§ Sir R. HORNE
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what it would cost to relieve the public companies of this country of Income Tax to the extent of one shilling in the pound on the sums placed by them to reserve; and how much have the public companies of Great Britain paid to the Exchequer in respect of Income Tax on sums placed by them to reserve during the last 14 years?
The statistics collected annually in relation to the Income Tax do not distinguish the tax on sums placed by companies to reserve and even to give estimates of the amount would require a special investigation. Such an investigation was made for the information of the Colwyn Committee on National Debt and Expenditure by reference to the years 1922 and 1923, and details of the investigation will be found on pages 18 and 19 of the Committee's1718W Report. The total undistributed income of companies was then estimated to be £219,000,000 for the year 1922 and £217,500,000 for the year 1923. The only investigation made since related to the year 1927, when it was estimated that the total undistributed income amounted to £240,000,000. I am not in a position to form an estimate of the current measure of undistributed income, but on the basis of the 1927 investigation the cost in a normal year of the relief which my right hon. Friend suggests would be about £12,000,000.