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MONTHLY

REVIEW

BUSINESS AND AGRICULTURAL CONDITIONS

WILLIAM W. HOXTON, CHAIRMAN AND FEDERAL RESERVE AGENT
RICHMOND, VIRGINIA

JULY 31, 1929

DISTRICT SUMMARY. Between the mid­
dle of June and the middle of July, there was a
moderate credit expansion in the Fifth Federal
reserve district, member banks increasing their
outstanding loans and also their rediscounts at
the reserve bank. Reporting member banks in
leading cities increased their loans on stocks
and bonds by $13,737,000 during the month, but
reduced their other loans $1,122,000. At the
middle of July the Federal Reserve Bank of
Richmond was rediscounting less for city mem­
ber banks than a year ago, but country banks
were borrowing slightly more this year. Debits
to individual accounts in twenty-four Fifth dis­
trict cities during the four weeks ended July
10th this year were seasonally larger than
debits during the preceding four weeks, and
were also larger than in the same period a year
earlier, ended July 11, 1928. Deposits in both
mutual savings and member banks rose during
June, but at the end of the month deposits in
member banks were lower than on June 30th
a year ago. Business failures in the Fifth dis­
trict were more numerous and liabilities were
greater in June 1929 than in other recent Junes,
but the record of the first half of this year was
better in both number of insolvencies and lia­
bilities involved than the record of the first half
of 1928. Employment is about up to seasonal
level, and is better than a year ago. Coal pro­
duction in June was perhaps a little above the
average for this time of year, and total produc­
tion this calendar year exceeded that of the first
six months of 1928. The textile situation did
not improve materially during June and early
July, bn* continued better than in June and July
last year. Cotton prices declined about $2.50 a
bale last month, but recovered during the third
week in July. On the whole, prospects for agri­
culture appear to be fairly good in the Fifth
district this year, although wet and cool weather
retarded growth and prevented proper cultiva­
tion of many fields. Retail trade in June, inso­
far as reflected in department store sales, was
better than in June 1928, and aggregate sales
during the first half of this year exceeded sales
in the first half of 1928, but wholesale trade in
June was less than in June last year in all lines
for which figures are available except shoes.

During
the demand for
and rediscounts

RESERVE BANK OPERATIONS.

the
 month ended Ju ly 15, 1929,
reserve
http://fraser.stlouisfed.org/ bank credit increased,
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis

for member banks held by the Federal Reserve
Bank of Richmond rose from $54,753,000 on
June 15th to $58,931,000 on Ju ly 15th. Total
earning assets of the reserve bank declined
during the month, however, from $63,451,000 to
$62,191,000, due to a reduction in the holdings
of bankers’ acceptances purchased in the open
market. The introduction of the new small size
currency on Ju ly 10th raised the circulation of
Federal reserve notes materially and also low­
ered the member bank’s reserve accounts to
some extent, both of these changes probably
being of a temporary nature. Between June
15th and July 15th, the circulation of Federal
reserve notes rose from $66,679,000 to $75,250,000, and member bank reserve deposits de­
clined from $70,693,000 to $65,696,000, having
reached the low point of $61,198,000 on Ju ly 9th,
the lowest for several years. The several
changes in the statement mentioned above, with
others of less importance, raised the cash re­
serves of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
from $82,721,000 on June 15th to $89,874,000 on
July 15th, and brought the ratio of cash reserves
to note and deposit liabilities combined up from
59.83 per cent last month to 62.92 per cent at
the middle of July.
In comparison with figures shown on the re­
serve bank’s statement on Ju ly 15, 1928, those
for the corresponding date this year show an in­
crease in rediscounts for member banks from
$56,678,000 to $58,931,000, but total earning
assets of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
declined during the year from $67,301,000 to
$62,191,000, the reduction being caused by de­
creased investments in open market paper this
year. The circulation of Federal reserve notes
rose from $53,626,000 on Ju ly 15, 1928, to $75,250,000 on Ju ly 15, 1929, but about half of this
rise is due to the introduction of the new cur­
rency and therefore does not indicate as large
an increase in the regular demand for currency
as the uninterpreted figures would indicate.
Member bank reserve deposits rose slightly dur­
ing the year, from $64,871,000 on July 15, 1928,
to $65,696,000 on Ju ly 15, 1929. The cash re­
serves of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
stood at $60,055,000 at the middle of Ju ly a year
ago, but totaled $89,874,000 on Ju ly 15th this
year, and the ratio of cash reserves to note and
deposit liabilities combined increased from 50.49
per cent to 62.92 per cent during the year.

