49 and 50. Mr. De la Bère
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) the total amount of Treasury deposit receipts outstanding at 30th June, 1941; the amount that have been converted into long-term investments by the banks and the securities into which they have been converted and the interest paid thereon;
(2) whether, in view of the many hundreds of millions of Treasury deposit receipts that have been converted by the banks into long-term securities carrying interest at 2½ or 3 per cent., he will confer with the banking interests concerned with a view to a reduction in interest being made in this connection; and whether he has estimated the amount by which Income Tax could be reduced if the interest which was permitted was not to exceed 1 per cent?
§ The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Captain Crookshank)
The amount of Treasury deposit receipts outstanding on 30th June, 1941, was £519,000,000. The amount converted was £142,000,000, and the securities into which they were converted were National War Bonds carrying 2½ per cent. interest and Savings Bonds carrying 3 per cent. As stated in the reply given to my hon. Friend on 7th May, my right hon. Friend sees no reason to make any change in the existing arrangements. With reference to the last part of Question No. 50, no precise estimate can be given.
Mr. De la Bère
Is my right hon. Friend aware that the result of this conversion is to put a burden on the tax-payers-in-perpetuity? Why is it that they have to bear this burden if it is a part of interest in the banks which is really cost less credit and is not subscribed for by the banks?