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MONTHLY

REVIEW

BUSINESS AND AGRICULTURAL CONDITIONS

W ILLIAM W. HO XTO N, CHAIRMAN AND FEDERAL RESERVE AGENT
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA
A further slowing down in business and industry
took place in the Fifth District during June, in
keeping with the general tendency throughout the
United States, but the decrease in the District was
moderate and was little more than seasonal. No
additional weak spots developed during the month
in the District's industries, and conditions in the
coal and textile fields grew no worse, if they did
not slightly improve. The leading causes of the
retardation of business in the nation appear to be
a falling off in the demand for steel and iron as
a result of lessened automobile output, a decline in
railroad purchases, and the passing of the crest in
building, but none of these influences affected the
Fifth District materially. The steel and iron busi­
ness of the District is comparatively unimportant,
our automobile manufacturing is nominal, and
building asi yet has not fallen off to any appreciable
extent. The unfavorable weather for cotton and
tobacco is the key to whatever unseasonable slack­
ening in business the District has experienced dur­
ing the past two or three months.
An examination of the chief indicators of busi­
ness prosperity or adversity in the Fifth District
shows both strength and weakness. Among the
outstanding favorable factors to be noted, perhaps
the most striking is the abundance of credit avail­
able. Member banks regularly reporting to the
Reserve Bank show a larger volume of outstanding
loans to customers than a year ago, but their de­
posits have advanced greatly during the year and the
volume of rediscounted paper held by the Reserve
Bank is very much less than a year ago. Member
bank reserves at the Reserve Bank are higher than
last year, and the Reserve Bank has materially in­
creased its cash reserves while its outstanding note
circulation has decreased, with a resulting rise in
the ratio of cash reserves to combined note and
deposit liabilities. Debits to individual accounts at
clearing house banks, a good indicator of the ac­
tual volume of business being transacted, are run­
ning under debits reported last year, but the dif­
ference is just about accounted for by the average
reduction in commodity prices. Business failures




JULY 31, 1924

in the District, while more numerous in June than
in June 1923, were lower in the total of liabilities
involved. Labor continues sufficiently well em­
ployed to keep the purchasing power of the public
at a high point, and retail trade has consequently
held up extremely well in view of the unfavorable
weather that prevailed during the spring and early
summer. Farmers dependent upon fruit and truck
have better prospects than for several years, and
throughout the entire District there is an excep­
tionally good hay crop, assuring a supply of feed
for farm animals. The volume of building con­
tinues to be unusually large in both number of
projects and total valuation, which apparently as­
sures plenty of work for all men employed in con­
struction for the balance of the year at least.
Among the unfavorable factors influencing busi­
ness in the Fifth District there are three that stand
out distinctly. The depression in the textile in­
dustry continues, with little sign of immediate im­
provement, and the output of bituminous coal is
very low in the absence of present demand. The
third, and perhaps the most important, depressing
factor is the great uncertainty as to this year’s
cotton and tobacco crops. Both crops are getting
a late start, and excessive rainfall has weakened
the plants and caused grasses and weeds to choke
the fields. Labor for cleaning and cultivating the
crops is scarce and high. Boll weevils have not
yet been much in evidence this year, but it is too
early to predict that there will not be a heavy in­
festation of the pests later in the season, and the
lateness of the cotton crop will make the usual
August migration of the weevils more disastrous
than would be the case if the crop could have gotten
an early setting of bolls. Theoretically the con­
dition of cotton in South Carolina this year is only
5 points below the condition a year ago, but in
North Carolina this year’s condition figure is 22
points below last year’s and Virginia’s is 34 points
below the condition figure on the corresponding
date in 1923. Favorable weather during the balance
of the season might overcome some of the handi­
cap, but the final outturn for the year appears
highly problematical.

The National Summary will be found on pages 10 and 11.

CONDITION OF SEVENTY-SIX REPORTING MEMBER BANKS IN SELECTED CITIES
July 9, 1924

ITEMS
|
i

1. Total Loans and Discounts (including
all rediscounts)................................... $
2. Total Investments in Bonds and Securitie s .......................................................
3. Total Loans and Investments...................
4. Reserve Balance with Federal Reserve
Bank.....................................................
5. Cash in Vaults...........................................
6. Demand Deposits.......................................
7. Time Deposits............................................
8. Borrowed from Federal Reserve Bank.....