CONDITION OF SIXTY-ONE REPORTING MEMBER BANKS IN SELECTED CITIES
ITEMS

July 10, 1929

Loans on Stocks and Bonds (including Government) ..
All Other Loans and Discounts.......................................
Total Loans and Discounts...............................................
Total Investments in Bonds and Securities..................
Reserve Balance with Federal Reserve Bank................
Cash in Vaults...................................................................
Net Demand Deposits........................................................
Time Deposits ..................................................................
Borrowed from Federal Reserve Bank...........................

$200,573,000
320,190,000
520.763.000
158.542.000
37.938.000
14.944.000
354.942.000
242.705.000
27.513.000

June 12, 1929

July 11, 1928

$186,836,000
321,312,000
508.148.000
158.249.000
39.554.000
.11,075,000
348.635.000
239,2)15,000
24.858.000

$188,459,000
331,059,000
519.518.000
160.465.000
41.865.000
12.809.000
359.792.000
247.798.000
31.337.000

The chief items of condition for sixty-one regularly reporting member banks are shown in the
accompanying table, three dates being included to allow for comparison of the latest available fig­
ures, those of July 10, 1929, with those of June 12, 1929, and July 11, 1928, the preceding month and
the preceding year, respectively. It should be understood that the figures shown reflect conditions
as of the report dates only, and are not necessarily the highest or lowest figures that occurred dur­
ing the interval between the dates. The figures shown for July 10, 1929, are not quite comparable
with those for the earlier dates, one of the reporting banks having consolidated with another insti­
tution which had not previously reported, but the figures are not materially affected.
A comparison of the July 10, 1929, figures with those of June 12th this year shows some inter­
esting changes during the month. Loans on stocks and bonds rose $13,737,000 during the four
weeks, while all other loans, which are largely commercial and agricultural, declined $1,122,000, a net
gain in loans and discounts of $12,615,000. Total investments in bonds and securities rose $293,000
between June 12th and July 10th, and aggregate deposits rose $9,797,000, demand deposits gaining
$6,307,000 and time deposits $3,490,000. The increase in demand deposits was exactly half the in­
crease in outstanding loans. The reporting banks reduced their reserve balances at the reserve
bank by $1,616,000 between June 12th and July 10 th, but increased their cash in vaults by $3,869,000,
both of these changes being influenced by the introduction of the new small size currency into circu­
lation on July 10th. The several changes in the statement made it necessary for the reporting banks
to resort to the reserve bank for additional funds; and they increased their borrowing by $2,655,000
during the month.
During the year between July 11, 1928, and July 10, 1929, the only change of importance in the
statement of condition of the sixty-one reporting banks was a shift in loans and discounts from
business to speculative and investment loans. Loans on stocks and bonds rose $12,114,000 during the
year, but all other loans decreased $10,869,000, resulting* in a net increase in total loans and dis­
counts of $1,245,000. Investments in bonds and securities declined $1,923,000 between Ju ly 11,
1928, and July 10, 1929, and the reserve balances at the reserve bank declined $3,927,000. Cash in
vaults rose by $2,135,000 during the year, probably due to the unusual amount of currency on hand
on July 10th this year on account of the introduction of the new bills. Demand deposits in the re­
porting banks declined $4,850,000 during the year under review, and time deposits dropped $5,093,000.
Borrowing by the sixty-one banks at the Federal reserve bank declined $3,824,000 between July 11,
1928, and July 10, 1929.
DEBITS TO INDIVIDUAL ACCOUNTS

