HC Deb 30 April 1919 vol 115 cc169-70W
Colonel THORNE

asked the President of the Board of Trade what effect, if any, the threat of a cotton stoppage has had upon the price of raw cotton in England and America; what were the official prices in Liverpool on 1st April and 8th April, respectively, for that class of cotton usually described as Middling American, and what were the official market quotations on the same dates for 32's twist; what also on the same dates were the respective figures for the Egyptian cotton usually described as F.G.F. Brown and the market quotations for 660's twist; and can he give, approximately, what were the margins on these two classes of yarn as compared with the raw material for the first week of April, 1918, 1917, 1916, 1915, and 1914?


As the answer is long and contains a number of figures, I propose, with the hon. and gallant Gentleman's permission, to circulate it in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

The following is the answer referred to

I should doubt whether the fortnight's stoppage in the American section of the cotton-spinning industry has had any appreciable influence on the price of raw cotton either in this country or in America. One would expect that its effect, if any, would be in the diretion of reducing the price; but, in fact, prices, which had been rising for a month before the announcements of the stoppage, have continued to rise since.

There are no "official" market quotations for yarns, and the only available quotations relate to Fridays. I cannot, therefore, supply comparative figures for cotton and yarns for April 1st and 8th; but taking the nearest available Fridays—namely, April 4th and 11th, 1919—and the quotations for yarns appearing in the "Cotton Gazette," the figures are as follows:—On April 4th: Middling American Boweds, 16.24d.; 32s Twist, 27d.; F.G.F. Brown Sakellarides, 26.59d.; 60s Twist, 44d.

On April 11th: Middling American Boweds, 16.88d.; 32s Twist, 27d.; F.G.F. Brown Sakellarides, 26.59d.; 60s Twist, 42.50d.

As regards the last part of the question, exact comparison is rendered difficult by the fact that the grades of cotton referred to have been either sub-divided or modified during the course of the War; but taking Middling Boweds and F.G.F. Brown Sakellarides as approximations to the old Middling American and F.G.F. Brown respectively, the margins shown on the above basis for the first weeks of April would work out as follows:

Between 32s Twist and Middling American: In 1914, 2.58d.;in 1915, 3.25d; in 1916, 4.88d.; in a 1917, 4.31d.; in 1918, 19.80d.; in 1919, 10.76d.

Between 60s Twist and F.G.F. Brown Sakellarides: In 1914, 7.43d.; in 1915, 5.50d.; in 1916, 9.59d.; in 1917, 10.50d.; in 1918, 22.44d.; in 1919, 17.41d.