HC Deb 09 November 1937 vol 328 c1575
47. Mr. Boothby

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his attention has been directed to the recent sharp fall in world commodity prices; and, in view of the adverse effect on trade and industry which a further fall in the commodity price level must have, whether he proposes to take any action designed to check it?

Sir J. Simon

I would refer my hon. Friend to the answers which I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Southampton (Mr. Craven-Ellis) on 28th October.

Mr. Boothby

Is it not a fact that the price of raw commodities has fallen by 50 per cent. during the last three months; and in view of the adverse effect which this must have on trade and on revenue, will the right hon. Gentleman state explicitly what steps, if any, he proposes to take to prevent a further fall?

Sir J. Simon

I am sure my hon. Friend will agree with me that in this matter it is very necessary to express oneself in terms which do not allow of any exaggerated view being taken of the position. The true position is that there has been, in some classes of commodities, a certain set-back but there is no ground for saying that it will be a permanent setback and it is due to causes which are quite outside this country. The fact is that prices are very greatly higher than they were at the time of the Ottawa declaration.