467,625,000

June 11, 1924
$

467,724,000

July 11, 1923
$

456,347,000

114.395.000
582.020.000

113.972.000
581.696.000

133.262.000
589.609.000

35.459.000
13.712.000
332.100.000
172.072.000
16.270.000

34.942.000
14.205.000
335.805.000
167.305.000
16.449.000

33.873.000
14.697.000
330.290.000
152.994.000
37.744.000

The accompanying table shows the principal items of condition reported by seventy-six identical mem­
ber banks as of three dates, July 9, 1924, June 11 , 1924 and July 11 , 1923, thus affording an opportunity
for comparing the totals reported for the latest date with those reported for the preceding month this year
and on the corresponding date a year ago. In comparing the July 9, 1924 figures with those previously
reported it should be understood that the figures show conditions existing on the report dates only, and
do not necessarily indicate that there were steady flows in the same directions during the entire period used
in the comparison.
Between June n th and July 9th, both this year, the several items shown in the table changed com­
paratively little, except in the case of demand and time deposits. Demand deposits declined during the
four weeks from $335,805,000 to $332,100,000, a decrease of $3,705,000, but time deposits rose from $167,305,000 to $172,072,000, a gain of $4,767,000. Other increases during the month were shown in total in­
vestments in bonds and securities, which rose from $113,972,000 to $114,395,000, and in reserve balances
carried with the Reserve Bank, which increased from $34,942,000 to $35,459,000. Decreases were made
in total loans and discounts, which fell from $467,724,000 to $467,625,000; in cash in vaults, which dropped
from $14,205,000 to $13,712,000; and in aggregate borrowing from the Federal Reserve Bank, which de­
clined from $16,449,000 to $16,270,000. All of the changes reflect the comparatively easy money con­
ditions now obtaining.
On July 11 , 1923, the seventy-six reporting banks were lending $456,347,000 to their customers,
but at the same time they were borrowing $37,744,000 from the Federal Reserve Bank, while on July 9th
this year their outstanding loans to customers amounted to $467,625,000 and their total borrowing totaled
only $16,270,000, an increase in loans of $11,278,000 and a decrease in rediscounts of $21,474,000. Dur­
ing the year the reserve balance with the Federal Reserve Bank rose from $33,873,000 to $35,459,000, a
gain of $1,586,000. These changes, all denoting gains in the assets of the reporting banks, were made
possible by a reduction of investments in bonds and securities during the year from $133,262,000 to $ 114 ,395,000; a reduction of cash in vaults from $14,697,000 to $13,712,000; an increase in demand deposits
from $330,290,000 to $332,100,000; and an increase in time deposits from $152,994,000 to $172,072,000.

FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OPERATIONS
Between June 18, 1924 and July 16, 1924, rediscounts for member banks held by the Federal Reserve
Bank of Richmond declined from $49,955,000 to $45,673,000, and the volume of Federal Reserve notes
in actual circulation dropped from $73,054,000 to $70,759,000. During the same period, member banks
of the Fifth District increased their reserve deposits at the Reserve Bank from $60,309,000 to $61,395,000,
and the total cash reserves of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond rose from $87,370,000 to $91,533,000. As a result of the changes noted, the ratio of cash reserves to combined note and deposit liabilities
rose from 64.91% on June 18th to 68.50% on July 16th.
On July 18, 1923, the volume of rediscounts for members held by the Federal Reserve Bank of
Richmond amounted to $67,012,000 compared with $45,673,000 this year, but a year ago cash reserves
amounted to only $74,341,000 in comparison with $91,533,000 on July 16th this year, and Federal Reserve
notes in actual circulation on the 1923 date amounted to $78,124,000 compared with $70,759,000 on the
1924 date. Reserve deposits of member banks rose during the year from $58,124,000 to $61,395,000. As
a result of the variations in the several items, the ratio of cash reserves to combined note and deposit
liabilities rose from 54.03% on July 18, 1923 to 68.50% on July 16, 1924.

SAVINGS BANK DEPOSITS
A month ago, we mentioned a slight recession during MJay in deposits reported by fifteen mutual
savings banks in Baltimore, but the decline was more than made up during June, the total of $143,760,471 on deposit in the reporting banks on June 30th being the highest figure on record. A year ago, at the




2

close of business June 30, 1923, deposits in the same institutions totaled $137,357,514 ; on June 30, 1922 the
total was $127,174,937; on June 3 1, 1921 it was $123,707,759; and on June 30, 1920 it stood at $120,349,929. Between June 30, 1923 and June 30, 1924 deposits in the reporting banks increased 4.7% and
between the 1920 and the 1924 dates the increase was 19 .5% .

DEBITS TO INDIVIDUAL ACCOUNTS IN LEADING TRADE CENTERS
TOTAL DEBITS FOR THE FOUR WEEKS ENDING
-------------------- -------------------------------------------

CIXIES

July 9, 1924

June 11, 1924

July 11, 1923

Asheville, N. C.................................... ............ .
Baltimore, Md................... .................................
Charleston, S. C...................................... ..........
Charleston, W. Va........................ .....................
Charlotte, N. C............................................... .
Columbia, S. C....................................................
Cumberland, Md..................................... ...........
Danville, Va........................................................
Durham, N. C.....................................................
Greensboro, N. C................................................
Greenville, S. C....... ..........................................
Hagerstown, Md.................................................
Huntington, W. Va............................................
Lynchburg, Va..................................................
Newport News, Va.................................... .........
Norfolk, Va.........................................................
Raleigh, N. C........................................... ...........
Richmond, Va............... .................................. .
Roanoke, Va............................................. ..........
Spartanburg, S. C.................... ........... ...............
Washington, D. C...............................................
Wilmington, N. C...............................................
Winston-Salem, N. C..........................................

$

22,595,000
352,868,000
24,728,000
32,417,000
39,315,000
18,871,000
9,586,000
7,165,000
17,691,000
18,355,000
16,313,000
10,042,000
23,388,000
18,120,000
6,387,000
56,787,000
27,391,000
111,902,000
23,804,000
12,492,000
203,216,000
17,314,000
30,258,000

$

22,203,000
316,195,000
25,057,000
30,163,000
35,924,000
16,836,000
8,269,000
7,134,000
16,489,000
19,175,000
17,077,000
8,296,000
22,451,000
17,258,000
5,715,000
60,197,000
23,942,000
104,690,000
22,490,000
12,189,000
182,837,000
17,099,000
27,144,000

$

19,822,000
376,461,000
29,338,000
35,736,000
40,945,000
21,003,000
8,912,000
8,680,000
16,456,000
20,062,000
19,164,000
11,127,000
24,493,000
21,707,000
7,044,000
62,638,000
28,753,000
119,064,000
22,762,000
10,567,000
194,019,000
17,907,000
32,857,000

Totals for 23 cities.................................

