31 March 1866. N. 1179.

The Economist, 31. März 1866. S. 378–380.
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The good and bad Mode of making minor railways.

At this moment all persons concerned in making many of the newest minor railways are half ruined by it – the shareholders and directors who have been led to incur personal liability rather than that the line in which they are interested should stop in the middle; the contractor who took his payment in shares of the co. now worthless; the finance cos. which lent money on „Lloyd’s bonds“ of the Co. and on bills of the directors-bonds now all but worthless, and bills hard to get paid.

Three motives induce people to make minor railways in England: 1) The greatest number are made out of contention. (Theils auf debateable land zwischen 2 grossen cos. Dann the co. worsted in the mixed district, invaded the antagonist cos’ peculiar district; that co. retaliated and so on in a course surprising, for both parties half knew they were lessening their income.[)] 2) On speculation. A contractor who sees a district which 2 great cos. both want, makes a line there, and sells the line to the highest bidder. His trade being construction, he generally gets a fair profit of his adventure, and a large profit if the rival cos. are eager bidders, though of late the high rate of interest and the quantity of such securities in the market have made it difficult for him to get money on terms which would pay, have always made his trade difficult, and often ruined him altogether. 3) On vanity. An engineer and a lawyer, sure to gain, induce gentlemen of a district „on public grounds“ to take shares in a railway and to become directors of it. Letztre oft ruined.

To insure good faith and solvency of the promoters, Parliament tried two ways:

1) It prescribed a „subscription contract“ to be signed in sufficient amount by solvent persons pledging themselves to make the railway. The subscription lists were filled with unsatisfactory names, schwer to detect. Committee (Parliament) in London no judge of persons in province etc[.] System broke down.

2) Present plan: Parliament required a certain sum of money or stock to be deposited by the promoters of the line. The promoters simply borrow that money or stock on their credit or on their securities; very commonly the lender’s name is placed in the books of the B.o.E. along with that of the promoter’s; the stock or the money does not go out of his possession, and when the bill is passed, the borrowed capital is returned to the lender and is not used to make the railway. Just before the „depositing“ season all banks are besieged to lend their stock for this purpose, and its deposit, in fact, shows neither bona fides nor solvency; it shows only that the promoters can get a certain sum into hands upon a secured promise to return it. There is often no company when the bill is passed, even if there is afterwards. (So this plan has also broken down.)

Many non-paying railways exceedingly benefit the places through which they pass, and do so even when no manipulation of fares would make them pay any better. It may often be for the substantial good of a whole district to have a railway, though that railway, after the most remunerative settlement of fares, will only just meet working expenses, and never yield a dividend. The reason is that the railway benefits the stationary property which you cannot charge as well as the conveyed property which you do charge. You can only make a line pay its shareholders by taxing the people and things that travel on the railway. But besides these the whole saleable value of the land of the district is enhanced sometimes almost fabulously. A pretty residence near London, suitable to a man of substantial business, if near a railway, will sell for a price that could never pay the purchaser 2%. But if that residence was far from a railway, it would not get into the market … The case of building land of poor quality is still stronger. The London Chatham and Dover railway does not pay a dividend, perhaps it is not likely to do so; yet, it is well known, that it has enhanced the value of the estates through which it passes, often very much. An estate used to be worth 41,000l. becomes in a few years worth 60,000l., and other similar figures. In many cases no tariff will make these railways give a good dividend … Yet this maximum rate (for goods’ and passengers’ fares) may not to be enough to do more than keep the railway open, while all round the rails the land and the houses may be rising rapidly in price.

Richtige Methode in Switzerland und France. The railway, or portion of it, is made out of the canton or country rate. The sum is borrowed at once and paid off annually during a term of years. Thus the stationary property benefited pays its fair part of the charge. The |40 canton or department investigates which line suit the locality best, selects the line, and raises by local taxation the necessary funds.

The Economist, 31. März 1866. S. 382.
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Meetings of Agricultural labourers.

The agricultural mind is disturbed. The Mark Lane Express is unhappy. Cattle plague und nun obendrein: the helpless labourers are becoming less patient and less helpless in the matter of wages. Even in husbandry, there is in many districts a demand for labour not altogether easily supplied. In Scotland, the meetings of the ploughmen and other farm workmen have been numerous, and indicated much purpose and good sense on the part of those workmen.

