March 18, 1850 - Henry Wells,
William G. Fargo and John Butterfield formed express delivery
business in Buffalo, NY
through combination of Wells and Company; Livingston, Fargo and
Company; and Butterfield, Wasson and Company; close of
Civil War - 900 offices in 10 states; 1868
- merged with Merchants Union Express Company to become
American Merchants Union Express Company with Fargo as head of
company; 1873 - name changed to American Express;
1882 - launched money order business; 1891
- introduced world’s first traveler’s cheque; 1905
- U.S. Immigration Department awarded contract to provide
official currency exchange services to millions of immigrants
entering United States through Ellis Island; 1915
- officially entered travel business; 1947 - U.S.
Government licensed American Express to provide banking services
to U.S. military personnel and their families stationed abroad;
October 1, 1958 - introduced
travel-and-entertainment charge card (paper printed with purple
ink to resemble Travelers Cheques); 1959 -
introduced plastic charge cards; 1963 - more than
1 million cards in use at approximately 85,000 establishments
within, outside United States; 1966 - launched
Gold Card; 1984 - acquired IDS (Investors
Diversified Services); 1986 - earnings exceeding
$1 billion for first time in its history; 1991 -
group of Boston restaurateurs, upset about what they felt were
American Express’ unfairly high rates, staged revolt, came to be
known as Boston Fee Party (outside United States, card
suppression – when merchants try to dissuade customers from
using the American Express Card – began to rise); saved by
strength of brand name;
2008 - Federal Reserve banking regulators
approved application to convert to bank holding company to
strengthen position in market turmoil, improve access to
low-cost financing from Fed; would not fundamentally alter
company’s core focus on credit card payments industry, would not
require any significant divestitures.
November 1, 1864 - The U.S. Post Office introduced
- Frank J. Mackey founded Household Finance Corporation.
December 12, 1882
- Marcellus Flemming Berry, of Brooklyn, NY, received a patent
for a "Check or Other Paper Representing Value" ("novel
formation of or arrangement of the figures in [marginal] tables
[of figures of different denominations], whereby the tearing
through the tables is facilitated and a check or paper is
produced which may be more conveniently used and which will
afford greater security against fraud"); 1891 - American Express
travelers cheque, oblong blue checks created by Berry in lieu of
letters of credit (at request of James Congdell Fargo, president
of American Express, younger brother of William Fargo),
July 1891 -
American Express launched Travelers Cheques; company placed ads
in New York newspapers, printed 70,000 leaflets for European
business.; as many as 10,000 circulars about travelers cheques
sent to agents, with special attention to Thomas Cook & Son,
European travel agency with worldwide network of 150 offices;
August 5, 1891 - Hotel Hauffe, Leipzig, Germany,
honored first American Express Travelers Cheque. .
February 22, 1908
- Henry Ittleson, former dry goods retailer, law student, real
estate agent, stockbroker, founded CIT Corporation in St. Louis,
1908 - 22 businesses as clients (including Monsanto);
1916 - joined with Studebaker automobile company
(4,000 dealerships) to provide financing to car buyers (put
one-third down, paid balance in eight monthly installments);
1924 - went public; 1925 - business
volume exceeded $148 million, recorded capital in excess of $26
million; 1926 - record profits of $3.5 million;
1928 - entered factoring market (Commercial Factors
Corporation subsidiary nation’s largest factoring business in
1929); 1965 - $100 billion in financing volume
since 1908 (half since 1955); 1969 - withdrew from
auto financing, turned to personal, home equity loans, equipment
leasing; 1971 - record-high earnings for 20th
consecutive year; 1977 - more than 1,000 consumer
finance offices; 1980 -- acquired by RCA
Corporation; 1984 - acquired by Manufacturers
Hanover Trust Corporation ($8 billion in factoring business
volume, largest factoring unit in world); 1989 -
60% majority interest in CIT acquired by Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank,
Limited of Japan (DKB); 1997 - went public,
earnings above $300 million for first time in its history;
2007 - 1 million clients across 30 industries in 50
Henry Ittleson - CIT
- Frank McNamara, lawyer Ralph Schneider created Diners Club;
presented small, cardboard card at Major's Cabin Grill, New York
City restaurant; signed for the purchase; known as the "First
Supper"; May 13, 1950 - Diner's Club issued first
credit cards to 200 people, most of whom are personal friends
and acquaintances; 14 New York restaurants agree to accept the
card; 1949 - had had dinner, left wallet in
another suit; wife paid, resolved never to be embarrassed again.
