HC Deb 20 February 1934 vol 286 cc181-3

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he proposes to enter into conversations with the Government of the United States with a view to securing a stable standard of value for the currencies of the two countries?


I have no reason to suppose that any such conversations as are suggested by my right hon. Friend would, in present circumstances, lead to any fruitful result.


Will the right hon. Gentleman welcome any conversations if they are put forward?


I should welcome any conversations if I thought they were likely to lead to useful results.

54 and 55. Mr. BOOTHBY

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) whether, with a view to facilitating a further rise in world commodity prices and the subsequent stabilisation of both prices and international exchanges, he will consider the advisability of restoring a free market in bullion gold at the price of 140s. per ounce;

(2) Whether the monetary policy of His Majesty s Government continues to be based on the currency resolutions of the Genoa Conference; and whether he is prepared to enter into negotiations with the Government of the United States of America, when conditions are favorable, with a view to the establishment of a gold exchange standard on the lines laid down by those resolutions?


The currency resolutions of the Genoa Conference have for the present only an academic interest. For the views of His Majesty's Government on questions of the monetary standard, of the necessity for raising prices and of the ultimate stabilisation of prices and exchanges I would refer my hon. Friend to the various statements already made and in particular to the joint Declaration by the Delegations of the British Commonwealth on the adjournment of the World Conference last year. I can only add that His Majesty's Government has constantly under examination all methods of achieving the monetary policy then agreed upon which appear at any time to be practicable.


Can we take it that His Majesty's Government are prepared to return to a gold exchange standard as soon as they are satisfied that foreign nations are prepared to co-operate with us in working it satisfactorily?


I should not like to add an impromptu statement to the carefully considered statement I have made on this subject.


When the Government are contemplating the establishment of a gold standard will they take measures to demand special taxation from those holders of gold shares which have appreciated so much in consequence of the rise in the price of gold?


In view of the repeated failure of a gold standard, have the Government no alternative in consideration?