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dition of the creditor by the clause The chancellor of the exchequer, was this, that the bank-note stood on the 31st of March, proposed to as a security for his demand until add a clause to the bill, the purport he should in a due course of law of which was to allow the bank to obtain bis judgment. The clause re-pay, at different periods, in cash, was brought up and read a first those who might at their discretion time; but upon the question for hereafter deposit cash with the dithe second reading, Mr. Fox ob- rectors of the bank, so that no more served, that by the clause if one than three-fourths of such sums man had a demand upon another should be repaid by the bank in for 10001, and he proceeded against cash during the continuance of the him, he could have no other secu- present bill. This clause was oprity than that of a bank-note; a posed by Mr. Fox, and strongly very good security he hoped it supported by Mr. Thornton : after would be, but then if he took it, which 'it was agreed to without and owed another the same sum, a division. and that other did not choose to Mr. Pitt next introduced a clause take it, he must incur the penalty to enable the bank, notwithstanding which would attend the litigation of the present restriction, to issue that demand.
for the accommodation of private Mr. Alderman Curtis stated, that bankers and traders in the metropothe clause had been laid before the lis a sum in cash not exceeding bankers, and that they were satisfied 100,0001, which was adopted with with it,
out a division. The report was orMr. Fox then moved “That it dered to be received on the Monday shall not be lawful for the bank following. On that day, however, to issue any cash to government it was further postponed; but the by way of loan to any foreign bill was read a third time on the 4rla power, pending the operation of of April. On that day Mr. W. Bird the restriction laid on the bank by presented a clause by way of rider, the late minute of council."
that in all cases where bank-notes The chancellor of the exchequer might be tendered in payment for said, tbat he felt no objection to rent, it should not be lawful for the the principle of the clause, but person to whom the rent was due, thought there should be some ex- if he refused such tender, to seek a ception introduced into it, con- remedy by way of distress. fering a power of issuing money The clause was brought up and to a limited amount; suppose read a first and second time; but 600,0001. and that only on the ere- after some observations made by dit of the exchequer bills already Mr. Pitt and Mr. Manning, it was authorized by a vote of parliament, negatived without a division.
The clause, with the exception, Sir William Pulteney next pro. was agreed to.
posed a clause, the object of which Mr. Nicholls moved for leave to was to require the bank within a cerbring up a clause for limiting the tain short period after the passing of amount of the debts which the the act to come forward, and to debank might be allowed to contract clare whether they wished the rem during the continuance of the pre- striction to continue, and if they seat bill. After some observations did not, that the prohibition should from Mr. Pitt and Mr. Thornton, immediately cease. this clause was put and negatived. The chancellor of the excheques
. poposed opposed the clause, and Mr. Fox could be no ground for continuing supported it.
their monopoly any longer; if they The house divided on the ques should at that time open for paytion, that the clause be brought up. ment in money, bis proposal would Noes 79, ayes 43. .
do no harm, and no second bank On the 7th of April upon a would be established. At all events, question of the duration of the bill, however, he thought, that if ansir W. Pulteney proposed an ac ober bank were instituted, it would mendment to the clause which li- aid the operations of the old bank. mited the bill on the 24th of June, Scotland had two banks, and the by leaving out that period and sub- affairs of the old one were much stituting the 6th of May, which more prosperous since the establishwas negatived.
ment of the new, though all the The bill was then passed, and arguments were previously opposed the chancellor of the exchequer to it which could be urged against was desired to carry the came to the a new bank of England on the prelords for their concurrence.
sent occasion. He contended, that The bill went through its several the monopoly of the bank was instages in the house of lords without jurious ; that an open competition any alteration, and was passed into would be of public service; that in a law a few days afterwards.
