Friday, July 29, 2005

Financial history/trivia from the 1700s

I had so much fun with the 1600s, I decided to go on to the 1700s. Enjoy!

Some more financial history/trivia. This is from the 1700s. I think it is worthwhile to note how some things really do not chnage that much. Indeed that is a major reason why I love history so much.

  1. In 1703 England and Portugal reach an agreement to jointly lower tariffs in order to increase trade. (Methuen Treaty)

  2. In 1716 John Law (who was wanted for murder and had taken refuge in France) persuades the French Government to allow him to open the Banque Royale. His famous quote from this time: “ Wealth depends on commerce and commerce depends on circulation (of money).”

  3. By 1720 the South Sea Bubble collapsed. Shares fell nearly 70% in a course of a few months.

  4. In 1729 Benjamin Franklin publishes “A modern Enquiry into the Nature and Necessity of a Paper Currency.

  5. In 1733 Britain passed the Molasses Act. It raised taxes on molasses from Non-British West Indies. Liike most taxes, this tax resulted in changes in behavior. By 1763 approximately 80% of molasses was smuggled into the colonies.

  6. In 1765, the Stamp Act is enacted. It sets off protests centered in Boston. Most likely not coincidentally, Boston is suffering through a serious economic downturn.

  7. In 1773 Britain lowered taxes on tea shipped into Britain but not on that shipped into the colonies. This gave British tea exporters a virtual monopoly but angered colonialists. The Act ended up sparking the most famous tax revolt of all time: the Boston Tea Party. At the Tea Party, an estimated £9,650 (or roughly equivalent of the annual income of 200 common laborers) was destroyed.

  8. By 1775, a growing spirit of independence in the American Colonies leads to boycott of British goods. American imports from Britain drop an estimated 90%! Cite

  9. In 1789 Benjamin Franklin writes “Nothing is certain but death and taxes.” Incidentally, Franklin dies in 1790.

  10. In 1799 Britain imposed its first income tax. The tax was remarkable similar to current income taxes. It was for 10% for incomes over £200 but allowed deductions for “children, insurance, repairs to property, and tithes.”

Quotes, dates and events from The People's Chronology by James Trager. It is one of my all time favorites. Covers history from 3 million BC to the present in largely bullet form. It may have some mistakes, but it sure is interesting! Definitely recommended!

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