$

1,101,005,000

$

1,018,830,000

$

1,149,517,000

The accompanying table shows total debits to individual, firm and corporation accounts in the clearing
house banks in twenty-three of the chief trade centers of the Fifth Reserve District during three periods
of four weeks each, ending July 9, 1924, June 1 1 , 1924 and July 1 1 , 1923, thus affording an opportunity
for comparing the latest four weeks period with ( 1 ) the preceding like period this year, and (2) the
corresponding period last year. The debits figures include all checks drawn on deposit accounts of in­
dividuals, firms and corporations, and the United States Government, including checks against savings
accounts, payments from trust funds and certificates of deposit paid.
Total debits in the twenty-three reporting cities during the four weeks ending July 9, 1924, amounted
to $1,101,005,000, compared with $1,018,830,000 reported for the preceding four weeks, ending June 1 1 ,
1924, an increase of $82,175,000, or 8 .1% , during the more recent period. This increase is largely or
entirely seasonal, being due to income tax payments on June 15th and heavy quarterly and semi-annual
payments on July 1st, and therefore does not indicate any material increase in the volume of business
transactions since June nth.
In comparison with debits amounting to $1,149,517,000 reported by the twenty-three cities during the
four weeks ending Ju ly n , 1923, the $1,101,005,000 reported for the corresponding four weeks this year
shows a decline of $48,512,000, or 4 .2% , but in view of lower prices prevailing this year in comparison
with 1923 the amount of debits reported for the 1924 period is indicative of fully as large a volume of
business as was transacted during the corresponding period last year. Larger totals this year were re­
ported by Asheville, Cumberland, Durham, /Roanoke, Spartanburg and Washington, but the other seventeen
cities showed lower figures.

BUSINESS FAILURES IN THE TWELVE FEDERAL RESERVE DISTRICTS
JUNE, 1 9 2 4 AND 19 23.
Dun's Review for July 5, 1924, commenting on business failures during June and the first half of this
year in comparison with failures reported during the corresponding month and half-year in 1923, says:
“ The best monthly showing of the quarter recently ended is that of June, with 1,607 failures for $34,099,031. These figures represent decreases of 11.5 per cent in number of defaults and 6.8 per cent in
amount of liabilities from the May totals, but disclose increases of 18.3 and 18.9 per cent, respectively,
over the 1,358 failures for $28,678,276 of June last year, when the business mortality was at a relatively
low point. For the first half of 1924, defaults numbering 10,785 for $304,459,959 compare with 9,724




3

for $259,424,068 for the similar period of 1923. The record for the current year has been marked by
several failures of unusual size, one manufacturing default in the first quarter alone involving $40,000,000.”

1924

1923

Per Cent
Increase or
Decrease

Boston, First.......................................
New York, Second............................
Philadelphia, Third............................
Cleveland, Fourth..............................
Richmond, Fifth................................
Atlanta, Sixth.....................................
Chicago, Seventh................................
St. Louis, Eighth................................
Minneapolis, Ninth............................
Kansas City, Tenth............................
Dallas, Eleventh.................................
San Francisco, Twelfth.....................

154
334
81
149
126
103
194
81
70
113
50
152

104
288
60
105
91
91
159
68
76
63
97
156

48.1
16.0
35.0
41.9
38.5
13.2
22.0
19.1
— 7.9
79.4
• 48.5
—
— 2.6

Totals..........................................

1,607

1,358

Number
City and District

18.3%

Liabilities
1924

1923

Per Cent of
Increase or
Decrease

$ 2,724,380
10,967,752
1,323,953
3,685,790
2,701,150
1,805,051
5,387,561
975,155
1,432,514
1,013,2 66
765,071
1,317,388

$ 1,261,171
8,276,970
1,074,915
2,466,216
3,488,755
1,294,943
2,854,809
2,450,239
1,390,396
1,274,881
1,293,018
1,551,963

116.0%
32.5
23.2
49.5
— 22.6
39.4
88.7
— 60.2
3.0
— 20.5
— 40.8
— 15.1

$ 34,099,031

$ 28,678,276

18.9%

In the Fifth District, June 1924 witnessed 126 failures for $2,701,150, compared with 91 failures for
$3,488,755 reported in June last year, an increase of 38.5% in number but a decrease of 22.6% in total
liabilities involved. In the number of failures, therefore, the District record for June compares un­
favorably with the average for the United States, but in the amount of liabilities the District record is
much better than the national average.
Average liabilities per failure during June 1924 amounted to $21,219 in the nation and $21,438 in
the Fifth District, compared with averages of $ 2 1,118 in the nation and $38,338 in the Fifth District
during June 1923.

LABOR — There has been little net change in the labor situation since the middle of June. Better
weather has enabled outside work to proceed more regularly than during May and early June, and un­
skilled and semi-skilled workers have found employment more easily, but factory work in a number of
lines has slackened and workers have either been laid off entirely or had their operating time reduced,
with consequent reductions in their pay envelopes. Farm labor has been in great demand as a result of
the grassy condition of fields, but this class of labor has been very scarce and the farmers have had to
get along as best they could with the labor from farm families. The Agricultural Statistician of North
Carolina states in an official report that it is quite common to see children as young as eight years hoeing
in the fields, and small boys are plowing. In the textile centers curtainment of operating time continues,
and lumber mills are reducing their output with the passing of the crest of building operations for this
year. The large amount of construction work under way in the District is the salvation of the laboring
people at present, and practically all skilled workmen find plenty of work to give them full time employ­
ment. There is a surplus of common labor in the cities, both male and female workers being obtainable
on short notice.
COAL — According to recent reports of the Geological Survey of the Department of the Interior,
bituminous coal production has been increasing slightly since the middle of June, but the daily rate of
production is still considerably below that of any previous year .on record except 1922, when a general
strike involving all union mines was under way at this season. In its July 5th report, the Geological
Survey says, 'T h e fact that the depression at the coal mines has caused production to drop to a lower
level than in 1921 should not, however, be taken as indicating that a similar depression in other indus­
tries has reduced the consumption of coal to the extremely low point reached in 1921. There is ample
evidence that consumption has declined during the first half of this year, but to what extent cannot be
accurately stated. It seems to be obvious, however, that production declined at a more rapid rate than
did consumption and that there has been an appreciable draught on the 62,000,000 tons of soft coal held
by consumers 011 January 1, 1924.” Mine owners profess to believe that consumers have reduced their
surplus coal to a limit below which most of them will not care to go, and therefore a better demand at
the mines is expected during the balance of the year.
Anthracite coal production, while at a lower rate than in 1923 when the mines were working to
overcome the shortage created by the strike of 1922, compares favorably with normal years.

