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"Carry your credit in your pocket": The early history of the credit card at Bank of America and Chase Manhattan

Опубликовано на портале: 15-12-2002
Enterprise and Society. 2000.  Vol. 1. No. 2. P. 315-354. 
Drawing from newly available archival material, this article explores the early history of one of today's most ubiquitous financial instruments, the bank credit card. It focuses on the managerial decisions that led to the implementation and development of charge card programs at the 2 largest American banks of the late 1950s and early 1960s. Even though the initial performance of the 2 programs was comparable, top management at each bank ultimately adopted different business strategies. The differences resulted from managers' contrasting interpretations of the appropriate market for the credit card, interpretations formed within the context of 2 distinct banking cultures.