Bochove C. van (2008) Outsourcing financial modernisation

October 11, 2009

Bochove, Christiaan van (2008) “Integration of Denmark-Norway in the Dutch capital market”, chapter 4 in The Economic Consequences of the Dutch. Economic integration around the North Sea, 1500-1800, Amsterdam: Aksant, 90-125.

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The early modern markets for goods and labour were highly integrated. As the country’s Golden Age came to an end, by 1700, Dutch capital was increasingly finding investment opportunities abroad, chiefly in Great Britain but also in the Danish Kingdom (p.90). It had not always been the case. For instance around 1600, trade with Norway was conducted with cash rather than bills of exchange, a sure sign of poor integration. The concentration of trade in the hands of a local business elite (rather than scattered between small producers) made this modernization possible. By the mid century Norwegian merchants started drawing credit from Amsterdam (p.93). Read the rest of this entry »

Pourchasse P. (2006) French, Swedish and Danish consuls in 18th-century Europe

February 3, 2008

Pourchasse Pierrick (2006) “Les consulats, un service essentiel pour le monde négociant: une approche comparative entre la France et la Scandinavie”, in Ulbert Jörg and Le Bouëdec dir., La fonction consulaire à l’époque moderne. L’affirmation d’une institution économique et politique (1500-1700), Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 191-209.


In the extremely slow early modern economy, having a good network to carry information as quickly as possible meant being competitive. Prices varied a lot from one place to the other, being informed on time meant one’s success or one’s ruin. During the 18th century, French merchants were very passive in the northern seas, they had no information network; on the other hand, the Scandinavian traders were emerging quickly as one of the main players of the region (191). Consuls – present mostly in port towns such as Bordeaux, Nantes, Bergen, or Dantzig – were a key element in the chain relaying information. Read the rest of this entry »