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THE BUSINESS REVIEW
THIRD FEDERAL
PHILADELPHIA

RESERVE DISTRICT
MAY i, 1930

By R IC H A R D L . A U STIN , Chairman and Federal Reserve A gent
FEDERAL RESERVE BAN K of PHILADELPHIA

Business and Financial Conditions in the United States
Industrial production declined in
March, while factory employment and
payrolls showed little change, and
wholesale prices continued to decline.
There was an increase in construction,
as is usual at this season. Interest
rates continued to decline in the first
three weeks o f March, but later became
somewhat firmer.
Production. Production in basic in­
dustries declined in March, contrary
to the usual seasonal trend. Average
daily output o f steel, coal, and copper
decreased substantially, while output
o f cotton and wool textiles declined at
about the usual seasonal rate. Produc­
tion o f automobiles and lumber in­
creased.
For the first quarter o f the year,
taken as a whole, output o f basic indus­
tries was considerably smaller than in
the unusually active first quarter of
1929 and smaller than in any other
first quarter since 1925. In the steel
and automobile industries, output for
the first three months, though smaller
than in 1929, was about the same as in
the corresponding months in 1928,
while in most o f the other m ajor in­
dustries it was smaller than in either
o f the two preceding years.

Building contracts awarded in­
creased substantially in March as is
usual at this season, according to re­
ports o f the F. W . Dodge Corporation.
In comparison with a year ago, a large
increase in contracts for public works
and utilities was more than offset by
a decrease in residential building.
Average daily awards in the first half
o f April were somewhat larger than
in March, but continued smaller than
a year ago.
Employment.
Factory employment
and payrolls, which usually increase
during March, changed little from
February and continued to be con­
siderably smaller than in other recent
years. The number o f workers em­
ployed in the automobile industry in­
creased somewhat less than is usual
at this season and reductions in em­
ployment and in earnings were re­
ported in the iron and steel, machinery,
and car building industries.
Distribution. Freight car loadings,
which have been at low levels in re­
cent months, did not show the usual
seasonal increase during March. De­
partment store sales continued in
smaller volume than a year ago.
PERCENT

Index number of production of manufactures
and minerals combined, adjusted for seasonal
variations (1923-1925 average = 100). Latest
figure March, 105.




Wholesale prices.
Wholesale prices,
which began to decline last summer,
continued to move downward in March
to the lowest level since 1916, the de­
cline reflecting chiefly sharp decreases
in prices o f agricultural products.
Prices o f imported raw materials, such
as sugar, coffee, and silk, fluctuated
around the low levels reached in Feb­
ruary. The price o f silver advanced
slightly from the low point reached
early in March.
In the last week in March and the
first week in April there were ad­
vances in prices o f agricultural prod-

Monthly averages of weekly figures for re­
porting member banks in leading cities.
Latest figures are averages of first three weeks
in April.

PERCENT

Index numbers of factory employment and
payrolls, without adjustment for seasonal
variations. (1923-1925 average = 100). Latest
figures March, employment 92.7, payrolls
98.0.

Monthly rates in the open market in New
York: commercial paper rate on 4 to 6 month
paper. Acceptance rate on 90-day bankers’
acceptances. Latest figures are averages of
first 20 days in April.

Page One

ucts, especially grains and cotton,
while the price o f steel declined. On
April 15th, the price o f copper was
sharply reduced, and in the same week
prices o f a number o f other important
commodities also declined.
Bank credit.
A t member banks in
leading cities total loans and in­
vestments increased in the four week
period ending April 16, reflecting a
growth o f $184,000,000 in loans on
securities and o f $80,000,000 in invest­
ments, offset in part by a further de­

March 24 and remained steady at that
level; rates on 60-90 day bankers’ ac­
ceptances were reduced to 2y2 per cent
on March 20 but later advanced to 3
per cent. Bond yields, after declining
during most o f March, increased grad­
ually in the first half o f April.
During April the rediscount rates
o f the Federal Reserve Banks o f Rich­
mond, Atlanta, St. Louis, Minneapolis,
and Dallas were reduced to 4 per cent,
the rate prevailing at all o f the reserve
banks except New Y ork where the
rate is 3^4 per cent.

crease o f $186,000,000 in “ all other”
loans.
Member bank indebtedness at the
reserve banks and total reserve bank
credit declined further between the
weeks ending March 15th and April
12th, reflecting primarily additional
imports o f gold from the Orient.
In the third week o f March, money
rates in the open market reached the
lowest levels since 1924, but in the
next three weeks were somewhat
firmer. Rates on commercial paper de­
clined to a range o f 334-4 per cent on

Business and Financial Conditions in the
Philadelphia Federal Reserve District
Business in the aggregate has
shown some signs o f improvement
since the middle o f March, although it
continues less active than at the same
season in other recent years. Indus­
trial output and employment in March
on the whole changed little and con­
tinued at lower levels than is usual.
Commodity
prices
have
declined
further.
Reflecting in a measure business
conditions, the commercial loans o f
member banks have declined during the
past month. The banks’ investment
holdings, on the other hand, have in­
creased, while borrowings from the
reserve bank have declined. Demand
for currency continues less active than
last year. Banks in this district were
active purchasers o f commercial paper
during March.
Manufacturing. Analysis o f the avail­
able data shows that there has been
some seasonal improvement in the
manufacturing industry as a whole,
although the present rate o f activity
has been below that o f recent years.
The market for manufactured goods
continues restricted and sales are
smaller than a year ago. This is also
true o f unfilled orders which have de­
clined in the month and in compari­
son with last year. Stocks o f finished
goods at manufacturing plants, while
showing some accumulation, are not
regarded as burdensome; they are said
to have been reduced somewhat in the
last month and are smaller than a year
ago. Commodity prices in this dis­
trict have declined further and are
noticeably below the level prevailing
at the same time last year.
Factory employment in this section
in March showed a slight decline in­
stead o f increasing seasonally. The
volume o f wage payments continued
virtually unchanged, although ordi­
Page Two




and there was a decline o f nearly 7
per cent in the amount o f wage dis­
bursements.
Business in iron and steel products
on the whole has shown a slight fur-

narily a marked increase occurs be­
tween February and March.
In
comparison with last year’s peak there
were more than 4 per cent fewer
workers employed in Pennsylvania,

