The Revenue Return of the United Kingdom for the quartet
ending on the 30th ult. bears witness to a continued depression of prosperity under those heads which always are the most sensi- tive,—Customs and Excise. In both there has been a falling-off, which makes the present return lower than that for any of the last eight quarters, the new figures being, under Customs £4,626,000; and under Excise £5,508,000, as against £4,670,000 and £5,547,000 respectively, in the corresponding quarters of last year. The net increase for the quarter is 183,545, chiefly accounted for by the large returns under the bead of " Property Tax," the fruit of the extra 2d. imposed in the Budget; and as against this, we have to set off the fact that the decrease in Customs and Excise is such as it is in spite of the increase in the Tobacco Duty, which was calculated to bring in £800,000 a year. The return does not altogether make very pleasant reading, especially at a time when we are being already warned that we shall have to pay our share of the bill for Afghanistan, when the Money Market is quaking, and when the Premier is doubtless arranging for some new and expensive burst of rockets, to make the time pass pleasantly.