The first Canadian bank to open an international branch

Bank of Montreal was the principal agent for servicing Canada’s rapidly expanding foreign trade. That led to a decision to open an agency in London, England in 1870. The office at 27 Lombard – a street that had been synonymous with finance since the 13th century – was a stone’s throw from the Bank of England, the Royal Exchange and the Mansion House.

A bank report set forth the three purposes of the new office: 1) provide for the transfer of the bank’s stock and payment of dividends in England; 2) develop and facilitate the foreign business of the bank, and the British and foreign trade of the Dominion; and 3) provide safe employment for “surplus funds” of the bank.


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