Company Dividends (Payments to United States)

Oral Answers to Questions — National Finance – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 29th November 1960.

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Photo of Mr Marcus Lipton Mr Marcus Lipton , Lambeth Brixton 12:00 am, 29th November 1960

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much in dollars was transferred to the United States of America during each of the past five years by way of dividends to United States shareholders in British companies.

Photo of Mr Selwyn Lloyd Mr Selwyn Lloyd , Wirral

Payments of interest and dividends in respect of United States direct investment shareholdings in British companies—excluding oil and insurance—are estimated at 93 million dollars in 1958 and 104 million dollars in 1959. Figures on a comparable basis for earlier years are not available. These figures exclude portfolio investment by United States investors.

Photo of Mr Marcus Lipton Mr Marcus Lipton , Lambeth Brixton

Is the Chancellor satisfied with these figures or does he want to see them increased or reduced in the next year or two?

Photo of Mr Selwyn Lloyd Mr Selwyn Lloyd , Wirral

I should like to see the figures increased bath ways.

Photo of Mr Cyril Osborne Mr Cyril Osborne , Louth Borough

What amount of American dividends axe paid to British shareholders? Is it not a fact that more money comes from America to British shareholders than British dividends go to America?

Photo of Mr Selwyn Lloyd Mr Selwyn Lloyd , Wirral

It is difficult to arrive at precise figures, but the figures on a strictly comparable basis in relation to the Question asked by the hon. Member for Brixton (Mr. Lipton) are 17 million dollars in 1958 and 20 million dollars in 1959. These figures did not include the portfolio investment, which is very much larger in our case than it is for Americans in our country.

Photo of Mr Douglas Jay Mr Douglas Jay , Battersea North

Why did the Chancellor exclude oil and insurance from the original figures?

Photo of Mr Selwyn Lloyd Mr Selwyn Lloyd , Wirral

Because of the way in which the figures in relation to those two are computed.