網頁圖片
PDF
ePub 版

C

the bank took advantage of those circumstances, France, in the sixteen months preceding the 31st and made a great addition to the amount of the pre- Dec. last, gold to the amount of 125 millions of cious metals in their possession. The purchases francs, (being equal to about five millions sterling;) made by the bank appear to have had no unfavora- and silver to the amount of a little more than three ble effect on the price of gold; and there is reason millions of francs.' Of that gold, upwards of three to believe, that it would have fallen to the mint fourths was in coin from this country; and this opeprice, bad not the bank fixed the rate, at which they ration has continued during the present year, were willing to purchase, at 31. 18s 6d per 02. Mr. though the amount of the importations of this year Goldsmid informed the committee, that at that pe has not been reported.” riod there were no other buyers in the market, at your committee are satisfied that the bank in the price which was given by the bank: had there dertaking to pay their notes

re dertaking to pay their notes in cas!), under the cir. been, they would have been supplied on the same

cumstances above mentioned, acted from the best termg, if they had wanted gold." 'Being asked,

motives, and from a belief that the measure would whether, if the bank had not been purchasers at

tend to facilitate the complete resumption of pay. 31. 18s 6d, he believes the price of gold would have

ments in specie. Unfortunately it has had a contrafallen to the mint price, he answers, “I think it

ry effect; the last of the three notices having been might after some time; but that is matter of opinion given at a period when the exchanges were unfavo. only."

rable, when the price of gold had risen from 1.3 18s. In the year 1817 the bank had a much larger

6d. to 1:4 per ounce; and at a time when the bank had amount of cash and bullion in their coffers, than not (according to the evidence given by Mr. Har. · they had been in possession of at any former period

man) that control over their issues, which might since their establishment. From the commence have enabled them to counteract the effect of the Inent of the year 1818 the stock has been progreso unfavorable exchange, by a reduction of their pa.' sively diminished. The diminution has taken place

ace per currency. in consequence of engagements into which the bank entered (in conformity with the power reserved to

There was, in fact, in the half year between July them by the original restriction act.) in the months and December, 1817, a considerable increase in the of November, 1816, and April and September of the amount of notes issued by the bank. The average following year. to pay in the first and second in. amount outstanding in the four half years preced. stance cash for all notes issued prior to the 1st Janu. ing, had not exceeded 1.26,771,914. In this half ary. 1812 and 1st January, 1816: and in the latter, to year it was increased to 1.29,210,035, having been pay cash for their notes of every denomination dat in the previous half year, 1.27,339,768. It a ed prior to the 1st Jan. 1817.

by the returns, that on the 5th of July, 1817, imme

diately preceding the payments of the dividends, The total quantity of gold coin issued from the

the the amount outstanding was 1.25,800,000; on the 4th bank, in consequence of the engagements thus en- of October, being a few days before the payment of tered into, and the continuance of the fractional pay-the dividends of that quarter, the amount was inents, under five pounds, appears, by accounts be- 11.28.900.000. fore the house, to have announted, between the 1st January, 1917, and the ist January, 1819, to the sum

The issue of sovereigns between July and Dec of 1.1,596,256, in guineas and half guineas, and in 18

1817, amounted to 1.1,240,422, so that had the sove. sovereigns and half sovereigns to 14.459.725. Your reigns remained in circulation, there would have committee have ascertained. that subsequently to been an increase to the circulating medium issiled the 1st January there has been a further demand by the bank of England in the course of that half on the bank for gold to the extent of about 1.700,000. year, compared with the average amount outstandThe total sum, therefore, which has been issued by

issued bvling in the four half years preceding, to the extent the bank since the commencement of the year of 6.3,678,543. 1817, has been about 1,6,756,000; and no doubt can! Your committee cannot avoid expressing an opibe entertained that the coin thus drawn from the nion, that whatever might be the policy, and how'. bank was demanded, not for the purposes of inter- ever laudable the intentions of the bank, in engagnal circulation, but in order to realize a profit, eithering to make partial issues of coin in payment of on its sale as bullion in this country, or on its ex- their notes, yet when the exchanges became unfa. portationt.

