Dye to dollars – how China’s first banks were born


In a special publication to commemorate WiC’s 8th anniversary we look at Pingyao, China’s version of Wall Street for most of the nineteenth century.
We tell the story of how a small city in Shanxi pioneered Chinese banking; analyse the corporate governance lessons to be learned from how its banks recruited and rewarded their staff, and managed their risk; and how the bond with the Qing rulers that helped Pingyao to boom and become China’s de facto treasury and central bank – as well as a private banking centre bigger than Zurich or Geneva – eventually led these Silk Road financiers to go bust after 1912.

Click here to go to our site and download the edition.