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CHICAGO, D ECEM BER 31, 1920

/C U R T A IL M E N T IN THE BU YIN G DEM AND AND THE A T T E N D A N T SLACKENing of manufacturing operations has resulted in improvement in fundamental banking
conditions in the Middle West, although this is not reflected in the aggregate loans represent­
ing the borrowings of customers at the individual banks or rediscounts by member banks at
the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. Whatever improvement or liquidation of loans has
taken place is traceable largely to the slowing down in manufacturing and in buying. The
movement of agricultural products to the market is slow, and consequently the liquidation of
loans for agricultural purposes has not been sufficient to offset the new demands springing up
for agricultural and allied purposes.

TR E N D OF AD VAN CES B Y TH E RESERVE BA N K FOR A G R ICU LTU R A L AN D O TH ER PURPOSES
Individual banks continue to experience a heavy
demand for accommodations. This is indicated by
the course of aggregate loans other than those secured
by war obligations and by stock market collateral.
The peak of the loans in the individual banks was
reached about the middle of October, according to the
reports from the 108 selected banks in this District*
including all member banks in Chicago and Detroit
and representative banks in the principal cities. This
item ran off some the first of December but increased
again later.
Net demand deposits of these individual member
banks on which reserve is computed, while following
closely the course of loans are decreasing a little more
rapidly than loans are contracting.
While the aggregate borrowings of member banks




at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago are below the
peak reached October i, the contraction is compara­
tively slight. Borrowings for agricultural purposes
are now practically at the high level for the year, the
peak early in the fall being reached October 2 and the
same level was approached again on December i.
Borrowings by other than agricultural interests re­
flect noticeable liquidation. The course of all other
loans has been downward in general since September
3, when they aggregated about S8,000,000 greater
than the agricultural borrowings at that time. This
total fell below the agricultural borrowing estimate
a few days later, and while fluctuating sharply at
times, the trend was downward, showing on Decem­
ber 15 the lowest point reached by aggregate borrow­
ings for other than agricultural purposes during the
autumn.

Compiled December 28, 1920

LIQU IDATION OF FARM PROD UCTION HOLDINGS SLOW
Careful study of the accompanying chart will indi­
cate the yearly receipts of wheat, corn and oats at
the principal grain centers or primary markets of the
■ country during the last seven years. These primary
markets are: Chicago, Minneapolis, Duluth, St. Louis,
Milwaukee, Kansas City, Omaha, Peoria, Detroit,
Toledo and Indianapolis.

RECEIPTS AT PRIMARY POINTS
Wheat

M IL L IO N S

OF B U S H E L S

3 Q ..
.Q

-5 DO

It will be noted that while the receipts of wheat at
these markets for the eleven months of 1920 aggregate
considerably less than those for 1919 and 1918, they
are considerably larger than the receipts for 1917.
Corn receipts so far this year are considerably be­
low those of 1918 but greater than 1919, the theory
being, however, that there is still an accumulation of
corn from the 1919 crop on the farms notwithstand­
ing the bumper crop of 1920 now just harvested.
The receipts of oats in the last two years have
fallen off decidedly, 1920 being slightly less than
1919, allowing for the normal December receipts.
In mixed farm and industrial territory borrowings
are somewhat less burdensome and liquidation in
many quarters is in evidence. Owing to heavy inven­
tories, however, it is not progressing as rapidly as some
of the borrowers themselves may desire. The view
is expressed by bankers as well as business men that
this impediment to business is being removed in a grad­
ual way and that such a course is avoiding the forcing
of holdings upon the markets when consumption gen­
erally is at low ebb, thus avoiding demoralization due
to a lack of absorptive power.

*

192,0 R E C E I P T S

ONLY

TO

D E G .1 8

IM P LE M E N T M AKER S STOCKS IN CREA SIN G
So far there have been no marked changes in prices,
either wholesale or retail, of agricultural implements.
Implement manufacturers report an increase of about
25 per cent in stocks and a decline, which began earlier
than usual this year, of about 50 per cent in sales, com­
pared with the same period of last year.

The buying

of materials by implement makers for 1921 production
has been considerably restricted.