Latest figure
compared with

Business indicators
Philadelphia Federal Reserve District

Previous
month

Year
ago

+ 8.1%
+ 6.3 “
+ 26.0 “
+ 11.0 “
15.8 “

-1 7 .5 %
- 1 6 .8 *
-2 0 .1 “
- 2 8 .2 “
- 2 1 .2 “

Retail trade— estimated net sales (134
stores)................................................... (daily average)
U
Department stores (64)..........................
u
U
Apparel stores (37).................................
“
U
Shoe stores (17).......................................
“
Credit stores (16)....................................
“

$775,300
$649,100
$100,800
$12,100
$13,300

Wholesale trade—net sales (104 firms) . . . (daily average)
“
Boots and shoes (5)................................
“
“
Drugs (10)...............................................
“
“
Dry goods (13)........................................
“
“
Electrical supplies (5).............................
“
“
Groceries (32)..........................................
“
“
Hardware (22).........................................
“
“
Jewelry (10)............................................
“
Paper (7 )..................................................
“
“

$284,801 + 4.0 “
$4,701 + 59.8 “
$47,449 + 2.3 “
$18,277 + 7.0 “
$17,570 — 16.9 “
$101,973 — 3.0 “
$66,110 + 22.0 “
$10,066 + 4.6 “
$18,655 + 7.3 “

Productive activity—
Employment— 850 plants in Penna......................
Wage payments in above plants...........................

“
“
“
“
“
“

“
“
“
“

“
“
“

“
“
“

bbls ............ 45,400
bbls ............ 87,645
KWH. ..18,711,600

9.9 “
+ 20.7 “
0.2 “

- 2 1 .3 *
+ 8.1 “
+ 10.7 “

$2,753,308,000

+ 12.3 “

- 1 1 .2 “

Financial and credit—
Debits— 18 cities.....................................................
Loans and investments—middle of April— 103 member
banks....................................................................
Bills discounted held by F. R. B. of Phila. (daily average)
Bankers’ acceptances outstanding— end of month
Commercial paper sales— 4 dealers.......................
Commercial failures— number...............................
Commercial failures—liabilities.............................
Building and real estate—
Building permits— 17 cities....................................
Building contracts awarded...................................
Number of real estate deeds recorded (Philadelphia
county).................................................................
Value of mortgages recorded (Philadelphia county).......
Sheriff sale— number of writs issued for April— (Philacounty).................................................................
Miscellaneous—
Freight car loadings (Allegheny district).............
Sales of life insurance (Penna., N. J.*, and Del.)..
Automobile sales registrations of new passenger cars. . .
* Bureau of Census preliminary figures.

“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“

336,626
$9,175,793
prs. ..............54,386
doz. prs........62,084
..........268,948
479,393
tons ..............10,391
tons .................. 208
tons ..................336
tons .......... 174,900
tons ..........386,200

U
u
Active cotton spindle hours (Penna.)...
Pig iron production.................................
Iron casting production (34 foundries).
Steel casting production (11 foundries).
Anthracite................................................
Bituminous coal (Penna.)......................
Petroleum receipts at Port of Philadelphia—domestic and foreign..........
Cement....................................................
Electric power output— 11 systems. . . .

— 0.3
0
+ 4.2
4.8
—
7.2
— 1.5
+ 0.0
— 1.3
— 3.1
— 31.8
— 8.5

- 3.3
- 1 6 .9
+ 6.8
- 1 6 .8
- 3.9
- 1.4
- 3.4
- 2 6 .0
- 0.0

$1,670,400,000 + 0.9
$36,700,000
27.3
$23,930,000 — 9.0
$12,335,000 + 76.8
132 + 7.3
$2,054,077
45.3

“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“

+ 0.7 “
- 3.9 “

- 2 2 .3
- 9.5
-1 1 .9
+ 20.0
- 1 3 .3
- 1 5 .4

“
“
“
“
“
“

*
“
“
“
“
“

— 3.2 “
-6 3 .9 “
+ 3 8 .4 “
+ 5 3 0 .1 “
+ 7 1 .4 “
+ 2 9 .7 “

$11,246,539
$28,511,000

+ 157 .6 “
+ 60.7 “

- 2 6 .6 “
- 1 9 .5 “

4,489
$17,171,044

+ 2.8 “
+ 12.5 “

- 1 7 .5 “
- 2 1 .7 “

1,366

+ 27.7 “

+ 4 5 .3 “

780,883 + 9.1 *
........ 4,545,078 + 16.6 “
$131,282,000 + 17.6 “
18,121 + 61.5 «

+
+
-

8.9
6.7
5.0
6.0

“
“
“
“

ther improvement, but the volume does
not equal the usual seasonal amount.
The daily output o f those fabricated
metal products which are used by the
automobile and construction industries
has shown a moderate expansion in
response to better demand. Buying
by railroads, however, which was con­
spicuous in earlier months, has slack­
ened lately.
The output o f steel
foundries showed an increase between
February and March and was mate­
rially larger than in March 1929.
Operations o f iron foundries also in­
creased in the month but were notice­
ably below those o f a year earlier.

