HC Deb 20 December 1915 vol 77 cc25-6
71. Mr. FELL

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if the new issue of five-year Exchequer Bills is in effect a new War Loan and not an issue of ordinary Exchequer Bills contemplated when the exception was made in their favour on the issue of the last War Loan; if ordinary Exchequer Bills are ever issued for periods exceeding one year, and if the interest is paid on them by selling them at such a discount as will provide interest on the repayment at their face value; and if the last War Loan will be exchangeable into the new Exchequer Bills?


No, Sir. The new issue consists of Exchequer Bonds and not of Exchequer Bills, which is an obsolete form of Government security and is entirely distinct from Treasury Bills. Exchequer Bonds may be issued for any term not exceeding six years under Section 26 of the Exchequer Bills and Bonds Act, 1866. The answer to the last part of the question is in the negative.


Is the right hon. Gentleman not aware of his pledge, when he asked the companies to subscribe to the last Loan, that they would get the increased rate if it was paid, and does it not apply to this issue?


It was stated at the time quite definitely that the Exchequer Bonds and Treasury Bills were not included as the kind of security which would entitle their holders to apply for them.

72. Mr. WATT

asked the Chancellor of the. Exchequer, whether no Exchequer Bond prospectuses were obtainable on Friday either at the Glasgow Stock Exchange or at any of the Glasgow banks, although clients of the stockholders and banks there received by post such prospectuses from London brokers and banks; and why the equitable treatment of the provinces which he promised would be observed in all future issues was not secured?


Consignments of prospectuses left the Bank of England at 12.55 p.m. on Thursday, 16th December, addressed to the Glasgow Stock Exchange and the head offices of the banks in Scotland, and a further consignment left at 4 p.m. on the same day addressed to every banking office in Scotland not covered by the previous arrangement. I have not received any corroboration of my hon. Friend's statement in the first part of the question, and, in view of the facts stated above, I think he must be mistaken.


Does he not consider it his duty to treat all citizens of this country equally and alike?


Yes, Sir; and, so far as circumstances allow me to do so, I have done so.