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A bank as a financial institution

The concept of the bank as a financial institution and intermediary that accepts deposits and provides loans. History and mandatory bill details as a written financial obligation, giving the note holder the right to receive money from the debtor.

Рубрика Банковское, биржевое дело и страхование
Вид контрольная работа
Язык английский
Дата добавления 17.02.2013
Размер файла 19,5 K

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A bank is a financial institution and a financial intermediary that accepts deposits and channels those deposits into lending activities, either directly by loaning or indirectly through capital markets. A bank is the connection between customers that have capital deficits and customers with capital surpluses.

Due to their influence within a financial system and an economy, banks are generally highly regulated in most countries. Most banks operate under a system known as fractional reserve banking where they hold only a small reserve of the funds deposited and lend out the rest for profit. They are generally subject to minimum capital requirements which are based on an international set of capital standards, known as the Basel Accords.

The oldest bank still in existence is Monte dei Paschi di Siena, headquartered in Siena, Italy, which has been operating continuously since 1472.[1] It is followed by Berenberg Bank of Hamburg (1590)[2] and Sveriges Riksbank of Sweden (1668).

Banking in its modern sense evolved in rich cities of Renaissance Italy, such as Florence, Venice and Genoa. In the history of banking, a number of banking dynasties--among them notably Medici,[3] Fugger,[4] Welser,[5] Berenberg,[6] Baring[7] and Rothschild[8]--have played a central role over many centuries.

the word can be traced to medieval and early Renaissance Italy, to the rich cities in the north like Florence, Lucca, Siena, Veniceand Genoa. The Bardi and Peruzzi families dominated banking in 14th century Florence, establishing branches in many other parts of Europe.[9] One of the most famous Italian banks was the Medici Bank, set up by Giovanni di Bicci de' Medici in 1397.[10] The earliest known state deposit bank, Banco di San Giorgio (Bank of St. George), was founded in 1407 at Genoa, Italy.[11]

Origin of the word

The word bank was borrowed in Middle English from Middle French banque, from Old Italian banca, from Old High German banc, bank "bench, counter". Benches were used as desks or exchange counters during the Renaissance by Florentine bankers, who used to make their transactions atop desks covered by green tablecloths.[12]

One of the oldest items found showing money-changing activity is a silver Greek drachm coin from ancient Hellenic colony Trapezus on the Black Sea, modernTrabzon, c. 350-325 BC, presented in the British Museum in London. The coin shows a banker's table (trapeza) laden with coins, a pun on the name of the city. In fact, even today in Modern Greek the word Trapeza (ФсЬрежб) means both a table and a bank.

Another possible origin of the word is from the Sanskrit words 'byaya' (expense) and 'onka' (calculation) = byaya-onka. This word still survives in Bangla, which is one of Sanskrit's child languages. Such expense calculations were the biggest part of mathematical treatises written by Indian mathematicians as early as 500 B.C.

Definition

The definition of a bank varies from country to country. See the relevant country page (below) for more information.

Under English common law, a banker is defined as a person who carries on the business of banking, which is specified as:[13]

· conducting current accounts for his customers,

· paying cheques drawn on him/her, and

· collecting cheques for his/her customers.

In most common law jurisdictions there is a Bills of Exchange Act that codifies the law in relation to negotiable instruments, including cheques, and this Act contains a statutory definition of the term banker: banker includes a body of persons, whether incorporated or not, who carry on the business of banking' (Section 2, Interpretation). Although this definition seems circular, it is actually functional, because it ensures that the legal basis for bank transactions such as cheques does not depend on how the bank is organized or regulated.

The business of banking is in many English common law countries not defined by statute but by common law, the definition above. In other English common law jurisdictions there are statutory definitions of the business of banking or banking business. When looking at these definitions it is important to keep in mind that they are defining the business of banking for the purposes of the legislation, and not necessarily in general. In particular, most of the definitions are from legislation that has the purposes of entry regulating and supervising banks rather than regulating the actual business of banking. However, in many cases the statutory definition closely mirrors the common law one. Examples of statutory definitions: bank deposit bill financial

· "banking business" means the business of receiving money on current or deposit account, paying and collecting cheques drawn by or paid in by customers, the making of advances to customers, and includes such other business as the Authority may prescribe for the purposes of this Act; (Banking Act (Singapore), Section 2, Interpretation).