Daily average
Electric power
Philadelphia Federal
Reserve District
11 Systems

Change
from
March,
1929

Change
from
Feb.,
1930

Rated generator capacity. . . . + 4.5%

+ 0.7 %

Generated output................... + 10.7
Hydro-electric..................... + 9.7
+ 10.6
Purchased............................ + 15.0
Sales of electricity...................
Lighting...............................
Municipal.........................
Residential and comniercial................................
Power...................................
Municipal.........................
Street cars and railroads.
Industries.........................

“ - 0.2
“ + 58.0
“ - 2 9 .7
“ + 15.3

“
“
“
“

+ 12.9 “ - 4.7 “
+ 9.4 “ - 5.8 “
+ 39.4 “ - 1 8 .1 “
+
+
+
+
+

7.7
15.4
10.1
16.0
9.1

“
“
“
“
“*

- 5.9
- 1 6 .4
- 1 3 .0
- 1 6 .8
- 5.5

“
“
“
“
*

All other sales......................... + 28.1 “ + 2 3 .5 “
Iron and steel
production
(Daily average)

First
quarter,
1929

First
quarter,
1930

Per
cent
change

Pig iron:
United States.. . 10,363,028 8,912,655 -1 4 .0
897,877 - 9.5
992,143
Phila. F. R. Dist.
Steel ingots:
United States.. . 13,874,612 12,143,406 -1 2 .5
Source: Iron Age.

Activity o f plants making transpor­
tation equipment is well maintained.
The production o f commercial trucks,
and automobile bodies and parts con­
tinued upward in March, while that
o f locomotives and cars declined
somewhat.
Ship and boat building
shows the highest rate o f operation
since the early part o f 1927.
The textile situation on the whole
continues unsatisfactory. The demand
generally is fair to poor and prices
have declined further. The broad silk
industry alone is operating at a high
level, one which has been rising since
the beginning o f 1929, barring some
variations. Manufacturers o f wool and
cotton products, on the other hand,
are producing at a much lower
rate than in any month during the
past five years, when allowance is
made for the usual seasonal changes.
Following a pronounced increase from
the middle o f 1928 to the close of
1929, the production o f hosiery has
since declined and was materially
lower than in the same month o f the
past tw o years. N o marked change
is noted in the operation o f carpet
and rug concerns, although the pres­
ent rate o f loom activity compares
rather well with that o f a year or two
years ago.
Such recessions as oc­
curred since March in these textile
branches may be attributed, at least
in part, to the customary seasonal
influences.
Conditions in the leather industry
have shown lately a considerable de­
gree o f stability, although some weak­
ness in prices occurred last month.
The demand for hides and skins has




♦Working days average.

been fair but operations o f local tan­
neries were reduced slightly in March.
The goat and kid leather market is
steady and production is keeping up
the rate which has shown an upward
trend since 1925.
Industries preparing and manufac­
turing food products generally con­
tinue to operate at a stable rate and
several o f them show seasonal gains.
The output o f bakeries and sugar re­
fineries increased in March but that
o f local creameries showed some de­
cline in the month and as compared
with a year earlier.
Daily animal
slaughterings in this district were
larger in March than in February.
The output o f the principal tobacco
products declined in March instead o f
increasing as in other recent years,
although employment and wage pay­
ments showed gains over February.
The general trend o f production in
this industry has been upward since
1924 while employment and payrolls
have shown a slight declining tend­
ency.
Production of some building mate­
rials has increased recently, reflecting
a more active demand from the con­
struction industry.
Unfilled orders
generally are larger than a month
ago. Comparisons with a year ago,
however, continue less favorable,
except in the output o f cement
which in March reached a larger vol­
ume than in the same month o f the
past two years. Stocks o f cement at
the end o f March were the largest
shown for any month in the past four
years, as is indicated in the accom­
panying chart. Stocks o f slate also
exceed those o f a year ago. Inven­
tories o f brick and lumber, on the
other hand, are somewhat smaller
than at the same time last year.
Building and real estate. Building ac­
tivity has improved since the early

part o f last month. Both employment
and wage payments in construction
and contracting increased between
February and March and the demand
for workers by various building trades
was more active in the first fortnight
o f April than for many weeks past.
W hile the rate o f operation also has
risen considerably above the very low
level reached in December, neverthe­
less it remains below that prevailing
at the same time in recent years.
The total value o f building contracts
awarded rose somewhat more sharply
between February and March this year
than last, but it still was lower than in
the same month for many years past.
In the first three months o f this year,
however, the value o f contracts was
slightly in excess o f that in the same
period last year.
The accompanying chart shows that
contracts for dwellings continued gen­
erally the downward trend since the
spring o f 1928. Such upturn as oc­
curred in the first quarter o f this year
failed to measure up to the usual sea­
sonal level, and the value o f contracts
was about 55 per cent less than in the
first quarter last year. While a steady
gain was noted in the construction o f
industrial and commercial buildings
during the first quarter o f this year,
the total was only a little more than
one-half o f that in the same quarter
last year, but was close to that o f
1928.
Public works and utilities
showed the largest expansion in the
first three months o f this year, owing
chiefly to the construction o f high­
ways. The value o f contracts for this
class o f construction was about three
times as large as in the first quarter o f
last year and about twice as large as
that in 1928. Comparative figures for
this district as a whole and for some
o f the leading cities are given in the
following table:

Building contracts
awarded
(000’s omitted
in figures)

First
First
quarter, quarter,
1930
1929

First
quarter,
avg.
19251928

Philadelphia.............. $55,923 $36,089 $ 56,750
Reading.....................
591
4,017
1,164
Scranton....................
1,276
226
1,133
Camden.....................
1,536
2,560
2,229
Trenton.....................
497
1,290
1,415
Wilmington...............
2,755
4,632
931
Total for Philadel­
phia Federal Re­
serve District, ineluding all cities. . . 94,168

