§ Order for Third Reading read.
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
, in moving that the Bill be now read the third time, said, he desired to correct a statement which he had made inadvertently to his right hon. Friend the Member for the City of London (Mr. J. G. Hubbard) the other night in regard to the rate of interest to be paid on the Terminable Annuities which were to extinguish, by 1885, the £6,000,000 of Debt. His right hon. Friend had rather put into his mouth the rate of 3¾per cent, the amount at which the last Terminable Annuities for that purpose were issued. But, on a careful consideration of the matter between the officers of the Treasury and the National Debt Com- 1223 missioners, it had been decided that the reasons which led to the fixing of that rate of interest on previous occasions did not apply in the present state of the market. In the present state of the money market, it had been thought that 3½per cent was the proper rate of interest to be fixed. In this case the effect of this operation would be that the Annuities to extinguish the £6,000,000 in ten half-yearly payments would only be £1,320,000 a-year. There would, therefore, be a smaller demand on the new Sinking Fund, and the amount of the Fund applicable to the reduction in the present year would only be £172;000.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read the third time."—(Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer.)
§ MR. LAING
wished to remind the House of the danger which might arise in times of commercial depression or panic by the maintenance of a large Floating Debt. He thought that where the policy of the Government necessitated the occurrence of deficits in successive years, these deficits, instead of being allowed to accumulate, should be wiped off by new taxation.
§ Question put, and agreed to.
§ Bill read the third time, and passed.