The Banking license reference article from the English Wikipedia on 24-Apr-2004
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Banking license

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A banking license is a prerequisite for a financial institution that wants to provide banking services. Under most jurisdictions the fundamental banking activities, such as taking deposits from the general public are exclusive to holders of a banking license.

However some banking services may be provided without meeting the legal definition of a bank, not holding a banking license. Such an institution is generally referred to as a non-bank.

See also: Finance