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May 6, 1899.
Record and Guide -
^ __________^ _, ,:Bew^iB6a.
BcrsaiEss iufo Ihoces or Cet^eivI iKtoipi,
PRICa PER YEAR IN ADVANCE SIX DOLLARS
Published every Saturday
THLKPHONE, CORTIlAMJJT 1370.
Conimunlcatloiis Bhould be aadressed to
C. "W. SWEET, 14-16 Vesey Streetv
/. 1. LEND SIS Y, Business Manager.
'• Entered at tlie Post-OS\ce at New York, N. ¥., as second-class matter."
MAT G, 1S99.
IN producing tlie break cn the Stock Exchange tbis week all
sorts of excuses have heen used. The growth of public opin¬
ion in favor of taxing corporate franchises, as shown by the re¬
sult of the Chicago election and the passage of the Ford
franchise tax bill in the New York Legislature, was used to
good effect although its infiuence was temporary. Local secur¬
ities were, of course, most affected, but as soon as It was under¬
stood that a considerable period of time must elapse before taxes
could be collected under the bill, even if it should become law,
it ceased to influence. As to the great railroad systems that es-
tend through the country a tax on their franchises, by any con¬
ceivable calculation through which such a tax wo'Uld be imposed,
would more prohably benefit than hurt them. They are already
so heavily taxed that any change must bring relief and of course
the principle of taxing franchises must be generally adopted
throughout the country before they need, as a whole, consider
its probable injuries or benefits. There continue to be circulated
unsatisfactory reports of the agricultural situation and these
also accompanied the break in prices; but, as a matter of fact, the
real cause of the latter were the unwieldiness of quotations and
the restiveness of holders on margin in the face of a tendency of
prices to slump. The reaction we are now seeing is purely and
simply the natural result of overdone buying. It is a phenome¬
non familiar to the street and need create no surprise. When
merely speculative issues are put to investment prices, there
must come a time when they go back to the figure that their
character warrants. We are seeing this process working out
to-day and it is not completed. It will be noted that true in¬
vestment issues are not affected and this is one of the good signs
of the times and one that reduces the declines in other issues, to
their proper significance. It is not a time when sacrifices need
be made. Business is good, tbe country is prosperous and money
is plentiful, but these things will not bolster up infiated valua¬
tions indefinitely. In referring to the stock market and to Wall
Street business generally, the recent subscription to the Amal¬
gamated Copper Company's shares should receive attention not
because of the individual significance of this event, but because
it shows that the moneyed public is eagerly awaiting the oppor¬
tunity to take part in the industrial development of the country,
in the only way available through shares of corporations. The
profits promised from this source are so much greater than from
any other that it is natural that people with money to employ
should turn their gaze in that direction.
AMONG all political events that have had a tendency to con¬
firm business confidence and to prolong the era of pros¬
perity in which Europe has been so long happily dwelling, the
RuEEO-British agreement in China must have first place. The
march of Russia to the Paciflc was thought certain to bring about
a conflict in China such as the middle of last century saw in
India and Canada. Judged by old-world precedents it was
thought impossible that either of two great European nations
would be content to tolerate the other In China and that a con¬
flict must ensue to prove which was the stronger and should ex¬
clusively occupy that field. That better counsels prevail and it
is seen that there is room for all, not excepting the natives, is a
happy thing for the world. There may arise a question of the
moral right of any foreigner to say what he will or will not do
there, but this arrangement for mutual occupation through
peaceable discussion is a distinct advance on the old methods of
the sword, because in neither case would the native be consulted.
Coming to matters of lesser Importance we note that the Board
of Trade returns relating to the British cotton trade for tbe first
three months of the year show a very slight falling off in exports
as compared with the first quarter of 189S. The points of de¬
creased and increased shipments correspond to a considerable
extent with the points of dull and active trade over the world.
