@article { ribeiro18, abstract = {Little is known about the structural patterns and dynamics of the First Global Trading Market (FGTM), which emerged during the 16th century as a result of the Iberian expansion, let alone how it compares to today’s Global Financial Markets. Here we build a representative network of the FGTM using information contained in 8725 (hand-written) Bills of Exchange (BoE) from that time — which were (human) interpreted and digitalized into an online database. We show that the resulting temporal network exhibits a hierarchical, highly clustered and disassortative structure, with a power-law dependence on the connectivity that remains remarkably robust throughout the entire period investigated. Temporal analysis shows that, despite major turnovers in the number and nature of the links ─ suggesting fast adaptation in response to the geo-political turmoil lived at that time ─ the overall characteristics of the FGTM remain robust and virtually unchanged. The methodology developed here demonstrates the possibility of building and analysing complex trading and finance networks originating from pre-statistical eras, enabling us to highlight the striking similarities between the structural patterns of financial networks separated by centuries in time.}, journal = {Royal Society Open Science}, keywords = {Miscellaneous;}, pages = {in press}, title = {Structural and temporal patterns of the first global trading market}, year = {2018}, author = {Ana Sofia Ribeiro and Flávio L. Pinheiro and Francisco C. Santos and Amélia Polónia and Jorge M. Pacheco} }