« ZurückWeiter »
The markets of South America and by the want of payment for the goods the West India islands are overstocked sold ; that will in some measure come at present ; but they will naturally round in the course of twelve months, come round, and the home trade al. and then the manufacturer will have ways takes off a certain quantity, so his own capital again. that he had no doubt in six or twelve That there has been a very consimonths this increased demand will do derable supply of this sort of manumore than take off what is on hand factures sent to the peninsula, which now, or what will be manufactured in was in a great measure with a view to the mean time, which will be a very their being sent to the Spanish colo. limited quantity indeed.
' nies ; that the same failure of payment “ That if there was no particular happened in some degree, in respect glut in the market, from the time of of those goods, as those sent to South shipping the goods till the payment America; that one considerable house could be commanded in this country, in London connected with this trade, he should conceive would be twelve or which stopped or made a pause within fifteen months; it may in some instan- the last two or three weeks, had sent ces be sooner, but, generally speaking, a great quantity to Cadiz; and they he should conceive about that time informed the witness that the last acIn some instances payments have been count they had was, that the goods much quicker, perhaps by the return would be all sold in this and the next of the same ship; and he mentioned month, by which means they should that there have even been instances of be able to make a handsome dividend ships returning within four or five to their creditors; but their bills ha." months.
ving gone back on the manufacturers, « The usual date of bills given by they are depressed in the mean time. the merchant to the manufacturer is." That there had been a great fall six or nine months, but in some cases in the price of the manufacture ; that it may be extended to twelve months; when he left Glasgow, there were some in cases where the goods are sold by articles of manufacture which had fallan agent in London, that agent inter en perhaps 40 or 50 per cent. ; but poses his credit, and gives an accommo- he understands, from communications dation to the manufacturer sooner, if since, that the fall is greater, because he requires it, taking his chance of the distress is become more general. payment from the merchant.
“ With respect to the failures that 6 That the distresses were imme. had happened, there are several houses diately and in the first instance occa- which will probably pay very large sioned by the want of payment for dividends; and indeed there are sevethose that were vended; but at the ral of the houses in Glasgow that he same time the want of a market is cer- alludes to, which stopped payment, tainly a part of the cause. The mar- have undertaken to pay their creditors kets of South America having been in full in a certain time ; one who had for a time overstocked, there is no more than 200,0001. of bills out, has great demand at present; and even undertaken to pay his creditors in 3, though there were a demand in the 4, 8, 12, and 16 months, and probably present situation of things, with the he will do it, but in the mean time the want of confidence and the want of manufacturers cannot command a shil. credit, it would be difficult for the ling of this money ; that the failure of manufacturers to know to whom to sell those houses, before he left Glasgow, with safety ; that is chiefly occasioned had amounted from one to two mil
lions ; one house, (the same to which amongst the workmen ; and though the witness alluded before) has failed there had not been any failures among since that time for 519,0001. which the more considerable and best estathey have undertaken to pay in full. blished houses of manufacture in Lan
“ That the failures of the export cashire, yet that great distress and emhouses certainly arose from their ha. barrassment must already be felt by ving gone greatly beyond their capital, many, and that some parliamentary ashaving exported goods to a far greater sistance would be of most essential ad. extent; but he understood many of vantage. those houses were not without capital, Your Committee think it right to and some even had large capital; but refer to the returns of the export of being disappointed in the markets, it the cotton manufactures in the follow. was found that they could not make ing years, to shew the state and protheir returns so quickly as their bills gress of the trade in this article of became due ; there are houses of that manufacture, up to the period when description in Liverpool, and some in this distress began to be strongly felt. Glasgow."
The official value of cotton manufacBeing asked, as to the amount of tures exported from Great Britain, in failures on the present occasion, as com- the year ending 5th Jan. 1808, was pared with those in 1793, he said,
£ 9,846,889 6. The proportion of failures will be in the year ending 5 Jan. 1809, 12,835,803 always something in proportion to the In the year ending 5 Jan. 1810, 18,616,723 extent of the trade ( which has increased And in the three quarters endwonderfully since 1793), and of course ing 10 October 1810............ 13,761,136 the failures now are to a much larger It appeared to your committee, that amount than they were at that period." there had been no want of a disposi.
