The City of London (the "Square Mile") is one of the oldest financial centres. London is ranked as one of the largest International Financial Centres ("IFC") in the world.
IFCs, and many RFCs, are full-service financial centres with direct access to large capital pools from banks, insurance companies, investment funds, and listed capital markets, and are major global cities. OFCs, and also some RFCs, tend to specialise in tax-driven services, such as corporate tax planning tools, tax-neutral vehicles,[c] and shadow banking/securitization, and can include smaller locations (e.g. Luxembourg), or city-states (e.g. Singapore). The IMF notes an overlap between RFCs and OFCs (e.g. Hong Kong and Singapore are OFCs and RFCs). Since 2010, academics consider OFCs synonymous with tax havens.[d]
In April 2000, the Financial Stability Forum ("FSF"),[e] concerned about OFCs on global financial stability produced a report listing 42 OFCs. In June 2000, the IMF published a working paper on OFCs, but which also proposed a taxonomy on classifying the various types of global financial centres, which they listed as follows (with the description and examples they noted as typical of each category, also noted):
International Financial Centre ("IFC"). Described by the IMF as being large international full-service centres with advanced settlement and payments systems, supporting large domestic economies, with deep and liquid markets where both the sources and uses of funds are diverse, and where legal and regulatory frameworks are adequate to safeguard the integrity of principal-agent relationships and supervisory functions. IFCs generally borrow short-term from non-residents and lend long-term to non-residents. In terms of assets, London is the largest and most established such centre, followed by New York, the difference being that the proportion of international to domestic business is much greater in the former. Examples cited by the IMF were: London, New York and Tokyo;
Regional Financial Center ("RFC"). The IMF noted that RFCs, like IFCs, have developed financial markets and infrastructure and intermediate funds in and out of their region, but in contrast to IFCs, have relatively small domestic economies. Examples cited by the IMF were: Hong Kong, Singapore, and Luxembourg;
Offshore Financial Centre ("OFC"). The IMF noted that OFCs are usually smaller, and provide more specialist services, however, OFCs still ranged from centres that provide specialist and skilled activities, attractive to major financial institutions, and more lightly regulated centres that provide services that are almost entirely tax driven, and have very limited resources to support financial intermediation. The IMF listed 46 OFCs in 2000, the largest of which was Ireland, the Caribbean (includes the Cayman Islands, and the British Virgin Islands), Hong Kong, Singapore and Luxembourg.
The IMF noted that the three categories were not mutually exclusive and that various locations could fall under the definition of an OFC and an RFC, in particular (e.g. Singapore and Hong Kong were cited).
Rationale for OFCs
The IMF noted that OFCs could be set up for legitimate purposes (listing various reasons), but also for what the IMF called dubious purposes, citing tax evasion and money-laundering. In 2007, the IMF produced the following definition of an OFC: a country or jurisdiction that provides financial services to nonresidents on a scale that is incommensurate with the size and the financing of its domestic economy. The FSF annual reports on global shadow banking use the IMF definition to track the OFCs with the largest financial centres relative to their domestic economies.
Progress from 2000 onwards from IMF-OECD-FATF initiatives on common standards, regulatory compliance, and banking transparency, has reduced the regulatory attraction of OFCs over IFCs and RFCs. Since 2010, academics considered the services of OFCs to be synonymous with tax havens, and use the term OFC and tax haven interchangeably (e.g. the academic lists of tax havens include all the FSF-IMF OFCs).
24 Sink OFCs: jurisdictions in which a disproportionate amount of value disappears from the economic system (e.g. the traditional tax havens).
5 Conduit OFCs: jurisdictions through which a disproportionate amount of value moves toward Sink OFCs (e.g. the corporate-focused tax havens) (Conduits are: Netherlands, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Singapore and Ireland)
Sink OFCs rely on Conduit OFCs to re-route funds from high-tax locations using base erosion and profit shifting ("BEPS") tax planning tools, which are encoded, and accepted, in the Conduit OFC's extensive networks of global bilateral tax treaties. Because Sink OFCs are more closely associated with traditional tax havens, they tend to have more limited treaty networks and access to global higher-tax locations.
Prior to the 1960s, there is little data available to rank financial centres.:1 In recent years many rankings have been developed and published. Two of the most relevant are the Global Financial Centres Index and the Xinhua-Dow Jones International Financial Centres Development Index.
