HC Deb 26 November 1953 vol 521 cc496-7
3. Mr. Bence

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer the average price of Government securities for six months previous to reduction in the Bank rate; and what was the stated price at which Government securities would be accepted in payment of United Steel shares.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

There are some 30 Government securities on the market in widely differing amounts and ranging from stock maturing within a few months to undated stock. A so-called average price for all these securities would be meaningless. For averages for certain groups of Government securities I would refer the hon. Member to Table 142 of the Monthly Digest of Statistics.

As regards the second part of his Question I would refer him to the public notice dated 23rd October, of which I am sending him a copy.

Mr. Bence

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that his reply will add further to the conviction that the manoeuvre of reducing the Bank rate at that time was not so much for the needs of the economy of the country as to enable a further group of friends of the party opposite to obtain their steel shares a little cheaper than they would otherwise have done?

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

My reply will only strengthen that conviction in the case of such persons, no doubt very few, whose obstinate desire to retain it prevents them from reading the documents to which I have referred.