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of the directors. In some cases several local authorities are shareholders in the same company. Dr. Passow is of the opinion that more of these joint public and private enterprises are likely to be established in the immediate future, although he expresses some doubt as to the permanency of this form of organisation. In several cases the local authorities have secured the right to buy out the private shareholders on agreed terms, and in at least one case have already done so.
This type of municipal trading is almost unknown in this country; it is, however, deserving of the most careful consideration, and Dr. Passow's book may be recommended as providing a very convenient means of studying the question.
La gestion par l'Etat et les municipalités. By Yves Guyot.
(Paris : Félix Alcan. 1913. Pp. viii + 437. 3fr. 50c.)
This book deals with national and municipal trading of many kinds in many countries, but it can make no claim to be a scientific study of the subject. The author has collected figures and statements of various kinds from a variety of sources, and seeks to show that it is undesirable that the State or the municipalities should do anything which can be done by private enterprise. The book appears to have been produced in a great hurry; it contains numerous slips and mistakes; the figures and statements are not always correct, and some of them appear to be irrelevant; the sources from which much of the material is taken are by no means authoritative. A few examples may be given. In one list of English towns (p. 130) eleven out of forty-seven, and in another list (p. 144) four out of twenty-four are spelt wrongly. On p. 24 we read that the London water companies were purchased by the Metropolitan Water Board for 47,500,000 francs (? £); on p. 151 that the population of Liverpool is 75,900 (1911 census : 746,566), and that the population of Manchester is 865,900 (1911 census : 714,427); and on p. 152 that the population of Salford is 102,000 (1911 census : 231,380). One statement (p. 123) by M. Guyot is that British municipal gas works are exempted from taxation, whereas, as a matter of fact, they pay rates and taxes like any gas company. Another statement (p. 62), referring to the Prussian State Railways, is that the Government in 1907 imposed a tax on railway tickets and abolished return tickets. The tax, in reality, was an Imperial, not a Prussian, tax. The author goes on to state that in this way the first-class fares were raised by 44 per cent., the second-class by 25
per cent., and the third-class by 15.8 per cent. The facts are these : Prior to 1907 the fare for single tickets (by slow train) was 8 pf. per klm. first-class, 6 pf. second-class, and 4 pf. third-class; and the fare for return tickets was half as much again. After the abolition of return tickets the single fare (by slow train) became 7 pf. per klm. first-class, 4:5 pf. second-class, and 3 pf. third-class. Both before and after the change somewhat higher fares had to be paid to travel by express trains. How M. Guyot obtained his figures showing the percentage of increase in fares is a mystery, as the ticket tax is not sufficient to account for them. On p. 140 appears the statement that the London County Council made no provision for the depreciation of the tramway undertaking in 1910–11, whereas they actually set aside something like £130,000 for this purpose. On p. 226 the following statement, made on the authority of a newspaper report of a speech at a congress of Post Office employees, appears without any comment : "The Post Office Savings Bank [of the United Kingdom] loses £100,000 annually on account of bad administration and bad investments." Amongst the matters which, to the reviewer at least, appear to be irrelevant may be mentioned the reference (p. 277) to the estimate of the Naval Intelligence Department in 1909 as to the number of Dreadnoughts Germany would have in 1912, and the lengthy discussion (pp. 409-414) of the action of the United States Senate with regard to that clause in the Hay-Pauncefote Treaty which deals with the Panama Canal tolls.
The author has sought to make his book conclusive by embracing in it references to many countries and a great variety of undertakings; as a consequence, his treatment of any one country and of any one industry is far from comprehensive. If a more judicious selection had been made of the material, if greater reliance had been placed on first-hand authorities, if more care had been taken in checking the accuracy of the figures and statements, and if the matter had been presented in a more systematic manner, the case against municipal and national trading could have been stated in a way which would have carried far more conviction.
Die Unternehmungsformen. Von PROFESSOR DR. R. LIEFMANN.
(Stuttgart : E. H. Moritz. Pp. viii + 216. Price 2.50 Marks.)
This work is a companion volume to a treatise on Kartelle und Trusts, by the same author and publisher, and forms an
introduction to the study of the position and developmental tendencies of business undertakings in the present state of industrial society. It is intended for the business man and general reader rather than for the professed economist, and fully serves its purpose as a guide to the problems of organisation which will come up for solution in the near future. While it is necessarily not comprehensive enough to contain all the material required for the complete weighing of all the considerations affecting these problems, there are few points of importance left entirely undiscussed. Naturally, it is chiefly intended for the German reader, but the English reader will find it very useful precisely on account of those differences in German methods of organisation with which he is little familiar in English systems. For this reason it is to be hoped that an English translation will soon appear. Dr. Liefmann is well-known to economists for his excellent studies of the development of kartells, and the business man whose attention is not restricted merely to the happenings within his own counting house will find it to his advantage to follow the example of the academic persons whom he too frequently despises.