The present manu­

facturing schedule for the coming season calls for
about 50 per cent of that for 1920.
This has a direct bearing on the agricultural situa­
tion because implement manufacturers will be in a
position to take advantage of any decline in cost of
materials and to lower the cost of implements thus
aiding the farmer in offsetting his loss of purchasing
power due to the sharp decline in market values of
grain and live stock.

BAN K ER S EN D EAVO RIN G TO CA RE FOR L IV E STO CK NEEDS
Leading Chicago cattle bankers say that they are
making heroic efforts to care for their old clients
but at an actual loss in many cases. One large firm
figures that it actually loses a fraction of one per cent
on its ninety day feed lot loans. There is no choice,



however, as the solvency of many cattle men depends
on their ability to finish cattle now in hand. A
banking syndicate has been formed in Chicago, New
York, and Boston during the last month to assist in
meeting the problem.

CH ICAGO H O LID AY T R A D E G R E A TE R BUT ELSEW H ERE NORM AL
Christmas buying, this season, is regarded as an in­
dex of readjustment toward the prewar status. Mer­
chants entered the holiday period with many embarrass­
ing conditions to be faced; merchandise bought at
higher prices, enforced liquidation in many lines of
trade and consequently a downward trend of prices,
and, the most serious of these factors, the disposition
of the public to buy only at or near the price level of
the armistice period, or at least cheaper than the peak
of the spring of 1920.
As a result of these conditions trade opinions regard­
ing holiday business are very contradictory. In Chi­
cago the facilities for quick turns in retailing enable
merchants to avoid troubles that cannot be so easily
sidestepped by dealers in rural districts. Hence there
is a great difference between store reports from the
District at large and those from downtown Chicago
stores. The great metropolitan stores describe the
holiday selling as “ tremendous” in volume of goods
moved and satisfactory in money value. Although
prices have fallen much below the holiday level of
1919, these stores have been able to maintain a fair
percentage of profit in most lines and will come down
to the December 31 “ stock taking” with less anxiety
than they expected when the big slump in staples began.

“ We explain the marked success of our 1920 holiday
merchandising,” said an influential man on State
Street, “ on the ground that Chicago retailers have
learned to trade on the market as it is from day to
day.

Our merchants generally have learned that it

is folly to fight the trend of prices.

We try to antici­

pate the market, but whether we succeed or not we
drive our selling to the utmost, at the ruling prices of
the day’s market, taking losses if necessary, but avoid­
ing the evil of ‘frozen’ and nailed-on-shelf goods.
Chicago moves the goods at the market.”
Retailers throughout the Seventh District, exclusive
of Chicago, report the money return from Christmas
trade to date, about the same as for the same period
last year.

The volume of goods moved is considerably

larger but at sharp reductions, so that the result in
dollars is about the same as for the season of Decem­
ber, 1919. The “ weighted averages” of results
from Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa stores
indicates 3.6 per cent gain over last year, which was at
least 50 per cent greater than in 1918.

Merchants

note a great wave of “ necessity buying” and a falling
off in high priced luxuries.

Buyers are critical, scrut­

inizing quality.
Returns from the leading Chicago retailers indicate
20 per cent gain in money volume of holiday sales to
December 15, as compared with the like period of 1919.
In “ yards and dozens” sold the gain over 1919 would
be much more imposing, but it is not possible to tell
what this percentage will be at the year end.
The large money gain shown in Chicago is more
significant than it appears because the comparison is
made against 1919 Christmas trade, which ranged from
40 to 100 per cent greater in dollars than in 1918, and
established a “ peak” for most stores. Again, the
weather a year ago was hovering near zero, whereas
the thermometer registered 58 degrees on December
13, 1920, with a warm April rain falling and no sug­
gestion in it that furs and woolens would ever be
needed.

