pawnshop is a loan made after the deposit of property as collateral; the loan amount is proportional to the value of the property deposited.

The pawnbroker has existed in China for more than 2000 years. He appeared in Europe in the Middle Ages, in Freising , Germany, where the first pawnshop was founded in 1198 [ref. necessary] .


In France today, municipal credit unions have a monopoly on pawnshell loans.

Pledged objects are valued by experts. The loan represents 50 to 70% of the estimated value of the object in the public auction market. The sum of money is returned immediately after the establishment of a contract. The property can be recovered at any time by repaying the loan amount and interest.

In Switzerland today, pawnbrokers are governed by Articles 907 to 905 Swiss Civil Code of 10 December 1907  [ archive ] (CC; RS 210). The terms and conditions for granting pledge loan authorizations are governed by cantonal law.

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