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ers, with all of the differences as to conveniences and comforts characteristic of the several countries. For an accurate understanding of these differences the reports relating to the several countries should be consulted.

When the rents reported in the individual cities of each country are compared, the range is found to be much greater than that noted in the case of wages. Each report contains figures showing the relative rents in each city as compared with those in the chief city of the country as a basis or 100, and in order to compare the ranges these figures have been brought together in the following table:

RANGE OF RENTS IN THE CITIES OF EACH COUNTRY AS COMPARED WITR RENTS

IN THE CHIEF CITY. [Compiled from reports of an Inquiry by the Board of Trade into Working Class Rents, IIousing and Retail Prices, together with Rates of Wages in certain occupations in the Principal Industrial

Towns of the United Kingdom, 1908; Germany, 1908; France, 1909; Belgium, 1910; United States, 1911.)

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In the case of rents the maximum cost was found in the largest city in each country except the United States, and in nearly all cases the lowest rent was found in the smallest or one of the smallest cities, The widest range in the cost of rents was found in Germany, where in one city rents were only 28 per cent of those in Berlin. In both Germany and Great Britain the range was found to be slightly wider than in the United States; in France and Belgium it was somewhat narrower, Belgium showing the least range from lowest to highest.

RETAIL PRICES OF COMMODITIES.

Comparisons of the retail prices of commodities are limited to those articles found in general use in several countries and which are of approximately the same grade or character. The actual prices of the 11 articles of food and of coal and of paraffin oil are shown in the following table:

PREDOMINANT RANGE OF RETAIL PRICES OF COMMODITIES IN EACH COUNTRY. [Compiled from reports of an Inquiry by the Board of Trade into Working Class Rents, Housing and

Retail Prices, together with Rates of Wages in certain occupations in the Principal Industrial Towns of the United Kingdom, 1908, Germany, 1908; France, 1909; Belgium, 1910; United States, 1911.)

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The relative prices of this same list of commodities (prices in England and Wales in each case being taken as 100) are shown in the following table:

RELATIVE LEVEL OF RETAIL PRICES OF COMMODITIES IN EACH COUNTRY. (Compiled from reports of an Inquiry by the Board of Trade into Working Class Rents, Housing and Retail Prices, together with Rates of Wages in certain occupations in the Principal Industrial Towns of the United Kingdom, 1908; Germany, 1908; France, 1909; Belgium, 1910; United States, 1911.)

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The table shows that for all the articles included in the comparison, save pork, prices in the United States were higher than in England. On this one article prices were lower in the United States than in any of the other countries. Without exception the highest prices for meat were found in Germany. For two varieties of meat, beef and bacon, Belgium showed the lowest prices, while for mutton the lowest price was found in England. England also showed the lowest price for flour, the price in the United States being 39 per cent higher, while in Germany and France it was 40 and 53 per cent higher, respectively. For bread the highest price was found in the United States, being almost two and one-fourth times the price in England. In France the price was 15 per cent higher than in England, and in Belgium 5 per cent lower.

Each report contains figures showing the relative retail prices of commodities in each city as compared with those in the chief city of the country as a basis or 100, and in order to compare the rango between the various cities in the several countries these figures have been brought together in the following table:

RANGE OF RETAIL PRICES OF COMMODITIES IN THE CITIES OF EACH COUNTRY AS

COMPARED WITH PRICES IN THE CHIEF CITY. (Compiled from reports of an Inquiry by the Board of Trade into Working Class Rents, Housing and

Retail Prices, together with Rates of Wages in certain occupations in the Principal Industrial Towns of the United Kingdom, 1908; Germany, 1908; France, 1909;" Belgium, 1910; United States, 1911.)

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The differences between the various cities of the several countries are much smaller in the case of prices than was found in the case of wages or rents. In Belgium, for example, a range of only 11 per cent was found between Brussels, the city of highest prices in that country, and Bruges, the city of lowest prices. Both in the United States and in England and Wales the range from lowest to highest was only 18 points; in Germany 24 points; and in France, where the maximum difference was found, 34 points. In all of the countries except Belgium the highest prices were reported from some city other than the largest city. Thus in England the highest prices were reported for Dover; in Germany for Barmen; in France for Marseille; in the United States for Atlanta. It is worthy of note that notwithstanding the great extent of territory covered by the investigation in the United States, the differences in prices throughout that territory were found to be less than in France and Germany and not greater than in England and Wales. COST OF FOOD CONSUMED WEEKLY IN THE BRITISH WORKMAN'S

FAMILY. The reports of the Board of Trade have used as a basis of comparison of the cost of food the average quantity consumed as ascertained from an investigation of a large number of British wageearning families. Applying these quantities to the predominant prices of the same articles in the various countries, a total figure is arrived at in which each of the selected articles is weighted according to its importance to the British wage-earning family. The figures so weighted are presented in the following table:

COST OF COMMODITIES CONSUMED PER WEEK IN AVERAGE BRITISH WORKMAN'S

FAMILY (Compiled from reports of an Inquiry by the Board of Trade into Working Class Rents, Housing and

Retail Prices, together with Rates of Wages in certain occupations in the Principal Industrial Towns of the United Kingdom, 1908; Germany, 1908; France, 1909; Belgium, 1910; United States, 1911.)

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Flour Bread Sugar, Bacon, Cheese, Butter, Potatoes, 54 pounds. 14 pounds. 1 pound. 2 pounds. 17 pounds. 18 pounds 22 pounds.

(wheat), (white),

$0.558 1.806 .644 .530 1.242

100 117 99

99 2 143

Cost of 22 pounds o? wheat flour in Germany. The British report states: "Actually 22 pounds of flour are not required for making 22 pounds of bread, but no allowance has been made for the cost of other materials nor of baking, and as the predominant cost of bread per pound in England (2.5 cents) is almost identical with the cost of flour (2.6 cents) the method adopted seems fair.".

As between prices in Great Britain, October, 1905, and prices in the United States, February, 1909. British prices in February, 1909, after due allowance for the varying degrees of importance of the articles included, were about 4 per cent higher than in October, 1905. The index number when adjusted accordingly becomes 138.

The index numbers computed on the total cost of the selected articles of food in the several countries show that the British workman's weekly food budget, which in England and Wales is represented by 100, costs in the United States 43 per cent more; in Germany 17 per cent more; and in France and Belgium 1 per cent less.

With reference to the extent to which these figures are modified by the changes in prices between October, 1905, the date of the investigation in England and Wales, and the dates of the several investigations in the other countries, the reports show that in Germany, so far as it was possible to judge from the few returns obtained at the later date, March, 1908, prices appeared to have undergone little change. In France the average increase in prices between October, 1905, and October, 1907, of food other than meat, was estimated at 4} per cent, and on food of all kinds at slightly under 5 per cent. In Belgium no appreciable change appears to have occurred down to the autumn of 1908. When allowance is made for the increase of 4 per cent which took place in England and Wales between October, 1905, and February, 1909, the cost of the British workman's weekly budget was found to be 38 per cent higher in the United States than in England and Wales instead of 43 per cent, as shown in the above table.

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