HC Deb 17 February 1919 vol 112 cc606-7W

asked the Postmaster-General whether it is still necessary to subject the customers of the Post Office, with regard to Money Order and Savings Bank business, to the losses involved in the refusal to recognise halfpennies or farthings, seeing that the Post Office charges odd halfpennies in its telegraph business?


I do not think the refusal to recognise fractions of a penny in Money Order and Savings Bank transactions gives rise to any appreciable inconvenience. An odd halfpenny can be remitted by means of a stamp with an Inland Money Order. When an odd halfpenny occurs in calculating interest on Savings Bank deposits it is carried forward till another occurs in a subsequent year. Any change in the present practice would cause considerable additional labour.


asked the Postmaster-General whether he has under consideration the desirability of permitting the holders of deposit accounts in the Post Office Savings Banks to enjoy the advantages of drawing cheques on their accounts and of having moneys paid to the credit of their accounts by other than the holders thereof at any post office in the United Kingdom, in the same way as is permitted in Germany, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Japan, and other countries?


The conditions in the United Kingdom are different from those prevailing in the countries named. The banking system is more widely extended and cheques and postal orders are in general use for remittance purposes. I doubt if there would be much scope or demand for a postal cheque system, especially as it would be necessary to charge relatively high fees to cover the extra cost of administration.