1 JUNE 1934, Page 30


Among the stocks which have suffered some reaction during the past week, Home Railway Ordinary Stocks have figured rather prominently ; the damping influence is the recurrence of the wages controversy. That wage earners who submitted to a cut of a little over 4 per cent. in 1931 should be watching the growth in Railway Receipts during the past year is only natural, and if only common sense and restraint mingle with the longing for restoration of the cuts, all may yet' he well. And because there is usually so much common sense in the average British worker, I think that in reality it is only organized agitation which has to be feared. For some few years the Railway industry has been fighting for its life amidst the forces of unprecedented trade depression and-road competition. Now, thanks to h moderate improve- ment in trade, to drastic'economies on the part of the manage- ment and a bid by the management for increased traffic by quoting-lower fares,- some-recovery has taken place. It was in 1931, when Railway Receipts were deplorably low, that the cuts of just over 4 per cent were imposed, and accepted. In the following year, the Net Revenue of the-four Trunk Railways had fallen to a little over £26,000,000, as compared with about _141,006,000 in 1928 and about £45,000,000 in 1929. Last year there was a recovery to nearly, 129,000,000, a figure, however, still below that for 1931. -- - -