94,073

103,331

Source: F. W. Dodge Corporation

The value o f contracts let in this
section in the first eighteen days o f
April showed a further gain over the
daily average in March. Comparison
Page Three

with a year ago, however, remained
unfavorable in spite o f the continuous
enlargement in the activity in some
types o f construction.
The real estate market continues
unsatisfactory. The number o f real
estate deeds and the value o f mortgages
recorded in Philadelphia during March
showed a gain over the preceding
month, but they were much lower
than in the same month during the past
four years. This is also true o f the
total volume o f transactions in the first
quarter o f this year. The number o f
writs issued for the sale o f property in
April by the sheriff o f Philadelphia
was larger than in any month in the
past eleven years.
Coal. The market for anthracite has
slackened somewhat, owing largely to
lessened buying by householders on
account o f warmer weather. Prices
have declined since the middle o f last
month, probably reflecting the usual
seasonal reductions. Daily output o f
anthracite
collieries
has
declined
steadily since the turn o f the year and
in March this decrease was more pro­
nounced than that in the same month
in the past two years. In the first three
weeks o f April, production totaled
2,788,000 tons as against 3,895,000
tons in the same period last year, a
drop o f almost 40 per cent.
The demand for bituminous coal also
has been less active than four weeks
ago and prices have declined further.
The output o f Pennsylvania collieries
in March was smaller than in Febru­
ary and in March, 1929. In the first
two weeks o f April, production re­
mained fairly steady and the volume
exceeded that in the same period o f
last year and two years ago.
Agriculture. Spring farm activity is
in evidence, particularly in the south­
eastern portion o f the district. Prelim­
inary reports show that farmers intend
to increase slightly their acreage of
corn, oats, and potatoes while the area
allotted to hay and spring wheat is
expected to be somewhat smaller. T o ­
bacco growers intend to cultivate as
large an acreage as they had last year.
The condition o f winter wheat on
April 1 was estimated at 87.3 per cent
o f normal as compared with 91.3 per
cent for 1929, a decline o f 4 per cent.
The decline for the country was placed
at 5.3 per cent.
Distribution. Railroad shipments o f
commodities in this section in March
increased less than usual, but con­
tinued the upward trend in early
April. The number o f freight cars
Page Four




loaded in the first quarter o f this year
was the lowest shown for the same
period since 1925.
The wholesale and jobbing trade
showed an increase in daily sales of
about four per cent between February
and March. Compared with a year
ago, the dollar volume o f wholesale
trade was smaller by about three per
cent.
The largest declines occurred
in jewelry, shoes, and dry goods;
drugs alone reported increased sales.
This unfavorable comparison was due
in a large measure to lower prices
and to the lateness o f Easter.
Preliminary reports covering the
greater part o f April showed that
there existed a fair demand for com­
modities at wholesale and the num­
ber o f returns showing smaller sales
equalled those showing larger sales.
Wholesale prices continued to de­
cline, although many reports showed
no change since March.
There is no statistical evidence
showing an accumulation o f inven­
tories at wholesale and jobbing estab­
lishments; on the contrary, stocks o f
goods at the end o f March generally
seemed lighter than on the same date
last year.
Retail sales during March were
about 8 per cent larger than in Febru­
ary, when computed on the daily aver­
age basis. Department, apparel and
shoe stores shared in this gain, where­
as credit stores had a considerable
decline in their sales. Early reports
covering about eighteen days o f April
showed a further increase in sales,
principally on account o f Easter trade.
Comparisons with sales in March,
1929 lose their significance inasmuch
as the spring holiday trade was
about three weeks later this year than
last. Largely for that reason sales in
all lines showed
substantial
de­
clines. This was
naturally reflected
in the fact that re­
tail sales in the
first quarter o f this
year were about 8
per cent less than
in the same period
last year.
Inventories car­
ried by reporting
retailers increased
about 8 per cent
March,
during
which was only to
be expected, pend­
ing
the holiday
activity. In com ­

parison with a year ago, stocks o f
merchandise as a whole were nearly
5 per cent smaller.
Sales o f new automobiles, as shown
by passenger car registrations, in­
creased further in March, although
the rate o f this gain was considerably
below what is normally expected.
The number o f new cars sold in the
first quarter o f this year was mate­
rially smaller than in the correspond­
ing period last year but was slightly
larger than in the first three months
o f 1928.
The increase in the sales o f ordi­
nary life insurance in this section was
noticeably larger than is usual for
March.
The volume also exceeded
that in March, 1929 by 5 per cent.
The number o f commercial failures
increased, while liabilities involved
decreased sharply between February
and March, but both were much
heavier than in March, 1929. The
amount o f liquidations in the first
three months this year reached the
highest level since the early part of
1927.
Financial conditions.
The renewal
rate for call money in this city contin­
ued at 4Yz per cent, the rate first fixed
on March 18, but there was a further
reduction in rates charged on commer­
cial loans to customers as reported by
large member banks in Philadelphia.
In the course o f the week ended April
15, the average rate was 5.1 per cent,
as compared with 5.4 per cent a month
earlier, and 5.9 per cent six months
ago when commercial demands were
heavier and the stock market was in
the midst o f a readjustment; the April
figure is the lowest since June, 1928.
The commercial loans o f reportingmember banks in twenty-one cities of
the district declined during the five