The accompanying table shows total debits to individual, firm and corporation accounts in the
clearing house banks of twenty-four trade centers in the Fifth Federal reserve district during three
periods of four weeks each, and in addition the table this month shows semi-annual totals in the
several cities for the first half of 1929 in comparison with corresponding figures for the first half
of 1928. The figures for the latest available four weeks period, ended July 10th, may be (fcmipared
with the figures reported for the preceding four weeks, ended June 12th this year, and with those of
the corresponding four weeks ended July 11, 1928.
Aggregate debits of $1,321,060,000 in the reporting banks during the four weeks ended July 10th
show a seasonal increase over the total of $1,213,762,000 reported for the preceding like period,
ended June 12th, the semi-annual and quarterly payments occurring on and around July 1st increas­
ing debits totals materially. The increase during the more recent period was perhaps larger than
in most years. Nineteen of the twenty-four reporting cities showed higher figures for the later four
weeks.
i
In comparison with the corresponding four weeks in 1928, ended July nth, when debits totaling
$1,309,233,000 were reported, the total of $1,321,060,000 for the four weeks ended July lo, 1929, shows
an increase of $11,827,000, fourteen of the twenty-four cities reporting higher figures this year.
Total debits for the first half of 1929 amounted to $8,326,348,000, compared with $8,137,248,000
reported during the first half of 1928. Sixteen cities showed higher figures while seven cities showed



2

lower figures during the first half of this year in comparison with the corresponding six months of
1928, Norfolk and Portsmouth being considered as one city since combined figures were reported
during a part of 1928. Newport News with a gain of 8.8 per cent showed the largest increase in
debits this year, Washington ranking second with 8.7 per cent and Durham third with 8.1 per cent.
Of the seven decreases, only those in Danville, Va., and Greenville, S. C., were relatively important.
CITIES

TOTAL D
EBITS D RIN TH FOU W
U G E
R EEKS E D D
NE
July 11, 1928
July 10, 1929 June 12, 1929

Asheville, N. C............. $ 25,728,000
419.267.000
Baltimore, Md...............
21.097.000
Charleston, S. C............
44.890.000
Charleston, W. Va........
53.019.000
Charlotte, N. C ............
19.600.000
Columbia, S. C..............
11.249.000
Cumberland, Md............
7.601.000
Danville, Va..................
27.997.000
Durham, N. C................
21.424.000
Greensboro, N. C.........
20.430.000
Greenville, S. C............
11.348.000
Hagerstown, Md............
21.580.000
Huntington, W. Va.
19.649.000
Lynchburg, Va..............
10.007.000
Newport News, Va.......
57.249.000
Norfolk, Va....................
6.452.000
Portsmouth, Va..............
31.595.000
Raleigh, N. C................
132.812.000
Richmond, Va................
31,0(15,000
Roanoke, Va..................
12.059.000
Spartanburg, S. C..........
259.486.000
Washington, D. C.........
16.807.000
Wilmington, N. C.........
38.699.000
Winston-Salem, N. C..~
District Totals ...............

$1,321,060,000

$

31,131,000
364.083.000
24.800.000
37.780.000
51.362.000
20.057.000
8.723.000
7.560.000
30.508.000
20.982.000
18.701.000
9.527.000
20.513.000
17.017.000
9.592.000
56.932.000
5.058.000
22.385.000
118.768.000
29,2tll,000
13.229.000
242.098.000
15.336.000
38.409.000

$1,213,762,000

$

ANNUAL TOTALS
1929
1928

29,028,000
424.358.000
25.430.000
41.028.000
52.414.000
19.387.000
10.340.000
8.214.000
25.894.000
23.033.000
19.512.000
10,71)1,000
23.196.000
19.989.000
9.242.000
60.980.000
5.804.000
31.112.000
128.998.000
28.945.000
12.957.000
242.799.000
14.644.000
41.218.000

$ 193,917,000
2.506.144.000
159.902.000
255.827.000
367.941.000
154.936.000
58.320.000
51.858.000
186.190.000
153.452.000
138.423.000
64.749.000
136.839.000
119.529.000
63.481.000
384.449.000
32.640.000
154.796.000
842.731.000
184.855.000
87.187.000
1.656.536.000
110.314.000
261.332.000

$ 187,539,000
2.539.431.000
163.263.000
239.303.000
346.562.000
153.388.000
55.280.000
59.700.000
172.280.000
156.671.000
150.987.000
63.842.000
135.656.000
117.259.000
58.328.000
*422,385,000

$1,309,233,000

$8,326,348,000

$8,137,248,000

150,010,000'*
816.304.000
172.822.000
85.628.000
1.523.273.000
112.112.000
255,225,000

* The 1928 Norfolk total includes debits in Portsmouth.

