The Rational of Private Bank Note Issuance. The Enskilda Banks in the Economic and Financial Development of Nineteenth Century Sweden
First established during the 1830's, the Enskilda banks were characterized by unlimited liability and the right to issue bank notes. In Swedish banking history, these banks have been considered to be primitive relics. This paper utilizes new data to revise this picture. Issuing notes based on an anchor provided by the National bank, the Enskilda banks made an important contribution to the development of liquid capital markets and for economic growth. The note issuance was also of importance to overcome shortages of liquidity due to both seasonal and regional variations in demand. In view of the crucial role of the Enskilda banks, the Banking Act of 1864, which permitted freer establishment and automatic prolongation of the charters for such banks, must be judged to have been an important institutional change.
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