John Castaing   (birth and death dates unknown) 

John Castaing was a broker and founder of the newspaper ‘Course of the Exchange’   

Jonathans Coffee House in Change Alley
Jonathan’s Coffee House in Change Alley

Castaign arrived from France in the 1680s and by the 1690s was a rising broker in the City Exchange. He spent a lot of time at the famous Jonathan’s Coffee House in Change Alley, which was the main meeting place of City stockbrokers, and began listing the prices of stocks and commodities on the walls of the Coffee House.

There was a rapidly developing market for all kinds of business and Government securities, and he took advantage of this by establishing in 1697  a twice weekly newspaper  ‘Course of the Exchange’   a list of European cities and the price for which bills of exchange on those cities sold on the Royal Exchange. There was also information on prices and conditions of sale of numerous forms of investments; shares, bonds, annuities and securities.

Jonathan's Coffee House in Change Alley plaque
Jonathan’s Coffee House in Change Alley plaque

Castaing’s prices were relied upon by many of the coffee houses in the City and his exchange rate was commonly used. This paper is now known as The Stock Exchange Daily Official List, and is the  third oldest continuously published newspaper in the world.


The Quiet Conquest: The Huguenots 1685-1985 by Tessa Murdoch

Essays in the Economic History of the Atlantic World:  John McCusker

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