The Global Financial Centres Index ("GFCI") is compiled semi-annually by the London-based British think tank Z/Yen in conjunction with the Shenzen-based think tank China Development Institute. As of March 2019, the top ten global financial centres per the GFCI article containing a ranked list of 100 financial centres were:
Old finance centers such as Amsterdam, London, Paris, New York, and Tokyo have long histories. Today there is a diverse range of financial centres worldwide. While New York and London often stand out as the leading global financial centres, other established financial centres provide significant competition and several newer financial centres are developing. Despite this proliferation of financial centres, academics have discussed evidence showing increasing concentration of financial activity in the largest national and international financial centres in the 21st century.:24-34 Others have discussed the ongoing dominance of New York and London, and the role linkages between these two financial centres played in the financial crisis of 2007-08.
Comparisons of financial centres focus on their history, role and significance in serving national, regional and international financial activity. Each centre's offering includes differing legal, tax and regulatory environments. One journalist suggested three factors for success as a financial city: "a pool of capital to lend or invest; a decent legal and taxation framework; and high-quality human resources".
Major IMF IFCs
New York, London and Tokyo are in every list of major IFCs. Some of the major RFCs (see below), such as Paris, Frankfurt, Chicago, and Shanghai appear as IFCs in some lists.
New York. Since the middle of the 20th century, New York City, represented by Wall Street, has been described as a leading financial centre.:1:25:4-5 Over the past few decades, with the rise of a multipolar world with new regional powers and global capitalism, numerous financial centres have challenged Wall Street, particularly London and several in Asia, which some analysts believe will be the focus of new worldwide growth.:39-49 One source described New York as extending its lead as the world's centre of finance in September 2018; according to Reuters, the think-tankNew Financial concluded the "raw" value of domestic and international financial activity like managing assets and issuing equity underscored the position of New York as the world's leading financial centre.
London. London has been a leading international financial centre since the 19th century, acting as a centre of lending and investment around the world.:74-75:149English contract law was adopted widely for international finance, with legal services provided in London. Financial institutions located there provided services internationally such as Lloyd's of London (founded 1686) for insurance and the Baltic Exchange (founded 1744) for shipping. During the 20th century London played an important role in the development of new financial products such as the Eurodollar and Eurobonds in the 1960s, international asset management and international equities trading in the 1980s, and derivatives in the 1990s.:13:6,12-13,88-9
Tokyo. One report suggests that Japanese authorities are working on plans to transform Tokyo but have met with mixed success, noting that "initial drafts suggest that Japan's economic specialists are having trouble figuring out the secret of the Western financial centres' success." Efforts include more English-speaking restaurants and services and the building of many new office buildings in Tokyo, but more powerful stimuli such as lower taxes have been neglected and a relative aversion to finance remains prevalent in Japan. Tokyo emerged as a major financial centre in the 1980s as the Japanese economy became one of the largest in the world.:1 As a financial centre, Tokyo has good links with New York City and London.
Major IMF OFCs
These centres appear in all FSF-IMF lists of OFCs and, bar the Caribbean OFCs of the Cayman Islands, the British Virgin Islands, and Bermuda, represent all the major OFCs. Some also appear as RFCs in various lists, particularly Hong Kong, and Singapore. They also appear on most lists of major tax havens, and on lists of the largest Conduit and Sink OFCs in the world.
Amsterdam. Amsterdam is well known for the size of its pension fund market. It is also a centre for banking and trading activities. Amsterdam was a prominent financial centre in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries and several of the innovations developed there were transported to London.:24 In June 2017, a study published in Nature ranked the Netherlands as the world's largest Conduit OFC, a term use to describe the re-routing of fund flows to tax havens.
Luxembourg. Luxembourg is a specialised financial services centre that is the largest location for investment fund domiciliation in Europe, and second in the world after the United States. Many of the funds domiciled in Luxembourg are managed in London.:5-6 Luxembourg is the leading private banking centre in the Eurozone and the largest captive reinsurance centre in Europe. 143 banks from 28 different countries are established in Luxembourg. The country is also the third largest renminbi centre in the world by numbers, in certain activities such as deposits, loans, bond listing and investment funds. Three of the largest Chinese banks have their European hub in Luxembourg (ICBC, Bank of China, China Construction Bank).
