§ 19. Mr. LYONS
asked the President of the Board of Trade the number of requests which have been made for investigation under Section 135 of the Companies Act, 1929, during the year 1931 or nearest convenient date; how many company investigations have been made by his Department pursuant to such requests; and in how many instances he has insisted upon security being furnished by the applicants?
§ Mr. RUNCIMAN
Ten requests were made in 1931 for the appointment of an inspector under Section 135 of the Companies Act, 1929, and in two of these cases inspectors were appointed. In both cases security for the costs of the inquiry was furnished by the applicants. In the remaining cases either the application was not pursued or the Board did not consider that they would be justified in appointing an inspector. In no case was the application dropped as a result of the Board's request for security.
§ 30. Lord SCONE
asked the President of the Board of Trade how many public companies have not lodged annual accounts in accordance with the requirements of Section 110 of the Companies Act, 1929, as on 5th April, 1932; and will he state the number in default on 5th April, 1931, and explain the failure of his Department to obtain every year punctual compliance with the law, although the Act has been in force, in January 1930, 1931, and 1932, respectively?
§ Mr. RUNCIMAN
The number of public companies having a share capital which were in default in respect of their Annual Returns under Section 110 of the Companies Act, 1929, was on the 5th April, 1932, 235. Precise figures for a corresponding date in 1931 are not available but on the 4th April of that year approximately 287 such companies were in default. The reasons for delay in compliance with the Act vary from case to case but where it is not possible to secure compliance cases are referred to the Solicitor to the Board of Trade who takes such action as is necessary.