Furs and heavy winter goods have been stagnant
on account of the unseasonable weather. The read­
justment of prices in silks is generally regarded as
finished.
The more seasonable weather which set in around
the middle of December, contributed to a cheerful
selling outlook and stimulated the belief that the vol­
ume of business for the last month of the year, when
the returns are all in will overrun the promises of the
early part of December.
Fifty one of the principal wholesalers of the Seventh
District answering the questionnaire for November,
1920, show the following changes from November, 1919:

Decrease o f

Cancellations

sales under

Increase over

Is Buying

November

Difficulty in

Concerns

1919

1919

Delivery ?

Cautious?

D ry Good*........................................

10

24.3%

N ot a factor

100% “ N o”

100% “ Y e s”

100% “ Down”

Shoes..................................................

9

22.4 %

24%

100% “ N o”

100% “ Y es”

100% “ Down”

Clothing.............................................

3

5 2 .1 %

100% “ N o”

100% “ Y es”

50% “ D ow n”

25

16 .4 %
16 .6 %

40%
16%
No D ata

100% “ N o”

100% “ Y es”

100% “ Down”

100% “ N o”

100% “ Y es”

100% “ Down”

Number

Groceries...........................................
Tailoring....................................................




November

4

Price Trend

RETAILER S OF CONSUM ABLE GOODS A R E SLOW TO RESPOND
So far the reductions made by retailers on consum­

assist in lowering the cost of living and thus relieve
the consumer of unnecessary burden.

able goods have not kept pace, even at bargain prices,
with those now quoted on farm products, raw materials
and goods at wholesale in the Middle West.

Our returns fro m firms replying to the regular retail
trade questionnaire indicate for November net sale
(retail prices) an increase of 17.6 per cent over the same
month of 1919 and from July 1 to date 24.2 per cent
over the same five months of 1919. Retail stocks
(valued at retail sales prices) are 40 per cent higher than
a year ago but 5.9 per cent less than for October, 1920.
Average stocks for the five months’ period July-November are 4L5 times the average monthly sales over
the same period. Outstanding orders at the end of
November equal 6.3 per cent of total 1919 purchases.

Retail

quotations on many of the foodstuffs, especially
meats, are so much out of line that in Chicago
steps are being taken to utilize the publication of what
is termed a fair retail price as a guide to the consumer.
This was first utilized very largely during the war
period by the Illinois Food Administration and is now
being taken up by the city government in the hope that
the daily publication of such “ fair price list” will
N et Sales November, 1920 over November, 1919..............................................

17-6 %

N et Sales July-Novem ber, 1920 over July-November, 1919...........................

24-2%

Stocks November, 1920, over November, 1919 ..................................................

40.0%

Stocks November, 1920, under October, 1920......................................................

5 -9 %
43 2-i %

Average stocks July-November, 1920 to average monthly sales same period
Outstanding orders November, 1920, to total purchases during 1919 ...........

6 .3 %

CLEARIN G M OVEM EN T SHOWS DECREASE
Movement of credit, as indicated by the aggregate
debits to individual accounts at the member banks of
the twenty-four leading clearing houses in the Seventh
Federal Reserve District, shows a decrease of about
5.25 per cent compared with the previous month.

The total debits as of December 15, 1920, reported by
two hundred one banks in twenty-four leading clear­
ing house centers, including Chicago were $1,116,222,000 a decrease of $62,112,000 over the corresponding
week of November.

CO M M O D ITY IN D E X P R ICE S OF SEVEN CO UN TRIES
The comparison of the index prices of the seven
leading countries of the world reveals the fact that
the peak of prices in all countries was reached during
the current year.

In most instances the trend as

1920 closes, is downward. In France and Italy, how­
ever, after a downward trend, the index turned
sharply upward.

These indices are those of the United States Bureau
of Labor (328 quotations); London Statist, United
Kingdom (45 commodities); Bulletin de la Statistique Generale, France (45 commodities); Professor
Bachi, Italy, (40 commodities); Sweden, Svenisk
Handelstidning, (47 commodities): Canada, Depart­
ment of Labor, (272 quotations); Calcutta, India,
Department of Statistics (75 commodities.)

