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Economic Commentary

The Functions and Future of Retail Banking

At the turn of the century, one of the largest employers in America was the U.S. Ice Trust, which cut, stored, and delivered ice for people’s “iceboxes.” Today, that industry employs only a fraction of the workforce it once did. This happened not because people stopped consuming cool fresh food, but because the refrigerator-a product born of new technology-all but eliminated the need for ice blocks. In contrast, the Fisher Company, which produced carriages and buggies in the early years of the century, is still in the business of making automotive bodies.

The views authors express in Economic Commentary are theirs and not necessarily those of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland or the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The series editor is Tasia Hane. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. This paper and its data are subject to revision; please visit clevelandfed.org for updates.

Suggested Citation

Jordan, Jerry L. 1996. “The Functions and Future of Retail Banking.” Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Economic Commentary 9/15/1996.

This work by Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International