The role of accounting in the making of the bank customer: transferring capital ‘d'une main OISIVE dans une main LABORIEUSE’

Abstract : This article explores the role that accounting played in the development and transformation of a new banking model created at the end of the nineteenth century in a context influenced by the ideas of Saint-Simon. The Saint-Simonian doctrine emphasised the economic necessity to massively finance the growth of the industrial sector. Deposit banks such as the Crédit Lyonnais were intended to drain dormant capital from savers, even the most modest, and direct it towards industry, the heart of economic activity. This development model required the implementation of an accounting system, in part non-financial, in order to manage the many customers and local branches. We will show how the accounting system revealed a significant increase in the overheads linked to the new economic model and how this triggered the emergence of a new figure, the paying customer, whose income was to be captured. Accounting played a decisive role in the transformation by showing the costs of the draining policy. This revelation led the Crédit Lyonnais to draw away from the Saint-Simonian doctrine. Savers would gradually be transformed into paying customers subject to banking fees, prefiguring the bank of the twentieth century with its resolutely capitalist logic.
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Article dans une revue
Accounting History Review, 2015, 25 (2), pp.97 - 120. 〈10.1080/21552851.2015.1052528〉
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01479942
Contributeur : Samuel Sponem <>
Soumis le : mercredi 1 mars 2017 - 05:04:11
Dernière modification le : jeudi 2 mars 2017 - 01:04:26

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Anne Pezet, Samuel Sponem. The role of accounting in the making of the bank customer: transferring capital ‘d'une main OISIVE dans une main LABORIEUSE’. Accounting History Review, 2015, 25 (2), pp.97 - 120. 〈10.1080/21552851.2015.1052528〉. 〈hal-01479942〉

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