Frank McNamara -
- Donald McCullough launched Finders Services, first credit card
service in Britain; 1962 - merged Credit Card
Services to become Diners' Club.
– Bank of America launched BankAmericard in Fresno, CA
(innovative "revolving credit" feature); 1970 -
Visa incorporated in Delaware as National BankAmericard Inc.
(NBI); 1974 - International Bankcard Company
(IBANCO) formed to administer BankAmericard program
internationally; 1976 - BankAmericard changed name
to Visa; 1983 - launched global ATM network,
provided 24-hour cash access to cardholders around world;
1997 - annual global sales volume reached $ trillion;
2001 - annual global sales volume reached $2
trillion; 2004 - global debit volume surpassed
credit volume; 2007- completed corporate
restructuring, created new global corporation, Visa Inc.;
electronic-payments processor; March 18, 2008 -
went public in largest IPO in history ($17.9 billion).
October 1, 1958
- American Express introduced travel-and-entertainment charge
card (paper printed with purple ink to resemble Travelers
Cheques; 1959 - introduced plastic cards;
1966 - launched Gold Card; 2007 - 52
million card holders.
September 10, 1963
- American Express opened credit card service in Britain
(previously, card holders could only settle their accounts in
- Yasuo Takei founded Takefufi Corporation, consumer credit
company. June 2006 - Forbes.com ranked Takei
second richest man in Japan, worth $5.6 billion (behind
Masayoshi Son, CEO of Softbank, worth $7 billion).
- Jack Daugherty opened first Cash America Pawn in Irving, TX to
serve under-banked population (those who could not get financial
help from traditional financial lenders);
1984 - incorporated as Cash America
Investments, Inc.; 1987
- went public; 1994
- opened 300th pawnshop; $1 billion loaned, accumulated over 14
million loan transactions; 1998
- opened 400th pawnshop, began franchising Cash America
locations; 2003 -
$5 billion dollars loaned; 2004
- acquired SuperPawn, largest remaining independently owned
pawnshop chain in United States;
2008 - largest provider of secured non-recourse
loans, commonly referred to as pawn loans, through over 500
locations in 21 states.
September 12, 1997
- Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) announced that
annualized losses on bank credit cards had ballooned to highest
level in 14 years; losses accounted for 5.22% of every $100
charged to nation's credit cards; Americans also declaring
bankruptcy in record numbers (amounted to roughly half of "bank
credit card charge-offs"); painted "a picture of highly
leveraged consumers less able to handle their debts--and more
willing than ever to walk away from them."
April 16, 2007
- SLM Corporation (Sallie Mae), nations largest lender to
students ($142 billion loan portfolio), agreed to a $25 billion
buyout from two private equity firms and two banks; largest deal
ever for financial services firm.
(Advest Group Inc.), Donald Moffitt (1997).
Advest: Celebrating a Century of Service to Investors, 1898-1998.
(Lyme, CT: Greenwich Pub. Group, 63 p.). Advest Group,
Inc.--History; Financial services industry--United
(American Express), Alden Hatch (1950).
American Express, A Century of Service. (Garden City,
NY: Doubleday, 287 p.). American Express Company.
William G. Fargo
(American Express), Peter Z. Grossman (1987).
American Express: The Unofficial History of the People Who Built
the Great Financial Empire. (New York, Y: Crown
Publishers, 389 p.). American Express Company--History.
(American Express), Bryan Burrough (1992).
Vendetta: American Express and the Smearing of Edmond Safra.
(New York, NY: HarperCollins, 494 p.). Safra, Edmond; Republic
National Bank of New York--Management; American Express Company;
Money laundering investigation--United States.
(American Express), Jon Friedman and John
House of Cards: Inside the Troubled Empire of American Express.
