16 AUGUST 1930, Page 1

The foreign trade returns for July are disheartening. Contrary to

the opinion of those who have so often pointed to prosperity abroad as a cause of difficulty here, we discern the dependence of one nation upon another. The world was never able to produce more readily or more profusely. which means that the dis- tribution of material wealth ought to be freer than ever. The clouds are not lifting yet, but when they do they will gradually let brightness return to the world as one, not to Great Britain alone but to her as a member or the whole body of inter-dependent trading nations. We must record two special troubles at the moment. Nature has visited the United States with a prolonged drought which is bound to cause heavy losses through her greatest agricultural areas. Man has brought about a stoppage of production of textiles in Northern France. A strike has spread through the woollen, cotton and linen mills of Lille, Tourcoing and Roubaix. The workers have been sore over rising prices and refusals to raise wages, and further annoyed by the new Social Insurance Law which demands a share of the premiums front their wages. This last effort of the State to do good to the wage-earners by compulsion is, as usual, ill-received, lint has no logical connexion with the trade dispute. There seems to be great bitterness and miserable lack of trust between the employers and wage-earners.

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