weeks ended April 16; this was in
keeping with slow progress and weak­
ness o f prices in the business world,
as an increase in such loans is usual
in this period. The banks apparently
are amply supplied with funds, for
they have reduced their borrowings
from the reserve banks, added mate­
rially to their investment holdings,
and also expanded their loans on se­
curities.
The total credit extended by mem­
ber banks in four cities o f this dis­
trict, as measured by their average
loans and investments, in March was
lower than in any month since 1927;
this was followed by some increase
in April. Deposits declined over a
large part o f this period, but have
been rising since August.
Member banks reduced their bor­
rowings from the Federal Reserve
Bank o f Philadelphia during the five
weeks ended April 23, with relatively
little change in reserve deposits. T w o
divergent factors are to be noted.
Treasury operations caused the banks
to lose substantially, chiefly as the
result o f income-tax collections early
in the period and withdrawals o f gov­
ernment funds from depositary banks
at intervals over the five weeks. These
losses, however, were more than com­
pensated for by favorable balances in
Reported by member
banks in 21 leading
cities
(000,000’s omitted)

April
16,
1930

Changes in—
Five
weeks

One
year

Reported by 91 banks:
5 -S 22
Loans on securities.......... $ 583
Other (largely commer­
600 3 + 4
cial) loans.....................
Reported by 103 banks:
Total loans and discounts. 1,238 + 2 - 16
432 + 13 - 39
Investments......................
Net demand and time de­
posits ............................. 1,409 4- 14 + 10




thfe inter-district settlements. There
was some increase in the demand for
currency around Easter, as usual, but
the net change for the whole period
was a small decrease; currency de­
mand also has been much smaller than
a year ago, reflecting less satisfactory
business conditions.
The decline in bills discounted in
the five weeks amounted to 5 mil­
lions, reducing the total to 27 mil­
lions on April 23. Member banks in
Philadelphia have been borrowing
around 4 or 5 millions recently, and
those outside o f the city also have re­
duced their indebtedness to the reserve
bank to a point materially under that
o f a year ago. The reserve ratio, owing
principally to an increase in reserve
cash, increased from 80 to 82.2 per
cent in the period under review ; since
the middle o f March the ratio has
been below 80 per cent on only a few
days, and at one time was as high as
84.6 per cent. Purchased bill hold­
ings o f the bank show little change
in the month. The bank’s holdings
o f United States securities, consisting
mainly o f a participation in the
special investment account o f the sys­
tem, also have shown slight fluctua­
tions, although they continue in rela­
tively large amount, making up more
than half o f the earning assets o f the
bank.
Commercial paper sales in March,
according to the reports o f four deal­
ers, were considerably larger than in
February and far in excess o f those
a year earlier. In only two o f the
seven preceding years were the March
figures higher than those in February
and in both o f these exceptions the
expansion was much less than that
shown last month. Total sales for
the first three months o f 1930 trebled

Federal Reserve
Bank of
Philadelphia
(Dollar figures in
millions)

Changes in—

April
23,
1930

Bills discounted for
member banks
in Philadelphia. S 4.1
Other communi­
ties ....................
23.2

Five
weeks

One
year

-$ 1 .5

T o t a l b ills d is ­
counted ............ $ 27.3
Bills bought............
8.8
United States se­
curities.............
46.1
Other securities. . . .
1.0

-$ 6 3 .6

-

-

3.7

22.8

-.$ 5.2
.6
-

Total bills and
securities.......... $ 83.2
Member banks’ re­
serve deposits. . 137.8
Cash reserves.......... 233.0
Reserve ratio..........
82.2%

-$ 8 6 .4
3.5

.6
0

+ 28.9
.2

—$6.4

-$ 6 1 .2

+ 3.1
+
.7
+ 8.1
+ 67.5
+ 2.2% + 22.7%

those in the first quarter o f 1929;
this comparison also holds good both
for sales to city banks and those to
outside institutions.
Commercial
paper sales
(Four
dealers)

Sales to—
City
banks

Country
banks

Total sales

1930— Jan.. . $7,012,500 $8,124,500 $15,137,000
Feb...
875,000 6,100,000
6,975,000
Mar. . 7,840,000 4,495,000 12,335,000
1929— Mar. .
705,000 1,252,500
1,957,500

In keeping with the tendencies
shown in the national totals, the vol­
ume o f bankers’ acceptances executed
by banks in this district declined dur­
ing March, but continued much larger
than a year ago. Totals for the United
States show that the declines were
largest, in dollars, in acceptances
covering imports and domestic ware­
house credits. The total o f Philadel­
phia district bills outstanding on
March 31 was $23,930,000, as against
$26,309,000 on February 28, and $17,290,000 on March 30, 1929.
Page Five

Payrolls
March, 1930

Employment
March, 1930
Employment and
wages
in Pennsylvania

Mar.,
index*

All manufacturing indus­
tries (51)......................

97.6

Metal products...................
Blast furnaces.................
Steel wks. & rolling mills.
Iron and steel forgings...
Structural iron work.......
St. & hot wtr. htg. ap... .
Stoves and furnaces........
Foundries.........................
Machinery and parts. . . .
Electrical apparatus.......
Engines and pumps........
Hardware and tools........
Brass and bronze prods. .

94.7
60.5
86.8
96.5
119.0
99.3
83.0
101.5
106.7
116.7
95.2
98.4
102.4

Transportation equipment...
Automobiles....................
Auto, bodies and parts...
Locomotives and cars. . .
Railroad repair shops. . . .
Shipbuilding....................
Textile products................
Cotton goods.................
Woolens & worsteds.. ..
Silk goods.......................
Tex. dyeing & finishing.
Carpets and rugs..........
Hats...............................
Hosiery...........................
Knit goods. Other.........
Men’s clothing..............
Women’s clothing.........
Shirts & furnishings. . . .

