Abbildungen der Seite

considered it probable that a similar expenditure would be necessary in future years, he would at once, whatever the hazard might be, have made an appeal to the spirit and magnanimity of the country; and from such an appeal he was sure the country would not have shrunk. From the feeling which had been manifested in consequence of the recent events, he was satisfied that those measures, which the wisdom of Parliament might think necessary to the honor and security of the country, would be cheerfully submitted to. But thinking as he did, that an expenditure to the amount of that of the present year, was not likely again to recur, even if the war should continue on the present scale, which was that which he could not anticipate, he had thought it wiser to have recourse to no other means than those which it had been usual for Parliament to adopt on former occasions. However large the demand which had in consequence been made on the credit of the country, he saw no reason to regret this resolution. The Honourable Gentleman now proceeded to state the ways and means which would be, in the opinion of his Majesty's ministers, the fittest to meet the supplies which had been voted. He took the annual duties at 3,000,0002. the surplus of the Consolidated Fund, he also took at 3,000,000l. It would be satisfactory to the House to learn the grounds on which he estimated the surplus of the Consolidated Fund, at that amount; and they would view with pleasure the increased resources of the country. It might also be proper that he should show the grounds on which he intended to propose on a future day a grant of 22,000,000l. out of the growing produce of the war taxes. He should not call upon them to come to this vote that night, as it was more consistent with the forms of Parliament, that some portion of the ways and, means of the year should be reserved for a time to meet any future grants which might yet be made in the course of the session. He, however, considered himaelf justified in taking the war taxes as 22,000,000l.; the lottery he took at 250,000l. old naval stores at 508,500l.; the vote of Credit he had stated at 6,000,000l.; the Exchequer bills funded, and the loan in the five per cent, would give 18,135,000l. The second loan 27,000,0007. These were the ways and means by which he proposed to meet the charge of the year, immense as it was. The total amount of them was 79,893,500l. This sum fell a little short of the supplies, but upon the whole he expected the ways and means which he had enumerated would prove sufficient. It was his peculiar duty this day to state the terms on which the loan had been contracted for the service of the public. It had been the object of the Treasury to diffuse the loans called for, over different species of stock, in order to divide the burthen, to remove all inconveniences to the VOL. VI. * C*



public creditor, and to provide for the exigency on the easiest terms. This would be seen by adverting to their former proceedings in the course of the session. It had been proposed to fund 18,000,000l. of Exchequer bills. This, in the first instance, they had not been able to effect; but subsequently on a loan in the five per cents, subscribers had gone beyond the 18,000,000l. by a sum of 135,000l. The sum, therefore, of 18,135,000l. was thus placed in the ways and means. The committee were aware, that by the loan that day, no less a sum than 27,000,000l. for England was to be raised, and as the five per cents, were sufficiently burthened, it became necessary that this should principally fall on the three and the four per cent stocks. It was originally proposed that a larger sum should be taken in the four per cents, but on the subscribers objecting to this, 10l. per cent. only had been given out of that stock, 1307. had been taken from the three per cent reduced, and the remaining part of the 100l. was to be by a bidding in the three per cent. consols. It had happened singularly enough, as it had once on a former occasion, about eighteen monts ago," that the sum offered by the subscribers, was exactly the minimum of what the treasury had resolved to accept. This was a circumstance so far satisfactory, as it went to show that both parties met on fair and honourable terms, and arrived at the same point, from reasoning different ways. What further proved the correctness of the view which had been taken of the case was that four different calculations had been made by four different persons, and all had concurred in naming 447. in the three per cent consols, as that which ought to be the bidding. The bonus which the Subscribers had was to be estimated in this

manner :

The 1301. given in the three per cent, reduced, at 54, were worth

The 101. in the four

per cent at 691

The 447. in the three per cent consols, at 54


[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors]

£101 15 3

The Consols being shut, there was no money price to them, and the time's price was something more than the money price of that stock. The time's price was 551⁄2, but from this one and a half per cent. was to be deducted, on account of the dividend to arise from the half year which was about to expire: as no dividend would be paid to the subscribers to the loan on that stock tiil January next. This, therefore, reduced the value of the three per cents. consols to 541. which made the total sum given to the subscribers what he had before stated; 1017. 15s. 2d. to which, adding the sum which would be allowed them in case of prompt

payment, made an addition of 21. 13s. 73d. and the total 1047. 8s. 101d. including the whole of the discount allowed to any who might pay the intire amount of their subscriptions at once. But it was obvious, the loan being on so large a scale, it would not be fair to expect that so many could do this as had so come forward on former occasions, and that when the monthly instalments were so considerable, there was less probability of payments in advance than when a smaller loan was called for. On this account he thought that not more than half the discount, at the utmost, could be estimated as a bonus to the contractors, which would reduce their advantage to no more than 37. 2s. per cent. The bargain therefore was not unreasonably favorable to them, and there was reason to rejoice that such a Loan could be obtained at a period like the present on such terms. He would now proceed to explain the grounds on which he took the surplus of the Consolidated Fund at three millions. The actual surplus of that fund in the year ending April 5, 1815, after deducting. all charges, had been 3,647,000, and would therefore have justified an estimate to the same extent for the current year, supposing the revenue to remain equally productive, and the additional charges to be covered by the provision made by parliament for meeting them. As, however, there remained the sum of 284,000l. granted for the service of a former year still due on April 5, the sum which would remain for the service of the current year would be no more than 3,363,000l. In another mode of estimate the result would be still more favorable. The amount of taxes applicable to the Consolidated Fund of Great Britain in the year ended April 5, 1815, was 38,702,000

[ocr errors]

Adding the War Taxes, appropriated to the Consoli

dated Fund.


