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tion are depositors. The depositors in savings banks alone number 9,794,000, while the number of depositors having savings accounts in all other banks is stated at over 7,834,000, the total deposits classed as savings in all banks being more than 64 billions of dollars.

Since 1907 (panic year) individual deposits in all banks have increased over 21 per cent., more than $2,806,000,000 having been added to the depositors' accounts.

While the average percentage of increase for individual deposits for the United States for the last fiscal year was 4 per cent., it will be interesting to note the varying percentages of increase or decrease in the several geographical sections during the fiscal year 1911. The largest percentage of increase, 15.62 per cent., is shown to have been in the Southern States, followed by the Middle Western States with 5.35 per cent., the New England States with 4.93 per cent., the Pacific States with 3.59 per cent., the Eastern States with 2.11 per cent. and the Island Possessions with 1.53 per cent. In the Western States a decrease of 3.42 per cent. is shown. The largest volume of increase was in the Middle Western States of $190,000,000, followed by the Southern States with $173,000,000, the Eastern States with $138,000,000, the New England States with $109,000,000, the Pacific States with $37,000,000 and the Island Possessions with $600,000-the decrease in deposits in the Western States being $26,300,000. The proportion of individual deposits on June 7, 1911, held by each class of banks, was as follows: National banks 34.4 per cent.; savings banks 26.5 per cent.; loan and trust companies 20.7 per cent.; State banks 17.5 per cent. and private banks 0.9 per cent.

From the deposit account let us turn to the other side of the ledger and take note of the loans. Loans and discounts in the banks of the United States shown by reports of condition as of June 7, 1911, aggregate roundly, $13,046,000,000. Of this amount $5,634,000,000 is held by national banks and $7,412,000,000 by banks other than national. Of the total loans, over $7,146,000,000, or more than 54 per cent., are secured by real estate or other collateral security. About 36 per cent. of the loans reported by national banks are secured by collateral, while over 68 per cent. of the loans by banks other than national are thus secured, about 40 per cent. being on real estate security.

As has been stated, the sum of $5,051,000,000 of the banks' resources are invested in bonds, stocks and other securities. Infor

mation in detail as to the character of investment in bonds, securities, etc., from all the banks was first obtained in April, 1909, when the aggregate investments in bonds, stocks and other securities by all reporting banks were $4.614,000,000. In 1910 such investments had increased to $4,723,000,000 or a gain of 109,000,000. For the present year, investments in bonds, securities, etc., aggregate as stated, $5,051,000,000, a gain of $328,000,000 during the year. About 32 per cent. of investments of the banks reporting in 1911 are in railroad bonds and about II per cent. in bonds of other public service corporations. Nearly 24 per cent. is invested in State, county and municipal bonds, a little over 15 per cent. in United States bonds, and the remaining 16 per cent. comprises miscellaneous stocks, bonds, etc. The national banks hold bonds valued at $1,762,400,000. Of this amount, $754,700,000, or over 42 per cent., are United States. bonds. The bond holdings of the mutual savings banks approach nearly that of the national banks, $1,715,500,000 being held by this class of institutions, over $781,000,000 of which are railroad bonds and about $754,000,000 State, county and municipal bonds.

The average rate of interest paid by banks other than national on savings deposits is 3.73 per cent., and on other interest-bearing deposits, the average is 3.25 per cent. The average rate paid by State banks on savings deposits is 3.64 per cent.; by mutual savings banks 3.95 per cent.; by stock savings banks 3.61 per cent. and by loan and trust companies, 3.74 per cent. The average rate of interest paid by national banks on such deposits ranges from 3 to 4 per cent. or an average of about 31⁄2 per cent.

