The Exchequer returns published last week showed that the revenue
for the year 1919-20 was £1,339,571,381, and the expenditure £1,665,772,928. The revenue exceeded Mr. Chamberlain's revised estimate by nearly £171,000,000, but it must be remembered that £264,000,000 comes from the sale of surplus stores. The expenditure exceeded his estimate by £23,000;000. He anticipated a deficit of over £473,000,000, but the actual deficit shown on these returns was £326,000,000. Comparisons with the previous year are of small value, but It may be noted that the expenditure of 1918-19 was cut down by a third and the- revenue of 1918-19 was increased by a half during the financial year now closed. We question whether even America has done as much towards restoring her finances ; certainly no other belligerent country can show such a creditable record as Mr. Chamberlain's. It is only a first step, of course, towards a normal peace Budget, and the deficit, though less than was feared, is enormous. Still, the results of the past year are encouraging, for the transition from war to peace has now been effected, and much of last year's expenditure will not recur.