1913 TO 1920 WORLD WAR PERIOD

700

Z 50
2)00

550
500
450

400
350
300
250
200

150
iOO




CO LLECTIO NS PRON OUNCED AS_REASONABLY GOOD
While collections in practically all lines of business
have slowed down somewhat, still they are pro­
nounced as reasonably good. There is a manifesta­
tion of greater thrift as the wage earner begins to
more fully appreciate the necessity of saving a part
of his income. Dealers, however, report a tendency
toward longer time in paying accounts.
Slowness in collections seems to be manifesting
itself more in the agricultural localities than in

the mining and manufacturing districts. In the
lumber trade, collections are slower than else­
where, but this is attributed to the stagnation in the
building industry.
Statistics relating to business defaults indicate 124
failures reported in the Seventh District by one of the
large mercantile agencies, involving $3,647,520, as
liabilities, compared with 74 defaults and $434,048 as
liabilities for November, 1919.

SU PPLY OF COAL NOW E X CE E D S D EM AN D
A careful survey of the fuel situation reveals the fact
that the supply of coal for all consuming territories
now exceeds the demand. This is the first time that
this condition has existed, with the exception of the
spring months of 1919, in nearly four years. During
the greater part of that four-year period there have
been shortages either in all or certain sections of the
country, due to insufficient facilities, government pri­
ority of orders, zone regulations and other factors.
In four years the number of operating mines in­
creased from 6,500 to 10,000, with a producing capa­
city of 750,000 tons, an excess over consumption of
about 200,000 tons. Now there are ample trans­
portation facilities, it is claimed, for all of these mines.
The consumption of coal has been materially de-

creased in consequence of the reduced operating time of
industries generally.

This, together with the result­

ant additional transportation facilities, has made
possible a greater increase in coal production.
Those in the coal industry who have handled their
business on a speculative basis, having bought the
output of mines for a period of one year from last May
and June now have the production of these mines with
out disposition. In many cases they have had to sell
the coal far below the cost to them or the cost of pro­
duction. This combination of circumstances, it is
pointed out by expert coal men, has reduced the market
price of coal that was handled on a speculative basis,
from $8 to $2.50 per ton, and in some instances lower
than that figure.

PROD UCTION OF BITUM INOUS COAL
Average daily production of Bituminous coal, ineluding coal coked, is shown in the chart below which




is based on figures compiled by the U. S. Geological
Survey.

AUTOMOBILE INDUSTRY MARKING TIME
With the let-down in the buying of automobiles
and the slowing down in manufacturing activities by
automobile makers, the readjustment in that industry
has presented some interesting features. Careful
inquiry has been made to ascertain to what extent
manufacturers have found themselves with surplus
stocks of finished cars or parts on their hands and to
what extent cars are being stored against future sales.
Answers received from manufacturers generally indi­
cate that there is not a much greater storing of cars
than a year ago, the difference being that the dealers
have not been able, because of restricted credit, to
take the number of cars they did during the closing
months of 1919. This has resulted in some backing up
at the factory. In the effort to check this accumula­
tion, plant operation has been curtailed all through the
industry. Nearly all of the larger plants are operating
at less than 50 per cent of capacity, while many others
are much lower and some are closed.
Those manufacturers who have figured that they
could replace all their inventories at lower prices, so
far are finding little encouragement in developments.
One large automobile builder, for instance, has many
months supply of pig iron on hand at a cost price of
$29 per ton, whereas it could not now be replaced for
£40 a ton. In some cases articles have been bought
on a cost basis, and in view of lower production and
increased freight rates, these articles now cost auto­
mobile factories more than they did before any re­
duction in the automobile selling price was seriously
discussed.