vorable, and the price of gold rose above the mint Your committee are confirmed in this conclusion, price, the only mode by which they could have reby the documents before the house; from which it tained

if Itained the coin in circulation, would have been a appears, that the sum issued from the 9th of De-contr

of Decontraction of their issues; and unless the bank at cember, 1816. (when the notes of the bank became that period possessed such a control over the pavable under the notice issued in the preceding amount of those issues, as would have enabled them month.) to July 1817. amounted only to 1.38,020 10$. I to effect that object, your committee must consider though the bank bad become liable on the 20 May it to have been inexpedient, in the then state of the of the latter vear to pay cash for all their notes of exchanges, to undertake an extensive though darIl and 1.2 value. dated prior to the 1st January.tial issue of coin, which subjected the bank to cou. 1816.

siderable loss, and a great drain of treasure. In July, 1817, the foreign exchanges became un- Under these impressions, and from a conviction favorable, and have continued so since that period; that the continued issue of coin from the bank, by a profit has been realized on the exportation of gold | diminishing the amount of their treasure, would coin, and the bank has been subject to a constant have the effect of postponing the period at which deinand for cash in payment of their notes.

the termination of the restriction can take place, The following extract from the evidence given by without producing, on the other hand, any advanMr. Alexander Baring shows the purposes to which tage whatever to the country, while the exchanges a considerable portion of the gold, thus drawn from and the price of gold are in their present state, the coffers of the bank, has been applied:-"In your committee were induced to recom'nend to the · France, it appears, by the report of the minister of house, in their first report, the immediate exact. finance, that there has been carriod to the mint of mert of a law to suspend all payments in gold coin by the bank, until your committee might be ena-l lords of the treasury, and made payable at the bank, bied to present to the house their view of the whole but not charged on any branch of the revenue. The subject which has been referred to their considera- motives for passing this act are fully detailed in the tion.

evidence given by Mr. Bosanquet, then a director The next important point to which the commit of the bank, to the committee of secresy, in the year tee will call the attention of the house, is the 1797. He states, “that it had been the custom of the amount of the issues of the bank of England, which bank, time out of mind, to advance, for the amount are outstanding upon government securities: or, in of such treasury bills of exchange as were directed other words, the amount of the debt due by the for payment to the bank, until the amount was about public to the bank of England,

20 or 1.30,000, when the treasury usually sent orThe necessity of the repayment of a large portion ders for the amount of such advance, to be set oft ofthat debt has been so earnestly insisted on by the from the respective accounts to which the bills probank, and the nature and extent of the connexion perly belonged. In the American warz they had between the government and the bank, involves'so been permitted to run to a larger amount, but he many important considerations, that your commit. believed they never exceeded 1.150,000. Doubts tee deem it incumbent upon them to enter into occurred to him, when governor, whether the pe. some detail with respect to the origin and gradual nalties of the act of William and Mary did not ex. increase of the advances made by the bank on be- tend to this transaction; and for the purpose of rehalf of the public, and the effect which they have, moving them, the act of 1793 was introduced and when carried to the amount at which they at pre passed.” It appears to have been originally prosent stand, of depriving the bank of that control posed, that the bank should be empowered to ad. over their issues of notes, the possession of which vance, to a limited amount of 1.50,000 or 1.100,000; is deemner by them an essential preliminary to the but the act passed without any linitation; its opera. resumption of cash payments.

tion being of course confined to advances upon In the appendix to the report will be found an treasury bills of exchange, on which species of seaccount of the amount of advances made by the curity, no advances appear to have been made since bank of England to the government, on exchequer the restriction. bits and other securities, from the year 1792 to the By an act which passed very shortly after the first latest period to which it can be made up.