TEXTILES— Curtailment in operating time continues in the textile mills of the Fifth District, and
no material improvement has been noticed in the demand for cotton goods. Many of the mills are oper­
ating only about 50% of full time, and the demand for textiles is reported as not more than 50% nor­




4

mal for this season of the year. No one cares to venture a prediction as to the probable length of time
curtailment will continue, but the mills are not carrying large stocks of manufactured goods and any
improvement in demand that may develop later in the season will probably necessitate an increase in oper­
ations. As a result of careful buying all down the line, there is no danger of any one being caught with
large stocks bought at high prices, if it should happen that cotton prices next fall should be lower than
present prices.
Cotton consumed in the Fifth District during June amounted to 143,263 bales, North Carolina mills
having used 73,997 bales, South Carolina mills 62,675 bales, and Virginia mills 6,591 bales. The number
of bales used in each state was lower than the number consumed in May, during which month a con­
sumption of 162,487 bales was reported. The Fifth District consumption during June amounted to 40.9%
of national consumption compared with 39.3% of national consumption reported for the three Fifth Dis­
trict states in May 1924 and 37.9% in June 1923. These figures appear to indicate that the reduction
in consumption during both the past month and the past year was less in the Fifth District than in the
nation as a whole.

(COTTON— In our June 30th Review we quoted spot cotton prices in the Carolinas through the week
ending June 14th, the average price paid for middling during that week being 28.00 cents per pound.
During the week ending June 21st the average price rose to 28.18 cents, but declined the following week,
ending June 28th, to 27.59 cents. Another upward movement occurred during the week ending July 5th,
the average being 27.91 cents, but the week: ending July 12th witnessed a decline to 27.17 cents, the lowest
weekly average reported since March 29th. The week ending July 19th, the latest period for which figures
are available, experienced a partial recovery, the average price rising to 27.85 cents per pound. All of
the above prices were taken from official figures collected by the Cotton Quotation Service of the United
States Department of Agriculture and represent actual sales by farmers on various markets in the two
Carolinas.
The Department of Agriculture’s second cotton report of the season was issued on Ju ly 2nd, and es­
timated the condition of the crop at 7 1.2 % as of June 25th, an increase of 5.6 points over the May
25th condition and an increase of 1.3 points over the June 25, 1923 condition. This report also estimated
the 1924 acreage at 40,403,000 acres, an increase of 4.4% over the 1923 acreage, Virginia showing an
increase of 25% this year, North Carolina an increase of 8% and South Carolina an increase of 9 % .
On July 21st the third report on condition was issued, and proved much lower than had been expected,
the crop being rated at only 68.5% of a normal in comparison with 7 1.2 % three weeks earlier and 67.2%
on July 25, 1923. The past three weeks have been disastrous for cotton in the Fifth District, North
Carolina’s condition dropping from 73% on June 25th to 56% on Ju ly 16th, South Carolina's condition
declining from 69% to 59 % , and Virginia’s condition falling from 6 1% to 54 % . Condition figures
in the states named on Ju ly 25th last year were North Carolina 8 2% , South Carolina 64% and V ir­
ginia 88% .
Cotton consumed in American mills during June amounted to 350,277 bales, the lowest figure reported
for any month since December 1920. Consumption has fallen steadily since January, the high point for
the present cotton year, and every month since October has witnessed lower figures than for the cor­
responding month of the preceding year. Total consumption during the eleven months since August 1st
was 5,323,300 bales, compared with 6,203,135 bales used during the corresponding eleven months of the
previous cotton year. Cotton on hand in consuming establishments at the end of June amounted to 950,625 bales, in comparison with 1,157,778 bales on May 31, 1924 and 1,345,066 bales on June 30, 1923.
Public warehouses and compresses held 882,204 bales on June 30th, compared with 1,12 6 ,7 11 bales on May
31st this year and 1,232,888 bales on June 30th last year. Imports during June totaled 13,640 bales, com­
pared with 16,107 bales in May 1924 and 13,367 bales in June 1923, while exports totaled 230,979 bales
in June 1924, 326,357 bales in May 1924 and 214,851 bales in June 1923. Cotton consumed in the cotton
growing states during June numbered 247,478 bales, compared with 289,897 bales in May 1924 and 350,967
bales in June 1923. June consumption in the cotton growing states amounted to 70.7% of national con­
sumption, compared with 70.1 % of national consumption used in the cotton growing states during May
TQ24 and 64.8% used in June 1923.
The prospects for this year’s cotton crop appear much less favorable than a year ago in the Fifth Dis­
trict. The crop is about two weeks late, and plants are weak and small. The unusually wet weather has
made fields grassy, and with a general shortage of farm labor it is probable that abandonment of acreage
will be comparatively heavy. Last year North Carolina experienced almost ideal weather for cotton, es­
pecially in July, but this year the Agricultural Statistician for the State reports the outlook “ anything but
favorable.” Cotton plants in North Carolina are reported as shedding squares, at the same time putting
on very few. In South Carolina plants are reported small and fruiting is not so good as last year. V ir­
ginia’s crop is very late and grassy.