Manufacturers suggest that these things




counter balance to a considerable degree the reduc­
tions offered by supply and parts manufacturers.
From some of the smaller automobile centers come
reports that wages actually have been reduced in
some instances. The reduction in the volume of auto­
mobiles produced tends to increase the per car cost.
From reports of at least two of the companies, there
has been a disposition on the part of accessory and parts
manufacturers to reduce prices, in order to distribute
loss, even though old contracts exist. About 80 per
cent of the 100 makes of cars on the market in this
country are assembled, hence any attempt of the parts
manufacturers to reduce prices in face of contracts in
order to distribute losses, has an important bearing
on the entire car manufacturing situation.
Some December reports treating the automobile
situation of the country in its entirety show signs of
improvement; for instance, the Pacific Coast terri­
tory is doing better, while some of the Eastern auto­
mobile shows have stimulated trade. Shipments of
automobiles during November aggregated consider­
ably smaller than in October. The final October fig­
ures showed 17,186 car loads shipped by rail, while the
available November figures indicate 13,000 car loads.
The complete statistics for October also show 14,101
automobiles driven away on their own power, and
2,519 automobiles shipped by boat from the factories,
which are located largely in the Seventh Federal
Reserve District, while the November available
figures showed 6,000 cars driven away and 1,000
shipped by boat. The trend for the year follows:

AU TOM OBILE SH IPM ENTS AN D PROD U CTION

SE LE CTE D M EM BER B A N K ST A TIST IC S— SEVEN TH D IST R IC T
(ooo’s omitted)
Dec. 10,
1920
Number o f Banks R eporting....................

C H IC A G O
N ov. 12, Dec. 12,
1920
1919

Dec. 10,
1920

D E T R O IT
N ov. 12, Dec. 12,
1920
19 l 9

Other Selected Cities
Dec. 10, N ov. 12, Dec. 12.
1920
1920
1919

12

12

12

45

45

45

146,693

193,446

$66,225

$60,139

$82,053

£49,976

? 52,397

£6 i ,735

52,860

56,256

66,672

9> °
47

11,039

10,724

12,737

13,478

1 5,944

other than U. S. securities................. 334,673

332,762

373,488

56,690

57,687

49,539

55,098

55,456

45,863

All other loans and investm ents........... 861,019

872,921

782,600

325,946

33 i , i 8o

284,798

309,833

317,99!

293,691

131,562

132,118

26,647

25,909

32,436

26,495

27,590

28,303

11,057

12,519

14,150

I 5> 1
39

16,474

15,026

230,128

224,731

119,949

*07,5 15

457

5,185

5i

Total U. S. Securities.................................. ? 47>°33

5i

5°

Loans— (exclusive of rediscounts)
Secured bv U. S. war obligations.........
Loans secured by stocks and bonds

(exclusive o f rediscounts)
Reserve Balance with Federal Reserve
B a n k ...................................................... 126,533
36,466

39 ,75°

42,917

N et D e m a n d ............................................ 912,125

Cash in v a u lt................................................

942,034

955,428

'Ti
0
0
0

191,498

L
ri
O
C
O

Deposits—
2x9,404

T im e ........................................................... 302,603

294,757

251,940

220,412

223,808

193,936

121,521

1,016

1,172

2 i , i 55

640

822

12,087

176

G overnm ent..............................................

OPEN M A R K E T DISCOUNT AND IN TE R E ST RATES A T CHICAGO
comparison of rates during the thirty-day periods
ending November 15, 1920, and December 15, 1919,
follows:

The open market range of discount and interest
rates prevailing in Chicago during the thirty-day
period ending December 15, 1920, together with a

D E C E M B E R , 1920

N O V E M B E R , 1920
D E C E M B E R , 1919
High Low
Low
Customary High
Customary

Low

Customary

6

7

7

7

7

6

5M

533 @6

b. Running 4 to 6 months................................................... 7
6
7
2. Rates for prime commercial paper purchased in the
open market:
Not in M arket
a . Running 30 to 90 days .................................................

7

7

7

6

5 '^

534 @6

High
i. Rates of discount charged by banks to customers for
prime commercial paper such as is now eligible
under the Federal Reserve Act:
a. Running 30, 60 and 90 days........................................

b. Running 4 to 6 months

7

8

8

8

6

5 33

533 @6

8

C
C

(<

..............................................

8

8

6

533

533 @6

7

7

6

533

5H @6

3. Rates charged on loans to other banks— secured by

bills payable.........................................................................................

8

4. Rates for bankers’ acceptances of 60 to 90 days
maturities:
a . Endorsed.....................................................................................
b. Unendorsed...............................................................................

