The financial crisis.
important action of the New York Banks,

At a meeting of the officers of the banks of the city of New York, at the Merchants' Bank, on Wednesday, the 21st of Nov., 1860, the following proceedings were unanimously adopted, viz:

In order to enable the banks of the city of New York to expand their loans and discounts, and also for the purpose of facilitating the settlement of the exchanges between the banks, it is proposed that any bank in the Clearing-House Association say at its option, deposit with a committee of the persons — to be appointed for that purpose — an amount of its bills receivable. United State stocks, Treasury notes or stocks of the State of New York to be approved by said committee, who shall be authorized to issue there upon to said depositing bank certificates of deposit, bearing interest at seven per cent per annum, in denominations of five and ten thousand dollars each, as may be de to an amount equal to seventy five per cent of such deposit. These certificates may be keep in settlement of balances at the clearing house for a period of thirty days from the date thereof, and they shall be received by creditor during that period daily, in the same proportion as they bear to the aggregate amount of the debtor balances paid at the clearing house.--The interest which may accrue upon these certificates shall at the expiration of the thirty days apportioned among the banks which shall have them during that time.

The deposited with said Committee, as above named shall be held by them in trust as a special deposit, pledged for the redemption of the certificates issued there upon.

The Committee shall be authorized to exchange any portion of said securities for an equal amount of others, to be approved by them, at the request of the depositing bank, and shall have power to second additional security either by an exchange or an increased amount, at their discretion.

The amount of certificates which this Committee may issue as above, shall not exceed five millions dollars.

This agreement shall be binding upon the Clearing-House Association when assented to by three fourths of its members.

Resolved, That in order to accomplish the purpose set forth in this agreement, the specie belonging to the associated banks shall be considered and treated as a common fend for mutual aid and protection, and the Committee shall have power to equalize the same by assessment or otherwise.

For this purpose statements shall be made to the Committee of the condition of each bank on the morning of every day, before commencement of business, which shall be sent with the exchanges to the Manager of the Clearing-House, specifying the following items, viz:

  1. 1 loans and discounts.
  2. 2 Deposits.
  3. 3 Loan certificates.
  4. 4 specie.
resolved that after the 1st of February next, every Bank in the Clearing-House Association shall have on hand, at all times, in specie, an amount equal to one-fourth of its net liabilities, and say Bank whose specie shall fall below that proportion shall not make loans or discounts until their position is re-established; and we, as members of the Clearing-House Association, agree that we will not continue to exchange with any Bank which shall show by its successive weekly statements that it has violated this agreement.

the Chairman appointed the following named gentlemen as the Committee:

Adjourned Jno. A.Stevens, Ch'n.

W. F. Ho, Secretary.

This movement of the Banks is generally approved by the press of that city. The Times says:

‘ The associated Banks of this city have followed up their action of Monday, in the direction of relief, by a further and more general movement, this afternoon, for meeting the until promptly and boldly by unlimited expansion, or by an expansion limited only by the legitimate business wants of their dealers.--To this end they have virtually resolved to make common their whole stock of specie, saw about twenty millions, and if, with the exchanges everywhere in favor of New York, at home and abroad, the public want the specie simply because they distrust its continued existence with the Banks, they can help themselves freely to it, without reference to the particular Bank in which their deposits are held. All will pay while the sum total insets, and if the sum now in hand (and which is likely soon to be increased from England,) be insufficient to answer the demands of the suspicious or incredulous, they will all go down together, and with the satisfaction of accommodating, to the last dollar, the reasonable wants of every solvent dealer, and the legitimate requisitions of the great trade of this city. This plan of relief, or mode of meeting a crisis, though new to this country, is the approved and successful policy, under similar circumstances, of the National Banks of England and France, and the reasons which impel it to success, with the exchanges all right, are, in the present sound condition of a trade simply overtaken by panic, perfectly irresistible. And, for one, we have little question of its wisdom if carried out, as we have every reason to believe it will be, with the same boldness of action and unanimity of purpose, as well as mutual good faith, which inspired it.

’ We desire to express no hasty opinion or confidence as to how this matter is to work.--Its success in London and Paris, in seasons of trial, has, we believe, been invariable — certainly in the English capital. But, come what may, this much we do rejoice at, that the bankers of the city of New York have made their Association a real and substantial unit, resolving that it is better, if need be, to go down together, and in advance of general mercantile bankruptcy, which a different course might entail, in the effort to arrest the panic by expansion, rather than seal their own folly and shame by breaking in the process of cruel contraction.