The first were Brazil, Japan, Turkey, India, Germany, Straits
Settlements, Greece, Egypt, Philippines, Holland, Italy and Bel-
glum. The points of Increased shipments were: China, easily
leading all the rest, Venezuela, Morocco, Mexico, the South Amer¬
ican States excepting Brazil, Central America, United States,
Foreign West Indies and Australasia. The revival of the agita¬
tion, stilled a year ago by a compromise, to raise wages 10%
In the cotton trade has been begun, but the employers are pre¬
paring to resist it. There have already been advances of wages
in this industry this year as well as in the coal and iron and
steel trades. In order to encourage manufactures in mother-of-
pearl—now a Viennese specialty—the French government soma
time ago established au export duty on tbe shells from French
colonic,^ in the Pacific which was reimbursed on the shells enter¬
ing France. It is now propoaed to make a similar arrangement
in regard to caoutchouc, which is now handled mostly in Britain
and Germany. Speculative industrials have been the favorites in
Berlin as in New York. Coal and iron shares have moved up¬
ward during tbe year the swing running from 10 or 12 to as
much as 70 points. In fact industrial corporation together with
the large returns made on the stocks, not in Germany
alone but in Europe generally, is relegating high-priced
government and municipal issues to the ultra-conservative and
the estates and trusts whose range of Investments is limited by
law. In London recently colonial and municipal issues have
only been poorly covered by subscriptions, so that, for the time
beiug at least, there is a rising wave of interest rates, people
being no longer aatisfied with the low ones that have prevailed
for some time. An interesting experiment was made recently in
the Simplon tunnel, the result of which sent dynamite shares
O'ffi 20 points in the Vienna market. Compressed air was em¬
ployed in blasting in opposition to dynamite and came out of the
contest completely successful, it is reported. Industrial enter¬
prises are being invited into Hungary by generous state conces¬
sions, in order to diversify the industries of that country, now
considered too purely agricultural, especially in view of the pos¬
sibility of a failure to agree on a state treaty with Austria and
a consequent imposition cf tariffs between the two countries.
EVIDENCES OF AH IMPaOV£E) REAL1Y MARKET.
Y the distribution of the conveyances and mortgages, which
is made In the table given below, it can be easily seen where
the business has come from that made the first quarter of this
year so active in real estate circles. It will be noted that the total
.of conveyances bulks rather In money value than in number; as a
matter of fact there were 260 more deeds filed in the first three
mouths of last year. It is in the increased importance of the
property conveyed that tbe report for the quarter of this year has
most significance. It will be noted that In 198S conveyances out
of 3,903 filed In the first quarter of this year and In 2,354 out of
4,163, of the same part of last year, we have no way of estimating
the value of the property conveyed; but this year the considera¬
tions were given in 1,915 instances, as against 1,809 so given last
year. In the first case the total valuation is $42,877,600 and in the
second, 527,364,948, The average per conveyance this year ia
$22,390 to set against an average of §15,127 per conveyance last
year, an increase of $7,263, or nearly 50%: This result is, no
doubt, partly due to a larger proportion of high-priced property
getting into the division of the conveyances, "with considera¬
tion," tban was the case last year, but not wholly. Such a re¬
markable comparison can only be the result of an Increased act¬
ivity In the realty market with rising values and more bulk to
the transactions. The distribution referred to is;
DISTRIBUTION OF CONVEYANGES AND 'MORTGAGES
QUARTER-YEAR ENDED MARCH 31, 18^9.
South of Chambers st.....
Bet. Chambers and Canal.
Cana! Se 4lh, e Bowery.. , ,
Canal Se 4th Sts, Bowery &
Canal & 4th sts, and West
Broadway & West at., .
4th-14th sts.bet.3d-7th avs.
Bet. 4Lh Se 34th sts, e 3d av
4th-31th sts, w Tth av. .
14th-23d sls,3d-7th avs.
23d-34th sts,3d-7ttL avs,
34th-5yih sts, e 3d av. .
34th-Dyth ata, w Tth av.
34th-42d Ets,3d-7th ava.
4i:d-59tii at9,3d-7th avs.
59th-12oth sts, e 5th av
59tii-125th 3t3,w Sth av.
110th-125tU, 5th-8th av,
125th to luBth Ht..........
North of lo5th at to river..
■2'3d and 24th Warda (old).
Anne.tation of ISiO.......
Total, lat quarter......
Total, 1st quarter, 169S. .,
No. With considera-
Total, nal. No.
22 1,317,974 67 3,264,395
3,903 1.988 1,915 $42,877,000 4,531
4,163 2.354 1,809 37,.3ti4.948 t-1.374
•Includes mortgage for $15,000,000 to N. Y. Gas & Electric Light, Heat &
tincludes mortgages: $11,000,000 by Amsterdam Gaa Co., and $7,000,000
by Second Avenue R.R. Co.,both to secure bonds.