| restriction act, the bank were prohibited from makThe first item of this account, entitled, “an ad. ing any loan or advance on account of the public vance out of sums issued for the payınent of divi- service, during the continuance of the restriotion; denils" now ainounting to the sum of 1.1,098,820, but at the commencement of the following session ought not, in the opinion of your committee, to be it was enacted, “that the bank may make an advance considered as any portion of the debt due by the on the credit of duties on malt, and on the land tax, governinent to the bank. It arises from money ori- imposed in that session, and any other advance ginally lodged by government at the bank for pay. which may be authorised by any other acts which inent of dividends to public creditors, which not may be passed during the continuance of the rehaving been claimed, has been withdrawn from the striction.” bank, and applied to the public service, under the In almost all the acts authorising the issue of er. provisions of acts of the legislature, passed in the chequer bills passed subsequently, a special clause years 1791, 1898, and 1816. It is not therefore an has been introduced, empowering the bank to ad. advance from the funds of the bank, but it is the vance the whole or a portion of the amount speci. property of the public creditors, which has been fied in the act. They never advance any sum be. made available for public purposes, until demanded yond the amount to which they are limited in the by them.

several acts, nor have the bills purchased by them, It will be seen from the account, that a great pro- together, exceeded that amount. portion of the advances of the bank are at present the bills described as issued," are those which made under the two heads of "exchequer bills is.

pass directly to the bank from the exchequer, under sued,” and “exchequer bills purchased;' and be

special contracts or agreements entered into; as, fore the committee point out the distinction between

for instance, the bills issued upon the credit of art, those heads of the account, they will shortly acivert

nual duties, and upon the advance of 1.3,000,000 as to the laws which have been passed since the inol a loan to the public, in consideration of the renew. stitution of the bank for the regulation of their ad.

al of the charter, vances to government.

The bills "purchased," are those which are taken On the original establishment of the bank, by the

ent of the bank, by the by the bank, (usually on an application from tlie *5th and 6th William and Mary, a penalty is imposed me

treasury) when an issue of exchequer bills takes upon the directors, if they purchase, on account of place, and when they cannot be sold to the public the corporation, any crown lands, or if they advance

vance at a premium. The bank never credit any premi. to his majesty any sum of money by way of loan or

"um, nor deduct any discount, upon the bills thus ta. anticipation on any branch of the public revenue,

:ken; nor do the; resell such bills to the public. other than on such finds only on which a credit of loan is or shall be granted by parliament. Such! An account in the appendix shows the total eredits have ever since been granted, from time to amount of exchequer bills authorised to be issued time, and advances made upon them. The amount by parliament in every year since the year 1792, and annually, from the vear 1777 to the year 1792, ex- the amount which the bank was authorised to take tracted from the documents published in the re- of each description of bills. port of the committee of secrecy of 1797, will be The amount of the advances of the bank to go. found in the appendix,

vernment, (deducting the sum issued from the un. In the year 1793 an act was passed, protecting claimed dividends) on the 26th Feb, and 20 August the governor and company of the bank of England of each year since the year 1814, and of the bank from any penalty, on account of their having ad- notes issued during the corresponding half year, vanced, or advancing in future, any sums of money appears from the accounts presented to your com, iy payment of bills of exchange accepted by thel mittce to bave been as follows:

BANK NOTES.

I 'It appears, however, that the sum paid in money 1814. Jan. to June · - 25,511,012 on account of this loan feil short of the amount wich

July to December - 28,291,832 was expected, anl the repayment to the bank did 1815. Jan. to June •

27,155,824 not much exceed five inillions at the end of January, · July to December - 26,618,210 1819; one million of which the bank do noi consi1816. Jan. to Jupe . 26,468,283 der as an effective re-payment, interest to that

July to December - 26,681,398 amount being due to the bank upon the whole of 1817. Jan. to June . . 27,339,768 their advances.

