BANKING IN AUSTRALIA. •
It is always satisfactory to be • able to comment upon progress in any of our banking institutions, but especially so when that progress is accompanied by sound and conservative management and a liquid balance-sheet. These conditions un- doubtedly apply to the English, Scottish and Australian Bank, and I am the more glad to emphasize the point because these are days when the well-being of our Empire banks arouses almost as much interest as that of the purely domestic insti- tutions. For the past year the actual gross profits of the bank only increased slightly, but, owing to economies in manage- Ment and smaller amounts paid in taxes, the net profit increased from £510,000 to £542,000. In consequence of the increase in the capital, the 121 per cent. tax -free diiridend absorbs more than in the previous year, but -owing to the big margin of profits over dividend requirements, there is practically no change in the allocations to special Funds. The amount placed to Reserve of £100,000 is slightly less than last year, but, on (Continued on page 878.)
the other hand, £93,750 has been paid in purchase of Deferred Inscribed Deposit Stock against £81,250 last year, while the amount to the Staff Fund is £20,000 against £10,000.
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