A retrospective view of banking for the brief period of ten years will show a development surprising to those who take the trouble to compare figures for ten years ago with those compiled for 1911. Since 1900, the number of banks in operation in the country has more than doubled. Their capital has increased by over 75 per cent. and their volume of business as indicated by their deposits shows an increase of over 114 per cent. In 1900, the total number of banks in operation (including the non-reporting banks) was stated at 13,977, with capital of $1,150,000,000 and individual deposits of $7,689,000,000. For 1911, the number increased to 28.551 (including 4,159 non-reporting banks) with aggregate capital of $2,032,000,000 and individual deposits of $16,466,000,000. The national banks have increased from 3,732 in 1900 with aggregate capital of $621,000,000 to 7,277 on

June 7 last with aggregate capital of $1,019,000,000; other reporting banks from 6,650 with aggregate capital of $403,000,000 to 17,115 with aggregate capital of $932,000,000. The non-reporting banks, chiefly private banks or brokers, are now estimated at 4,159 with capital of $80,000,000.

It will thus be seen that the capital of the national banks about equals the capital of all other reporting and non-reporting banks, but the other banking institutions out-number the national banks nearly 3 to 1.

The increase in deposits of the banks and in the volume of their loans during the past ten years shows what measure of prosperity the people have enjoyed. It is a period unparalleled in the history of the country's finances, in the growth of banks and the gain in deposits, and the statistics from all the banks annually compiled tell a most interesting story of the country's growth in wealth, and from them we may obtain a clearer idea perhaps of business conditions than from any other source of information.

Taking our country by and large, the banks are today better managed, as a whole, both State and national, than ever before in the history of this country. There are a few badly managed banks, but that has always been so and always will be. The thing to do is to use all of the power given to an executive by law, and supplement that by the best and most efficient executive administration, to lift up the badly managed banks to a higher place of safety. We need, and sorely need in this country, such a reform in our banking laws as will prevent in times of panic and crises the breaking down of our great credit machinery with a resulting paralysis of business of every kind from the smallest to the greatest. When that legislation is passed we shall have the best banking system in the world; a banking system that gives banking facilities under local control and direction to every little hamlet in this great country. We are forging ahead wonderfully; the last decade tells a story that should make us all feel proud of our country's development.

Laurence 0. Murray

Editorial

INCREASE IN BANKING BUSINESS.

(Washington Post.)

RETARDING influences in the financial world are seen to be less considerable when expressed in figures than in words. Or, is it because bad news travels faster than the other kind that the impression got abroad that the last twelvemonth had been exceptionally fruitful of developments disastrous to general business? At any rate, what happened to give us cause for apprehension seems not to have had an immediate chilling effect on banking operations, a barometer of trade whose readings can not be gainsaid.

Comptroller of the Currency Murray is the indisputable authority for the rather surprising statement, made in his annual report to Congress, that the volume of business transacted by the national banks during the year ended October 31 was substantially larger than during the previous year. Additionally the bank deposits show a gain in excess of half a billion, while the sum total of ready money in circulation reached new top-notch figures. These items of special significance are tempered, however, by the circumstantial statement that the increased operations over 1910 are less than the ten-year average.

A still more important item on the debit side is that loans and discounts, the biggest item in a bank's resources, increased only 3.59 per cent., as against an average ten-year increase of 6.52 per cent. The fact that individual deposits reached the highest point ever attained also attests to a state of things not reflective of ideal conditions, since it goes to show that the depositors would not have put in bank had they needed the money in their business. However, the croakers can not escape from the concrete fact that the deterrent influences were not present in sufficient strength to put a full check on the momentum due to nat

ural increase, whatever the consequences were in special cases. Losses in New England and the middle States were offset by the phenomenally favorable conditions in the South. The West appears to have held its own, the banner crop yields of a year ago practically compelling a continuance of activity in the transportation business and in market circles despite the depression in the East.

There is no offset to the flattering returns as to the net earnings and dividends of national banks during the last fiscal year. The earnings approximated $157,000,000, out of which $115,000,000 was disbursed in dividends representing 11.38 per cent. on the capital, and 6.83 per cent. on the combined capital and surplus. The Comptroller's report, on the whole, is the most valuable contribution to the factors making for a return to normal conditions in the centers of disturbance that the Treasury has yielded since things took a bad turn.

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