HC Deb 30 November 1939 vol 355 cc245-6
60. Mr. Keeling

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that many people who already hold 500 Savings Certificates find it impossible to buy Defence Bonds; and whether he will consider the issue of further Savings Certificates at a lower rate of interest to such holders?

Sir J. Simon

I take the suggestion in the first part of my hon. Friend's question to be that some people may not be able to provide £5 at one time to purchase a Defence Bond. In that case, their course should be to deposit whatever they can afford from time to time in the Post Office Savings Bank or a Trustee Savings Bank until they have sufficient to purchase a Bond. In view of that possibility I see no need to provide a further issue of National Savings Certificates as suggested in the second part of the question.

Mr. Keeling

Is my right hon. Friend aware that to many people these Savings Certificates have attractions, which are lacking in the Defence Bonds, in that they are a kind of endowment policy?

Sir J. Simon

Like Savings Certificates, the Defence Bonds can be held for a period of years. The Defence Bonds have this further quality that interest on them is payable half-yearly. I think that both instruments are attractive, and I am glad to say that they are both proving to be popular.

Mr. Lipson

Will my right hon. Friend make it possible for those who already hold 500 Savings Certificates of the earlier series to buy a limited number of the new series?

Sir J. Simon

No, Sir. As I explained in my statement to the House, that could not be done, and that was one of the reasons for devising the Defence Bonds.