July to December - 29,210,055 The amount of the advances of the bank to you! 1818. Jan. to June . . 27,954,558 vernment was, on the 291) Aprii lasi, 6.19,438,900; July to December 26,487,859 the sum of 1.1,098,820 being deducted from the acADTANCES.

count furnished by the bank, as the amount of adFeb. 26, 1814 . . . . 23,607,200 vances on sums issued forthc payment of dividends. Aug. 2, - . - . 34,937,200 It will be seen by references to a communication Feb. 26, 1815 . . . 27,156,000 made by the court of directors of the bank, to the Aug. 2,

24,079,100 committee, as well as froin the whole tenor of the Feb. 26, 1816 . . . 18,988,300 evidence of the directors who were examined per. Aug. 2,

26,042,000 sonally before them, that they consider the repasFeb. 26, 1817. . . . 25,399,500

ment of a large proportion of those advances esseis. Aug. 2,

- 27,5 0,718 tially necessary, preparatory to the resumption of Feb. 26, 1818 .' . , 27,002,000 cash payments. As the notes which are issued by Aug. 2, - - • 27,060,900 : the bank, upon the discount of mercantile bills, re. Feb. 11, 1819 .

. 21,930,000 vert to them at the expiration of the period which - From the year 1790 to the year 1797, when the those bills have to run, and which never exceeds restriction act passed, the amount of advance made sixty-five days, it is clear that that portion of their by the bank to government, and of the notes out issues can be extended or limited at their discrestanding on the 25th February in each year, was- tion; whilst over the notes which are issued in con

BANK NOTES, ADVANCES. sequence of advances to government, they have 1790 10,217,360

7,908,968 not practically the saine control. 'io what i ér ex. 1791 11,699,140

9,603,978 tent these advances may be reduced, the bank will 1792

11,349,810 · 9,839,338 gain a corresponding control over the amount of 1793 11,451,180

9,066,698 their circulating paper, and will be enabled to sup1794 10,963,380

8,786,514 ply the diminution of notes thus created by an in1795

13,539,160 11,114,230 crease of their issues, either upon the discount of 1796

11,030,110 11,718,730 mercantile bills, or by the purchase of bullion, or if The amount, therefore, of advances to the govern- necessary, to make a reduction in the total amount ment does not appear to have borne, for some time of notes outstanding, equal to the whole or any part previously to the restriction act, a much less propor- of the repayment. tion to the total amount of notes outstanding, than The only mode, during the suspension of cash the advances since 1814 have borne to the notes is. I payments, by which the bank can effect reduction gued in corresponding periods.

of their issues, supposing no part of the advances It will be seen, that a material reduction of the made by them to the government to be repaid, is debt to the bank took place between the month of by limiting that accommodation to tradle, which August, 1815, and the month of February, 1816; it they have long been in the habit of granting, by having been reduced in the latter period to the sum the discount of mercantile bills of urloubles solidiof 1.18,988,300, deducting the advances from un-ty, arising out of real commercial transactions, and claimed dividends.

falling due within short and fixed periods. This debt was again increased between February, Although the amount of the advances made by the 1816, and August following

bank on public securities is accurately stated in the In that interval, war taxes to a very considerable account in the appendix, and although the commit. · amount were remitted; a large addition, authorised tee strongly advise the repayment of the portion of by several acts of parliament, was made to tbe un-them required by the bank, yet tlicy think it necesfunded debt, and to the advances of which the go.sary to observe, that in determining the actual vernment were indebted to the bank. The amount amount of the debt due to the bank on account of of those advances was again reduced from 1.37,060. these advances, an allowance ought to be inade in 000 to 1.21,930,000 between the 2d of August, 1818, favor of the public, to the extent of tic balances of and the 11th Feb. 1819,

I public money deposited at the bank. It was proposed, in May, 1818, to repay to the The attention of parliament appears to have been bank a sum from eight to nine millions, by gradual first called to the extent and operation of those bainstalments of one million a month, from the month lances, in the report of the comyiittee on public ex. of May; the bank having then considered that re-penditure, presented in the year 1807; from which payment sufficient (according to the evidence of it appears that the aggregate amount of the public the governor) to enable them to make the expe- money deposited at the bank, was then calculated riment of the resumption of cash payments." to be l.11,104,919; and a sum equal to 5 per cent.

