13 APRIL 1929, Page 44


In the twelve-month . which has just closed, that charge, owing to dearer money, was far larger than the Chancellor had expected -and the Sinking Fund suffered accordingly. This is the more regrettable, when it is remembered that on the present basis of £855,000,000, the'_margin -remaining over for the _Sinking Fund, even Supposing that no encroachment 'Occurred in the shape of high interest charge on the debt during the year, is no more than sufficient to cover the amounts required to meet the definite Sinking Funds attached to particular Loans. Of course, those particular attachments would at all costs be maintained in operation, but it might conceivably have to be at the .cost of fresh borrowing in the shape of Floating Debt, in which connexion it must be noted that the accounts which _terminated on March 31st showed that the Floating Debt .was nearly £50,000,000 greater. than a year .previously,. the volume of Treasury Bills outstanding- having increased by £178,000,000.