SAVINGS DEPOSITS—Savings and time deposits increased during the past month. Twelve
mutual savings banks in Baltimore had deposits totaling $190,273,519 at the close of business June
30, 1929, the highest figure ever attained by these banks. On May 31st this year the same institu­
tions had deposits aggregating $189,402,208 and on June 30, 1928, their deposits totaled $182,944,849.
Sixty-one regularly reporting member banks had time deposits aggregating $242,705,000 at the close
of business July 10th this year, which showed an increase over deposits amounting to $239,215,000
on June 12th this year but a decline from $247,798,000 reported on Ju ly 11, 1928.
BUSINESS FAILURES —In commenting on the business failure record in the United States for
the month of June, Dun’s Review of July 6th says, “ The usual seasonal trend toward reduction in
number of failures is disclosed by the returns for June, and the report in this respect is the best for
the period since 1926. Statistics recently compiled show 1,767 commercial defaults in the United
States last month, which is not only the smallest total for the present year, but is also less than for
any other month back to last September. The decrease from the 1,897 insolvencies of May is 6.9
per cent, while there is a decline of 9.2 per cent from the 1,947 insolvencies of June 1928. In that
year, the falling off in the number of failures from May to June was only about 3 per cent. At
$31,374,761, last month's liabilities reveal a contraction of 23.9 per cent from the $41,215,865 of May,
and also are the lightest of the current year. Despite the reduced number of defaults in June, how­
ever, tlie indebtedness exceeds by approximately 5.2 per cent the $29,827,073 of the same month
last year, but the latter aggregate was relatively low” .
For the half year ended June 30, 1929, there were 12,172 commercial failures in the United States,
involving $232,128,936. The number is about 5.1 per cent less than the 12,828 defaults for the cor­
responding period of 1928, and the indebtedness for this year is 7.7 per cent less than the $251,448,406
of the first six months of last year.
Numbering 138, business failures in the Fifth reserve district in June were more numerous than
in any other June except one, that month in 1927 showing 142 failures. Last month’s liabilities total­
ing $2,534,991 were also unusually high for this season, exceeding all other June figures since 1924.
In June 1928 defaults in the Fifth district numbered 98, with total liabilities of $1,397,502, but these
were both exceptionally low figures. Total failures in the district during the first half of 1929 com­
pare favorably with those of the first half of 1928, 825 insolvencies involving $13,436,178 this year
falling below 840 insolvencies involving $18,914,488 in the first half of 1928.



3

EMPLOYMENT—No changes of importance occurred in employment conditions during the
past month, and on the whole labor is seasonally engaged. The industrial plants of the district are
operating full time with the exception of a few textile mills, and coal production has declined some­
what less in recent months than in most years at this season. Building and other construction work
continues to employ nearly all workers dependent upon those activities. The clerical field appears
to be the only one in which there is a marked surplus of workers.
COAL—The total production of bituminous coal during June amounted to 37,900,000 net tons, as
against 40,172,000 tons mined in May this year and 35,963,000 tons in June 1928. Total production
of soft coal this calendar year to Ju ly 6th (approximately 158 working days) totaled 260,628,000 net
tons, a higher figure than the tonnage during the corresponding month in 1928, but less than the
1927 and 1926 figures for June. Production in West Virginia and Pennsylvania was so nearly the
same last month that at present the leader in the industry cannot be determined. Retailers have full
stocks in their yards, and prices to consumers are at practically the same level as at this season
last year.
BUILDING OPERATIONS FOR THE MONTHS OF JUNE 1929 AND 1928.

0

CITIES

z

Permits Issued
New
Repairs
1929 1928

“I

Baltimore, Md.....

2 Cumberland, Md...

467
31
4
14

3 Frederick, Md.....
4 Hagerstown, Md...
11
5 Danville, Va.........
16
6 Lynchburg, Va....
52
7 Norfolk, Va.........
9
8 Petersburg, Va....
17
9 Portsmouth, Va,....
88
10 Richmond, Va......
38
11 Roanoke, Va........
9
12 Bluefield, W. Va...
54
13 Charleston, W. Va.
22
14 Clarksburg, W. Va.
31
15 Huntington, W.Va.
18
16 Parkersburg, W. Va—
7
17 Asheville, N. C......
34
18 Charlotte, N. C....
19 Durham, N. C......
17
37
20 Greensboro, N. C.
15
21 High Point, N. C...
20
22 Raleigh, N. C.......
17
23 Rocky Mount, N.C.
24 Salisbury, N. C....
7
7
25 Wilmington, N. C...
24
26 Winston-Salem, N. C._
18
27 Charleston, S. C...
29
28 Columbia, S. C.....
29 Greenville, S. C.....
7
7
30 Rock Hill, S. C....
12
31 Spartanburg, S. C.
32 Washington, D. C. 161
Totals............. 1,300

