Lessons from Financial History

It is my experience that todays developements in the financial markets and public opinion with respect to banking, can be better understood by taking into account our financial history. It contains many events and lessons that we can draw upon and that will help us understand the challenges that we face today.

Apart from the walking tours around the Amsterdam city centre on the financial history of the city (and its lessons), I also provide presentations and executive briefings on a standalone basis. In december 2011 for example, I presented an outline of Dutch Financial History to the Holland Financial Centre Young Professionals group. Mr Balkenende, former primer-Minister of the Netherlands, also presented at that meeting and commended me with the presentation and the inclusion of integrity and ethics as a very apt theme for todays bankers.

The subjects of my presentations and briefings may differ, depending on the angle that you wish to choose. Some of the subjects that I cover are:
- how the Dutch financial capabilities find their origin in the physical characteristics of our country,
- what is the meaning and origin of money: which alternative and modern money systems exist and why do they work or fail?
- what is the development of supervisory structures in the Netherlands and which main conclusions and lessons can be drawn today from the bank failures in the past (Mendelssohn, Texeira de Mattos, FGH, BCCI, Van der Hoop, Icesave),
- what can be seen as the main causes of todays financial crisis and what lessons does history provide in this respect,
- what constitutes a succesfull payment innovation? Why did the Amsterdam Municipal Giro not succeed in getting a tranferable transfer instrument to function as a bank note? And why is this lesson still relevant, even for Google Bucks...
- what historic and essential view is missing in the report de Wit 1 and 2 and their analysis of the events in the Dutch financial crisis?
- what is the reasons that the Dutch don't pay a lot with credit-card cards? ; this presentation tells a story, unfamiliar to many in the industry about Visa's efforts to try and penetrate the Dutch market and the collective efforts of both banks and regulators to keep the Netherlands free from those evil instruments of credit...

Are you interested to know more? Contact me and we'll take it from there.