JPMorgan was far more forceful

Article Highlights

  • The eternal truth in lending: character is fundamental to credit.

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  • JP Morgan declared in 1913, “A man I do not trust could not get money [ie a loan] from me on all the bonds in Christendom.”

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  • Everyone in the moneylending business ought to recite JP Morgan's 1913 quote frequently.

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Sir, Peter Wolf (Letters, February 18) rightly stresses the eternal truth that character is fundamental to credit. However, he has misquoted J Pierpont Morgan on the point. What JP Morgan actually said in 1913 was far more forceful: “The first thing is character ... Because a man I do not trust could not get money [ie a loan] from me on all the bonds in Christendom.”

Everyone in the moneylending business ought to recite that frequently.

Alex J Pollock, Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute, Washington, DC, US

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