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The Chief of the Postal Money-Order Section of the Mexican Federal Postoffice Department has made available to this Consulate-General the following figures concerning the number and value of postal money orders issued and paid in Mexico during each of the five calendar years from 1919 to 1923 inclusive. PROGRESSIVE INCREASE IN DOMESTIC MONEY ORDER BUSINESS

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From the foregoing tabulation of postal money orders bought in Mexico and payable therein, it is apparent that both the total number and the aggregate value of domestic orders utilized for the transfer of funds from point to point within the country have shown a constant and progressive increase during the past five years. In fact, the number of orders purchased in 1923 represented an increase of 175 per cent over the year 1919, while the combined value thereof was greater by 114 per cent.

The increased number of domestic money orders issued in 1923 no doubt indicates a growing vogue of this means of effecting currency transfers in Mexico, but the simultaneous decline in the average value of these documents during the period under review, viz., from 49 Pesos in 1919 to 38 Pesos in 1923 ($24.50 to $19 in United States currency), is probably a reflection of the reduced purchasing power of the great mass of the population in this country. The falling off in average value of domestic money orders becomes more significative upon considering that the 100 Peso ($50 U. S.) limitation upon the sum in which orders might be issued was raised to 500 Pesos ($250 U. S.) in September, 1923.

It may be said that the domestic postal money order service in Mexico finds its most numerous patrons among individuals of small means, who have proven the convenience of this means of transmitting unimportant sums to relatives or friends in distant points of the Republic. In general, the great bulk of the laboring or "peon" population of Mexico is accustomed to dealing with an essentially popular and democratic institution such as the postoffice, which branch of the Mexican public service has usually been able to maintain itself outside and above the political strife and disturbances of the past, and its traditional reputation for

*Prepared by Vice Consul Ernest E. Evans, Mexico City, and published by permission.

security has inspired confidence among classes who have not had an opportunity to prove the integrity of banking institutions.

On the other hand, the business houses and commercial element incline to the use of bank drafts on important centers, even in effecting payments at places unprovided with regular banking facilities, as merchants can generally be found who are willing to discount such paper as a part of their business. Nevertheless, postal money orders are also sometimes utilized in transferring funds to smaller towns and rural communities served by postoffices; the domestic postal money order in Mexico, therefore, performs a very useful function as an extension of the inadequate. banking system of the country, and plays an essential if modest role in aiding the development of trade.


The exchange, during the year 1923, of 19,575.479 Pesos ($9,787,739 U. S. Currency) by postal orders between Mexico and the United States represented a much larger movement than in any of the four preceding calendar years-in fact, an increase over 1922 of 10,552,573 Pesos, or 116 per cent.

The same relative growth occurred in both directions from 1919 to 1923, notwithstanding the falling off that took place in the intervening years, notably in 1921.

Of the 1923 business, 81 per cent was in favor of Mexico, that is, represented money orders issued in the United States for payment to persons in Mexico.

From a conversation had with the Chief of the Postal Money Order Section of the Mexican Federal Postoffice Department, it appears that, whereas funds sent to the United States by postal order are mostly in payment of small consignments of merchandise intended for consumption in Mexico, the movement of funds through postal agencies from the United States to Mexico is responsive more to the fulfilment of family obligations of Mexican residents of the United States toward their dependents in this country.

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The average value of postal money orders purchased in Mexico for payment in the United States during the past five calendar years was 65 Pesos ($32.50 U. S. Currency), and of those issued by United States postoffices for payment in Mexico, 61 Pesos ($30.50 U. S. Currency).


It will be apparent, from the following tabulation, that the postal money-order movement between Mexico and other countries than the United States is relatively insignificant, although a slight increase over 1922 may be noted in such business during 1923.

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American Chamber of Commerce.
American Chamber of Commerce
American Chamber of Commerce

.Mexico City, D. F.


Confederacion de Camaro de Comercio.
Camara Nacional de Comercio.
American Chamber of Commerce

Monterey .Tampico, Tmps.

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Camara de Comercio, Industria y Agricultura.

Camara Regional de Comercio

Camara Nacional de Comercio, Agricultura e Industria..
Camara Nacional de Comercio, de la Comarca Lagunera.
Camara Local de Comercio.

Camara de Comercio

Camara de Comercio

Camara Nacional de Comercio.

Camara Nacional de Comercio

.Acapulco Aguascalientes .Ameca .. Atlizco Campeche Cuautla

. Ciudad Juarez



. Chihuahua .Guadalajara .Durango

.Gomez Palacio


Mazatlan Matamoras


Monterey .Morelia Nueva Laredo .Orizaba


. Puebla . Saltillo

.San Luis Potosi
San Pedro



. Matehuala . Pachuca Queretaro Tampiquena



.Torreon Tulancingo

.Tuxtla Gutierrez

Uruapan Veracruz .Zacatecas



Washington, D. C.

Definition: A concesión-or to use the common English rendering a concession-is a privilege granted by the state to do certain acts which may not be performed as a matter of common right by all members of the community. These privileges fall naturally into two main divisions: (1) Those relating to the public domain; (2) Those dealing with public utility services. Thus they cover the enjoyment of waters, the grant of lands, the development of mines, the construction and operation of railroads, telephones, etc.

There is another class of grants to which the term concessions has been somewhat loosely applied. We refer to certain contracts whereby the Government granted individuals or corporations special tax immunities, in return for the assumption of specific obligations. Among these may be cited an agreement to build a smelter of prescribed capacity; an agreement to invest a stipulated sum in the extraction of subsoil products from privatelyowned lands, etc. This system became indeed such an integral part of the policy of the Diaz régime for the economic development of Mexico that a law, known as the new industries act, was passed to this end. It took the form of an enabling act, that is to say, prescribed the general conditions with which every applicant for these privileges was called upon to comply. The measure was the means of the establishment of many small industries which could not otherwise have taken root in Mexico. The constitution of 1917 has struck a death-blow at the system, for Article 28 forbids all "exemption from taxation.'

Concessions are not peculiar to Latin-America. Anglo-Saxon jurisprudence defines a franchise as "a particular privilege conferred by the sovereign power of the state and vested in individuals." It will be evident from the definition that no difference exists between the concesión and the franchise. While the term franchise is perhaps more strictly confined to the special privilege to do a certain thing, its meaning has now been extended to embrace the document authorizing and defining the exercise of the privilege. But the confusion of terms does not stop here, for another is also commonly used in the latter sense. We refer to charter, which has by general use largely superseded. that of franchise to designate the evidence of the privilege.

*Printed in this section because of the dependence of all industries devoted to the development of Mexico's natural resources upon the official grants known as concessions. Reprinted from the 1920-21 Year Book.

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