Promissory note

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A promissory note is a written promise by someone to pay a specific amount of money by a certain date. It is the formal name for an "I.O.U."

For example, a bank will require a promissory note in exchange for loaning someone money, and the promissory note will specify how that money must be repaid.

Such terms of repayment will include interest rate, frequency of payments, any penalties regarding late or early payments, and how the principle of the loan is amortized.