Singapore. With its strong links with London, Singapore has developed into the Asia region's largest centre for foreign exchange and commodity trading, as well as a growing wealth management hub. Other than Tokyo, it is one of the main centres for fixed income trading in Asia. However, the market capitalisation of its stock exchange has been falling since 2014 and several major companies plan to delist.
Zurich. Zurich is a significant centre for banking, asset management including provision of alternative investment products, and insurance. Since Switzerland is not a member of the European Union, Zurich is not directly subject to EU regulation.
Major IMF RFCs
In some lists, RFCs such as Paris, Frankfurt, Chicago, and Shanghai appear as IFCs, however, they do not appear in all lists. They are certainly major RFCs.
Frankfurt. Frankfurt attracts many foreign banks which maintain offices in the city. It is the seat of Deutsche Börse, one of the leading stock exchanges and derivatives markets operators, and the European Central Bank, which sets the monetary policy for the single European currency, the euro; in addition, in 2014 the European Central Bank took over responsibility for banking supervision for the 18 countries which form the Eurozone. It is also the seat of Deutsche Bundesbank, the German central bank, as well as of EIOPA, the EU's supervisory authority for insurances and occupational pension systems.
Frankfurt has been the financial centre of Germany since the second half of the 20th century as it was before the mid-19th century. Berlin held the position during the intervening period, focusing on lending to European countries while London focused on lending to the Americas and Asia.
Madrid. Madrid is the headquarters to the Spanish company Bolsas y Mercados Españoles, which owns the four stock exchanges in Spain, the largest being the Bolsa de Madrid. Trading of equities, derivatives and fixed income securities are linked through the Madrid-based electronic Spanish Stock Market Interconnection System (SIBE), handling more than 90% of all financial transactions. Madrid ranks fourth in European equities market capitalisation, and Madrid's Stock Exchange is second in terms of number of listed companies, just behind New York Stock Exchange (NYSE plus NASDAQ). As a financial centre, Madrid has extensive links with Latin America and acts as a gateway for many Latin American financial firms to access the EU banking and financial markets.:6-7
Shanghai. Official efforts have been directed to making Pudong a financial leader by 2010. Efforts during the 1990s were mixed, but in the early 21st century, Shanghai gained ground. Factors such as a "protective banking sector" and a "highly restricted capital market" have held the city back, according to one analysis in 2009 in China Daily. Shanghai has done well in terms of market capitalisation but it needs to "attract an army of money managers, lawyers, accountants, actuaries, brokers and other professionals, Chinese and foreign" to enable it to compete with New York and London. China is generating tremendous new capital, which makes it easier to stage initial public offerings of state-owned companies in places like Shanghai.
Sydney's northern CBD serves as the financial and banking hub of the city
Sydney. Australia's most populous city is a financial and business services hub not only for Australia but for the Asia-Pacific region. Sydney competes quite closely with other Asia Pacific hubs, however it concentrates a greater portion of Australian-based business in terms of clients and services. Sydney is home to two of Australia's four largest banks, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Westpac Banking Corporation, both headquartered in the Sydney CBD. Sydney is also home to 12 of the top 15 asset managers in Australia, Melbourne, on the other hand, tends to concentrate more of the Australian superannuation funds (pension funds). Sydney is using the large Barangaroo development project on its harbour to further position itself as an Asian Pacific hub. Sydney is also home to the Australian Securities Exchange and an array of brokerage banks which are either headquartered or regionally based in Sydney including Australia's largest investment bank Macquarie Group.
Others. Mumbai is an emerging financial centre, which also provides international support services to London and other financial centres. Cities such as São Paulo, Mexico City and Johannesburg and other "would-be hubs" lack liquidity and the "skills base," according to one source. Financial industries in countries and regions such as the Indian subcontinent and Malaysia require not only well-trained people but the "whole institutional infrastructure of laws, regulations, contracts, trust and disclosure" which takes time to happen.
The first real international financial center was the City State of Venice which slowly emerged from the 9th century to its peak in the 14th century. Tradable bonds as a commonly used type of security, were invented by the Italian city-states (such as Venice and Genoa) of the late medieval and early Renaissance periods.
In the sixteenth century, the overall economic supremacy of the Italian city-states gradually came to an end, and the centre of financial activities in Europe shifted to the Low Countries, first to Bruges, and later to Antwerp and Amsterdam. They also became important centres of financial innovation.
