HC Deb 12 December 1972 vol 848 cc92-3W
Mr. Bruce-Gardyne

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish in the OFFICIAL REPORT details of the calculations which led him to inform the directors of Lloyds and Scottish and European Ferries, respectively, first that publicly predicted dividend increases would not contravene the Counter-Inflation (Temporary Provisions) Act, and then that they would contravene that Act, respectively; and if he will take steps to compensate those who dealt in the shares of these two companies between the first decision and the second, on the basis that the predicted dividend increases would be paid.

Mr. Nott

The advice given in the first instance to these companies by the Treasury was based on the understanding, following discussions with these companies, that they had formally announced their dividends to the Stock Exchange and to the Press before the standstill in the terms referred to in the Treasury guidance of 7th November 1972. When it became clear that no such formal announcement of the kind set out in Treasury guidance had been made the companies were advised that their forecast higher dividends would not be consistent with the standstill.

The answer to the second part of the question is "No".