To meet these charges and the services of the interest, on the average balances in question, was year, and also to effect a further reduction of the un-considered, by that committee, not far from the funded debt, provision was made, by a loan of three amount ofthe profits derived by the bank from this millions in money, and a gradual funding of exche-source. quer bills to the amount of about 27 millions, with The average amount of public balances held by power to the subscribers of making money pay the bank appears to have been about eleven mil. ments, instead of bringing in exchequer bills; and lions, from the year 1807 to the year 1816; and in it was understood that the bank should retain one consideration of the advantage resulting to the bank half of the monics paid in, to the extent of the from the psssession of them, the sum of three mil. monthly payments abovementioned.

Ilions was advanced by the bank to government, without interest, in 1908, which advance was con- tent to which that authority may be in future eser tinued, unler the authority of acts passed by the cised. legislature, to April, 1818.-Since the year 1816, II. Your committee proceed to the next head of the public balances heid by the bank have been di- their inquiry-the expediency of reverting to cash mivisheid, and their average amount in the year payments, at the period fixed by law for their re1818, did not exceed the sum of seven millions. I sumption, Their amount has been still further reduced by the It will be seen, by a reference to the papers in operation of an act which has passed in the present the appendix, that the bank, without departing from session, which makes the growing produce of the the principles upon which theirissues on the discount consolidated fundavailable to a limited extent, for the of mercantile bills have long been regulated, have public service; and in a certain degree within those made a very considerable reduction in the amount limits lessens the benefit previously derived by the of notes outstanding, compared with their amount bank from its accumulation from the first to the last at the commencement of the year 1818; day of each quarter.

From July to December, 1817, the ave. it appears, however, to the committee, that what-rage amount was

£29,210,035 ever may be, either now or hereafter, the amount From January to Jume, 1818

27,954,518 of the public balances held by the bank, that amount From July to December do.

26,487,859 ought always to be kept in view, and allowance The average amount for the 3 months made for it when the advances from the bank to the to the end of March, 1819

25,794,460 government are under consideration; for it is clear, Should the legislature determine on the restora. that if a final settleinent of this account were to tion of cash payments on the fifth of July next, the take place, the public money deposited with the directors of the bank would naturally feel thembank inust be set off against the advances made by selves compelled to postpone the consideration of them to the government upon exchequer bills, and all other interests to the security of the establishother securities bearing interest.

ment over which they preside, and would make a In confirmation of this view of the subject, the further and very sudden reduction of that portion committee beg leave to refer to the evidence of of their currency which they have immediaiely Mr. Haldimand, now one of the bank directors. He within their control. states, “that it is his opinion, that a sum of from 81 Much important testimony will be found in the to 10 millions should be repaid to the bank by go-minutes of evidence, with respect to the effect to vernment, supposing the public balances to remain be apprehended from a very rapid diminution of without any considerable decrease in amount.” And the present amount of currency upon the trading being asked, “Does the aggregate amount of such and agricultural interests of the empire, of which balances operate as a diminution of the total advan-evidence your committee deem it incumbent on ces made by the bank to the public?” he answers, them to extract a portion, sufficient to give the “Yes, it does."

house a just idea of the opinions prevailing upon For the reasons alleged, it appears to your com.this subject amongst the persons whom they ex. mittee, that although the amount of the advances of amined. the bank upon government securities is accurately Mr. Alexander Baring being requested to state stated in the appendix, yet in determining the effect in what manner an attempt to effect the restoring which these advances have of diminishing the con. of cash payments within the period of a year would trol of the bank over their issues, a deduction must operate upon the commerce and internal concerns be macie corresponding in amount to the average of the empire, replied, “The resumption of cash sum held for any given period by the bank as a de payments can only be effected by drawing bulbon posite of public money, since that deposite, by les into the country, or by a reduction of the issues of sening the amount of notes in circulation, restores the bank. I cannot think that the bank could pay in to the bank, in proportion to its extent, the power specie, with any expectation of continuing in that of acceding to the applications made to them for the state, until there was a considerable portion of spe. discount of the mercantile bills.

