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BANKS AND BANKING. Modern banking was first established in the Islamic world in the mid-nineteenth century. Financial intermediaries of course were not new to the region, as the sophisticated Moslem trading economies had long used specie as a means of exchange, and money changers and moneylenders carried out their business in most urban centers. Money changers were especially active in the cities of the Hejaz, such as Mecca and Medina, catering for needs of the pilgrims, demonstrating that there ...more

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