· "banking business" means the business of either or both of the following:

1. receiving from the general public money on current, deposit, savings or other similar account repayable on demand or within less than [3 months] ... or with a period of call or notice of less than that period;

2. paying or collecting checks drawn by or paid in by customers.[14]

Since the advent of EFTPOS (Electronic Funds Transfer at Point Of Sale), direct credit, direct debit and internet banking, the cheque has lost its primacy in most banking systems as a payment instrument. This has led legal theorists to suggest that the cheque based definition should be broadened to include financial institutions that conduct current accounts for customers and enable customers to pay and be paid by third parties, even if they do not pay and collect checks.[15]

Banking

Standard activities

Banks act as payment agents by conducting checking or current accounts for customers, paying cheques drawn by customers on the bank, and collecting cheques deposited to customers' current accounts. Banks also enable customer payments via other payment methods such as Automated Clearing House (ACH), Wire transfers or telegraphic transfer, EFTPOS, and automated teller machine(ATM).

Banks borrow money by accepting funds deposited on current accounts, by accepting term deposits, and by issuing debt securities such as banknotes and bonds. Banks lend money by making advances to customers on current accounts, by making installment loans, and by investing in marketable debt securities and other forms of money lending.

Banks provide different payment services, and a bank account is considered indispensable by most businesses and individuals. Non-banks that provide payment services such as remittance companies are normally not considered as an adequate substitute for a bank account.

Channels

Banks offer many different channels to access their banking and other services:

· Automated Teller Machines

· A branch is a retail location

· Call center

· Mail: most banks accept cheque deposits via mail and use mail to communicate to their customers, e.g. by sending out statements

· Mobile banking is a method of using one's mobile phone to conduct banking transactions

· Online banking is a term used for performing multiple transactions, payments etc. over the Internet

· Relationship Managers, mostly for private banking or business banking, often visiting customers at their homes or businesses

· Telephone banking is a service which allows its customers to perform transactions over the telephone with automated attendant or when requested with telephone operator

· Video banking is a term used for performing banking transactions or professional banking consultations via a remote video and audio connection. Video banking can be performed via purpose built banking transaction machines (similar to an Automated teller machine), or via a video conference enabled bank branch clarification

Business model

1. A bank can generate revenue in a variety of different ways including interest, transaction fees and financial advice. The main method is via charging interest on the capital it lends out to customers. The bank profits from the difference between the level of interest it pays for deposits and other sources of funds, and the level of interest it charges in its lending activities.

2. This difference is referred to as the spread between the cost of funds and the loan interest rate. Historically, profitability from lending activities has been cyclical and dependent on the needs and strengths of loan customers and the stage of the economic cycle. Fees and financial advice constitute a more stable revenue stream and banks have therefore placed more emphasis on these revenue lines to smooth their financial performance.

3. In the past 20 years American banks have taken many measures to ensure that they remain profitable while responding to increasingly changing market conditions. First, this includes theGramm-Leach-Bliley Act, which allows banks again to merge with investment and insurance houses. Merging banking, investment, and insurance functions allows traditional banks to respond to increasing consumer demands for "one-stop shopping" by enabling cross-selling of products (which, the banks hope, will also increase profitability).

4. Second, they have expanded the use of risk-based pricing from business lending to consumer lending, which means charging higher interest rates to those customers that are considered to be a higher credit risk and thus increased chance of default on loans.

A transactional account

This refers to the practice of maintaining physical locations where customers can receive a wide array of banking and financial services, such locations are described as branches. They may provide access to a combination of cash machines, telephone banking, counter services and financial advice.

Branch networks

Name

A transactional account is known as a checking (or chequing account) in North America,[1] and as a current account or cheque account in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, India and some other countries. Because money is available on demand it is also sometimes known as a demand account or demand deposit account (DDA), except in the case of NOW accounts in the U.S., which are technically distinct.

History

In Holland in the early 1500s, Amsterdam was a major trading and shipping city. People who had acquired large accumulations of cash began to deposit their money with "cashiers" in order to protect their wealth. These cashiers held the money for a fee. Competition drove cashiers to offer additional services, including paying out money to any person bearing a written order from a depositor to do so. They kept the note as proof of payment.

This idea spread to other countries including England and the English colonies in North America, where land owners in Boston in 1681 mortgaged their land to cashiers who provided an account against which they could write checks.

Features and access

All transactional accounts offer itemized lists of all financial transactions, either through a bank statement or a passbook. A transactional account allows the account holder to make or receive payments by:

· ATM cards (withdraw cash at any Automated Teller Machine)

· Debit card (cashless direct payment at a store or merchant)

· cash money (coins and banknotes)

Branch network

This refers to the practice of maintaining physical locations where customers can receive a wide array of banking and financial services, such locations are described as branches. They may provide access to a combination of cash machines, telephone banking, counter services and financial advice.

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