§ Mr. R. A. Butler
The Royal Commission on the Taxation of Profits and Income discussed this matter at length in its final Report, to which I am giving close consideration, but I am not prepared to anticipate the outcome of my study.
§ Mr. Butler
I wish that it were quite as simple as that, so that I might pose as a hero, but the difficulty is that the majority Report of the Commission indicates some of the difficulties and the minority Report indicates some of the advantages. It is because I want time to get a fair picture of this matter in my own mind that I should not like to say anything further about it to the right hon. Gentleman today.
§ Mr. Nicholson
Would my right hon. Friend agree that these capital gains are rather the symptom of inflation than the cause of inflation?
§ Mr. Osborne
Would my right hon. Friend remember that a Stock Exchange profit is not a profit until it has been taken and the stock sold, and if there were widespread selling to take profits, all share prices would fall, and the profits would not be available?
§ Mr. Butler
I cannot go further than I have stated, because I do not think that it is wise to pronounce upon a matter which took the Royal Commission so many months and, indeed, years to pronounce upon without having a look both at its recommendations and the operation of the scheme in America.