(New York, NY: Putnam, 272 p.). American Express Company;
Financial services industry--United States; Credit cards--United
(American Express), Reed Massengill (1999).
Becoming American Express: 150 Years of Reinvention and Customer
Service. (New York, NY: American Express Co., 200 p.).
American Express Company -- History; Financial services industry
(American Express), Aldo Papone (2005).
The Power of the Obvious: Notes from 50 Years in Corporate
America. (Los Altos, CA: Palo Alto Press, 189 p.).
President and Chief Operating Officer, American Express TRS.
Papone, Aldo; wisdom -- business; business philosophy. Author
captures what really counts in business - things we all once
knew but need to be reminded of.
(Canada Trustco), Philip Smith (1989).
The Trust-Builders: The Remarkable Rise of Canada Trust.
(Toronto, ON: Macmillan of Canada, 275 p.). Canada Trustco
Mortgage Company -- History; Trust companies -- Ontario --
London -- History.
(C.I.T. Financial), William L. Wilson (1976).
Full Faith and Credit: The Story of C.I.T. Financial
Corporation, 1908-1975. (New York, NY: Random House, 376
p.). C.I.T. Financial Corporation--History.
(Countrywide Financial), Adam Michaelson
The Foreclosure of America: The Inside Story of the Rise and
Fall of Countrywide Home Loans, the Mortgage Crisis, and the
Default of the American Dream. (New York, NY: Berkley
Books, 354 p.). Former Senior Vice President of Marketing,
Countrywide Financial. Mortgages --United States; Mortgage loans
--United States; Foreclosure --United States; Financial crises
--United States. Morality of career spent marketing mirages,
market forces that destroyed a company; can corporations serve
public good, profit at same time?; how to prevent meltdown from
ever happening again.
(John Hancock Financial Services), David F.
D'Alessandro, with Michele Owens (2001).
Brand Warfare: 10 Rules for Building the Killer Brand: Lessons
for New and Old Economy Players. (New York, NY:
McGraw-Hill, 185 p.). CEO, John Hancock Financial Services.
Brand name products; Product management.
(Household Finance), Herman Kogan (1965).
Lending Is Our Business; The Story of Household Finance
Corporation. (Chicago, IL: Household Finance Corp., 147 p.).
Household Finance Corporation.
Frank J. Mackey -
(Lomas), William R. Simon, pictorial research
by James A. Ledbetter (1994).
Lomas, The First One Hundred Years: A History of the Lomas
Financial Group. (Dallas, TX: Lomas Financial Corp., 502
p.). Lomas Mortgage USA--History; Mortgage banks--United
States--History; Lomas Financial Corporation--History; Financial
(National Mortgage and Agency Company of New
Zealand Ltd.), Gordon Parry (1964). N.M.A.: The Story of the
first 100 Years: The National Mortgage and Agency Company of New
Zealand Ltd., 1864-1964. (London, UK: The Company, 247 p.).
National Mortgage and Agency Company of New Zealand
(Provident Loan Society of New York), Peter
God Bless Pawnbrokers. (New York, NY: Dodd, Mead, 217
p.). Provident Loan Society of New York.
(SBI Holdings, Inc.), Yoshitaka Kitao (2007).
The SBI Group Vision and Strategy: Continuously Evolving
Management. (Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 164 p.). CEO of SBI
Holdings, Inc. (former finance arm of Softbank Corp.). SBI
Group--History; Financial institutions--Japan--History--20th
century; Financial institutions--Management; Information
technology--Economic aspects--Japan. July 1999 - founded SBI as
venture capital, incubation business; transformed it to
independent holding company; steered it through Internet bubble,
Financial Big Bang of Japanese deregulation; vision - customer
value, shareholder value, human capital value combine to create
prosperity for individuals and society.
(Simpson Inc.), William R. Simpson and
Florence K. Simpson, with Charles Samuels (1954).
Hockshop: The Fabulous Story of the Emperors of Pawnbroking.
(New York, NY: Random House, 311 p.). Simpson (William)
inc.--New York (State).
(UAPT-Infolink), C. McNeil Greig (1992).
The Growth of Credit Information: A History of UAPT-Infolink Plc.
