§ Mr. Russell
asked the President of the Board of Trade what quantities of cadmium and copper, respectively, were bought by his Department in 1951 for stockpiling; what was the average price paid for each metal; how much of these stocks has now been liquidated; what was the average price received; and what is the total loss to the Exchequer in respect of each metal.
§ Sir D. Eccles:
It is not the practice to disclose details of strategic reserve transactions. Moreover, the concept of profit and loss is inappropriate in this connection since these holdings were purchased, and their disposal decided upon, for strategic, not commercial, reasons. Purchases were, however, made at the market prices ruling at the time and sales are at the best prices which can be obtained. The total expenditure on the strategic 160W reserve out of money voted for it, and the receipts taken into the Exchequer, are available in the annual Appropriation Accounts.