The purpose of this book is to supply the general reader with a simple statement of the principles and problems of banking. Since it is designed primarily for American readers, special attention has been given to conditions in this country. An effort has been made clearly to draw the line between commercial and investment banking and to indicate the problems peculiar to each. That it may assist the average person in understanding present-day banking problems and thus contribute towards the formation of a sound public opinion regarding them, is the author's hope and desire.
ailers and these to consumers. Farmers, manufacturers, and merchants both buy on time and sell on time, and are thus both debtors and creditors, and each expects that his sales will ultimately pay for his purchases.
The obligations involved in these transactions are represented and recorded in the form of book accounts, promissory notes, or bills of exchange, the latter being written or printed, or partly written and partly printed, orders of creditors on debtors to pay to themselves or to third parties the sums indicated. These documents are being constantly made and constantly paid as the processes of agriculture, industry, and commerce proceed. Indeed, their creation and liquidation is a normal phenomenon of our modern economic life.
The term commercial paper, as we are using it, applies to such promissory notes and bills of exchange as belong to this credit system. It does not apply to such notes and bills when they owe their existence to credit operations of a different kind, such for examp