Beautifully engraved SCARCE SPECIMEN certificate from the Household Finance Corporation
. This historic document was printed by the American Banknote Company and has an
ornate border around it with a vignette of the company logo between allegorical women. This item has the printed signatures of the Company’s President and Secretary.
Household Finance Corporation is a leading provider of consumer loans, credit cards, auto finance and credit insurance products in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. In the United States, Household's largest business, founded in 1878, operates under the two oldest and most recognized names in consumer finance - HFC and Beneficial. Household is also one of the nation's largest issuers of private-label and general purpose credit cards, including the GM Card® and the AFL-CIO's Union Plus® card.
In 1928, Household Finance Corporation was the first in the consumer finance industry to offer stock to the public and be listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
In 1997, Household acquired Transamerica Financial Services, the consumer finance subsidiary of Transamerica Corporation, and ACC Consumer Finance, a leader in the subprime auto finance industry.
In 1998, Household merged with Beneficial Corporation, doubling the size of Household's consumer lending, retail finance and United Kingdom businesses and creating one of the country's leading consumer finance and credit card companies. The merger expanded Household's market presence, product offerings and growth prospects, ultimately making Household a much stronger company with greater market share. At year-end, Household's managed assets were $73 billion.
Specimen Certificates are actual certificates that have never been issued. They were usually kept by the printers in their permanent archives as their only example of a particular certificate. Sometimes you will see a hand stamp on the certificate that says "Do not remove from file".
Specimens were also used to show prospective clients different types of certificate designs that were available. Specimen certificates are usually much scarcer than issued certificates. In fact, many times they are the only way to get a certificate for a particular company because the issued certificates were redeemed and destroyed. In a few instances, Specimen certificates we made for a company but were never used because a different design was chosen by the company.
These certificates are normally stamped "Specimen" or they have small holes spelling the word specimen. Most of the time they don't have a serial number, or they have a serial number of 00000. This is an exciting sector of the hobby that grown in popularity over the past several years.