81.3f
58.1
91.7
52.5
78.2
84.5
106.5
78.1
59.2
123.3
101.8
71.7
90.3
127.5
97.1
85.2
135.4
141.5

Foods and tobacco.
Bread & bakery prods. . .
Confectionery........
Ice cream...............
Meat packing........
Cigars and tobacco

110.2
111.8
103.8
97.2
98.4
109.9

Stone, clay & glass prods...
Brick, tile and pottery...
Cement............................
Glass.................................

77.4
83.9
61.3
98.5

Lumber products.
Lumber & planing mills.
Furniture...............
Wooden boxes.......

79.3
67.4
85.9
66.3

Chemical products. ..
Chemicals and drugs
Coke.......................
Explosives..............
Paints and varnishes
Petroleum refining.

101.4
90.9
102.6
84.7
93.4
130.2

Leather & rubber prods.... 98.1
Leather tanning. . ,
105.5
Shoes......................
94.9
Leather products, Other. 97 A
87.2
Paper and printing. ..
Paper and wood pulp.. . .
Paper boxes and bags. . .
Printing and publishing..

Per cent
change since

99.5
86.9
92.5
103.9

Anthracite..........................
83.3
Bituminous co a l...............
Construction & contracting 123 9
Street railways..................
85.5
Retail trade.......................
Wholesale trade................
91.7

Mar.,
1929

+

0.7

_

0.2
0.8
2.8
2.6
1.1
1.7
1.5
0
3.4
11.0
7.8
13.2
22.9

+
+
+
—
+
+
—
—

0.1
11.0
— 32.5
+ 4.4
4.3
+ 96.5

+

_

_ 1.8
_
_ 17.0

— 20.1
+ 5.8
11.7
— 0.8
— 9.0
_ 0.6
+ 4.3
11.6
— 5.4
+ 7.1

Feb.,
1930




Mar.,
index*

Mar.,
1929

101.3

-

_ 0.8
+ 1.3
+ 1.2
7.0
+ 2.9
0.7
+ 2.9
4.3
— 2.2
— 4.5
— 1.6
— 2.2
3.2

99.7
58.9
93.5
99.2
122.7
102.1
71.6
103.6
107.2
125.5
100.9
101.3
108.7

—
—
—
—
+
—
—
—
—
+
—
—

83 .5f
+ 0.1
_ 3.0 50.6
97.2
+ 15.5
— 3.3
55.8
— 4.5 84.6
2.3 127.8

+
+
+
—
—
—
—

0.1
0.8
5.6
2.4
0.3
0.6
1.4
1.9
0.3
0
1.2
1.0

110.0
70.5
51.6
137.9
112.1
60.0
77.3
154.2
101.0
77.9
134.9
148.7

—
_
—
+

Feb.,
1930

0

3.9
5.5
4.1
8.7
0.4
4.2
8.0
0.8
3.5
1.7
5.3
12.9
14.9
22.3

—
+
—
+
—
+
—
—
—
—
—

0.8
0.2
4.0
1.8
2.4
4.0
7.2
1.0
7.7
9.8
2.3
0.1
3.3

4.9
— 15.1
— 34.3
+ 5.3
— 5.8
+ 80.3

+ 4.5
+ 8.6
+ 26.6
— 4.3
— 1.7
+ 1.3

—
—
+
—
—
—
—
—
—
—
+

- 2.0
— 0.3
14.0
+ 4.5
+ 1.8
— 0.7
15.0
— 4.8
+ 9.3
19.6
— 2.7
2.6

9.2
29.8
27.0
1.8
11.9
13.4
27.6
6.4
12.0
29.2
4.9
7.8

0.2 106.8
1.2 114.4
3.2 108.4
4.7 99.7
2.0 94.5
+ 1.2 96.4

+ 6.4
+ 5.1
— 2.0
— 0.5
+ 2.8
+ 16.4

+
+
—
+
—
+

2.6
0.7
2.3
4.8
2.9
8.4

+ 0.8
+ 2.1
0
+ 7.3

72.6
79.0
58.8
92.0

5.5
— 3.1
— 8.4
3.9

+
+
+
+

1.8
3.1
1.9
0.9

10.0 + 0.9
24.6 _ 2.3
_ 2.5 + 3.7
1.3
+ 1.1

75.2
66.1
80.4
61.1

—
—
—

16.1
23.1
12.5
10.5

- 4.6
— 6.6
— 3.6
3.9

+ 11.1 + 3.4 106.6
+ 2.0 + 4.8 89.0
+ 10.1 + 12.6 92.0
85.0
7.4 — 2.4
_
1 .3 + 1.6 103.4
0.8 140.5
+ 21.5 +

+
—
+
—
—
+

10.4
1.5
7.1
14.3
4.8
21.6

Employ­
ment

Wage
payments

Allentown
area
Altoona
Harrisburg
“
Johnstown
“
Lancaster
“
Philadelphia “
Reading
“
Scranton
“

+
+
+
+

+
+
+
-

Wilkes-Barre
Williamsport
Wilmington
Y ork

+ 5.5
- 2 1 .4
+ 10.8
- 0.1

“
“
“
“

3.5%
8.0 “
2.5 “
3.3 “
3.6 “
3.5 “
1.2 “
9.6 “

_
_
_
_
+

3.5
4.6
7.4
8.0

_

Allentown
area
Altoona
“
Harrisburg
“
Johnstown
“
Lancaster
“
Philadelphia
“
Reading
“
Scranton
“

