17 OCTOBER 1931, Page 34

Financial Notes


THE stock markets are naturally dominated at the present time by election uncertainties. Or rather, it would, perhaps, be more correct to say by hopes of a Nationalist victory. For otherwise it would be impossible to account for the com- parative cheerfulness of some sections of the House, and particularly those connected with home industries. A feature, for example, during the last few days has been the strong rally in English Railway Ordinary and Prior Charge stocks and also some of the leading home industrials. Apparently these have been bought on the idea that the formation of strong Nationalist Government will tend to revive confidence and improve trade. In a general way, of course, this argument is sound enough, but I think it would be a mistake under the most favourable circumstances to look for any immediate rally in trade activity. British Funds have been only moderately supported during the week, although the value of the pound has been fairly well maintained. During the week there has been an announcement of Finland departing from the gold standard and also of Southern and Northern Rhodesia taking similar action.

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