5

TOBACCO —Tobacco prospects in Virginia are not promising at the middle of July. The acreage
is estimated to be 5% larger than last year, but the condition of the crop on Ju ly 1st was only 75% in
comparison with the ten year average of 8 2 % . The forecast of the 1924 crop is 136,425,000 pounds
compared with 151,000,000 pounds grown last year. Weather conditions have been unfavorable for proper
growth and generally the plants are small and the leaves are narrow. Prospects are poorest in Bright
sections, and best in the Southwestern Burley district.
The tobacco outlook in North Carolina is quite variable. The color is good, but the quality is light.
The texture will be affected, as well as the weight, by the unfavorable weather. The plants are uneven in
growth rather than in stands. The North Carolina crop for this year is forecast at 315,719,000 pounds,
compared with 386,400,000 pounds last year.
South Carolina’s tobacco acreage is estimated to be 8% less than last year. The Ju ly 1st condition
was 69% compared with the ten year average of 7 6 % . Wet weather has hurt the tobacco crop seriously,
the fields are very grassy, and labor is hard to secure. The tobacco markets will open in South Carolina
during August.

AGRICULTURAL NOTES—Virginia's corn crop is very late, so an early frost will cause consider­
able loss, according to the statement of the Agricultural Statistician in his report released Ju ly 18th. The
rains have prevented cultivation and most fields are grassy and weedy. Some early planted crops on well
drained land look good, but river and creek bottom crops are very poor. Conditions are worst in the
eastern part of the state and best in the southwest. The wheat harvest, which is usually completed in June,
has been very late and in the northern part of the state many farmers have just finished cutting. There
is generally a large crop of straw, but the heads are not as well filled as usual in some sections, and the
rains have caused some damage to the grain in the shock. The yield per acre will probably be up to
the average for the past ten years, however. The digging of early potatoes progressed rapidly during the
past ten days, and the shipments during the second week of Ju ly were unusually heavy. Total carlot ship­
ments to Ju ly 12th were 10,916 cars compared with 10,719 cars to the same date last year. The yield
on the Eastern Shore has been better than expected, while in the Norfolk section the crop turned out
poorly except on well drained land. Peanut growers have had great difficulty in keeping their fields clean,
and the condition of the crop is poor. Fruit prospects continue to be above the average in most parts
of the state. The peach crop is one of the largest ever grown with an estimated production of 1,241,000
bushels in comparison with 504,000 bushels last year, and apple production will be greater than last year
by approximately a million barrels. The hay crop is generally ready for harvest, but the wet weather has
prevented much progress with this work. The yield will be unusually good if all of the crop can be saved.
Pastures have made splendid growth and are unusually fine in all parts of the state.
In North Carolina the corn outlook is reported perhaps the best of any crop. The best fields are found
on uplands, bottom land crops being poor because of floods. Bud worms have done considerable damage
in some localities, and the crop is generally backward in keeping with other crops. The fruit outlook in
North Carolina is good, in spite of adverse winter conditions and spring lateness, followed by a long period
of wet weather. The quality of peaches is good in size, but poor in flavor and keeping qualities. A heavy
drop of apples during June was reported from the large commercial orchards in western counties. Truck
crops are generally good to fair. Cantaloupes are very unsatisfactory, due to lack of sunshine primarily.
Wheat may not turn out as good as was expected, due to the bad weather during harvesting. Both wheat
and oats are reported as sprouting in the fields, while other reports note that these crops are rotting. An
increase in fertilizer used this year is reported, but much of it has been washed out by excessive rainfall.
South Carolina’s corn acreage is 4 % less than last year but the condition is good, being placed at 80 %
on Ju ly 1st in comparison with 73% a year previously and 8 1% the ten year average. The indicated pro­
duction of 31,933,000 bushels is about 500,000 bushels less than last year. Weather conditions have been
favorable for cowpeas, and also for soy and velvet beans. Soy beans are steadily gaining in favor in many
sections and are replacing to some extent cowpeas and velvet beans. Conditions of tomatoes, watermelons
and cantaloupes are fair to good. Cantaloupes are being shipped and watermelons are beginning to appear
on the market from southern counties. Peaches, apples and pears are plentiful and of good quality. The
commercial acreage of sweet potatoes is 2% less than last year and the condition is 8 1% of normal. The
acreage of hay shows a 2 % increase and present prospects point to a fine hay crop this year.
In Maryland, orchard fruit crops, apples excepted, give promise of bountiful yields this year. The wet
weather prevented pollination in many apple orchards and the heavy rains also washed off sprays. Much
scab is reported. The June drop was heavy. A yield of 2,119,000 bushels of apples is expected, compared
with 2,300,000 bushels last year. A commercial yield of 382,000 barrels is indicated. The prospect for
peaches is above the ten year average, a crop of 697,000 bushels being indicated in comparison with 631,000 bushels last year. The expected yield of pears is slightly smaller than last year.




6

BUILDING OPERATIONS FOR THE MONTHS OF JUNE, 19 2 4 AND 19 23.
Permits Issued
New Construction
CITIES

Repairs

New
1924 1923

2
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9

1 10
! 11
! 12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
! 24
25
26
27
28

MR L N
AYA D
Baltimore.............
Cumberland.........
Frederick..............
Hagerstown* .
V G IA
IR IN
Lynchburg............
Norfolk................
Petersburg..........
Richmond............
Roanoke...............
W ST V G IA
E IR IN
Bluefield...............
Charleston............
Clarksburg............
Huntington..........
Parkersburg.........
N R HC R L A
O T A O IN
Asheville..............
Charlotte..............
Durham.......... .....
Greensboro ..........
High P oin t..........
Raleigh.................
Salisbury..............
Wilmington..........
Winston-Salem
S U HC R L A
O T A O IN
Charleston............
Columbia..............
Greenville............
Spartanburg........
D . O C L M IA
IST F O U B
Washington..........

