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The Record and guide: v. 38, no. 969: October 9, 1886

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October 9, 1886 The Record and Guide. 1225 THE RECORD AND GUIDE, Published every Saturday. 191 Broadwav, IST. Y. Oar Telepboue Call'is JOKN 370. TERMS: OIVE YEAR, in adrance, SIX DOLLARS. Communications should be addressed to C. W. SWEET, 191 Broadway. J. T, LINDSEY, Business Manager. Vol. XXXVIII. OCTOBER 9, 1886. No. 969. The speculation in Wall street has been at fever heat during the past week. The transactions in stocks were enormous. Taking the two Exchanges, and making allowances for a number of sales which are not recorded, the daily transactions have averaged from 800,000 to 1,000,000 shares per day, and this without counting the bucket shops. The pace is very rapid and in marked contrast with last summer, when, for several days, tlie transactions fell off to less than 100,000 shares per diem. No doubt stocks will eventually average much higher,but the outside public should bear in mind that after such an advance as we have just had. Wall street is full of pit¬ falls. Some of the deals now going on are purely speculative; that is, they are the result of manipulation, and are not based on the merits or prospects of the stocks which are being " whooped up." People in legitimate business had better stick to their callings, as the outlook is promising in every department of trade. Barring accidents and the unexpected, there is no reason to apprehend bad times up to the close of the present crop year, nor then if our agri¬ cultural production is as good as it has bee a during the past year. Mr. Samuel Benner, the famous Ohio financial prophet, whose work on prices we have often commended, writes to a gentleman in this city that he has no new forecast to make as to the future business of the country. He stands by the letter he wrote to the Record AND Guide, published April 10th last. In that communication Mr. Benner predicted a good crop year and low prices for grain and provisions. He also foresaw the depression in the spring due to the labor troubles, but he apparently misread the signs of the times for the summer and fall, for he said in so many words, " prices for iron and stocks must continue on the average to decline to a lower level for the next two years before there can be a chance for perma¬ nent advance." In this Mr. Benner was clearly mistaken, at least so far as iron and stocks are concerned, while events have certainly justified his further statement " with a fair harvest abroad wheat will rule lower this year than we have yet seen for a number ot years in the past. ■----------------s—----------- Our "Sir Oracle" criticized Mr. Benner inthe issue of April 17th, in which he took a more hopeful view, not only of the stock mar¬ ket but of the times generally. He said "This year Mr. Benner seema to think the crops will be abundant, and this is also my fore¬ cast, although the acreage for winter wheat has fallen of largely, the chances are that the crop will be one-third better than it was last year." "Sir Oracle" further predicted that the crop of corn would be less than last year, and these two forecasts were fully justified by subsequent events, but the same authority was bullish on stocks, and argued that the upward movement, which commenced in the summer of 1885, would be continued for four years at least. In all his recent uiiteranceo, "Sir Oracle "has been very bullish, not only on stocks but on grain and cotton. He also believes the business of the world is improving. --------•-------- A member of the Citizens' Committee of One Hundred cannot understand why they are ignored and often misrepresented by the press. He declares he never knew a more disinterested body of citizens. Some of the members have " bees in their bonnets" as to the reforms which are needed in our city government, but so far no one has shown any disposition to grind private axes. This gentleman informs us also that Mayor Grace has few or no friends in this organization, and that it will never indorse him. The com¬ mittee have been earnestly seeking a first-class candidate for Mayor, and think they have found him in Orlando B. Potter. The other gentleman they have thought of would not accept their nom¬ ination unless they were assured of the indorsement of either the Republicans or the County Democracy. The committee will not indorse the candidate of any other party, but of course they hope their candidate is one whom either the Republicans or County Bemoci'ats will be forced to accept. sents nothing in particular. Henry George's candidacy involves the recognition of certain very abstract principles, some of which are doubtless objectionable to well-to-do people. But after all it satisfies those who demand a platform which naeans something. Doubtless the Committee of One Hundred will answer that char¬ acter and honesty mean a good deal in the administration of local affairs, but claiming these admirable qualities looks pharasaic to the friends of other candidates. Henry