several instances the directors of The next subject which engaged the bank had been improvident. the attention of the house of com- They had complained to Mr. Pitt mons relative to this business was a of the high price of gold in Portumotion made by sir W. Pulte. gal, when that was not the best ney “ for leave to bring in a Bill for market for it. The price of gold in the establishment of another bank, Portugal was 41. &s, od. per ounce, should the bank of England not when gold could be had at Hamopen for payment in specie on the burgh for 37. 18.0d. per ounce. 24th of June next." Sir William Mr. S. Thornton contradicted submitted this motion to the house the statement which had just been on the 30th of May.' He prefaced given of the price of gold at Hamit with an historical account of the burgh, and defended the bank up late failure of the bank. He al- on its present plan. lowed that the monopoly of the After some observations from bank of England was an obstacle Mr. Sheridan and Mr. Pitt, the in the way of his proposal, as its house divided for the motion 15, charter did not expire till 1814, against it 50. and the company took care always The limits of this publication to have their charter renewed a would not admit of a more extended considerable tiine before the period detail of the parliamentary debates of its expiration. He did not go on this subject; but we shall So far as to say that their stop- subjoin a few remarks on the report page in the first instance was a vio- of the committee which sat on the lation of that charter, though con- affairs of the bank. There is the siderable doubts were entertained utmest reason to believe the report upon that subject. But if they in every respect was a fair one, and should not be enabled to open for the statement must be allowed to payment on the 24th of June, there be in a great measure satisfactory,
From the report it appears that on finances of the bank stood as folbe 26th of February, 1797, the low : Debtor.
Creditor. L. Bank-notes in circulation 8,640,250 Advances on govern-'] Drawing account, audit, )
ment security S 10,072,490 roll, exchequer-bills, 5,130,1-40 Other credits, includ-) and other debts
ing cash, bullion, } 6,924,790
bills, disc., &c.
Particulars of Debit Account.
Particulars of Credit Account.
L. Drawing Account - 2,589,600 Bills and notes disExchequer bills deposited 1,670,000 counted, cash and 4,176,080 Audit roll (or unpaid di- } 983,730
Exchequer-bills - 8,228,000 Bank-stock dividends, un- ?
Lands and tenements : 65,000* claimed -
Money lent on mort Dividends upclaimed on 10.210
gage, on annuities East India annuities S
of 1,200,0001.tothe ( Sundry small articles un- ?
EastIndia company ) claimed . .. 1,330
1,510 Dae from chief cashier,? 000 Navy and victualling bills 15,890 op the loan of 1797 s " American debentures,
54,150 Unpaid Irisb dividends . 1,460 1790 Ditto, on the imperial loan 5,600 Petty cash in the house 5,320
Sundry articles .. 24,150 5,130,140 Five per cents. ann. 2
795,800 from naty
s Five per cents, 1797 1,000,000 Treasury bills paid for} 1,512,270
government § 420129270 Loan to government without interest
376,000 Bills discounted, unpaid . 88,120 Treasury and exche- 1
quer fees a' } .: 740 Interest due on differ-)
ent sums advanced 554,250 to government
With respect to the public, there fute, the bank must be regarded as
17,597,280 a solvent company, whose assets are at least three millions more than all
the demands that can possibly be The trade of the bank, however, brought against them. With re- enables them to divide at the rate of spect to the proprietors themselves 7 per cent. on the respective shares, the case is somewhat different, and and therefore the price of bauk. tequires investigation.
stock is to be considered not so The capital of the bank, if taken much paid for actual capital, as for at par, would be about 11,600,000l. a participation in a profitable busi
To cover this, they have lent to ness, which, as long as it is able to government on an annuity of 3 per support itself, will produce an annucent. 11,600,0001.* But this they ity of 71. for 125l. or whatever may cannot convert into specie, not be the current price of bank-stock recover in any other form. It can at any given period. therefore be only considered of the In the report which was given in same value as any other 3 per cent. to the house of commons, the quanannuity on government security, tity of specie and bullion deposited which at 50 per cent. (rather above in the bank at different periods was the present price) is L. 5,800,000 not specified; but this, as well as Add to this the balance .