Alterations

1924

1923

1924

1923

1924

$1,250,520
40,280
350

1923

Cent j
Increase or Perof
Decrease Increase i I
| i
Total
or
Valuation Decrease
0
2;

83.4% 1
$ 693,900 $ 2,264,100
6,785 — 150,323 — 50.4
2
3,750 — 19,355 — 49.4
3
4

629
48
9
68

390 1,317 1,193 $ 3,726,720 $ 2,019,240
12
107,935
291,753
20
43
6
35,400
19,445
8
1
220,000
24

17
120
5
161
111

18
117
4
139
80

30
50
12
102
34

30
83
10
91
49

37,936
372,030
25,000
681,358
162,652

18,759
786,356
9,093
905,976
124,080

48,141
31,753
9,450
75,764
15,375

27,116
145,065
6,475
118,485
39,065

40,202
87.6
— 527,638 — 56.6
18,882 121.3
— 267,339 — 26.1
14,882
9.1

5
6
7
8 »
9!

36!
47 i
35;
156!
381

13
101
47
117
20

4
21
33
44
10

3
36
39
41
5

233,975
77,569
68,675
808,735
103,700

30,975
273,895
111,765
215,790
175,000

900
53,350
26,630
559,015
3,500

1,880
45,517
15,028
20,725
75,000

202,020 614.9
— 188,493 — 59.0
— 31,488 — 24.8
1,131,235 478.3
— 142,800 — 57.1

10
11
12
13 j

37
64
14!
60
40
65
25
10
60

39
68
27
63
47
**85
13
13
74

62
19
4
39
12
10
4
5
87

59
12
6
22
14

614,422
311,100
120,225
255,649
89,465
**640,315
28,550
67,000
285,100

21,700
30,660
6,850
31,558
7,625
16,775
2,100
18,200
27,810

114,243
27,300
7,850
6,270
15,900

3
2
70

269,872
489,455
1,456,500
176,610
111,220
371,000
53,530
265,000
192,340

— 437,093
181,715
1,335,275
— 53,751
13,480
— 252,540
26,330
211,200
— 96,557

15
16
17
18
19
|
20
:21
i22
j23

8
15
14
22

8
45
26
27

8
131
17
18

16
80
21
24

24,980
82,041
946,375
1,035,540

9,250
117,770
85,415
37,440

3,375
45,909
10,795
5,535

40,274
13,146
29,275
6,772

257

358

469

311

3,705,697

3,544,841

372,183

409,829

750
5,000
31,607

—
—

— 60.0
53.7
1,042.6
— 20.5
12.8
— 39.4
89.9
293.3
— 30.5

21,169 — 42.7
2,966 — 2.3
842,480 734.6
996,863 2,254.7

1 s
24
| i
25
!26 j
| !
27

123,210

!28
!

.

Totals........ 2,103

1,990 2,563 2,238 $15,605,890 $11,204,624

$2,716,103

14

$1,907,007 $ 5,210,362

3.1

. . . . .. .. .. — .

39.7 fo

^Hagerstown figures not included in totals.
**Includes both new work and repairs.
—Denotes decrease.
NOTE-The figures in the above table reflect the amount of work provided for in the corporation limits of the several
cities, but take no account of suburban developments.

Construction work provided for in permits issued in June in twenty-seven cities in the Fifth District
showed some falling off from the May figures but the decrease was not greater than is usual at this season.
The volume of work provided for in June was greater than that provided for in June 1923 in both number
of permits and estimated valuation. Building inspectors reported a total of 2,103 permits for new construc­
tion with estimated valuation of $15,605,890 in June this year, compared with 1,990 permits valued at $ 11,204,624 in June 1923. Alteration and repair permits in June totaled 2,563 valued at $2,716,103, compared
with 2,238 permits valued at $1,907,007 issued for the same class of work in June 1923. Combined valua­
tion of both new and repair work amounted to $18,321,993 in June 1924, compared with $ 13 ,111,6 3 1 in
June 1923, an increase this year of $5,210,362, or 39.7 per cent. Huntington, Durham and Spartanburg
reported very large increases.
During the first half of 1924 the reporting cities issued 12,246 permits compared with 13,058 permits
issued in the same cities during the first half of 1923, when all previous records were broken. In esti­
mated valuation the 1924 figures exceeded last year's record, however, permits aggregating $87,856,729
having been issued this year to Ju ly 1st in comparison with a total of $84,592,235 during the correspond­
ing six months of 1923. No accurate figures are available for the entire District on the actual number of
buildings provided for by the permits issued, but judging from statistics that are available from a few cities
and from comments by building inspectors it appears certain that the 1924 permits include a considerably
larger number of structures than were provided for last year. This fact is due to the large number of
single permits taken out this year for groups of buildings, sometimes one permit covering an entire block
of dwellings.




7

FIGURES ON RETAIL TRADE
A s Indicated by Reports from Twenty-nine Department Stores in the Fifth Reserve District
for the first Six Months of 1 9 2 4
Percentage of increase (or decrease) in net sales during the month named, 1924, over the same month last year:
January
February
March
April
May
June
2.8
10.6
—14.5
17.4
Baltimore....................... .................................................
- 1.7
— 4.2
.................................................
23.6
20.5
—11.1
18.0
10.6
Richmond.......................
0.4
15.1
12.6
—13.0
18.0
— 4.8
Washington................... .................................................
— 3.2
.................................................
6.4
9.7
—18.5
13.9
- 0.8
Other Cities...................
—10.3
8.8
12.0
—14.2
— 1.6
— 4.1
17.3
District Average.. .................................................
Percentage of increase (or decrease) in net sales from Jan. 1st, through month named, 1924, over net sales
during the same period last year:
January
February
March
April
May
June
2.8
6.5
— 2.6
2.8
1.8
0.7
Baltimore....................... ..................................................
..................................................
23.6
22.2
7.8
10.6
Richmond................... ...
10.5
8.6
..................................................
15.1
13.8
2.8
6.4
4.0
2.6
Washington...................
..................................................
6.4
7.9
— 3.6
1.2
Other Cities...................
0.7
— 1.4
..................................................
8.8
10.4
— 0.1
4.5
3.1
1.8
District Average ..
Percentage of increase (or decrease) in net sales during the month named,
corresponding months of 1920, 1921 and 1922:
January
February
5.9
Baltim ore....................... .................................................. — 0.7
43.0
32.4
Richmond...................... ..................................................
2.1
9.1
Washington..................... ..................................................
5.3
9.2
Other Cities................... ..................................................
7.2
7.9
District Average ..................................................

