loans at a fixed rate, found themselves borrowing at an ever increasing rate and needing riskier loans to cover these higher rates. Causes of the savings and loan crisis||The Great Recession of 2007-2009 triggered by the collapse of a specific kind of derivative, the mortgage-backed security derivatives, which were protected from regulation by some federal regulators who believed the free market could manage itself. The Austrian School of economics blamed "easy" credit-based money caused an unsustainable economic boom. Others blame the extremely indebted US economy. The failure rates of subprime mortgages were the first symptom of a credit boom tuned to bust and of a real estate shock. These low-quality mortgages acted as an accelerant to the fire that spread through the entire financial system. The latter had become fragile as a result of several factors that are unique to this crisis: the transfer of assets from the balance sheets of banks to the markets, the creation of complex and opaque assets, the failure of ratings agencies to properly assess the risk of such assets, and the application of fair value accounting. To these novel factors, one must add the now standard failure of regulators and supervisors in spotting and correcting the emerging weaknesses. By October 2009, the unemployment rate had risen from 4.9% to 10.1%. In March 2009, Blackstone Group CEO Stephen Schwarmzman said that up to 45% of global (stock market) wealth had been destroyed in little less than a year and a half. Home prices, which didn't move much between 1990 and 1997, dropped dramatically, have come back some, and are about twice their 1997(1990) value. /Late 2000's recession|