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Stock Jobbing: Print and Prices on Exchange Alley

Stock Jobbing: Print and Prices on Exchange Alley

(p.157) Chapter Five Stock Jobbing: Print and Prices on Exchange Alley
Indian Ink
University of Chicago Press

In the summer of 1682 Robert Boyle received a series of letters from the depths of rural Somerset. They were sent by the Reverend John Beale, an active member of the Royal Society and a long-term enthusiast for agricultural improvement who had been part of the Hartlib Circle in the 1650s. As he had done throughout his career, Beale sought to use printed communications to promote the conjunction of science and religion in the national interest. The printing of the prices of stocks in newspapers and periodicals for a broader audience has subsequently become utterly commonplace, a simple and familiar listing of words and numbers. This chapter sets out the context for their first publication in London in the late seventeenth century. It examines the increased importance of stock trading to the East India Company and the greater prominence of Exchange Alley, as well as accusations of the immorality of the stock market during the period. It also considers the debate over the manipulation of stock prices, known as “stock-jobbing.”

Keywords:   English East India Company, stock market, Exchange Alley, stock prices, John Beale, stock-jobbing, London, newspapers, periodicals, printing

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