In the 17th century, Amsterdam became the leading commercial and financial centre. It held this position for more than a century, and was the first modern model of an international financial centre. As Richard Sylla (2015) noted, "In modern history, several nations had what some of us call financial revolutions. These can be thought of as creating in a short period of time all the key components of a modern financial system. The first was the Dutch Republic four centuries ago." Amsterdam - unlike its predecessors such as Bruges, Antwerp, Genoa, and Venice - controlled crucial resources and markets directly, sending its fleets to all quarters of the world.
During their Golden Age, the Dutch were responsible for three major institutional innovations in economic, financial and business history of the world:
The foundation of the Dutch East India Company (VOC), the world's first publicly listed company and an early pioneering model of the multinational corporation, in 1602. The birth of the VOC is often considered to be the official beginning of corporate-led globalization with the rise of modern corporations (multinational corporations in particular) as a highly significant socio-politico-economic force that affect human lives in every corner of the world today. As the first company to be listed on an official stock exchange, the VOC was the first company to issue stock and bonds to the general public. With its pioneering features, the VOC is generally considered a major institutional breakthrough and the model for modern corporations (large-scale business enterprises in particular). It was the first precursor to modern multinational corporations.
By the early 1800s, London officially replaced Amsterdam as the world's leading financial centre. In his book Capitals of Capital (2010), Youssef Cassis argues that the decline and fall of Amsterdam, as the world's foremost financial capital, was one of the dramatic events in history of global finance.
London and Paris were the world's only prominent financial centers throughout most of the 19th century.:1 After 1870, Berlin and New York grew to become major financial centres mainly serving their national economies. An array of smaller international financial centers found market niches, such as Amsterdam, Brussels, Zurich, and Geneva. London remained the leading international financial center in the four decades leading up to World War I.:74-75:12-15 Since then, New York and London have developed leading positions in different activities and some non-Western financial centres have grown in prominence, notably Tokyo, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Rise of London
London has been a leading international financial centre since the 19th century, acting as a centre of lending and investment around the world.:74-75:149English contract law was adopted widely for international finance, with legal services provided in London. Financial institutions located there provided services internationally such as Lloyd's of London (founded 1686) for insurance and the Baltic Exchange (founded 1744) for shipping. During the 20th century London played an important role in the development of new financial products such as the Eurodollar and Eurobonds in the 1960s, international asset management and international equities trading in the 1980s, and derivatives in the 1990s.:13:6,12-13,88-9
Since the middle of the 20th century, New York City, represented by Wall Street, has been described as a leading financial centre.:1:25:4-5 Over the past few decades, with the rise of a multipolar world with new regional powers and global capitalism, numerous financial centres have challenged Wall Street, particularly London and several in Asia, which some analysts believe will be the focus of new worldwide growth.:39-49 One source described New York as extending its lead as the world's centre of finance in September 2018; according to Reuters, the think-tankNew Financial concluded the "raw" value of domestic and international financial activity like managing assets and issuing equity underscored the position of New York as the world's leading financial centre.
In Asia, Tokyo emerged as a major financial centre in the 1980s as the Japanese economy became one of the largest in the world.:1 Hong Kong and Singapore developed soon after leveraging their links with London and Britain.:10-11 In the 21st century, other centres have grown including Toronto, Sydney, Seoul and Shanghai. Dubai has become a centre for finance in the Middle East, including for Islamic finance. The rapid rise of India has enabled Mumbai to become an emerging financial centre. India is also making an International Financial Center GIFT City from scratch. GIFT city is now functional and has already won the crown of fastest emerging International Finance Center of South Asia. Linked to the rise of these new IFCs, has seen the rise of "partner OFCs" (offshore tax-havens to which funds are routed), such as Taiwan (a major Sink OFC for Asia, and 7th largest global Sink OFC), Mauritius (a major Sink OFC for S.E Asia, especially India, and Africa, and the 9th largest global Sink OFC).
The private nationwide financial system in China was first developed by the Shanxi merchants, with the creation of so-called "draft banks". The first draft bank Rishengchang was created in 1823 in Pingyao. Some large draft banks had branches in Russia, Mongolia and Japan to facilitate the international trade. Throughout the nineteenth century, the central Shanxi region became the de facto financial centres of Qing China. With the fall of Qing Dynasty, the financial centers gradually shifted to Shanghai, mainly due to its geographical location at the estuary of the Yangtze river, and the control of customs in China. After the establishment of People's Republic of China, the financial centres in China today are Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen.