Your Committee having given this tion on the part of the banks of Scot. full extract from the evidence of Mr land to give their accommodation; that Garden, have to state, that it was in they had liberally applied it, as far as general confirmed by the evidence of was possible ; but that it was impossi. Messrs I. and R. Mackerrell, and Mr ble they could continue their aid, as Henry Fulton, muslin manufacturers they had their capital already locked at Paisley; and that evidence in a up in an immense number of bills, the great degree to a similar import was payment of which was suspended. given to the Committee by Sir Robert Your committee also found, that Peel. With regard to the state of the great distress was felt in a quarter manufacturers in Lancashire, he stated, which was much connected with this that the price of goods had fallen 40, trade, namely, amongst the importers 50, and in some instances 60 per cent. of produce from the foreign West that the greatest manufacturers had India islands, and from South Ame. been obliged to reduce the quantity of rica. their work by one-third, others one. That great parts of the returns for half, and others again had been obliged the manufactures which were exported to discharge their workmen altogether; to those parts of the world, came home and that even those which were con- in sugars and coffee ; which not being tinued in employment, were continued entitled to sale in the home market, at a very reduced rate of wages, amount. there were no immediate means of re. ing to not more than one-half of their alizing their value. ordinary payment—that under these These representations of the distress circumstances, great distress was felt experienced in the trade of the cottop
manufacturer and exporter, and from Portuguese and Spanish, have been the want of market for foreign colonial thrown open to us, and the greater produce, were also confirmed by re- part of the immense productions of spectable merchants and traders in those places (from which formerly we London ; who also stated that the em- received but little property direct, ex. barrassments were felt in other branches cept bullion) now comes to fill the of trade not connected with foreign warehouses, and for a time to exhaust commerce or colonial produce.
the capitals of the merchants of this It also appeared to your committee, country. Our conquests also have that one cause which might be con- had the same tendency ; in addition sidered as connected with, and as at to the produce of the old British colopresent aggravating the existing dis- nies, we now receive that of Martinique, tress, was the extent to which the Guadaloupe, St Cruz, St Thomas's, system of warehousing the goods of &c. ; the greatest part of the produce foreigners, as well as native merchants, of St Domingo also now comes here. for exportation, had been carried. On From Europe, the importations from this point, the commitee refer to the places from which the British flag is evidence of Mr Cock, commercial and excluded, have been immense these public agent for the corporation of causes co-operating at a period when Liverpool, and general agent to the the situation of the United States has merchants of the town; who informed prevented their ships from introducing the committee, that,
into Europe that large proportion of 6 Since the opening of the West West Indian and South American proIndia and London Docks, Great Bri- ductions, of which they would have tain has, under the provisions of the been the carriers, the effects have been warehousing acts, become a free port, more sensibly felt by our merchants.” into which foreign goods of almost Your committee, upon the whole, every description may be brought and think themselves justified in stating, safely deposited, and from whence they that the embarrassments and distresses may be exported again without pay- at present experienced, are of an exment of importation duties.--This tensive nature ; and though they are country possessing peculiar advantages most severely felt amongst the manufor foreign commerce, the consequence facturers and merchants in those trades of such facility to introduce goods from which have been more particularly all parts of the world has been, that the specified, yet that they are also felt in merchants of other countries, whether a considerable degree in some other neutrals, enemies or allies, have been branches of trade; but they have the eager to avail themselves of every op- satisfaction of stating, that from the portunity of sending their goods hither. evidence of a very extensive and exFrom Spain (for instance such goods perienced merchant, it does not appear as have not been imported on British that they are felt in the woollen trade account, the Spanish merchants have to such an extent, as would at all justi. been anxious to send here for safety fy a call upon parliament for any ex. and for sale—the same remark applies traordinary relief. to Portugal; in fact, we are now the That your committee are warranted exporters of Portugal wines to that in stating, that there appeared a genecountry. While importations from ral concurrence of opinion amongst · Europe, not the result of a demand those of the witnesses who were exfor them, have thus been occasioned, amined, as to the expediency of afford. the markets of South America, both ing parliamentary relief in the manner in which it was afforded by the issue mend that it should be more, than sig of exchequer bills in the year 1793, millions; and that, considering the although there was some difference as probable date of the returns of trade to the extent of benefit which might from South America, a greater interbe expected to be derived from such val should be given for repayment than relief. And your committee state it was allowed in 1793, the committee to be their decided opinion, that al. being of opinion, that the time for though there are many circumstances payment of the first quarter's instal. at the present time affecting the state ments should not be earlier than the of trade and commercial credit, which middle of January next, and that the make a great difference between the remainder of the sum advanced should present period and that of the year be required to be repaid by three equal 1793, yet the distress is of such a na. payments, from three months to three ture and extent, as to make such par. months, so that the whole should be liamentary relief highly expedient and discharged in nine months from the necessary; and that it promises to be payment of such first instalment. productive of extensive and important 7th March, 1811. benefit; that although in many cases such aid may not be capable of effec
APPENDIX. tually relieving the persons to whom it may be applied, from great losses
London 12th February, 1811, arising from the state of circumstances, At a meeting of merchants and yet by affording them time gradually others, convened for the purpose of to contract their operations, to call in taking into consideration the difficultheir means, to withhold from imme- ties and distress, to which the mercandiate sale articles which at present can tile and manufacturing bodies of this fetch only most ruinous prices, and to country are exposed, and the best rekeep up the employment of their ma- medy that, under the circumstances, chinery and their workmen, though can be applied ; present, Sir J. Shaw, upon a very reduced and limited scale, bart. James Maryat, John Tunno, Jer. it will divide and spread the pressure Harman, Thomson Bonar, J. J. Anof this distress over a larger space of gerstein, J. Staniforth, J. Inglis, Thotime, and enable them to meet it with mas Reid, and Wm. Porter, esqrs. consequences less ruinous tothemselves, and the Deputies from Glasgow and and less destructive to the interests of Paisley : the community.
