cover of book

A Culture of Credit: Embedding Trust and Transparency in American Business
by Rowena OLEGARIO
Harvard University Press, 2006
Cloth: 978-0-674-02340-6 | eISBN: 978-0-674-04163-9
Library of Congress Classification HG3754.5.U6O44 2006
Dewey Decimal Classification 332.7/42097309034

In the growing and dynamic economy of nineteenth-century America, businesses sold vast quantities of goods to one another, mostly on credit. This book explains how business people solved the problem of whom to trust--how they determined who was deserving of credit, and for how much. Rowena Olegario traces the way resistance, mutual suspicion, skepticism, and legal challenges were overcome in the relentless quest to make information on business borrowers more accurate and available.
    1  Mercantile Credit in Britain and America, 1700-1860  13
    2  A "System of Espionage": The Origins of the
    Credit-Reporting Firm  36
    3  Character, Capacity, Capital: How to Be Creditworthy  80
    4  Jewish Merchants and the Struggle over Transparency  119
    5  Growth, Competition, Legitimacy: Credit Reporting in
    the Late Nineteenth Century  139
    6  From Competition to Cooperation: The Birth of the
    Credit Man, 1890-1920 174

See other books on: Commercial credit | Credit | Economic History | Mercantile system | Transparency
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