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"The first of the several public debt funds that proliferated in the late 1830s was created by the Law of 20 January 1836. This law set aside a 15 percent quota of revenue from the maritime customs houses (aduanas maritimas) to be used to pay off all existing loans and contracts with the government. Creditors no longer could charge their orders against the customs houses separately, as Drusina & Martinez and other speculators had done in the past. Instead, they were obliged to pool their credits into the 15 Percent Fund. An apoderado, chosen from among the creditors, managed the fund and received the libranzas from the customs houses. Periodically, when a large sum had been accumulated, the members of the fund received dividends proportional to their shares in the fund. By 1839 the government had managed to pay off all but $360,000 owed to the 15 Percent Fund. The paper credits that speculators had introduced into this fund (as a part of a loan to the government) usually cost them 20 percent or less. Because dividends on the bonds were paid exclusively in silver, the profits earned from the 15 Percent Fund had been exceptional. After it had redeemed the bonds issued against this fund, the government created a new " 15 Percent Fund" consisting of about $1 million in credits on government salaries and pensions (vales de alcance). With what was to become a favorite device for obliging reluctant creditors to furnish new loans, the government required all creditors of the 15 Percent Fund to pay in 1839 a 15 percent restoration fee (refacción) as the price for receiving dividends from the fund."