The book is divided into four parts : a lucid sketch of the development from home industry to the industrial undertaking of to-day, a discussion of the joint-stock company and its results, a survey of co-operation, and a brief account of publicly-owned undertakings and their limitations. The second section claims most of our attention. The joint-stock company has proved an excellent means for collecting capital, for making it mobile, for spreading risk, and for distributing property. But as investment grows, so, too, does unearned income. A wealth-owning class thus finds it easy to maintain itself in possession, especially where limitation of the family prevails. The latter practice is, in Dr. Liefmann's opinion, closely related to the desire for an income derived not from personal exertion but from investment. He holds that management of companies by paid officials either may impair that spirit of enterprise on which industry has been built up, or, as in the case of banks, may lead to recklessness. The part played by banks in German industry is much more direct and important than the equivalent part played by British banks. This is mainly due to the German company law which requires that before a company can begin operations the whole capital must have been subscribed, and that at least one-quarter of the amount payable in cash must have been received. Usually, therefore, the promoters take up all the capital and issue it to
the public at a later date. This need of a greater initial command over money has led to the development of Effektenbanken, or banks which either as the whole or as a part of their business devote themselves to the financing of company-promoting. To accept short-term deposits and to make loans or investments for longer periods is an offence against strict banking; but, on the other hand, German banks work with a larger capital of their own than do English banks. Subsequently, the banks issue to the public the shares in the companies they have established, or retain a part of the capital themselves. German investors rely much on their banks, and readily take up the stocks they issue. Either in their own interests or in those of their investor-clients, German banks maintain a close connection with the companies they promote and secure representation on the boards of directors.
This close interlacing of finance and industry is characteristic of Germany, and it leads to the furthering of all plans for the cessation of competition and the increase of profits, especially by such methods as the community of interests through mutual stock-holdings, common directors, holding companies, &c. The same ends are attained in the United States through the agency of powerful individual financiers, but in Germany the holding companies are of dominant importance, especially in light railways and the electrical industries. Closely connected with the mobilisation of capital through the joint-stock system is speculation in industrial shares on the stock exchange. Well-known evils result, but, on the other hand, it is claimed that this speculation leads to an equalisation of the prices of goods, an assertion which Dr. Liefmann does not accept. These new developments of the company system require further legislative attention, especially, in the author's opinion, in the direction of greater publicity and more effective audit.
The co-operative system has developed in different directions in Britain and Germany. In the former country the co-operative idea came into activity after the industrial revolution, when there was a large factory population, and realised itself in distributive stores for the advantage of the workers. In Germany, while the small-scale style of industry was still the rule, cooperation came in to assist the small master against the large factory by means of credit banks, &c. Co-operation has, in Dr. Liefmann's view, reached its fullest development, and is now apt to lead to a reduction of the spirit of individual initiative and to the standardisation of demand; these opinions seem exaggerated.
Space does not permit of an examination of the author's views on State-conducted industry. He regards nationalisation as a remedy for the evils of private ownership which is only operative within narrow limits. The participation of the State in the coal-mining and potash industries of Germany he considers to be in no way successful. As a rule other methods of control should be sought when it is necessary to counteract the effects of private monopoly.
These somewhat disconnected references will perhaps serve as an indication of the topics which Dr. Liefmann discusses. Merely to enumerate them all would much outpass the limits permissible for this notice.
HENRY W. MACROSTY
Lectures on British Commerce, including Finance, Insurance,
Business, and Industry. By THE RIGHT Hon. FREDERICK
THE International Society for the Promotion of Commercial Education is apparently a development from the German association of the same name, of which Dr. Stegemann, of Brunswick, has for some years been President. The International Society, like the German association, desires to embrace within its range of activities all varieties and grades of commercial education; but its membership, as a matter of fact, consists, I believe, preponderatingly of representatives of commercial boys' schools, and of commercial academies of the older type; and its Central Committee does not this year-nor did it in a recent year for which I happen to have a report--include a single representative of these great Handelshochschulen which have come into existence in Germany during the last fifteen years, or of the American Universities, which have done equally great things, though in a somewhat different way, for commercial education of the highest type.
The Society arranges for a three weeks' summer school each year in some business centre. That at Havre, for instance, in 1909 brought together an audience of 144, of whom the great majority were teachers in commercial schools, not men themselves looking forward to a business career. Thus, of 48 from Germany 22 were teachers, of 24 from Austria 14, of 45 from Switzerland as many as 38, and all 7 from Hungary. Three Frenchmen only were