HC Deb 11 June 1940 vol 361 c1133
53. Mr. Craven-Ellis

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in view of the necessity to finance the present war with the utmost economy and of the beneficial results to His Majesty's Treasury of the previous reductions of Bank Rate, he will take immediate action for the reduction of Bank Rate from 2 per cent. to 1 per cent.; and for the comparative reduction of rates of interest on Treasury bills and other forms of Government borrowing?

The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Sir Kingsley Wood)

It would clearly not be proper for me to forecast the future course of Bank Rate. While I am in agreement with my hon. Friend as to the importance of the considerations to which he refers, they are not the only relevant considerations.

Mr. Craven-Ellis

Is my right hon. Friend aware that in 1936 and 1937 the Bank Rate was 2 per cent., and the Treasury bill rate 10s. per cent.? What is the justification for the Treasury bill rate now being over £1 per cent., which is 100 per cent. increase? My right hon. Friend has the control of money rates; why does he not exercise it?

Sir K. Wood

Perhaps my hon. Friend will put another Question down, and I will endeavour to answer it.