^The IMF definition, and examples, from June 2000.
^"Offshore" does not refer to the location of the OFC (i.e. many FSF-IMF OFCs, such as Luxembourg and Hong Kong, are located "onshore"), but to the fact that the largest users of the OFC are nonresident (i.e. the users are located "offshore").
^Tax-neutral is a term that OFCs use to describe legal structures where the OFC does not levy any taxes, duties or VAT on fund flows into, during, or exiting (e.g. no withholding taxes) the vehicle. Major examples being the Irish Qualifying investor alternative investment fund (QIAIF), and the Cayman Islands SPC.
^This is since circa 2010, after the post 2000 IMF-OECD-FATF initiatives on common standards, regulatory compliance, and banking transparency, which had significantly weakened the regulatory attraction of OFCs over IFCs and RFCs.
^The FSF is a group consisting of major national financial authorities such as finance ministries, central bankers, and international financial bodies
^The concept of the bourse (or the exchange) was 'invented' in the medieval Low Countries, most notably in predominantly Dutch-speaking cities like Bruges and Antwerp, before the birth of formal stock exchanges in the 17th century. From Flemish cities the term 'beurs' spread to other European states where it was corrupted into 'bourse', 'borsa', 'bolsa', 'börse', etc. In Britain, too, the term 'bourse' was used between 1550 and 1775, eventually giving way to the term 'royal exchange'. Until the early 1600s, a bourse was not exactly a stock exchange in its modern sense. With the founding of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) in 1602 and the rise of Dutch capital markets in the early 17th century, the 'old' bourse (a place to trade commodities, government and municipal bonds) found a new purpose - a formal exchange that specialize in creating and sustaining secondary markets in the securities (such as bonds and shares of stock) issued by corporations - or a stock exchange as we know it today.
^See, for example, Yoshio Okubo, Vice Chairman, Japan Securities Dealers Association (October 2014). "Comparison of Global Financial Center". Harvard Law School, Program on International Financial Systems, Japan-U.S. Symposium. Retrieved 2015.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
^ abHuw Jones (4 September 2018). "United States top, Britain second in financial activity: think-tank". Thomson Reuters. Retrieved 2018. Think-tank New Financial's study, which focuses on the "raw" value of actual domestic and international financial activity like managing assets and issuing equity, underscored the overall dominance of New York as the world's top financial center.
^Gelderblom, Oscar; Jonker, Joost (2004). "Completing a Financial Revolution: The Finance of the Dutch East India Trade and the Rise of the Amsterdam Capital Market, 1595-1612". The Journal of Economic History. 64 (3): 641-72. doi:10.1017/S002205070400292X.
^Tracy, James D.: A Financial Revolution in the Habsburg Netherlands: Renten and Renteniers in the County of Holland, 1515-1565. (University of California Press, 1985, 300 pp)
^Wilson, Eric Michael: The Savage Republic: De Indis of Hugo Grotius, Republicanism and Dutch Hegemony within the Early Modern World-System (c.1600-1619). (Martinus Nijhoff, 2008, ISBN978-9004167889), p. 215-217. Eric Michael Wilson (2008): "The defining characteristics of the modern corporation, all of which emerged during the Dutch cycle, include: limited liability for investors, free transferability of investor interests, legal personality and centralised management. Although some of these characteristics were present to a certain extent in the fourteenth-century Genoese societas comperarum of the first cycle, the first wholly cognisable modern limited liability public company was the VOC."
^Funnell, Warwick; Robertson, Jeffrey: Accounting by the First Public Company: The Pursuit of Supremacy. (Routledge, 2013, ISBN0415716179)
^Sayle, Murray (5 April 2001). "Japan goes Dutch". London Review of Books. 23 (7). pp. 3-7. The Netherlands United East Indies Company (Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie, or VOC), founded in 1602, was the world's first multinational, joint-stock, limited liability corporation - as well as its first government-backed trading cartel.
