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House. Select Comm. on Interest Rates. Report, 1840
House No. 33 A five man committee was created to study interest laws. On February 19, 1840, the committee issued majority and minority reports.
Economists had begun saying that people should be able to do as they pleased with their money--to make the best bargain they could. Regulated
interest rates did not fit that scenario. There were several pages of the history of money and older legal restrictions to prevent usury. Massachusetts'
penalties for usury were not very severe. On P. 13: An Act concerning the interest of money, 1840. No person shall be liable to the penalties of the
35th chapter of the Revised Statutes, but banks and corporations could not ignore the law. P. 14 began the Minority Report. This group was still
concerned about usury. P. 25: An Act to restrain excessive usury, 1840. Any contract that involved more than 6% interest meant the aggrieved party
could sue for the difference. Any person who received more than 6% interest was liable to a fine and jail time. (Digitized from a microfilm copy of
title originally held by the Massachusetts State Library).
Title:   Ordered, that a select committee of five be appointed to consider the expediency of modifying or repealing all laws regulating the rate of interest, except so far as may be necessary to establish a legal rate in cases where there is no rate specified.
OCLC Number:   1418965459
Available Volumes
NameFiche CountOnlinePaper Backup
Vol. 1YesNo