Why didn’t Spain and Portugal develop more flexible banks in the 1700s?

I figured that after witnessing a whole century of decline, the Portuguese and Spaniards would look over at the Netherlands, England, and France and think “Hmmmm… we should try to be more like them.”

These two nations were dynamite back in the 1500s. The adventures, the spices, the building of forts, etc… but in the 1700s they practically just put their feet up.

My question is in regard to their banking. The dominant banks in this time were in London, Amsterdam, Paris, etc…

Yet, Lisbon and Madrid still kept very much of a command economy and didn’t allow many foreign investors go in and have at it with their cities. This is totally in contrast with the Republic of Venice and Duchy of Milan which received plenty of foreign money, and tourists, together with Austrian backing.

The Dutch Republic had Prussian investors, English bankers, and French traders all running around their cities. Dealing in stocks was a very common thing, everybody did it.

Yet Spain and Portugal are peanuts in the century. What’s up with them?

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What do you think?

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