14 AUGUST 1936, Page 34

Financial Notes


Nor for the first time the month of August looks like belying its reputation for stagnation of business during the height of the holiday season. This year the firmness and (Continued on page 292.) Financial Notes (Continued from page 290.)

even the activity of markets is the more remarkable in view of the unfavourable external influences in the shape of European politics. Possibly, however, that very fact has tended to concentrate not only domestic but foreign attention upon British home securities, and certainly the outstanding feature of the month has been the firmness of Home Railways and Home Industrial shares, though British Funds and kindred stocks have also been a firm market. Home Railways have of course received a direct impetus from the recent rating decision and the hope that the wages question has been settled for at least another twelve months. Moreover, the traffic returns continue to be excellent and promise still further expansion if trade activity continues. The most noteworthy exception to the general firmness of markets during the week has been the heavy fall in Spanish bonds and the weakness of French securities. The former of course have been affected by the Revolution, while French bonds have been sold on apprehensions with regard to the general financial outlook in France.

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It was only a few weeks ago that I had to report in these columns a distinct falling off in the demand for. new issues of Home Corporation stocks. There had been for some time a steady stream of such issues in 3 per cents. at the price of 99, and the supply had proved to be greater than the demand, with the result, that the response from the investor slackened materially. Accordingly, there was a cessation _of these loan flotations for some weeks, and, when they were resumed, it became evident that the demand had once more revived. Of this revival striking evidence was afforded by the recent issue of Plymouth Corporation stock of £750,000 in 3 per Cents. at 99, when the total applications amounted to about £30,000,000. It may be well to point out, however, that these huge applica- tions are usually due in large measure to subscriptions by mere premium hunters. These premium hunters-or "stags " as they are sometimes called-had practically disappeared when there was a falling off in the investment demand some weeks ago, but when it became apparent that the demand had been resumed there was a very quick resurrection of the " stags."

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Although a slight fall in the stock of Arthur Guinness, Son and Co. apparently reflected some disappointment in the market that the dividend for the past year, namely a final dividend and bonus of 12 per cent. and 5 per cent. respectively, making 29 per cent. in all for the year, showed no advance on the previous year, the results nevertheless must be regarded as very good. A further £200,000 has been placed to the Reserve and about £37,000 allowed for Depreciation, while the • Carry Forward has been increased by 260,000. It should be remembered, too, that at the last meeting the chairman referred to the construction of the new brewery at Park Royal and the call made by the new undertaking on the company's reserves.

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Particulars have been published recently of an issue of fresh capital by Scophony Ltd. There has been no invita- tion to the public to subscribe for the shares, the notices which have appeared being for the purposes of giving information with regard to the company. The concern was incorporated in April of last year for the purpose of acquiring the assets of a private company of the same name which was incorporated in 1930 to develop the Scophony system of television. It is maintained that the company is in a favourable position by reason of its basic inventions, rendering possible the direct projection of high-definition television pictures suitable both for home_ and cinema entertainment The capital of the company is £300,000 in Ordinary shares of 5s. each, of which 560,000 shares have been issued, the last issue being one of 140,000 Ordinary shares at a premium of 2s. 6d. per share. The Chairman of the company is Sir