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May 19Doug Smith

Buzzword of the Week: Old Lady

May 19Doug Smith
Old Lady Smoking A Cigarette

I would never be able to get away using this week’s buzzword with my wife or my mom. But, never fear, the term Old Lady has a different meaning in the financial world, according to our friends at Investopedia. According to them, Old Lady is an eighteenth century nickname for the Bank of England. The full name is the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street, which refers to the bank’s location. The Bank of England is located in the middle of the city of London on Threadneedle Street.

James Gillray first used the nickname in a caricature cartoon in 1797. The cartoon was entitled “The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street in Danger”, which some say pokes fun of the Bank of England for stopping cash payments. The Old Lady is seen dressed in one-pound bank notes, which the Bank of England used to compensate for the lack of cash reserves.

photo credit: lonleyness 1 via photopin (license)

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