1929

1928

New Construction
1928

1929

457 1,285 1,236 $ 4,448,520 $ 2,433,720
16
8
13
105,003
26,810
2
7
5
3,250
22,100
2
22
8
137,320
19,440
13
14
11
41,830
16,165
26
36
33
67,400
33,335
82
78
91
437,195
297,420
10
9
9
27,456
29,300
17
27
25
25,320
46,325
115
80
93
432,477
367,562
22
57
21
152,306
846,450
2
11
4
23,600
17,275
40
20
13
331,555
135,960
23
20
17
44,334
100,488
32
10
1
78,375
50,127
21
17
8
42,525
52,050
30
47
74
26,274
279,247
85
40
36
158,985
669,515
59
8
10
248,950
46,335
72
33
46
135,995
319,316
32
6
9
164,350
69,150
21
29
12
288,016
131,030
4
30
9
167,535
105,417
16
1
1
55,500
143,500
14
9
14
42,600
13,500
90
57
90
434,450
94,090
10
32
29
77,420
5,455
32
44
40
125,400
143,400
12
21
24
21,100
52,200
14
15
7
129,455
22,250
9
19
30,070
30,900
17
211
540
472
1,186,850
3,674,440
1,688 2,541 2,472 $ 8,645,490 $11,340,198

Alterations
1929
$ 615,600 $
1,660
8,750
28,740
14,185
11,811
39,435
3,036
18,670
122,512
45,421
1,550
65,350
7,470

2,000
14,870
12,973
25,671
13,650
36,588
3,200
3,350
2,680

2,000
15,050
33,592
23,700
41,150
13,345
5,885
31,935
429,885
$1,695,714

1928

Increase or Per Cent
of
Decrease
of
Increase
0
Total
or
Z
Valuation Decrease

790,560 $ 1,839,840
57.1# 1
19,879
59,974 128.5
2
4,075 — 14,175 — 54.2
3
1,475 — 90,615 — 65.3
4
7,220 — 18,700 — 38.1
5
30,032 — 52,286 — 53.7
6
73,998 — 174,338 — 34.1
7
2,233 — 6.8
3,425 —
8
17,440 — 19,775 — 31.0
9
104,492
82,935
23.2 10
5,998 — 654,721 — 76.8 11
6,595
1,280
35.5 12
247,770
13,175
166.1 13
8,650 — 57,334 — 52.5 14
9,000 — 35,248 — 40.3 15
2,595
2,750
4.7 16
21,600 — 261,600 — 87.0 17
100,679 — 585,538 — 76.0 18
20,950 — 209,915 — 77.8 19
32,171 — 178,904 — 50.9 20
4,225 — 96,225 — 57.1 21
151,296
9,040
108.0 22
19,550 — 78,988 — 42.2 23
600 — 86,600 — 60.1 24
28,650
15,500
98.8 25
34,435 — 341,203 — 72.8 26
83,230 465.2 27
12,435
6,105
17,045
3.8 28
10,550 — 28,305 — 45.1 29
102,565 312.9 30
10,525
24,260
6,845
64.3 31
359,635 —2,417,340 — 59.9 32
$1,747,677 $ —2,746,671 — 21.0#

— 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.

Building permits issued in thirty-two cities of the Fifth Federal reserve district in June this
year were less numerous and the estimated valuation wras less than in June 1928. In June this year
1,300 permits for new construction compare with 1,688 permits issued in the same cities for new
work in June last year, and this year’s estimated valuation of $8,645,490 was considerably below the
total valuation of $11,340,198 for new work in June 1928. Permits for alteration and repair work
in June this year numbering 2,541 compare more favorably with 2,472 permits issued in the same
month a year ago, but this year’s valuation of $1,695,714 was less than $1,747,677 in June 1928. Com­
bined valuation figures for all classes of permits totaled $10,341,204 in June 1929, a decrease of
$2,746,671, or 21.0 per cent, under the total of $13,087,875 for all permits issued in the thirty-two
cities in June last year. Among the individual cities, Baltimore with permits totaling slightly more
than $5,000,000 accounted for about half the district total. Only twelve of the thirty-two cities re­



