Rights© 2018 Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Arora RU and Zhang Q (2018) Banking in the shadows: a comparative study of China and India. Australian Economic History Review. 59(1): 103-131, which has been published in final form at https://doi.org/10.1111/aehr.12167. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.