Bank-Book (or Pass-book). The book in which a bank makes a written entry of each sum of money deposited by the customer, arid is that person's evidence of the bank's indebtedness to him. In the case of a national bank, trust company, or any " bank of deposit," the book should be presented to the institution once a month to have it balanced. In the case of a savings bank, once or twice a year, according to the custom of the particular bank. The depositor must not make any changes or additions to the book, as all such must be made by the bank.
The bank used formerly to enter on the credit,2 or right hand, page of the book, a list of all checks paid during the month, but the custom more generally prevails now of returning a list of the checks on a separate sheet of paper, the total amount of which is entered upon the credit page.1
¹ Banks are now beginning to adopt the plan of returning the cancelled checks the first of each month, in envelopes with a printed form upon the face, on which appears the statement of the account as formerly entered upon the " pass-book." This obviates the necessity of the customer's handing in his " pass-book " from time to time, and with this statement he may check up his account.
2 Remember that the book shows the bank's account with the depositor, not his account with the bank, so that what he deposits is a "debit" of the bank.
On the left-hand, or debit page, has been entered the deposits as made from time to time. These (for the sake of simplicity we will assume that we are discussing the period covering the first month's business with the bank) are added up; the total amount of the checks paid deducted from it, and the remainder, or balance, entered upon the credit page, showing the amount of money to the credit of the depositor at the time.
The sum of the checks paid and the amount still to the credit of the depositor should equal the sum total of deposits. This balance to the depositor's credit is carried forward on to the left-hand page and is added in with the next month's deposits.
Immediately upon the depositor receiving from the bank, each month, the envelope and cancelled checks, with a statement of the account, he must satisfy himself that the bank has made no mistake, and, therefore, he proceeds in this way:
The checks paid during the period are checked off with the "stubs," a comparison of numbers facilitating this process; those which have been drawn by the depositor but not presented to the bank may thus readily be ascertained, and their sum total is added to the total amount of the checks paid, as given by the bank. These are added to the balance still to the credit of the depositor, which all together should exactly equal the sum of the deposits for the period; allowance being made, of course, for interest on the accounts, or collection charges. These will be entered in the statement as follows:
In event of interest being allowed upon the account, the amount of such interest for a given period will be entered at stated intervals among the deposits. On the other side, may be found occasional charges for the collection of a check, coupon, or some such item. This charge will be evidenced to the depositor by a slip of paper giving the amount of the charge and for what it was made, which is called a "charge ticket." Therefore, in balancing the "check-book," - and in this connection it would be well to refer to that subject, - the interest and collection charges should be taken into consideration.
Any error should be immediately reported to the bank for correction.
To withdraw money from a savings bank, the depositor may present his book in person, and have the amount withdrawn entered therein, besides signing in a book kept by the bank, the amount withdrawn being opposite the signature. This is the bank's receipt. To withdraw money when at a distance, draw an order on the bank following the form generally to be found at the back of every savings bank book, and forward to the bank with the book itself. Money is withdrawn from national banks, trust companies, etc., by the use of checks. (See " Checks.")