1924, over average sales during the
March
—10.9
9.4
—13.3
— 9.5
— 9.3

April
13.5
32.5
10.3
8.7
13.9

May
— 0.9
30.8
2.8
2.5
4.0

June
0.3
20.0
0.7
— 3.9
2.0

Percentage of increase (or decrease) in stocks at close of month named, 1924, over stocks at same date
last year:
January
February
March
April
May
June
3.4
0.6
3.7
— 1.5
— 2.7
— 4.4
Baltimore....................... ..................................................
..................................................
20.4
15.8
15.5
17.3
21.2
14.4
Richmond.......................
0.9
1.8
3.7
0.4
1.5
Washington..................... ..................................................
0.7
11.5
11.2
6.2
..................................................
12.8
3.7
3.1
Other C ities...................
..................................................
4.9
3.5
5.5
1.5
1.2
— 0.4
District Average
Percentage of increase (or decrease) in stocks at close of the month named, 1924, over stocks
ceding month this year:
March
January
February
April
6.2
12.6
— 1.7
Baltim ore....................... .................................................. — 3.7
14.2
7.8
2.6
Richmond....................... .................................................. —11.4
8.4
— 1.0
11.8
Washington..................... .................................................. — 7.8
6.8
9.1
0.4
Other Cities................... .................................................. — 0.9
10.4
— 0.8
8.9
District Average .................................................. — 5.6

at close of preMay
—3.9
0.4
—3.5
—4.9
—3.5

June
— 6.4
— 5.8
— 6.2
— 5.8
— 6.2

Percentage of average stocks at close o f each m onth since Ja n . 1 st, to average monthly net sales during the
same period:
January
February
March
April
May
June
381.4
418.0
414.2
393.0
389.0
382.5
Baltimore....................... ..................................................
404.2
392.7
346.8
398.8
395.6
387.5
Richmond....................... ..................................................
400.1
425.6
435.9
420.6
414.0
Washington ................... ..................................................
403.1
582.3
624.4
616.8
582.2
558.0
Other Cities................... ..................................................
548.3
404.9
440.1
441.0
421.6
415.2
406.9
District Average ...................................................
Percentage of outstanding orders at the end of each month named, 1924, to total purchases of merchandise
during 1923:
January
February
March
April
May
June
6.5
7.5
6.3
4.7
4.5
5.4
Baltimore...................... ..................................................
6.4
6.3
6.6
4.6
3.6
4.0
Richmond...................... ...................................................
8.7
6.2
4.7
3.5
3.0
Washington .................. ....................................................
3.9
7.0
6.4
5.1
4.3
3.8
4.9
Other C ities.................. ..................................................
7.4
5.6
6.8
4.2
3.8
District Average
4.7

I

—Denotes decrease-

Reviewing the averages for June, the only month not previously reported upon, a decrease in sales
under June 1923 is noticed, the decline amounting to 4 .1% for the District, Richmond with a gain of fourtenths of one percent being the only city to report an increase. Cumulative sales from January 1st through
June 30th this year show an increase of 1.8 % , and sales during June 1924 were 2.0% greater than average
sales during June of the three years 1920, 1921 and 1922. The reporting stores were carrying stocks fourtenths of one percent less valuable, at selling prices, at the end of June this year than a year ago, but the
decrease was due entirely to a reduction of 4.4% in Baltimore, all other cities showing larger 1924 stocks.
All cities reported less stock on hand at the end of June than at the end of May, both this year, the average
reduction for the District being 6.2% . The percentage of average stocks on hand at the end of each month




since January ist to average monthly sales during the
over slightly less than three times a year. Outstanding
to 4.7% of total purchases of merchandise during the
larger volume of orders than was reported at the end
of orders for fall goods.

same period was 406.9%, indicating a rate of turn­
orders for merchandise at the end of June amounted
calendar year 1923, each of the cities showing a
of May, a seasonal increase due to the placement

WHOLESALE TRADE
June 19 24.
Groceries

Dry Goods

Shoes

Hardware

Furniture

Drugs

7

13

Number of reporting firms in each line............

45

15

14

18

Percentage increase (or decrease) in net
sales during June 1924, compared with
sales during May 1924 ...................................

— 5.2

— 7.8

—32.3

—14.3

—14.5

— 6.1

Percentage increase (or decrease) in net
sales during June 1924, compared with
sales during June 1923...................................

— 1.5

—31.3

—29.6

—19.8

— 9.6

1.4

Percentage increase (or decrease) in cumu­
lative sales from Jan. 1st through June
30, 1924, compared with sales during the
corresponding six months of 1923...............

3.0

—15.3

—19.1

— 6.5

4.8

0.7

Percentage increase (or decrease) in stocks
on hand June 30, 1924, compared with
May 31, 1924....................................................

— 2.0(11)

-

3.8(3)

2.3(8)

6.4(7)

2.1(5)

Percentage increase (or decrease) in stocks
on hand June 30, 1924, compared with
June 30, 1923...... .............................................

