STOCK EXCHANGE, FRIDAY AFTEILNOON.
Money continues in steady demand on Government Securities at the minimum rate of 6 per cent. Applications have been occasionally rather numerous at the Bank ,but thereliave been no signs of great pressure either in or out of the Stock Exchange. This has been a dull week in the market for English Securities : Consols have alternated only between 931 and 931. Business has been almost stagnant. The market closes this afternoon as it opened-93/ : the quotation for the 7th May is 94 1. Exchequer Bills (small) have been done today at is. dis, and ls. pm.
Foreign Stocks have been animated, and some fluctuations will be observed in most quotations. Owing to the non-ratification of the treaty between Mexico and the United States, Mexican Bonds, after reaching 241, have receded to 221-1 per cent within the original price : they leave off at nt 23. PeruvianFour-and-a-half per Cents, 761 771; Ditto Three per Cents, 55 56 ; Buenos Aires, 83 85; Venezuela, 36/ 371. It has been announced from Brussels, that the Government propose to convert the Five per Cent Belgian Bonds into Four-and-a-half per Cents : a premium of per cent is to be allowed to holders accepting these terms; and the entire operation is to be completed by the 3d of April. A similar proposition was made at the end of 1852. The Bank of Amsterdam has reduced its rate of discount from 41 to 4 per cent.
In the Railway Share Market, priced, after fluctuating to some extent, slow about the same as last Saturday. London and North-Western, 1044j; Great Western, 68 j; Midland, 82 11 ; Lancashire and Yorkshire, 1011 102; London and South-Western, 511 52. A moderate amount of business hats been transacted in both heavy and light shares. Aberdeen Stock, 261 61 ; Dover, 221 ; Caledonian, 34 ; Brighton, 108 109. There is nothing whatever doing this afternoon. •
Foreign Railways have been pretty active. Northern of France have jumped up 1/. per share 401 it. Pans and Lyons have been much higher, but close at 611 1. Negotiations are in progress at Paris for the iunalgamation of the Pans and Lyons and the Lyons and Mediterranean Railway Companies; it is stated that the fusion will be on the following terms—four shares of the Paris and Lyons for three in the Lyons and Mediterranean. Sambre and Meuse dose at 91 ; Central, 241 1. There has been a little inquiry for Luxembourg Obligations during the week ; the closing price is 6 5-16 to 7-16. Indian Shares stationary. Riga rather better-21 1.
A dividend of 181. has been declared on the shares of the Stock Exchange.
SATURDAY, TWELVE O'CLOCK.
The telegraphic intelligence published this morning of the great probability of an early peace with China, caused the Funds to open firmer; the first price in Consols was 931 ; since which they have advanced to 931, buyers. Foreign Stocks are all better. Railway Shares are also about 1 per cent higher. The tone of the markets all round is good. The Bank return of last night gives an increase of 24,632/. in the stock of bullion.
SATURDAY, ONE O'CLOCK.
There has been considerable activity in the Stock Exchange all the morning: Consols are sellers at 931 only. The Foreign Market closes firm ; dealers are preparing their accounts for the first settling on Tuesday. Contangos rule easier this Account. The following will show some of the latest transactions in Railway and Miscellaneous Shares—Caledonian, 681; Eastern Counties, 111; Great Northern, 961; Great Western, 681 ; Lancashire and Yorkshire, 1021; London and North-Western, 1041; London and South-Western, 10
Manchester, Sheffield, and Lincolnshire, ; Midland, 84; 'North Brit' , 441; North-Eastern—Berwick, 86/. Joint Stock Banks—Bank of Egypt, 171; Chartered Bank of India, Australia, and China, 69; London and County, 321; London Joint Stock, 301; Ottoman Bank, 1 ; Western Bank of London, 39. Miscellaneous—Canada, 155; London eneral Omnibus, Company; 41.
Striking instances of mismanagement in private companies have been chronicled this week. First came that of the Australian Agricultural Association. This society, with a paid-up capital of 360,0004 and a free grant of 700,000 acres of land, has squandered its immediate resources, and kept the shareholders in profound Ignorance. Next, the London and Eastern Bank, which, with a paid-up capital of 250,0001., has in three years assisted its own directors and manager to the extent of 290,0001., and has announced the probable loss of the whole investment and the probability of further calls. The shareholders of the North of Europe Steam Company have discovered that they have lost 50,000/. out of 500,0001. in a few months ; and that the last half-yearly dividend at the rate of 8 per cent per annum was paid not only when there had been no profits, but actually while these ruinous proceedings were going on. A committee of investigation has been appointed. The London and Paris Bank has been abandoned. Not a single step has been taken towards the commencement of business yet 14,422/. has been spent by the directors in introducing the scheme to the public.
At a meeting of the Ottoman Bank, on Thursday, Mr. Layard in the chair, the dividend declared was at the rate of 15s. per share' or 10 per cent per annum ; and the report and accounts were unanimously adopted.
The Trinidad Railway Company—with a capital of 300,0004—propose to construct a railway in the island if the Colonial Government will grant a guarantee of 6 per cent on the capital, but not otherwise. A Parliamentary return shows that in 1866 three-fourths of our supply of foreign flour, three-fifths of Indian corn, and more than a fourth of wheat, were imported from the United States.
Some instruotive figures respecting the trade of St. Petersburg are furnished by the Berlin correspondent of the Antes. In 18,56 the total Valle of all articles imported was 68,871,752r. ; of all articles exported, 54,926,091r. ; of the imports the most extensive were raw cotton, amounting to 13,462,029r. ; precious metals, 9,343,672r. ; raw sugar, 8,005,520r.; colours, 6,702,47r.; sundries, 15,786,050r. Of the total amount of 68,871,752r., no less than 64,257,720r. was the value of goods imported by raerchants, ,while the foreigners trading there imported only to the amount of 4,491,740r. Of the exports the most extensive Were grain, to the amount of . 15,355,686r. ; tallow, 11,445,920r. ; sundries 14,762,035r. ; and then the only article of any amount remaining to be mentioned it hemp, 4,100,458r. Of the total amount of 54,926,091r., the Russian merchants exported to the extent of 39,558,999r., while the foreigners trading there exported to the • amount of 15,311,562r. The total amount of customs-dues received at St.. Petersburg and Cronstadt on the imports and exports of 1856 was 9,700,733r. " The following totals of the exports cleared out at St. Petersburg during the last four years will show the effects of the war on that chief port of Russian trade, and its recovery after the peace—The exports in 1853 were 53,267,261 roubles ; in 1854, 9,585,689; in 1856, 2,56,l94; in 1866, 54,926,091."