Resolved, That this meeting is That your committee referred to the strongly impressed with a sense of the manner in which relief was afforded in very great difficulties and distress to the year 1793, and have found that which the mercantile and manufactuthe provisions of that measure, which, ring bodies of every part of this kinga as appears by the report of the com- dom are subjected, and which threaten missioners appointed on that occasion, the most destructive consequences to was attended with the happiest effects, the merchant, and to every class of and the most complete success, are manufacturers and others dependent embodied in the act 33 Geo. 3. cap. on them. 29; and the committee are of opinion, That this distress, which in the that similar provisions should be adopt- origin was considered to be attributaed with regard to the relief at present ble to the imprudently extensive speproposed ; that the amount of exche. culations of some individuals, to those quer bills to be issued should not be new markets in South America, which less, nor would the committee recom- had recently been opened, has, in the
opinion of this meeting, been in a cer That it has been the effect of this tain degree occasioned by circumstan- combination of circumstances, to proces of a different nature, and far more duce a general distrust and want of extensive influence; and such as, this confidence, whereby the evil has been meeting trust, will, upon enquiry, be incalculably aggravated, and is daily found to justify an expectation of re- extending ; so that, unless some imlief from the assistance of parliament, mediate and effectual remedy be prounder the sanction of the lords com- vided, the consequences will, in the missioners of his majesty's treasury. opinion of this meeting, certainly prove
That the system of warehousing of a fatal description to the trade and goods for re-exportation (without pay. manufactures of this city, and the ment of duty having been brought kingdom at large, and every interest into complete operation by the con- dependent upon them. struction of the West India and Lon- That this meeting therefore considon Dock warehouses, and of similar der it as incumbent on them, to subreceptacles for merchandize in the prin. mit these deeply interesting matters to cipal out-ports, the events which have the consideration of the lords commis. occurred during the last two years sioners of his majesty's treasury; humhave tended to make Great Britain bly soliciting that relief may be afford. the emporium of the trade, not only ed by a loan of exchequer bills, as was. of the peninsula, but also of the Bra done in a similar case of commercial zils, of the Spanish settlements in difficulty (but of a much less alarming South America, St Domingo, the extent) in the year 1793, for such peconquered colonies of Guadaloupe, riod, and with such regulations, as, Martinique, &c. but even of countries under all the circumstances herein set under the direct influence of the ene. forth, shall appear to be just and exmy, whose traders have been anxious pedient. to avail themselves of the protection of That Messieurs Thomas Reid, J. J. British laws and of the honour of Bri. Angerstein, John Tunno, John Inglis, tish merchants. And thus it has, and the deputies from Glasgow and from these simultaneous and co-ope. Paisley, be requested to wait on the rating causes, happened, that in a short Chancellor of the Exchequer with a space of time, goods have been brought copy of these resolutions. to this country, in amount beyond all precedent, and all calculation. That Report on Petition of several Wea. the power, wealth, and high character
vers, &c. of the nation, have in fact contributed to produce a most alarming evil. And The commitee to whom the petition the measures of the enemy having been of several thousand manufacturers and especially directed to the preventing artizans in the town of Manchester the exportation of the immense quan- and neighbourhood ; and also, the pe, tities of merchandize of all descriptions tition of several weavers and spinners thus accumulated, the consequences of cotton, handicrafts, artists, and lao are, that the goods are become a bur bourers, resident in the town of Bol. then, and the advances to the owners ton, in the county of Lancaster, or its on account, and the payment of freight vinicity, were referred, to examine the and insurance, have become grievous, matter thereof, and report the same, in such a degree, as to threaten the with their observations thereupon, to most solid and respectable houses with the house ;-and to whom the petitions all the evils of insolvency.
of persons residing in the town of RE