4

ported higher valuation figures for June 1929 than for June 1928, and several of these increases were
due to low figures last year rather than to unusually high figures this year. A new city, Rock Hill,
S. C., is included this month in the table.
i
Contracts awarded in June for construction work in the Fifth district, including both rural and
urban projects, totaled $34,431,160, compared with $46,277,135 awarded in June 1928, according to
figures collected by the F. W. Dodge Corporation. Of the awards in June this year, $11,530,325 was
for residential work.
TEXTILES —Fifth district textile mills ran practically full time in June, although there was
some tendency to curtail operations. Several mills in which strikes had tied up the machinery re­
sumed operations, and no new labor trouble developed. The district mills consumed 243,682 bales
of cotton last month, North Carolina mills using 130,736 bales, South Carolina mills 104,786 bales,
and Virginia mills 8,160 bales, larger figures in each case than those of June 1928 when total con­
sumption for the district was 222,235 bales. June 1929 consumption was 42.7 per cent of National
consumption, compared with 43.5 per cent of National consumption attained by the Fifth district
mills in June a year ago. It is interesting to note that June consumption figures in the Fifth dis­
trict failed to gain in percentage of National consumption for the third month in succession. There
has been little improvement in demand for textiles in recent weeks, and mills are still operating on
narrow margins of profit.
COTTON— Spot cotton prices fluctuated through a range of about half a cent a pound during
the past month, and ended the period at the low point of the swing. In our Review last month we
quoted the average price for middling cotton on ten Southern markets as 18.50 cents per pound on
June 14th. The price declined to 18.13 cents per pound on June 21st, recovered somewhat and
rose to 18.29 cents on June 28th, but receded to 17.99 cents on July 5th, the lowest figure since Sep­
tember 21, 1928. On July 12th, the latest date for which official figures are available, the average
price was 18.02 cents, a rise of only 15 cents per bale over the preceding week and about $17 per
bale below the price on Ju ly 13, 1928.
Cotton consumption in American mills during June 1929 totaled 570,281 bales, compared with
668,229 bales consumed in May this year and 510,399 bales used in June 1928. Total consumption
for the eleven months of the season to date—August 1, 1928, to June 30, 1929—amounted to 6,552,489
bales, compared with 6,394,242 bales consumed during the corresponding period ended June 30, 1928.
According to the Bureau of the Census report on July 13th, consuming establishments held 1,289,294
bales of cotton in their warehouses on June 30th, compared with 1,160,888 bales so held on the cor­
responding date a year earlier. Public warehouses and compresses held 1,375,728 bales in storage
on June 30th, compared with 1,646,807 bales a year ago. Exports totaled 299,137 bales in June this
year, compared with 444,168 bales shipped abroad during the same month of 1928, and total exports
for the eleven months ended June 30th amounted to 7,811,834 bales against 7,208,493 bales exported
during the eleven months ended June 30, 1928. Imports last month totaled 26,113 bales, compared
with 14,587 bales brought in during June last year. The cotton growing states consumed 431,968
bales in June this year, or 75.7 per cent of National consumption, compared with 392,052 bales, or
76.8 per cent of National consumption credited to the cotton growing states in June 1928. Cotton
spindles active in June 1929 numbered 30,628,122, compared with 28,627,556 spindles active in June
1928.
On Ju ly 8th, the Department of Agriculture issued its first acreage report of the season, and esti­
mated the area in cultivation as 3.2 per cent larger than the acreage in 1928, the largest increase
being from Alabama westward. In the Fifth reserve district, Virginia with 89,000 acres shows an
increase of 10 per cent, North Carolina with 1,911,000 acres shows an increase of 1 per cent, and
South Carolina with 2,410,000 acres shows a decrease of 3 per cent.
TOBACCO—Virginia tobacco acreage is about 4 per cent less this year than in 1928, 174,000
acres now under cultivation comparing with 180,800 acres harvested last year. The reduction is in
flue-cured, fire-cured and sun-cured types, burley acreage in Southwest Virginia being approximately
50 per cent larger this year. The season was favorable for setting out tobacco and generally the
stand is very good, although in some sections plants are irregular, largely due to insect damage. Too
cool nights during most of June retarded growth. However, in most districts the plants were
slightly larger on Ju ly 1st than on the same date last year. Rains interferred with cultivation and
fields are becoming grassy. The condition on July 1st was reported to be 76 per cent of normal,
which is the same as reported last year. North Carolina tobacco acreage is 5 per cent larger
than that of 1928, but the condition of 69 per cent on July 1st was 3 per cent below the Ju ly 1, 1928,
condition. Burley tobacco in the extreme western counties shows the best condition. Curing of
tobacco is well under way in many of the eastern counties, and the section included in the South
Carolina Belt is ready for marketing. South Carolina tobacco is ready for market, and the
condition of 70 per cent on July 1st in comparison with 65 per cent a year ago indicates a probable
yield of 85,806,000 pounds, a record crop, although this year’s acreage was 8 per cent below the