cie already in the circulation of the country. I ap. Your committee trust they shall not be considered prehend that by no process, even if the effects of to have entered into unnecessary details in having any sudden reduction of issues were totally disre. thus given a full exposition of the relations between garded, could the sum necessary for the purpose the government and the bank. It will be seen by be brought into the country, within the period men. reference to the evidence, that the amount of their tioned. I am further of opinion, that the operation advances to the public is urged by the bank as one of reduction necessary for the purpose I have men. of the main impediments to the early resumption tioned must always be accompanied with some reof cash payments; and that in order to make prepa- straint and inconvenience to every branch of indus, rations for their resumption, the bank require a re- try in the country; and that if it were forced, with a payment to the extent of ten millions. The com- rapidity at all approaching to what would be re. mittee was anxious therefore that the amount and quired for the payment in the course of a twelve operation of these advances, and the degree to month, the injury would be intolerable; the reducwhich their effect is counteracted by the balancestion of paper would produce all those effects which of public money held by the bank, sliould be clearly arise from the reduction in the amount of money in understood; and this appeared to them the more any country; an effect which I think is well describ. necessary, as the committee feel it their duty to ed in Mr. Hume's “Essay on Money." The conse, close this branch of their enquiry, with an earnest quences of a contraction or expansion of the amount recommendation to the house, to make immediate of money in a country seem more felt during the provision for the gradual repayment to the bank of progress of such contraction and expansion, than that portion of the debt, which the bank requires from any positive amount of money at any one giren to be repaid, and to establish some permanent pro. period. It is not, in my opinion, of great import. visions, limiting and defining the authority of the ance what amount of money muy exist in any counbank to make advances to the government, and to try; but that the question, of whether it is on the purchase government securities; i'd bringing un-increase or decrease, is one of great importance to der the constant inspection of parliament thc ex-levery braic! of its industry,"

Mr. Haldimand stated, that he conceived it to be famount of gold in the country, previous to the necessary, that the bank of England, in order to be restriction, had been estimated by the late lord enabled to resume the payment of its notes in spe- Liverpool at thirty millions. Mr. Rose stated it cie, should reduce their present amount to the ex- higher; but, perhaps, if we were to take it at tent of three or four millions forcibly.” He ex. twenty millions, that might be about the amount plained, that by the term forcibly he meant a re which was in circulation previous to the restriction duction, not arising from three or four millions less | act.” He adds, that he thinks he is warranted in being demanded, but from three or four millions saying, that if twenty millions, besides what remainbeing demanded and refused by the bank to the ed in the bank, was necessary for the scale of expublic and government. He considered this for- penditure before the restriction act, it is taking it ced reduction of the issues of the bank of England moderately to contend that as much would be neto be necessary, in order to restore the rest of cessary now. the paper in circulation to its ancient value in Mr. Alexander Baring observed, that it is difli gold, and the exchanges to par." Being asked, if, cult, indeed impossible, to form any accurate esticoin order to produce the effect which he anticipated mate; but his impression is, that with a new and per: from a forcible reduction of the issues of the bank, fect coin, such as the sovereign, which, in his opi. it would be necessary that the reduction should be nion, would exclude the 11 and 21 notes, whether sudden;" he replied, in my opinion every possible they are by law excluded or not, the amount of such disadvantage and inconvenience to the public would gold coin could not be much less than from 40 to 45 arise from a sudden reduction; I should certainly inillions, He does not mean that the whole amount recommendits being gradual.

