Noel Newton Nethersole, whose statue stands tall in front of the Bank of Jamaica building, was Minister of Finance in the years 1955 to 1959. A Rhodes scholar and solicitor of the Supreme Court of Jamaica, Mr. Nethersole was good-natured and tenacious of character, dispersing his energies "amongst many avocations".
As Minister of Finance, his portfolio included public finance, financial planning, taxation, banking and currency and exchange control. He is credited with having a clear-sighted understanding of the real necessities of national independence. During his term of office as Minister of Finance, Nethersole worked to achieve three goals:
to create within the Government, an effective instrument for the centralization of financial control and the development of financial policy;
to establish modern techniques of financial management; and
to stimulate and foster the growth of modern financial institutions.
Mr. Nethersole foresaw the need for the establishment of a stock exchange, a development bank and a central bank as tools necessary for the execution of a sound monetary policy. By the time of his death at the age of 57 in 1959, plans for the establishment of the Central Bank were well underway.
Noel Nethersole's portrait appeared on the $20 note which circulated between 1976 and 2000.
In 1960, Mr. Vernon Arnett, in speaking on the bill dealing with the creation of the Central Bank, could say this of Mr. Nethersole:
"It had long been his profound conclusion that the organization of the financial institutions of the country were an indispensable part of our economic development and that the development of these institutions would give reality to our political status and enable Jamaica to press forward with its economic progress in an orderly and coherent manner."
The Central Bank stands at the center of the local financial system and is charged with the responsibility to promote and maintain financial system stability. To achieve this objective, the Bank supervises the activities of deposit-taking entities. In addition, the Bank seeks to promote the development of the local financial markets, and regulates and supports the major clearing and settlement systems.
Under the Bank of Jamaica Act (1960), the conduct of monetary policy is aimed at regulating the growth of money and credit in line with the resources expected to finance economic activity and generate employment, without undermining the conditions of price stability.
The Foreign Exchange section provides current and historical information on the movements of major currencies in relation to the Jamaican dollar. The section also provides powerful search techniques for users to manipulate the data and generate customize reports.
The Bank of Jamaica publishes in the daily newspaper each quarter, balance sheet data for commercial banks, building societies and licensees under the Financial Institutions Act . Such financial data is based on unaudited prudential returns submitted by the licensees to the Bank of Jamaica which are required to be certified by the licensee 's management as reflecting a true and fair representation of the affairs and condition of the institution at the reporting date.
The Bank of Jamaica is committed to providing information on its activities on a timely and continuous basis. In this regard, this section is designed to provide access to all major releases compiled by the Bank of Jamaica.
The Bank of Jamaica publications are aimed at providing quality economic and financial analysis and information on Jamaica as well as timely updates on matters relating directly to the functions of the Bank.