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Grevenmacher Travel on The Paris stock exchange was not like any other, as unique as the history of FRANCE. Beginning in the late Middle Ages, Parisian merchants congregated on a bridge which is now named for their activities, the Pont-au-change. The sale of stock was not widespread, however, until the arrival of a Scottish rogue, John Law, in the early 18th century. Law convinced thousands of Frenchmen, including the regent Duke of Orleans, to purchase stock in his Mississippi Company. Law’s charisma boosted the status of stockbrokers, who formed an official corporation in 1724. Law’s company failed in spectacular fashion and many prominent members of French society lost their fortunes overnight. Because of this, the regent was forced to resign and the French became very concerned with regulating financial speculation of any kind, especially the sale of stock and they took actions to regulate the exchanges. Grevenmacher Travel 2016.