would be required before cash payments could be Mr. Gladstone, a member of the house, and a mer. resumed; but he thinks that they could not be safe. chant, principally engaged in trade with the Eastly undertaken with much less than half of tist and West Indies, and occasionally in general trade, amount actually in the country, which its circulation gave an opinion, that the influence which the re-would ultimately absorb; and that the half could be duction of the bank issues produces, is of a seconda- accumulated, without great pressure upon the - ry nature; that, in other times, the alteration of two or country, in less than four or five years from the three millions in their issues would not have been present time.” at all felt; but that in the present state of the trade The data on which any reasoning, with respect of the country, after a year of much overtrading, to the amount of any metallic currency that will be and a great accumulation of foreign goods in the required subsequently to the removal of the re. country, and of British goods for British account in striction, are so imperfect, that your committee ah. foreign markets, whatevertends to narrow the means stain from offering any decisive opinion upon the of circulation, acts in a much greater degree now subject; but they think that Mr. Baring has overthan it would in other times.”

rated that amount. With respect also to the disAfter a full consideration of the evidence, and of position of the public, to require gold coin as curthe several matters to which it is material to ad- rency in preference to notes under five pounds, a vert, in considering the expediency of resuming conclusion may be drawn, from the testimony of payments in cash on the 5th of July next, the amount other witnesses, differing from that which Mr. Bar. of the advances of the bank to government, the ing bas formed. It has been observed, in a former quantity of bullion in their coffers, the probable part of the report, that when the bank undertook effect of a rapid and considerable reduction of their to pay their notes in cash in the year 1817, no preissues, in whatever manner or with whatever view ference for coin was shown, until the foreign ersuch reduction might take place, your comraittee changes caused a demand for the purpose of exporare decidedly of opinion, that it is expedient to tation. Mr. Harman states in his evidence, “that, at continue the restriction beyond the 5th of July next. that period, he was induced to flatter himseif that

· III. Your committee have now presented to the the doors of the bank would be opened that (if he house their view of the two important points which might use the expression) the public would hardly they proposed, (according to the order of refer- know whether the bank was open or shut-that it ence) to make the first subjects of their investiga- was in a moment of tranquility; that people secmex! tion—the state of the bank of England, and the ex. indifferent about gold--that instead of coming to pediency of resuming cash payments on the 5th of the bank for gold, they brought their gold to the July next. They now proceed to offer their ob- bank;--that reinained, till the financial operations servations with respect to the period at which it in France began, and as soon as they were talked may be advisable to terminate the restriction of, the tide turned.”

They will, in the first instance, advert to the sup- Mr. Stuckey, a gentleman very extensively conply of gold which may now be required in order to nected with banks in the county of Somerset, gave meet the probable demands upon the bank on the evidence to the following effect: “In the latterend resumption of payments in specie.

of the year 1816 and the beginning of 1817, we had It is difficult to form any accurate estimate of the a circulation of coin for some months; it cost us at amount of gold in circulation previously to the year that period nearly one hundred pounds to transmit 1787; and conjectures, with respect to that which the surplus quantity of coin to London, of which will hereafter be required, must necessarily be four-fifths in value, at least, consisted of gold. We more vague and unsatisfactory.

could not get rid of it in the country, our customers In the communication made to the committee by preferring our notes, In the spring of 1817, 1 bro't the court of directors of the bank on the 25th March, with me to town near 1000 guineas from one of our it is observed, that the amount of specie in circu- banks; on taking them to our London banker, be lation before the war was variously estimated, even requested as a favor, I would not leave them there. by persons best qualified, from their situation, to They had lately sent so znany to the bank of Engobtain information.” It seems, however, to bave land that they did not like to trouble them any been agreed that it was about thirty millions; but more; besides, the bank only took those which whatever the amount, the whole has beeen export. were of full weight.” ed. .

| Notwithstanding this evidence,it must be admitted Mr. Harman states in his cyidence, “that the that no satisfactory conclusion can be drawn from

« 上一頁繼續 »