Lately, however, there has been a meeting of agricultural labourers at Maidstone, Kent „for the purpose of taking into consideration their present low wages, with the view of taking steps for an increase thereof“. 4–500 labourers from all the neighbouring parishes. It was agreed: „That this meeting is of opinion, considering the great rise in provisions and other necessaries, together with the fact that nearly every branch of industry had received an increase of pay, that the farmers in this district be solicited to grant their labourers an advance of 6d. p. day upon their present scale of wages.“ They also resolved „that an increase of 2d. on the shilling upon the present scale of piece work be sought for as commensurate with that of day-work“. Endlich: „that it is the duty of the employers to permit their men to leave their work at 4 o’clock on Saturday afternoon.“ Of course it must depend on the state of the labour market in Kent whether the rural labourers have or have not any prospect of success … The attempt, however, shows that there are some circumstances rendering success to be apparently possible. At an adjourned meeting 600 labourers were present, and then it was determined to memoralise the farmers of West Kent in conformity with the foregoing resolutions. A 1000 signatures were rapidly attached to such memorial. Doubtless many farmers will regard such a movement much as the workhouse dignitary regarded Oliver Twist when asking for more. That seems in part the spirit in which the Mark Lane Express deals with it. Our contemporary also applies the sort of „mutual confidence“ argument so often and so absurdly directed towards the farmers themselves on the part of their landlords. … This is not a question of sympathy at all. The landlord has made a hard bargain with his tenant, giving him scant security, and many burdens, and drawing as much rent as can be got; while the farmer, in his turn, drives the hardest bargain he can with his men. … This pressure on the part of their labourers arises out of the improving circumstances of the country, its continuance is inevitable, its increase more than probable. What is their remedy? They must relieve themselves from some of the pressure they sustain from above; insist on rational leases; shake off the game and the gamekeeper; require their landlords to do the necessary landlords’ improvements, render their farms fit for the occupation of enterprising and capitalist tenants. Let them do this, and they will find there is a power, at present latent, in the soil to produce more profits and higher wages.

The Economist, 31. März 1866. S. 385–387.
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Discount and Money Market.

Money is steadily cheapening. Abroad, wie in England, besonders in France, the accumulation of capital goes on, and paper of London is readily taken as an investment at the higher rates prevailing here. Dennoch at Bank und in open market a sustained inquiry, owing to the approach of the quarter and the consequent necessity of providing for matured engagements in commercial circles. Some of the discount houses and financial establishments have also found themselves under the necessity of providing against the probable withdrawal of deposits by the public. The foreign exchanges, already high, seem likely to be supported, as the wool sales just concluded have proved heavy, and a larger amount than usual is likely to be exported from this country.|


Foreign stocks. Considerable fall in almost all securities. State of Affairs in Germany, Fenian demonstrations in America. Jedoch little doubt that forced sales of stock to meet the losses incurred on financial and miscellaneous shares, with those effected in consequence of the closing of many loan accounts, have had much more to do with the decline.

Railway shares: In England Railway prices steady or rather higher.

Indian stocks and shares have recovered from the decline, from now at higher prices than those previously attained.

Banking shares in a few cases lower. The amount of acceptances afloat gives colour to the rumour that „financial“ business entered into more or less extensively by several of the less cautious joint stock banks.

Financial shares: A call of £5 announced in 2 instalments on the shares of the Imperial Mercantile Co. proved the signal for a fresh downward movement. On the settling day, however, the accounts showed a tolerably even state of things; perhaps the bear accounts were the most numerous. It was evident that a large number of sales had been effected by persons more or less alarmed at the prevailing rumours, but on the other hand fresh investors seem to have carried off the shares thus brought to market. While Imperial Mercantile and Overend, Gurney etc shares were heavy at lower prices, the markets were firmer in General Credit, International Financial, Credit Mobilier, and Foncier, and some few others that have all along presented stronger features than the rest.

The Economist, 31. März 1866. S. 393.
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Manchester Market.

Manchester market, March 29, inactive; owing to the continued report of considerable quantities of cotton, prices slightly declined.

16 February. 1867. N. 1225.

The Economist, 16. Februar 1867. S. 169.
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The Clearing House.

Sir John Lubbock, as honorary Secretary to the London bankers, proposes weekly statistics of the Clearing House. We have no later statistics than 1839, when certain figures were given to Mr. Babbage.

The Economist, 16. Februar 1867. S. 178.
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Police Game Preservation.

Schamlosester Act 1862: „An Act for the Prevention of Poaching.“ (Sir Baldwin Leighton’s Act). Polizei dadurch in Wildfänger der landlords verwandelt.  Zusammenfassende Bemerkung von Marx.
Dabei voll der most arbitrary Clauses gegen individual liberty etc.