5

acreage of 1928. South Carolina tobacco markets are opening at the end of July this year, a week
ahead of last year’s opening.
AGRICULTURAL NOTES—Maryland crop prospects are varied, due to excessive rains in
certain sections and dryness in others. Wheat is disappointing in yield in many parts of the state,
wet weather during the spring and early summer having caused an abnormal growth of straw and
increased the disease hazard. As a result, many of the heads are poorly filled and the grain is far
below standard quality. In other sections of Maryland, however, the wheat yield is reported as sat­
isfactory. Potato growers on the Eastern Shore are very much encouraged. Yields are satisfac­
tory, and prices ranging from $3.50 to $4.00 per barrel are good. The outlook at present for the
tomato crop is good. Peach growers anticipate a fairly good crop, but apple conditions are spotted,
the crop being very light in some sections but fair and of excellent quality in others. The corn
crop in most sections of the state is growing nicely and a normal yield is indicated. During the
first half of July the weather was extremely dry, and considerable damage was done to pastures and
the second crop of alfalfa. Virginia crop conditions on Ju ly ist were above the average. Hay
crops and pastures were unusually good, but there was too much rain during June for cultivated
crops such as corn, peanuts and tobacco. The total acreage in all crops is slightly less than last
year. The corn acreage is estimated as 6 per cent less than last year. The stand of corn is very
good, but growth has been retarded by excessive moisture and cool nights. However, early in July
conditions were more favorable and corn made considerable progress, although fields became some­
what grassy. Virginia wheat prospects declined considerably during June, and early threshing re­
ports indicate that the yield is very poor. The crop was badly injured by rust and other diseases
which resulted from the unusually wet and cloudy weather during May and June. Wheat har­
vesting was considerably later this year than had been expected, but in most sections was com­
pleted by Ju ly ist. Other small grains such as oats, barley and rye are expected to yield slightly
better than wheat, but not as well as the large growth of straw indicated. These crops did not fill
as well as had been expected. The acreage of potatoes, both early and commercial, was reduced this
year, largely because of low prices received for the 1928 crop. The commercial crop yielded poorly
during the early part of the season, but after the middle of June yields improved considerably. This
year’s production of Irish potatoes is expected to be about 25 per cent less than last year’s pro­
duction, but prices during the latter part of June averaged around $3.75 per barrel in comparison
with $1.25 per barrel in 1928. The sweet potato acreage is 5 per cent larger than last year, the
increase being chiefly in the commercial acreage on the Eastern Shore where conditions were favor­
able for setting out the plants. The peanut acreage in Virginia, while 5 per cent larger than a year
ago, is smaller than the farmers had intended to plant. The stand is unusually good, but weather
conditions in June were unfavorable and grass was growing rapidly in the fields on Ju ly ist. A
considerable part of the acreage usually planted in the Spanish type nuts has this year been shifted
to the large type. The commercial apple crop of Virginia is expected to be smaller than a year
ago, but above the five year average. Weather conditions damaged the fruit somewhat in June, but
apples have grown rapidly and the size is larger than usual at this season. North Carolina acre­
age figures show the total area for all crops to be 1 per cent greater than last year, most of
the increases in other crops having been made at the expense of corn. The condition of the corn
crop was better on July ist than a year earlier, and the acreage was about 2 per cent smaller. Small
grain crops showed yields this year appreciably above the average for most years, and the quality
of the grain was good. Peanuts showed a condition of 69 per cent of normal on Ju ly ist, on an
acreage 8 per cent larger than in 1928. Fruit crops are generally short in North Carolina. The
early commercial Irish potato crop was cut almost 50 per cent in acreage, but the yield was gen­
erally considered very good, and prices were fairly satisfactory. South Carolina has experi­
enced a relatively good year for crops already harvested. The yield of commercial early Irish po­
tatoes was good, averaging about 143 bushels per acre. Both winter wheat and rye show yields
somewhat above the ten-year average, while the average yield of oats was the best ever made in
the state, according to available records. The corn crop of South Carolina was held back by an
unfavorable spring and the present condition is somewhat below average, but the prospects are for
a yield considerably above that of the unusually short crop of 1928. The condition of sweet po­
tatoes is below the ten-year average, but better than that of last year. Increased acreage was re­
ported this year over 1928 for sweet potatoes, peanuts, wheat, rye and oats, and reduced acreage
was reported for cotton, tobacco, tame hay, and early Irish potatoes. West Virginia crop con­
ditions on Ju ly ist were lower than a month earlier, due to cool and dry weather through most of
June, but with the exception of an unusually low condition for potatoes conditions compare very
favorably with a year ago and the past ten year average. The state’s apple crop shows evidence
at present of being only two-thirds as large as last year’s crop and somewhat below an average for
former years. Total acreage in West Virginia was slightly increased this year, due to larger areas
in wheat, oats, rye and tobacco. Potato acreage was reduced, and other crops showed practically
no change.