7

7

Not in M arket
“

7

6M

6

6

5

4«

4 33@5

6M

C
«

6V s

6V s

5

4 ?£

4^@ 5

7

7

5*

573 @6

«

5. Rates for demand paper secured by prime stock ex­

change collateral or other current collateral................. 7
6. Rates for time paper secured by collateral mentioned
in No. 5:
a . Running 3 months............................................................... 7
1». Running 3 to 6 months................................................... 7
7. Rates (when paper is current in city) for:
a. Cattle loans..................................................... 7
b. Commodity paper secured by warehouse
receipts, etc.................................................. 7
8 Rates for ordinary commercial loans running 30, 60
and 90 days, (not including loans to enable pur­
chase of bonds) secured by:
a. Liberty bonds................................................. 7
b. Certificates of indebtedness............................ 6




6

7

7

6

7

7

7

7

6

533

573 @6

6

7

7

7

7

6

533

573 @6

7

7

7

7

7

6

5X

533@6

7

7

7

7

7

6

533

573@6

7

7

7

7

7

6

53a

573 (5,6

6

6

7

7

7

6

533

533@6

6

BUILDING INDUSTRY AT A STANDSTILL
The common brick industry is prostrated. One
Chicago concern has the equivalent of four miles of
kilns representing several months of productive ca­
pacity of burned brick and virtually no outlet at any
price, though this product was made at peak prices
for fuel and labor. Illinois and Indiana firms report­
ing to the Common Brick Manufacturers Association
show stocks of 1 12,000,000 brick, with nominal orders
for only one-third that quantity and no possibility of
anything but very trivial deliveries at the price in this
market— about $ 1 6 per thousand against about $20
in October. Makers say that the fall in prices of
structural material has had little or no beneficial effect.

Labor costs remain high and the output per man is
near the minimum, but the dominant factor is the im­
possibility of financing construction except at pro­
hibitive rates for money.
Averages drawn from the replies to our November
labor questionnaire show that the labor market is
supplied in excess of the demand. A decline of 10.3
per cent from October this year shows the industrial
effects of readjustment and falling prices. Compared
with a year ago the decline in number employed is
23.6 per cent. About three-fourths of plant capacity
is operating, against 80.7 per cent in October and 82.2
per cent in November, 1919.

BU ILDIN G STATISTICS FOR TH E M ONTH OF N O VEM BER, 1920
CHICAGO DISTRICT

(Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri and Portions of Eastern Kansas and Nebraska.)
CONTEMPLATED PROJECTS
No. of
Projects

Class

CONTRACTS AWARDED
N o. of

Valuation

Projects

New Floor Space
Sq. ft.

Valuation

Business Buildings................................................

.....................

223

147

1,106,300

$8,745,100

Educational Buildings..........................................

.....................

67

6,865,200

24

550,200

3 ,47 I ,3° °

Hospitals and Institutions...................................

.....................

27

3,980,000

*5

92,100

1,736,800

Industrial B uildings..............................................

.....................

193

13, 533,500

122

3 ,1 53, 6oo

18,266,500

49,400

.. .

496,200

$

9> , ioo
456

30,000

M ilitary and N aval Buildings............................

.

..

Public B uildings....................................................

.....................

25

438,800

9

Public Works and Public U tilities.....................

.....................

3g2

22,772,200

124

Religious and Memorial Buildings....................

.....................

59

5,173,000

29

160,100

1,270,000

16,308,200

(b) 466

1,460,400

7, ” 3 , 5oo

7,768,600

21

252,500

2,325,000

S86.22C.6oo

QCl

Residential B uildings............................................
Social and Recreational B uildings.....................

.....................

CONTRACTS

awarded

54

(January 1

to

4,552,200

$47,976,600

December 1)

1920............................................. $768,274,000

1916.

1912..........

. $^3,950,000

1 9 1 9 ............................................. 816,086,000

1915.

1 9 1 1 ..........

. 140,062,313

1918............................................. 474,609,000

1914.

1910..........

• 181,159,931

1 9 U ............ .............................. 573> ,ooo
762

I 9I3 .

(a) 1,348 Buildings.
(b) 598 Buildings.




...

