6 JUNE 1931, Page 1

Dominion Finances The Australian Premiers' Conference on Tuesday at last

took their courage in both hands and passed a resolution " that there be a reduction of 20% in all adjustable Government expenditure," including wages, salaries and pensions. It also instructed its legal committee to prepare legislation for the proposed con- version loan for all Government loans, but left still open the points raised by Mr. Lang and Mr. Lyons relating to interminable stock, which it was formerly proposed to convert compulsorily. The news, the first part of it at least, should reassure foreign and other holders of stocks to some extent, as evidence of a determination to reform expenditure before requiring concessions from creditors. Mr. Bennett's Budget for Canada has to meet a deficit of about £21,000,000; the year 1930-1931 also shows a deficit of £16,800,000. The deficit on the coming year will be not quite fully met by new taxation and by increases in the tariff from which British trade will suffer, though less than that of other countries.