HC Deb 17 April 1962 vol 658 cc230-1
28. Mr. Lipton

asked the President of the Board of Trade whether he will introduce legislation requiring limited companies to include in their balance sheets independent and up-to-date valuations of all their assets.

Mr. N. Macpherson

The Jenkins Company Law Committee has heard evidence on this subject and my right hon. Friend would prefer to await its report, which should be available shortly, before considering any question of legislation.

Mr. Lipton

Does not the hon. Gentleman agree that this undesirable practice of covering up assets deceives investors, freezes expansion, and provides rich pickings for take-over "spivs"? When is the Board of Trade going to adopt Lord Hailsham's principle of getting rid of the obsolete, the inefficient and fuddy-duddy in our economy?

Mr. Macpherson

The hon. Gentleman will, of course, be aware of the important requirement in Section 149 of the Act itself that balance sheets shall give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the company, and that is what the accountant is there to certify.