1 73,3 ^9,000

BU ILD IN G P ER M ITS OF SEVEN TH FE D E R A L RE SE R VE D IST R IC T CIT IE S

November, 1920

No. of
Permits

November, 1919

Estim ated
Cost

N o. of

Estim ated

Per
Cent

Cent

Per

Permits

Cost

Gain

Loss

Aurora.............................................

O
O

C
r»

IL L IN O IS

27

202,700

96

Chicago...........................................

3,838,700

765

17,577,000

78
26

42

134,550

66

182,775

E vanston........................................ .....................

31

68,055

V
O
V
O

D ecatur........................................... .....................

$

3 I2, 732

78

Peoria.............................................. .....................

76

54,305

56

89 L 475

93

Rockford......................................... .....................

85

90,8 50

” 5

25 2» 5
5I

64

Springfield...................................... .....................

” 9

53,550

67

164,132

67

INDIANA
Fort Wayne.................................. ...............
Gary.............................................. ..............
Hammond..................................... ..............
Indianapolis.................................. ..............
Richmond...................................... ..............
South Bend................................... ..............
Terre Haute.................................. ..............

56

115,800

51

229,525

49

49

i 64,555

44

219,230

25

17

75,8oo

39

454

601,436

472

305,433
600,718

75

I

24

34,200

17

65,750

157

1, 555,363

192

382,439

5°

33,525

38

83,350

59

43

48
307

IOWA
Cedar Rapids................................ ..............

62

73,923

37

130,000

Davenport..................................... ..............
Des Moines................................... .............

29

41,895

126

194,265

78

51

127,585

383,750

67

18,263

91
10

75,090

75

.............

44

34 ,3 18

45

63,675

46

Sioux City..................................... .............

35

59,650

85

373,350

84

36

18,980

148

30,000

37

31

333,550

34

546,000

39

942

2,996,020

1,643

62

106,790

347

7,989,530
617,321

444,396

131

676,090

34

44

24,268

74

420,225

42

108,554

20

77

3 23 ,ooo

144

104,356
210,150

86

144,793

153

318,467

54

41

Dubuque.......................................
Mason City...................................

MICHIGAN
Battle Creek.................................. .............
Bay C ity....................................... ..............
Detroit........................................... .............
Flint..............................................
Grand Rapids................................
Jackson.......................................... .............
Kalamazoo........ ........................... .............
Lansing........................................... .............
Saginaw........................................... .............

82
94
3
54

WISCONSIN
Kenosha..........................................

105,519

145

181,417

Madison..........................................

69,070

527,850

87

Milwaukee.......................................

L 444,276

29
270

3,244,451

55

67

88,749

Oshkosh .......................................... .............
Sheboygan....................................... .............




23

14,503

57

34 ,WI

13,410

8
61

FOREIGN

EX CH AN G E

MOVEMENT OF INDICES OF COMMODITY PRICES

Wholesale prices in 1920 show a more rapid decline
during the last half of the year than they showed in­
crease during the first half.

All three indices show

approximately the same rate of decline in the last
three months. Farm products, textiles and food effectthe greatest decline.

The wide difference in the ad­

vance and decline of the indices of the Bureau of
Labor over both Bradstreet and the 12 basic com­
modities is due to:

the difference in the number of

articles selected and the time of market quotation.
The Bureau of Labor includes 325 articles, covering a
wide range of raw and manufactured products and
uses in most cases an average quoted price for the
month, while Bradstreet includes only 96 commodities
and both Bradstreet and 12 basic commodities use a

AN D

P R IC E

FOREIGN EXCHANGE AND COMMODITY PRICES

The chart below draws a comparison between
the United Kingdom, France, and Italy on the
one hand and the United States on the other as regards
the value of the currency of these countries.
Above the 100% line are the commodity prices of
these three countries of Europe, expressed in percen­
tage terms of the commodity price of the United
States. The rise of these price curves gives evidence
of a corresponding fall in the relative value of the
European currency.
Below the 100% line are the rates of foreign ex­
change expressed as per cent of the par value. The
depreciation of currency as shown here runs fairly uni­
form with that indicated above.
The rates of exchange used are the New York quo­
tations as of the first Thursday of each month, while
the commodity prices are averages for these months.

quoted price the first of the month.