The Courier and Enquirer says:

‘ Our commercial community, we think, will hall with satisfaction the result of a meeting of bank officers held yesterday afternoon.--Had it been earlier, it had been better; but it comes at last, and brings with it relief, before it is too late. The only requisite in a crisis like this is confidence, and wise and bold action on the part of our banks to inspire it, by expanding their operations to the extreme of their ability, and in such a manner as will afford the greatest relief to the mercantile class, for whom banks are specially created, and have their being. It is no time now for banks to board and thus cast down merchants, on the ground that thus alone they can stand up themselves; but it is a time for banks to give out with a liberal hand, in order that both merchants and banks may stand up together. It is a time, in short, when banks should not be found wanting when they are really wanted, and the resolutions above, on the part of the bank officers, show nobly a willingness and determination to meet the present emergency. We read in them that New York banks, and business, at least, will go through and survive the fire that secession and panic politicians have raised about them With a prosperity unparalleled around us, there never has been any real occasion for financial panic, and we think this will be proved to be so in the effects of the action of our bank officers. While, therefore, great credit is due to them for the bold and liberal course they have taken, the commercial community is to be congratulated on the cheering promise which it gives.

’ A New York letter to the Philadelphia Ledger says:

‘ The influence of this action was very favorably felt in the street, in the course of the afternoon, and paper was more saleable at lower rates. Philadelphia funds were quoted at 1 per cent discount. Southern money, however, could not be got rid of short of 25 per cent, with the exception of New Orleans, which was done at 10. Illinois and Wisconsin, 15; Ohio and Kentucky, 10. The Stock Market at the First Board was lower, but the proceedings of the bank meeting had the effect to improve prices at the Second Board.

’ Notwithstanding all these favorable symptoms, however, I am bound in duty to add, that the prevailing opinion among bankers and merchants, is that there will be a total suspension of specie payments here in less than thirty days from date — the great fact sticking out that the cause of all the present trouble — threatened revolution at the South--still exists, and is not likely to be got rid of soon.

The Baltimore American says commercial affairs showed a much more cheerful aspect Thursday, after the suspension of the Banks, and the Banks discounted freely. It adds:

‘ One Bank alone discounted over $90,000, and two others $100,000 each, and if this liberality was carried out by the balance of them, we shall soon have to note an easy money market. It will likely be some days, however, before entire confidence is restored. We heard of strictly first-class paper being sold on the street to-day at 9 per cent., but the regular rate was 1 per cent. per mouth; of course there is nothing doing in second-class. It will be seen under the telegraph is head that the Philadelphia Banks suspended specie payments at one o'clock to-day, and also that the New York Banks had resolved to make common stock of their specie, and pay it out as long as it lasts, but it is generally supposed here, among those who ought to know, that they will probably all suspend before the close of the week. Our Banks have been pretty liberal in paying out specie to-day in small amounts to those who were in need of it.

At the Corn Exchange a marked improvement was observable, buyers being anxious to purchase flour for export, but holders not quite so willing to sell, unless at a good while some of the sector would not any price of oil to hold on to their stocks . of the kinds showed some slight improvement, and by meet of our shippers wary purchasing freely. Although the market was firmer, we have no actual advance to note in either wheat or corn. All other branches of trade continue in the same quiet state they have been for weeks past.

At the Stock Board to-day we had to note quite a buoyant feeling, and there was a large business done, the sales amounting to fully $90,000.

’ The New York Journal of Commerce, writing on Thursday evening, after the new scheme of the New York Banks had gone into effect, says:

‘ There will be much disappointment, no doubt, that the measure of relief at once, in all the good anticipated from it. The truth is, that it has not yet been acted on to any considerable extent, and is to be tested rather by what it may ultimately accomplish, than by what may follow immediately upon its announcement. The Manhattan Company this morning, with receipts of $190,000, discounted $400,000, and others whose boards were in session, showed a corresponding liberality. --This wave of the flood has not yet reached the note brokers, where it is still almost impossible to negotiate business paper on any terms. The most needy business at the Banks have been relieved by the expansion and we trust that in that direction, where the pressure pinches the most severely, the relief will be sufficient to prevent a recurrence of excitement or alarm.

Foreign Exchange is still irregular, and nothing of importance has been done by the Bank Committee appointed to relieve the market. We understand that a proposition is before the Committee in relation to some large purchases of bankers' bills at a low rate, which may result in something before the day is over.

’ The Philadelphia Banks suspended at 1 o'clock on Thursday. The Bulletin, of that afternoon, says:

‘ The suspension was determined on as a precautionary measure, to enable the Banks to expand their discounts and thus aid our business men, and to prevent any of the wild scenes of 1857. The Banks are strong and abundantly able to meet all their liabilities.--While we regret that it should have been thought necessary for the Banks of Philadelphia so soon to follow the example of those of Baltimore, Washington and Virginia, we trust it may prove advantageous, and bring us sooner to a brighter prospect. There has been but little excitement attending this suspension, thus contrasting most singularly with the panic of 1857.

’ At a meeting of merchants, at Alexandria, Va., Thursday, the following resolution was adopted:

Resolved, It is the opinion of this meeting that the suspension of specie payments by the Banks of this city, is justified by the force of recent events beyond their control; and that the ability of said Banks to meet all their engagements, and their soundness, is not impaired by this course.

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