(Cambridge, MA: Blackwsell Business, 354 p.). UAPT-Infolink
(Firm)--History; Credit bureaus--Great Britain--History--19th
century; Credit bureaus--Great Britain--History--20th century;
Commercial credit--Great Britain--History--19th century;
Commercial credit--Great Britain--History--20th century.
(Union Discount Company), George and Pamela
The Union Discount: A Centenary Album. (London, UK:
Union Discount Company, 128 p.). Union Discount Company;
discount houses -- Great Britain -- history.
(VISA International), Dee Hock
Birth of the Chaordic Age (San Francisco, CA:
Berrett-Koehler Publishers, 345 p.). Hock, Dee, 1929- ; Hock,
Dee; VISA International--History; VISA International;
Businessmen--United States--Biography; Bank credit
cards--History; Consumer finance companies--History.
(VISA International), Paul Chutkow (2001).
Visa: The Power of an Idea. (Chicago, IL: Harcourt, 363
p.). VISA International--History; Bank credit cards--History;
(VISA International), Patricia Kapferer et
Tristan Gaston-Breton; preface de Michel Pebereau (2004).
Carte Bleue: La Petite Carte Qui Change la Vie. (Paris, FR:
Cherche Midi, 125 p.). VISA International; Bank credit cards;
Bank credit cards--France.
(VISA International), Lloyd
Priceless: The Case that Brought Down the Visa/MasterCard Bank
Cartel. (New York, NY: Kaplan Publishing, 352 p.).
Counsel to Constantine Cannon LLP. Inside account of largest
anti-trust merchant action suit in U.S history; pitted Walmart,
Circuit City, The Limited, Sears Roebuck, Safeway, class of five
million stores against proposed merger by Visa/Mastercard; how
more than $3-billion-dollar settlement came about; small
boutique law firm beat four of largest law firms in world.
Philip Augar (2009).
Chasing Alpha: How Reckless Growth and Unchecked Ambition Ruined
the City's Golden Decade. (London, UK: Bodley Head, 272
p.). Former head of NatWest's global equity and bond business,
Former Chief Executive of Schroder Securities. Financial
services industry -- History -- Great Britain.
of Britain’s financial services sector from early days of New Labour to present; how City’s golden generation turned London
around; how major economy tried to reinvent itself as hedge fund
crossed with offshore tax haven.
Denby Brandon, Jr., H. Oliver
The History of Financial
Planning: The Transformation of Financial Services.
(Hoboken, NJ, Wiley, 270 p.). Original board member of the
Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Chairman from
1989–1990; Chairman Emeritus of the Certified Financial Planner
Board of Standards. Financial planners -- History; Financial
services industry -- History. History of profession, how
financial planning movement has grown beyond United States; how
work of key researchers has influenced rise of financial planning profession; "four
initial engines of growth"; key players that define history of
financial planning; emergence of Financial Planning Association
Eds. Eric Bussiere, Youssef Cassis (2005).
London and Paris as International Financial Centres in the
Twentieth Century. (New York, NY: Oxford University
Press, 367 p.). Professor of Contemporary European History
(University of Paris IV); Professor of Contemporary Economic
History (University of Grenoble II). Financial institutions,
International--England--London; Financial institutions,
International--France--Paris; Banks and banking,
International--England--London; Banks and banking,
International--France--Paris; International finance.
Long-term perspective on
development of each centre, with special attention to pre-1914
years and to last decades of 20th century (contrasts these
two eras of globalization).
Alya Guseva (2008).
Into the Red: The Birth of the Credit Card Market in
Postcommunist Russia. (Stanford, CA: Stanford University
Press, 224 p.). Assistant Professor of Sociology (Boston
University). Credit cards --Russia (Federation); Consumer credit
--Russia (Federation). 1988-2007 - emergence of credit card market in post-Soviet
Russia; dynamics of market building in social structure,
creative use of social networks in facilitating exchange in mass
markets, building markets for mass consumption.
Ed. Clifford E. Kirsch (1997).