INDEX
NUMBER




IN D ICES

P E R CENT

CO M PARATIVE L IV E STO CK STA TISTICS
Receipts of live stock at Chicago for the four weeks ending December n , 1920, compare with 1919 as follows:
Year

Cattle

Calves

Hogs

Sheep

321,091

52,080

74^346

369>°57

19*9 ............................................................................................................ 393,886

68,884

903,244

447»659

16,804

160,898

78,60a

1920 ............................................................................................................
Decrease.............................................................................................

7 2,795

Receipts of live stock at the principal markets during November, and during the first eleven months of 1920
compared with the corresponding periods of the previous year, show the following changes:
1920

Cattle

Calves

N ovem ber........................................

25 per cent Decrease

Eleven months................................

Sheep and Lambs

Hogs

19 per cent Decrease

18 per cent Decrease

6 per cent Decrease

18 per cent Decrease

8 per cent Decrease

14 per cent Decrease

N o difference

Receipts of hogs at the six principal markets during November, 1920, aggregated 1,625,545 head, against
2,434,354 in November, 1919.
The average prices compared as follows per hundredweight:
Cattle
Choice

Cattle
Common

Sheep

Lambs

$12.09

Novem ber 1 9 2 0 ......................................................... $17.62

$ 5.70

$11.72

$12.20

Hogs

N ovem ber 1 9 1 9 .........................................................

20.14

15.10

8.30

14.50

13.60

Eleven months— 1920..............................................

$16.86

$13.73

$ 9-85

$*5*77

$13.30

Eleven months— 1 9 1 9 .............................................

18.94

*5-54

10.48

16.25

15.32

Cash lard in November 1920, ranged from $18.45 to $2°.° ° cwt. compared with $22.12 to $24.00 in November 1919.
Cash ribs in November 1920, ranged from $14.25 to $16.00 cwt. compared with $23.50 to $27.50 in November 1919

R E C E IPT S AN D SH IPM ENTS OF IM PO R TA N T COM M ODITIES A T CHICAGO
(ooo’s omitted)
R E C E IP T S
Novem ber
1920

S H IP M E N T S
Novem ber
October

October

1919

1920

1919

1920

1919

Flour, barrels.............................................

1,167

584

1,190

1920

1919

443

Wheat, bushels..........................................

3,342

i ,534

9,191

940

797

4i 7

790

5,507

3,939

1,404

Corn, bushels............................................. .....................

3.901

4 ,85 1

11,915

4,802

5,082

1,996

6,849

3,076

Oats, bushels.............................................. .....................

4,473

5,515

6,561

9,385

3,588

6,761

3,235

7,863

270

443

439

105

308

785

105

980

942

1,010

456

324

47 i

527

R ye, bushels...............................................
Barley, bushels.......................................... .....................

1.535

Cured M eats, pounds............................... .....................

4 , 9°4

12,402

6,657

10,160

106,012

111,423

108,801

104,012

Fresh M eats, pounds................................ .....................

56,401

8 i ,4 9 I

53, 578

77,829

104,898

262,900

112,597

153,490

Lard, pounds.............................................. .....................

5, 76o

11,166

6,898

7,232

40,259

58,033

51,804

55,686

Cheese, pounds.......................................... .....................

15,572

W ,505

15,546

22,384

10,921

19,112

8,391

24,333

Butter, pounds........................................... .....................

15,755

18,671

21,017

24,497

18,234

20,750

17,305

25,126

Eggs, cases.................................................. .....................

97

117

233

236

312

303

282

379

2,010

2,344

2,889

664

688

618

1,432

17,101

Potatoes, bushels.......................................
Hides, pounds............................................
Wool, pounds............................................. .....................
Lumber, thousand feet.............................




394

10,966

16,863

” ,239

27,522

13,340

27,939

x, 37 8

1,281

L 393

3,715

6,283

4,169

5,553

176

196

208

57

7°

75

95


Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, One Federal Reserve Bank Plaza, St. Louis, MO 63102