The Economist, 16. Februar 1867. S. 178/179.
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Tableau General du Commerce de la France. (bis 1865, published 1867)

Imports into France, including Consumption, Transit und Bonding.
1863 fcs 1864 fcs 1865 fcs.
England 691,800,000 679,600,000 700,200,000
Belgium 360,700,000 397,400,000 423,500,000
Switzerland 330,900,000 344,500,000 372,600,000
Italy 247,200,000 278,300,000 284,400,000
Zollverein 265,000,000 286,100,000 271,900,000
Turkey 177,200,000 166,900,000 159,300,000
Russia 81,800,000 93,100,000 118,000,000
Egypt 69,100,000 101,800,000 115,700,000
Brazil 84,600,000 85,900,000 96,100,000
British India 100,900,000 117,400,000 88,500,000
Algeria 52,700,000 76,700,000 71,600,000
Spain 74,900,000 72,000,000 71,500,000
Rio de la Plata 52,600,000 41,500,000 57,200,000
United States 92,100,000 Imports from U. St. were 282,8000f. in 1860 und 393,000,000f. in 1861 75,100,000 56,200,000
Holland 55,400,000 54,000,000 54,600,000
Brit. Possessions in Mediterranean 12,500,000 40,400,000
Brit. Africa 12,900,000 13,100,000 17,700,000
Brit. America 3,400,000 5,700,000 3,900.000
Australia 200,000 100 000
Austria 21,900,000 24,600,000 27,000,000
Hanse towns 22,000,000 31,700,000 30,000,000
Mexico 4,900,000 6,100,000 5,700,000
Exports to Foreign Countries (French and foreign Productions on transit)
1863 fcs 1864 fcs 1865 fcs
England 1,039,800,000 1,145,000,000 1,294,900.000
Italy 354,200,000 409,900,000 415,900,000
Switzerland 319,400,000 359,700,000 359,300,000
Belgium 245,300,000 257,700,000 287,700,000
Zollverein 228,200,000 237,000,000 235,500,000
Spain 248,700,000 266,200,000 217,000,000
Algeria 139,300,000 131,600,000 150,300,000
U. States 107,800,000 100,800,000 133,400,000
Brazil 81,700,000 129,200,000 118,900,000
Turkey 118,900,000 129,300,000 99,800,000
Egypt 47,300,000 96,600,000 96,200,000
Rio de la plata 44,400,000 51,900,000 61,900,000
Russia 34,100,000 27,400,000 29,900,000
Holland 39,800,000 40,600,000 37,800,000
Brit. Mediterranean 20,700,000 22,200,000
Brit. Africa 17,200,000 16,300,000 14,700,000
Brit. America 2,900,000 5,300,000 3,700,000
Australia 7,300,000 5,000,000 4,500,000
Austria 11,000,000 7,000,000 7,400,000
Hanse towns 35,300,000 37,700,000 45,600,000
Mexico 22,200,000 70,700,000 70,700,000 |


The Economist 16. Februar 1867. S. 190/191.
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Manufacturing towns.

Manchester Feb. 14. Business dull. Just enough buying to keep prices steady, and stocks from further accumulating. Goods selling in small lots for immediate wants of buyers. The short time movement does not increase, but manufacturers all complain that they are losing upon every sale they make.

Bradford: The failures, in this town and elsewhere, have done much to injure what little confidence remained in the present range in the prices of wool. Transactions few et small. Staplers who must or will sell, have to submit to a further reduction. Prices of yarn are even more irregular and depressed than those of wool. Demands for goods quiet.

Birmingham. More favourable than a month ago. Cardinal difference between this and ordinary seasons being that there are few orders on the books beforehand.

Wolverhampton. Improved demand for iron, though far from overtaking the means of supply. Tin and copper quiet, in spite of the present low rate of discount, which often leads to large speculative purchases when prices are low.


  • London. 1868.
  • 1866 „The Economist“ (Jahrgang 1866) vol. XXIV.
  • The Social Economist, 1. Oktober 1868
  • „The Economist“ (Jahrgang 1866) (Fortsetzung)
  • Jahrgang 1867.
  • Register der obigen Auszüge aus dem Economist für 1866 und 1867.
  • The „Money Market Review“. Jahrgang 1866.
  • The Money Market Review. Jahrgang 1867.
  • Register Money Market Review Jahrgänge 1866 und 1867