George goes further and gives his theories respecting city government, which are good as far as they go. We are afraid that the time has gone by for reform organizations composed of wealth j- gentlemen to make the public believe that they can put an end to the corruption of city politics. Tliere have been too many of them, and they have generally failed dismally in the purpose they set us to accomplish. May not the difficulty with the Committee of One Hundred be that it has no programme. How can they expect to excite any enthusiasm for some rich respectable gentleman, when he repre- Mr. Orlando B. Potter and J. Edward Simmons, late president of the Stock Exchange, have been put in nomination for Mayor. They are both excellent candidates and if either of them can get the indorsement of the Republicans or County Democracy, they have a fair chance of being elected. But they both labor under the disadvantage of being very rich men, and if they enter upon a canvass the workingmen's party will claim that they will be expected to spend large sums of money in the canvass. Indeed, Henry George, in his speech the other evening, declared that the office of Mayor was virtually sold to rich candidates who were expected to contribute from eighty to two hundred thousand dollars to get themselves elected, while he did not propose to spend oue cent for that purpose. Would it not look better if some union candidate was chosen who was poor, capable and honest. The rich could contribute to such a person's ejection without scandal, the same as the working people are doing for Henry George's canvass ; nor would it be hard to find a reform candidate to oppose not only George but the corrupt politicians of all parties. James T. Van Renssellaer, the Republican alderman of the Eleventh District, fills Ihe bill in every way. He comes of a historic family; he is thoroughly posted in municipal affairs, is honest and capable, and has very little of this world's wealth. This gentleman is not known to anybody in The Record and Guide office, but there is no doubt that he is all we have said he is, and would make an admirable chief magistrate for New York. We have warmly approved of the candi¬ dacy of rich men like Cornelius Vanderbilt, Theodore Roosevelt, Orlando B. Potter and J. Edward Simmons, but is it wise, after all, to put these wealthy gentlemen, at this particular time, against a candidate who is certainly an able man while poor himself and representing the toilers. The machine runners of all the organiza¬ tions as well as the Committee of One Hundred would do well to act upon this hint. The New Silver Certificate Issue. Notwithstanding the chorus of approbation with which the one and two-dollf ir silver certificates are being received by the press and the public, far-seeing, prudent financiers regard their advent with serious misgivings. The evil effects of this new paper money issue will not be felt immediately, but it may result in creating conditions, which will in time bring about serious disturbances iu the monetary affairs of tlie nation. At first the new small silver certificates will prove of great convenience. They will supply currency to replace the diminishing bank issues. A nevr, crisp and handsome note will replace the ragged and disreputable-looking one and two-dollar greenbacks, and then from this time forth, the cumbrous and unpopular silver dollar will gradually disappear and hide itself in the government bank vaults. There are now over $60,000,000 of these silver dollars afloat. in the channels of retail tradcj and the treasury department expects to get rid of |65,000,000 of them before there are a sufficiency of one and two's silver cer¬ tificates to take their place ; but it is probable that within two years time fully 50,000,000 of the metallic doUars will be stored in the sub-treasury vaults. This new issue of certificates means inflation, though not neces¬ sarily a dangerous one, for the enlarged currency issues will be based upon an actual precious metal dollar, into which they will always be convertible. But they will have the same effect that all additions to the currency ever had, whether the expansion came iu the form of gold, silver or paper. True at first, the new ones and twos will take the place of the withdrawn national bank notes, and the clumsy and inconvenient silver dollars. But ultimately they will do more than that. The 90,000,000 unused silver dollars in the treasury will make their appearance in the channels of retail trade in the form of silver certificates of one, two, five and ten-dollar denominations. It should be kept in mind that a small note infla¬ tion excites business activity far more than the issuance of notes at high denominations. All the larger movements of trade are based on the number and rapidity of the transactions in retail traffic, and these will be immensely stimulated by the superabun¬ dance of one and two-dollar silver certificates. It is as yet an open question how many of these one, two and five dollar notes can be issued. Indeed, it is idle to give estimates, for