+
+
+
—
+

1.4%
0.1 “
0.5 “
1.5 “
2.1 “
1.7 “
1.7 “
1.3 “

Wilkes-Barre
Williamsport
Wilmington
York

+
+
-

2.8
5.0
6.0
2.3

“
“
“

+
+
+

— 2.0 100.8
1.8 104.7
— 2.0 100.2
— 1.6 101.3
— 3.8 95.3

+
+
—
—

2.4
8.2
2.5
1.9
12.3

—
+
—

2.1
4.9
5.6
2.0
3.1

3.9
4.4
2.0
2.4

0 115.4
93.9
+ 0.1
1.2 103.6
+ 0.1 122.5

+
+
—
+

6.7
0.1
3.9
3.6

+
—
+
+

0.3
1.4
1.4
0.7

22.7 67.1
0 9
-f 7.4 111.4
0.8 93.5
0 0
0.7

_

15.6

-

5.6

1.2
5.2
1.9
5.3
5.5

— 8.2
-

3.9

_

35.3
— 4.3
+ 8.3
0.5

2.0% - 72.0%
11.7 “ - 53.0 “
4.7 “ - 87.0 “
1.7 “ + 41.5 “
3.4 “ - 45.1 “
6.0 “ - 31.1 “
2.7 “ - 57.1 “
3.0 “ - 57.9 “
+ 379.6 “
+ 8.8 “ - 61.8 “
- 2 9 .4 “ + 26.3 “
+ 9.1 “ + 196.0 “
- 5.4 “ - 48.4 “

Retail
trade
sales

Debits

- 2 7 .2 %
-1 5 .1 “
- 2 2 .8 “
- 1 0 .3 “
- 1 0 .9 “
- 1 5 .8 “
- 2 6 .9 “
-2 6 .7 “
- 2 2 .5 “
- 2 0 .6 “

- 8.6 %
- 4.2 “
- 5.2 “
+ 2.5 “
+ 10.0 “
- 1 3 .4 “
- 2.2 “
- 1 0 .8 “
- 9.7 “
- 1 3 .1 “
- 1 1 .3 “
+ 12.7 “
- 5.1 “

- 2 5 .5 “

“
“
“
“

+
+
+
+
+

5.7%
0.4 “
6.2 “
7.6 “
3.4 “
1.8 “
2.3 “
0.1 “

+ 98.0%
9.1 “
- 34.3 “
- 16.0 “
+ 57.7 “
+ 162.6 “
+ 185.9 “
+ 3.7 “
+ 56.9 “
+ 2.0 “ + 248.2 “
+ 2.7 “ + 414.5 “
- 0.2 “ + 377.6 “
- 3.6 “ - 37.0 “

+ 9.8%
+ 9.5 “
+ 13.1 “
+ 8.2 “
+ 26.1 “
+ 13.3 “
+ 25.0 “
+ 6.5 “
- 2 4 .4 “
+ 7.9 “
+ 27.4 “
+ 3 0 .5 “
+ 15.1 “

- 2.1%
+ 46.7 “
+ 15.7 “
- 1 9 .7 “
+ 68.3 “
+ 18.1 “
+ 1.8 “
+ 19.1 “
+ 8.2 “
+ 28.1 “
-

Wholesale trade
Philadelphia
Federal Reserve
District

Dry goods.............
Electrical supplies.
Groceries...............
Hardware..............
Jewelry..................
Paper.....................

During
From
Mar., 1930
compared Mar. 31,
with Mar., compared
with same
1929
period
last year
-1 6 .9 %
+ 6.8 “
- 1 6 .8 “
- 3.9 “
- 1.4 “
- 3.4 “
- 2 6 .0 “
- 0.0 “

- 1 1 .4 %
- 3.8 “
- 1 1 .3 “
- 1 4 .6 “
- 1.9 “
- 5.0 “
-2 2 .1 “
- 3.1 “

Mar. 31, 1930
compared with

Mar. 31,
1929

- 1 6 .8
-1 5 .4
- 2 0 .0
-2 0 .1
- 2 8 .8
-2 6 .9
-3 0 .4
- 1 7 .6
- 1 5 .4
- 3 1 .8
- 2 8 .2
-2 1 .2

Feb. 28.
1930

+ 0.9
- 7.7
- 6.0
- 0.8
- 1 4 .3
+ 3.4

“
“
“
“
“
“

+
—
+

2.0
1.0
4.8
0.3
0.1
0.9

“
“
“
“
“
“

- 3 0 .8 %
+ 3.3 “
— 4.5“
+ 6.5 “
- 7.2 “
+ 1.9 “
- 2 2 .0 “
- 4.9 “

Comparison of
stocks

turnover,
Jan. 1 to
Mar. 31, 1930
Jan. 1 to
Mar. 31,
Mar. 31
1930,
with
with
with
Jan. 1 to Mar. 31, Feb. 28,
Mar. 31,
1929
1930
1929
1929 1930

Mar.,
1930,
with
Mar.,
1929

All reporting stores............... -1 7 .5 % Department stores................
in Philadelphia..................
outside Philadelphia.........
Apparel stores.......................
Men’s apparel stores........
in Philadelphia..............
outside Philadelphia___
Women’s apparel stores...
in Philadelphia..............
outside Philadelphia___
Shoe stores............................
Credit stores.........................

during
Mar.
1930,
compared
with
Mar.
1929

..............% ..............%

Comparison of
net sales
Retail trade
Philadelphia Federal
Reserve District

2.8 “

Collec-

Net sales

Boots and shoes...