the amount of the discounts for as above . • - 3,826,800 private persons, was represented by
certain arbitrary pombers, iptel. Total of assets to an-7
ligible only to the directors and swer the above capital 9,626,890 certain confidential servants of the ef 11,600,0001. ,
bank. These numbers, however, Kave been decyphered by a gentle
man conversant in such calculaBut, in fact, batik stock is not tions; and it appears that the mean bought at par, that is, at 100l. for number 660, in the following table; a nominal share, or Jool. of the denotes the sum of four millions; that above eleven millions and a half; from the 18th to the 25th of Febut at the rate of about 1251. per bruary, 1707, the sum of 600,0001. cent. which to the proprietors at was paid in specie; the fictitious large would add one fourth to the number was therefore reduced from aboye eleven millions and a half, 314 to 210, and consequently the
sum of 1,272,0001. was the whole Nominal capital - 11,600,000 of the cash and bullion in the bank Twenty-five per
at that time the order of council cent. premium on
was issued. the stock or capital · 2,900,000
• Round numbers are employed, to void fractional calculations; the real sum due from government on a permaneat annuity being 11,686,8001.
TABLE shewing the Scale of Cash and Bullion in the Bank, from 1782 to 1797. 1782. No. No! 1789. No.
No. 1796. No. March 002 Dec. 13 1220 Mar. 28 1+62 Sept. 28 1032 January 558 June 5801786. June 27 1034 Dec. 29 805 March 490 Sept. 382 Mar. 24 1178 Sept. 20 1704 1793. May Dec. 352 June 30 1220 Dec. 24 1750 Mar. 30 580 July 414
1783. Sept. 30 1250 1790. June 29 728 Sept. 418 March 209 Dec. 30 119C Mar. 20 1712 Sept. 28 1128 Dec. 414 June 136 1787. June 25 1652 Dec. 30 12741 1797. Oct. 18 Mar. 21 1090 Sept. 24 1684 1794. January Dec. 110 June 30 1140 Dec. 31 16 16 Mar. 29 1420 Feb. 4 338
1784. Sept. 28 1270 1791. June 28 1354 1 1 340 June 224 Dec. 29 1180Mar. 26 1516 Sept. 27 1336- 18 356 Sept. 25 326 00 June 25 1552 Dec. 24. 1252- 21 314 Dec. 31 445! 1700 Sept. 24. 1582 1795.
- 22 298 1785. Mar. 29 1124 Dec. 31 1420 March 1310- 23 284 Mar. 19 582 June 28 1240 1792. Juve 12141- 24 7 268 June 25 854 Sept. 27 404 Mar. 31 1236 Sept. 956- 25 S 210 Sept. 24 1174 Dec. 21 1435 June 30 1132 Dec. *060l
* This nuraber has been stated to represent fuir cash.
The di counts to merchants, and will observe, represented also in the other individuals, are, the reader table below*, by arbitrary numbers,
1792 1793 1794
* TABLE OF DISCOUNTS. SCALE.
| Year: . SCALE. to 1
| 1795 - - i to to 1 i to 3 to 1
1796 - 1 to 2 to 1 ! to 2 1 to 1 to 1
| 1797 - 2 to 1 to 2 *. This is bronght down to the 16th of March, or thereabouts.
Monthly Scale of Discounts for the Years 1793, 1794, 1795, and 1796.
1793. No. 1794. No. 1795. No. 1796. No. January 5 214 January 4 101 January 4 ' 104 January 2, 179 February 209 February ( 110 February 7 107 February 6 152
217 March i 131 March 7 103 March 5 127 April Ô
320 April 5. 137 April 11 187 April 2 131 283 May 3 139 May 2 170 May 7
23) June 13 147 June 6 157 June 3 168 July 6 178 July 5 149 July 4 220 July 2 , August 3 123 August
2 1 20 August 1 151Angust 6 September 7 93 September 6 go September 5 85 September 3 151 October 5 102 October 4 02 October 3 79 October 1 189 November 8 9. November 8 85 Noveinber 7 9o November 3 160 December 7 9 December | 85 December 5 140\December 3 171
May 4 June 1