Each port has a local Bank. At a local Bank gamers can keep bank accounts, get business loans, buy government bonds, get insurance for ships and buy national lottery tickets. All local Banks are branches of the nation’s Central Bank which can be found in the capital city. In addition to regular Bank services, the Central Bank allows gamers to register Joint Stock Companies and houses the Stock Market. The Central Bank also keeps the gold reserve of a nation and mints the nation’s coin.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer or Minister of Finance has control of the Banks and holds office in the Central Bank. Next to many other responsibilities, this powerful minister sets up the standard loan contracts per businesses type, issues government bonds against specific conditions, sets the rules for the Stock Market and can issue a National Lottery.
The Finance Minister has control over the nation’s currency policy. The decisions this Minister makes have a great effect on a nation’s market. There are 19 different currencies in the game in addition to gold itself. These currencies are minted by the major trade Empires like China, the Ottoman Empire, Poland, Britain, Spain, the United Provinces, and so forth. All nations without their own currency have a currency union with one of the 19 currency holders. Client nations have no control over their currency policy but independent nations can also mint the coin. Nations with no coin have gold as a currency, but they lack the economic tools to mint coins.
Finance Ministers can set the Fractional Reserve, this is the increasing or decreasing of the gold reserve or the coin. More coin than gold reserve means a lower value currency, this is good for export to other nations. More gold than coin means a higher value currency, this is good for import from other nations. As all nations tweak their fractional reserve, the policy of a Minister depends on the value of other currencies, but also on the kind of market a nation want to have. It will take a Finance Minister of great skill and foresight to properly control the nation’s currency.