There would be a total Income of


From which, deducting the permanent charges of
Great Britain, existing April 5, 1815,

[ocr errors]


[blocks in formation]



He should, therefore, have thought himself justified in proposing a grant on account of this surplus to the extent of 3,500,000%. But as no inconvenience would arise from its being estimated too low, and some had been experienced from an error of an opposite nature, he thought the safer course was to take it, at 3,000,000l. With respect to the War Taxes, he should, at a future day, pro

pose a vote highly satisfactory, from the view which it give of the increasing means of the country. The amount of the War Taxes, taking them at what they were last year, and adding the arrears of the Property Tax remaining to be collected,

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

There would remain to be granted for the service

of the year . £22,213,567 On the credit of this he should consider himself fully justified in moving on a future day a grant of 22,000,000l. It was worth while to look back to the increase which had taken place in the produce of the permanent and war taxes since the last considerable addition was made to them. The Committee were aware that no new taxes had been proposed since the year 1813. In the year ending April 5, 1813, their total produce was somewhat less than 60,000,000l. In the year ended April 5, 1815, they amounted to 65,804,000l. thus giving an increase of five millions and a half. Undoubtedly, it must be admitted, that the year ending April 5, 1813, had been less productive than some which had preceded it; but, making every reasonable allowance for this circumstance, the increase had been great beyond all former example. He now came to state the amount of the charge on the country, by the loans for the present year, and the way in which it was proposed to meet them. The total amount of the capital created by the Exchequer Bills funded, and the loan in the 5 per cents. amounted to 21,208,000l. 5 per cent. Stock; the interest of this to 1,060,000l.; the Sinking Fund to 331,000l. with the usual charge for management. The loan obtained that day created a capital of 49,680,000l. the interest of which would be 1,517,000l.; the Sinking Fund, would amount to 758,700%. to which was to be added the charge for management. The total amount of the capital created in the present year by funding, was 70,888,000l. The interest on this was 2,577,000l.; the Sinking Fund 1,090,000l.: the total annual charge to the country 3,689,000l. The rate per cent. at which the whole of the sum raised in the present year had been obtained was, to the subscribers, (including the Sinking Fund,) 5l. 14s. 2d. The total charge to the country

was, every thing included, 87. 3s. 54d. He wished to show what had been the impression made on the Stocks by the financial operations of the present year, and to compare them with that which had formerly been produced by those measures rendered necessary to prosecute the late war. In 1795, a Loan was obtained at 4l. 14s. per cent. In that and the following year 137 millions were added to the national debt, and the effect of this on the Stocks was such, that for a loan borrowed at the beginning of 1797, the public were compelled to pay 67. 7s, per cent. being an increase of interest, and consequently a depression of public credit of 33 shillings per cent. on the amount of the Loan, and of 35 per cent. on the interest paid in the former year. Now, since the year 1813, the public debt had been increased one hundred and eighty seven millions, and the effect was this:-in that year we paid 5l. 8s. to the Subscribers: we this year paid 51. 14s. 2d. on the whole amount borrowed. So that with this immense addition to our debt, no greater depression on public credit was observable than six shillings and two pence per cent. on the Loan and about five and a half per cent. on the former interest. This might be considered to result from an astonishing increase of public credit since the period to which he had referred, or to the improved situation of the country. And whichever way it was viewed the effect was equally gratifying. To provide for the annual charge of 3,689,000l. the House had already supplied by taxes of Customs and Excise, on Tobacco, and on Excise Licences about 600,000l. and there were now under the consideration of the House, additions to the Stamps and Postage to the amount of about 1,200,000l. more, making in the whole a provision by new taxes of about 1,800,000l. Thus it would be seen about half the necessary supplies were provided by taxes now agreed to, or in progress through the House. For the remainder, he proposed to take a sum of from 1,800,000l. to 1,900,000l. out of the sums in the hands of the Commissioners for liquidating the National Debt, as he was authorised to do by the Act of 1813. The sum in their hands was at present about 70,000,000l. and he proposed to cancel so much of that as would suffice to meet the remainder of the charge created by the Loan. He wished it to be borne in mind, as a consideration of no small importance, that a large proportion of the immense sum called for must have been supported by the country as arrears of the late war, had not the recent events again placed us in a state of hostility to France. On the most moderate calculation, no less than 21,000,0002. would have been sufficient. Of this 12,000,000l. were for the arrears of the Army Extraordinaries: for the payment of the

« ZurückWeiter »