17.8

+
+

“
“
“
“

Building
permits
(value)

March, 1930, compared with February, 1930

+ 1.4
+ 2.5
+ 11.1
15.3
+ 3.8
1 .3

7.4
3.0
1.2
0.8
— 0.7
+ 14.5

+
+
+

* 1923-1925 average = 100 f Preliminary figures

Page Six

Per cent
change since

0.3

-

March, 1930, compared with March, 1929
Philadelphia
Federal Reserve
District

“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“

8.4%

- 4 .5 % + 8.3% 0.89 0.87

- 8.0 “
- 6.4 “
- 1 1 .7 “

- 5 . 4 “ + 7.6 * 0.87 0.86
- 5 . 8 “ + 7.0 “ 0.96 0.97
- 4 . 8 “ + 8.9 “ 0.70 0.66

- 1 3 .6
- 8.4
- 1 8 .2
- 9.7
- 8.8
- 1 6 .2
- 1 5 .0
- 8.1

+ 3 .4
+ 4 .9
+ 6 .2
-0 .4
-0 .7
-8 .8

“
“
“
“
“
“
“
“

“
“
“
“
“
“

+ 12.1
+ 2 3 .6
+ 2 2 .9
+ 2 7 .0
+ 8.9
+ 6.9

“
“
“
“
“
“

0.63
1.52
1.64
1.01
0.64
0.54

0.51
1.32
1 .42
0.87
0.57
0.51

A U T O M O B IL E
P H IL A .

FED.

REGISTRATION
RES.

D IS T R IC T

?
PA S S E N G E = C A R S

1
t
I
I
1

.

V

^ 1
1

923- 2 5 / 1
llN D E x 1 \

J

V

T

1927

r

if

v \
1

1927

1928

1929

1930

Source: R. S. Polk Company
Pennsylvania Motor List Company

T E X TILE S

CEMENT

1926

IX
J r

A jL

ADJUSTED V
\
f fo* SEAS DNAL CHANGES

1926
Source: American Railway Association

,
/

1928

1929

1930

Source: Department of Commerce

1925

1926

1927

1928

1929

1930

Source: Cotton—Bureau of Census
Silk—Silk Association of America

BUILDING CONTRACTS— VALUE
EA.PENNA.—SO. N.J.-MD. - D E L . - D.C.-W. VA.

MILLIONS
OF
DOLLARS

. RESIC ENTIAL

40

INDU STRIAL AND
COMMERCIAL

•

S

30
/
•

/

20

t

A

| T 7 |»
1

j

• »

K

y

M
A

A T
f
IV 1

f i t

t

* l/

\/N

V\

!

'

i/

V PUBLIC

VF^sV 1

1

f '/
WORK ? AND

1928

—
1.

UTILITIES

1929

1930

Source: F. W. Dodge Corporation




Page Seven

Synopsis o f Industrial Conditions in the Philadelphia
Federal Reserve District
D em and

O p e r a tio n s

S to c k s

M a n u fa c tu r in g
I r o n a n d ste e l

Fair, some gain

A slight gain, but below a year
ago

Steel
works
and
rolling
m ills
........................................... Fair, increased
Foundries and m achine

Increased
year

but

lower

than

last

Fair, little change

Output o f steel castings increased Some gain in raw materials
but that o f iron castings de­
clined in March

Quiet, seasonally

Production declined as usual but
above last year

Fairly good,
orders

some

increase

in Some decline in March, but above
last year

T e x tile s

Fair, increased; prices lower
Fair to
lower

poor,

declined;

Increased further, the highest in Smaller, broad
the past seven years
a year ago

prices Unfilled

orders

smaller

prices Decreased; unfilled orders smaller Larger in fabrics but smaller in
yarns; both smaller than a
year ago

Fair to poor, declined;
slightly lower

Fair for this time, declined; prices Slight decline;
unchanged
smaller
p ro d u c ts

Heavy to moderate, little change,
below last year
unfilled

orders Smaller than a month and year
ago

Fair but below a year ag o; prices Output increased in March above M oderately light, smaller than a
last year
fairly steady
month and year ago
Quiet, little
weakness

change;

some price Little change

Fairly good, increased
prices steady

Little change

slightly; Slightly higher

Larger of colored but smaller of
black kid

Fair to poor, increased but below Lower as are unfilled orders
last year
B u i ld i n g m a t e r i a l s

Heavy to m oderate, larger than a
month and year ago

Production and unfilled orders in­ Heavy to moderate, larger than a
month and year ago
creased noticeably

Fair, increased; prices firm
Fair, increased but below
year; prices steady

Lumber

than

Moderate, smaller

Fair to poor, some decline in de­ Declined further
mand and prices

L e a th e r

larger

Moderate to light, a trifle larger
than a year ago

Fair to poor, declined as usual; Declined, below a year ago
prices lower
Cotton m anufactures ...........

silk

last Unchanged
increased

but

unfilled

orders Moderate, unchanged

.................................... Fair to poor, some gain but below Little change in production and Moderate and less than a year
ago
last year; prices lower
unfilled orders
Fair, increased but below
year; prices fairly steady

last Production and unfilled orders in­ Moderate, smaller than a month
and year ago
creased

Fair to poor, increased but less Little change in output and un­ Rather heavy, larger
month and year ago
than a year a g o ; prices lower
filled orders but both declined
from a year ago

than

a

M is c e lla n e o u s

Fairly active, increased in month Output and
creased
and year; prices steady
T o b a c c o and tob acco

B u ild i n g

unfilled

orders

in­ Lower than
year ago

last

month

and

a

Fair to poor, some gain in cigars Increased in tob a cco but declined Stocks little changed
in cigars
but below la s t year; prices
steady
Some
improvement,
value
of Value of contracts increasing but
is below the last two years
March permits increased but
below last year

C o a l m in in g

Quiet, decline; reduction in prices Declined
Poor, decline; prices lower

Little change

T rad e

Fair, increased in first three weeks
o f April
Fair to p oor; sales increased in
March but were below last year

Page Eight




Larger but below last year
Larger but generally below last
year

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