^Brooks, John: The Fluctuation: The Little Crash in '62, in Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street. (New York: Weybright & Talley, 1968)
^Macaulay, Catherine R. (2015). Capitalism's renaissance? The potential of repositioning the financial 'meta-economy'. (Futures, Volume 68, April 2015, p. 5-18)
^Stringham, Edward Peter; Curott, Nicholas A.: On the Origins of Stock Markets [Part IV: Institutions and Organizations; Chapter 14], pp. 324-344, in The Oxford Handbook of Austrian Economics, edited by Peter J. Boettke and Christopher J. Coyne. (Oxford University Press, 2015, ISBN978-0199811762). Edward P. Stringham & Nicholas A. Curott: "Business ventures with multiple shareholders became popular with commenda contracts in medieval Italy (Greif, 2006, p. 286), and Malmendier (2009) provides evidence that shareholder companies date back to ancient Rome. Yet the title of the world's first stock market deservedly goes to that of seventeenth-century Amsterdam, where an active secondary market in company shares emerged. The two major companies were the Dutch East India Company and the Dutch West India Company, founded in 1602 and 1621. Other companies existed, but they were not as large and constituted a small portion of the stock market (Israel  1991, 109-112; Dehing and 't Hart 1997, 54; dela Vega  1996, 173)."
^Neal, Larry (2005). "Venture Shares of the Dutch East India Company,", in The Origins of Value: The Financial Innovations that Created Modern Capital Markets, Goetzmann & Rouwenhorst (eds.), Oxford University Press, 2005, pp. 165-175
^Petram, Lodewijk: The World's First Stock Exchange: How the Amsterdam Market for Dutch East India Company Shares Became a Modern Securities Market, 1602-1700. Translated from the Dutch by Lynne Richards. (Columbia University Press, 2014, ISBN9780231163781)
^Shiller, Robert (2011). Economics 252, Financial Markets: Lecture 4 - Portfolio Diversification and Supporting Financial Institutions (Open Yale Courses) [Transcript]
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2005). The Big Problem of Large Bills: The Bank of Amsterdam and the Origins of Central Banking. Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (Working Paper 2005-16)
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William: An Economic Explanation of the Early Bank of Amsterdam, Debasement, Bills of Exchange, and the Emergence of the First Central Bank. Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta (Working Paper 2006-13), 2006
^Van Nieuwkerk, Marius (ed.): The Bank of Amsterdam: On the Origins of Central Banking. (Amsterdam: Sonsbeek Publishers, 2009)
^Kuzminski, Adrian: The Ecology of Money: Debt, Growth, and Sustainability. (Lexington Books, 2013), p. 38
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2007). The Bank of Amsterdam and the Leap to Central Bank Money. American Economic Review Papers and Proceedings 97, p262-5
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2008). Domestic Coinage and the Bank of Amsterdam. (August 2008 Draft of Chapter 7 of the Wisselbankboek)
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2010). How Amsterdam Got Fiat Money. (Working Paper 2010-17, December 2010)
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2012). The Bank of Amsterdam through the Lens of Monetary Competition. (Working Paper 2012-14, September 2012)
^Quinn, Stephen; Roberds, William (2014). Death of a Reserve Currency, Atlanta Fed Working Paper 2014-17
^Gillard, Lucien: La Banque d'Amsterdam et le florin européen au temps de la République néerlandaise, 1610-1820. (Paris: Editions de l'Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales, 420 p., 2004)
^Goetzmann, William N.; Rouwenhorst, K. Geert (2008). The History of Financial Innovation, in Carbon Finance, Environmental Market Solutions to Climate Change. (Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, chapter 1, pp. 18-43). As Goetzmann & Rouwenhorst (2008) noted, "The 17th and 18th centuries in the Netherlands were a remarkable time for finance. Many of the financial products or instruments that we see today emerged during a relatively short period. In particular, merchants and bankers developed what we would today call securitization. Mutual funds and various other forms of structured finance that still exist today emerged in the 17th and 18th centuries in Holland."
^"The Keynes Conundrum by David P. Goldman". First Things (firstthings.com). 1 October 2010. Retrieved 2017. Reuven Brenner & David P. Goldman (2010) noted, "Western societies developed the institutions that support entrepreneurship only through a long and fitful process of trial and error. Stock and commodity exchanges, investment banks, mutual funds, deposit banking, securitization, and other markets have their roots in the Dutch innovations of the seventeenth century but reached maturity, in many cases, only during the past quarter of a century."