The Financial Services Revolution: Understanding the Changing
Role of Banks, Mutual Funds, and Insurance Companies
(Chicago, IL: Irwin Professional Pub., 565 p.). Financial
services industry--Government policy--United States; Banks and
banking--Government policy--United States; Insurance--Government
policy--United States; Mutual funds--Government policy--United
States; Financial services industry--Law and legislation--United
States; Banking law--United States; Insurance law--United
States; Mutual funds--Law and legislation--United States.
Herman E. Krooss and Martin R. Blyn (1971).
A History of Financial Intermediaries. (New York, NY:
Random House, 254 p.). Financial institutions--United
States--History; Finance--United States--History.
Stephen Krupnik (2009).
Pawnonomics: A Tale of The Historical, Cultural, and Economic
Significance of the Pawnbroking Industry. (Seattle,.
WA: BookSurge Publishing, 92 p.). Founder, Past President of
Indiana Pawnbrokers Association. History of pawn broking
industry; common myths, misconceptions about pawn broking;
innermost workings, machinery of industry; dark reputation of
pawn broking, how the business of usury can sometimes be its own
Lewis Mandell (1990).
The Credit Card Industry: A History. (Boston, MA: Twayne
Publishers, 176 p.). Credit cards--United States--History;
Consumer credit--United States--History.
Ronald J. Mann (2006).
Charging Ahead: The Growth and Regulation of Payment Card
Markets. (New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 308
p.). Credit cards; Credit cards--Law and legislation. First
comprehensive treatment of credit cards in the global economy.
Relation between rise of
credit card use, broader macroeconomic phenomena (consumer
borrowing, savings, bankruptcy); how credit cards are used
differently around world.
Robert Mayer (2010).
Quick Cash: The Story of the Loan Shark. (DeKalb, IL:
Northern Illinois University Press, 328 p.). Professor of
Political Science (Loyola University). Usury; Loans.
'Payday Lenders', advance small sums of cash at high interest rates until payday,
existed long before organized crime entered trade; predatory
lenders have endured through regulation, prohibition, rise and
fall of mob since late 1800s; fill niche in credit market; most large cities still
hotbed of usurious lending, landscapes dotted with
inviting, brightly colored storefronts; consequences of high-interest
lending for people who borrow at steep prices, for society
as whole; consistently traps
many wage earners who pawn postdated checks, leaves
them worse off; payday lending regulations vary widely
throughout country; focus on Chicago; story behind unscrupulous lending operations that feed off America’s
current tough economic times.
Gary Rivlin (2010).
Broke, USA: From Pawnshops to Poverty, Inc.: How the Working
Poor Became Big Business. (New York, NY: Harper
Business, 358 p.). Reporter (New York Times). Working poor --
United States; Poverty -- United States; ]United States --
Economic conditions -- 21st century. One of America's largest,
fastest-growing industries; voracious, often predatory poverty
business has flourished over past two decades--at enormous
cost to economy, society, democratic institutions; companies
that cater to, prey on working poor; high-priced products for sale to credit-hungry working
poor; industry larger than casino business; pawnbrokers and
check cashers can grow very rich off those with thin wallets.
Guy Stuart (2003).
Discriminating Risk: The U.S. Mortgage Lending Industry in the
Twentieth Century. (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University
Press, 248 p.). Associate Professor of Public Policy (Harvard's
Kennedy School of Government). Mortgage loans--United States;
Discrimination in housing--United States; Discrimination in
housing--Illinois--Chicago; Race discrimination--United States;
United States--Race relations.
Charles B. Wendel (1996).
The New Financiers: Profiles of the Leaders Who Are Reshaping
the Financial Services Industry (Chicago, IL: Irwin
Professional Pub., 342 p.). President, Financial Institutions
Consulting. Financial services industry--United States--Case
studies; Capitalists and financiers--United States;
Center for the
Study of Financial Innovation
Founded as a not-for-profit think-tank in 1993 by Andrew Hilton
and David Lascelles, the Centre conducts research, publishes
reports and holds round-table meetings, all centered on the
latest developments in the financial services sector. There is
no ideological brief, beyond a belief in open and efficient
markets, and in frank debate of the issues that will shape the
sector's future. The CSFI holds about 80 round-table discussions
a year on a variety of topics and has published more than 90
reports in its 17-year history.