§ 37. Mr. WARDLE
asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the price of American spelter was up till a few weeks ago from £28 to £32 per ton, and that now the price has risen to £46 per ton; whether he is aware that, having regard to conditions of freight and other considerations, market conditions do not justify a price of more than £35; whether he is aware that the rise in price is an indication of a movement on the part of certain prominent metal merchants to comer the metal; and whether he will make inquiries into the matter and take whatever steps are necessary to frustrate this movement and secure a reduction in the price?
It would appear that during the last four weeks the price of American spelter in this country has risen 1141 from under £29 per ton to £40 per ton. The price in New York is reported to have advanced from under £27 early in January to over £37, and for small lots considerably higher prices about a week ago. In these circumstances it is evident that the price of American spelter in the United Kingdom is governed by conditions which cannot be controlled in this country except possibly by the establishment of spelter undertakings on a large scale. This requires time, but I believe the matter is under consideration by those interested.