3.3 (8)
- 1.9(4)
- 7.5(7) —10.4(6)
14.3(3)
—Denotes decreased percentage.
NOTE:-The number of firms reporting stock figures for the dates compared is shown in parenthesis immediately after the
percentage figure.

The accompanying table shows percentage increases or decreases in sales made by 112 wholesale firms
in six lines during the month of June 1924, compared ( 1) with sales made in May 1924 and (2) with sales
in June 1923. Also, increases or decreases in cumulative sales made by the reporting firms from January
ist through June 30th are compared with total sales during the corresponding six months of 1923, and
finally, stocks on hand June 30th are compared with stocks on hand at the end of May this year and at the
end of June last year.
The table shows that all lines sold less goods in June than in May, both this year, the declines ranging
downward from 32.3% in shoes to 5.2% in groceries. In comparison with June 1923, June this year;
shows decreased sales in all lines except drugs, which reported an increase of 1 . 4 % . Dry goods experienced
the largest decrease, June sales falling 3 1 . 3 % under June 1923 sales, but shoes with a decline this year of
29.6% was close behind dry goods. Grocery sales declined only 1 . 5 % under sales in June last year, the
actual units of merchandise sold being approximately the same since wholesale food prices are slightly
lower this year.
Stocks in the warehouses of the reporting firms increased during June in dry goods, shoes and furni­
ture, but declined in groceries and hardware, while in comparison with stocks on hand a year ago those
reported at the end of June were greater in grocery and furniture lines, but less in dry goods, shoes and
hardware.
Lines
Groceries ...................
Dry Goods .......... .....
Shoes ..........................
Hardware ...................
Furniture
................
Drugs ..........................
June Totals .......




Good
Fair
1924-1923
1924-1923
11
8
24
30
*
3
7
9
1 0
7
10
2
3
7
10
1 1
5 4
1
5________ 10
7
17
20
60
70

Collections in June Reported as
Slow
Poor
Total
1924-1923
(1924-1923
1924-1923
7
'4
0 0
42
42
7
2
0
1
1 5 1 5
2
1
1 0
11
11
6 2
0 0
1 5 1 5
0
1
0 0
6 6
2
1 ________ o
o________ 13
13
24
11
1
1
102
102

(Compiled July 2 1, 1924)

9

BUSINESS CONDITIONS IN THE UNITED STATES.
Compiled by the Federal Reserve Board.

Production of basic commodities and factory employment showed further large declines during June.
Trade, both at wholesale and retail, also decreased during the month and was in smaller volume than a year
ago.

PRODUCTION. The Federal Reserve Board’s index of production in basis industries, adjusted to
allow for seasonal variations, declined about 9 per cent in June to a point 22 per cent below the level of the
first two months of the year. Iron and steel and cotton manufacturing industries continued to show the
most marked curtailment of activity, and decreases were general in other industries. Factory employment
decreased 3 per cent in June, the metal, automobile, textile, and leather industries reporting the largest re­
ductions in forces. Value of building contracts awarded in June was 8 per cent smaller than in May,
though 4 per cent larger than in June of last year.
Condition of the corn crop on July 1, as reported by the Department of Agriculture, was the lowest on
record for that date and indicated a probable yield about 500,000,000 bushels less than last year. Condition
of the cotton crop was reported less satisfactory than a month earlier, while forecasts for wheat and oats
were larger than in June.

TRADE. Railroad shipments decreased in June and were about 15 per cent less than a year ago, owing
to smaller loadings of all classes of freight except grain and livestock. Wholesale trade showed a further
slight decline in June and was 1 1 per cent smaller than a year ago. Sales of hardware, drugs, shoes, and
dry goods decreased, while sales of groceries and meat increased slightly. Sales of department stores and
chain stores showed more than the usual seasonal decrease during June and were smaller than last year.
Mail order sales in June showed less than the usual seasonal decline and were larger than a year ago. De­
partment stores further reduced their stocks of merchandise and slightly increased their outstanding orders.
PRICES. Wholesale prices, as measured by the index of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, declined more
than one per cent in June to a level 5 per cent below the high point for this year. Prices of all groups of
commodities, except clothing, showed declines and decreases were particularly large for building materials.
During the first three weeks of July quotations on wheat, corn, and hogs advanced sharply, while prices of
sugar, cotton goods, and iron and steel products were lower.
BANK CREDIT. Commercial loans at member banks in leading cities during June and the first two
weeks of Ju ly remained at a relatively constant level, considerably below the peak reached in April, while
investment holdings and loans secured by stocks and bonds increased rapidly and carried total loans and
investments to the high point for the year. Demand deposits, owing partly to the growth of bankers’ bal­
ances at financial centers, advanced to a record level.
At the Reserve banks there was a continued decline in discounts and an increase in purchases of gov­
ernment securities in the open-market. As a consequence, total earning assets in the middle of July were
only slightly less than at the beginning of June. Member bank reserve balances increased rapidly, reflecting
a return flow of currency from circulation and further imports of gold; total deposits at the reserve banks on
July 16 were larger than at any time since the organization of the system.
Money rates in July were comparatively steady but continued to show a somewhat easier tendency.
Discount rates at the Federal Reserve Banks of Kansas City and Dallas were reduced during July from 4 ^
to 4 per cent.




10

CHARTS SUPPLEMENTING TEXT ON PAGE 10

Index of 22 basic commodities corrected for
seasonal variation (1919=100). Latest Figure-?

Index of U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
(1913=100, base adopted by Bureau) Latest figure
—June 145.

June 94.

Index of 33 manufacturing industries (1919=
100). Latest figure—June 90.




Weekly figures for 12 Federal Reserve Banks,
Latest figures, July 23rd.

11




FIFTH

12

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