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The Bank of Nova Scotia

The Bank of Nova Scotia

 

            Incorporated by the Legislative Assembly of Nova Scotia on March 30, 1832 as The Bank of Nova Scotia, for the first four decades after its creation this institution remained comparatively small in size with only six branches through 1839. After this significant period of slow growth, the 1880’s and the trans-Canada railroad lead to a boom period in the bank’s activities, with numerous branches opening across the United States and western Canada: Winnipeg, Minneapolis, Chicago and Boston were soon added to its roster. The early 1900’s see a movement south in the Bank’s activity, due to its origin as a merchant operation, local Halifax interests push it to start trade in Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Caribbean, but also world capitals such as New York and London. Simultaneously, the bank begins acquiring other, smaller, chartered banks: The Union Bank of P.E.I in 1883, The Bank of New Brunswick in 1913, The Metropolitan Bank in 1914, and The Bank of Ottawa after the end of World War I in 1919. Similarly to other Canadian banks, the rough waters of the great depression rock the boat, but thanks to its over 30 international locations the Bank of Nova Scotia survived the ordeal better than many others, and after a period of recovery which lasted through the 1940’s returned to its position of power and fortified itself through continued diversification into foreign markets. Today the bank operates across the globe, and thanks to its important position in the gold market has the distinction of being Canada’s third-largest bank. Notes were issued for over one hundred years in Canada, from 1832 until 1935. Bills were also issued in the British West Indies, with the head branch printing (pound) notes in Kingston Jamaica from 1900 to 1930.

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