Something was said in another part of the Spectator last
week, on the strength of the Bowater results, of the spectacular profits paper-makers have achieved in the past year. Since then several other results have been published, and they are worth some brief reference here. Inveresk Paper Company reports gross profits of £5,148,349 as against £1,685,796 in the previous year; Townsend Hook gross profits of £964,354 against £479,321; and Olives Paper Mill (a smaller concern) £185,281 against £48,246. (A good part of this, of course, goes in tax.) The mildest question that can be asked is whether prices to consumers need have been forced up as they have been. One answer has been given by the well-known firm of Hugh Stevenson and Co., who specialise in cardboard boxes. Having based their selling prices on a certain estimated cost Of raw material, and succeeded in buying the material a good deal cheaper, they have handed £40,000 back to their customers.