6

FIGURES ON RETAIL TRADE

As Indicated By Reports from Thirty-One Representative Department Stores tor the Month of June 1929
Percentage increase in June 1929 sales, over sales in June 1928:
Baltimore
Richmond
Washington
Other Cities
District
7.8
1.0
5.3
— 6.2
4.6
Percentage increase in total sales since January 1st, over sales during the first six months in 1928:
2.1
3.5
4.9
— 3.5
2.8
Percentage increase in June 1929 sales over average June sales during the three years 1923-1925, inclusive:
4.3
23.8
14.5
— 111.5
8.4
Percentage increase in stock on hand June 30, 1929, over stock on June 30, 1928:
— 1.7
6.7
2.3
— 5.9
—
.09
Percentage increase in stock on hand June 30, 1929, over stock on May 31, 1929:
— 5.5
— 2.3
— 5.9
— 3.7
— 5.1
Percentage of sales in June 1929 to average stock carried during that month:
30.0
31.2
30.8
20.4
29.1
Percentage of total sales since January 1st to average stock carried during each of the six elapsed months:
163.7
178.9
172.7
120.5
162.7
Percentage of collections in June 1929 to accounts receivable on June 1st:
25.0
32.4
32.2
29.1
28.5
— Denotes decreased percentage.

Thirty-one leading department stores sent figures on their June 1929 business to the Federal
Reserve Bank of Richmond, and an analysis of the figures shows sales averaging 4.6 per cent above
sales in June 1928. On a daily basis, the increase this year is really larger than the percentage
indicates, since June 1929 with five Sundays contained one less business day than June last year.
Total sales in the reporting stores from January 1st through June this year averaged 2.8 per cent
above sales during the first half of 1928, and June 1929 sales were 8.4 per cent larger than average
June sales during the three years 1923-1925, inclusive. Baltimore stores averaged the largest gains
in sales last month in comparison with sales in June 1928, but in total sales for the first half of
1929 the Washington stores showed the largest increase over 1928.
Stocks of merchandise on the shelves of the reporting stores at the end of June averaged
practically the same as on June 30, 1928, but were 5.1 per cent less than stocks on hand a month
earlier this year, May 31, 1929, a seasonal reduction.
The percentage of sales to average stock carried during June was 29.1 per cent for the dis­
trict as a whole, and the percentage of total sales during the first half of 1929 to average stock
carried during each of the six months was 162.7 per cent, indicating an annual turnover of 3.25
times, compared with a turnover rate of 3.09 times in the first half of 1928.
Collections by thirty of the thirty-one reporting stores during June totaled 28.5 per cent of
outstanding receivables as of June 1st, a slightly lower figure than 28.7 per cent of outstanding re­
ceivables collected in May this year and exactly the same figure reported for June a year ago. Bal­
timore and Washington reported somewhat better collections in June 1929 than in June 1928, but
Richmond and the Other Cities stores reported slower collections last month.
_____________________________ WHOLESALE TRADE, JUNE 1929________________________________
Percentage increase in June 1929 sales, compared with sales in June 1928:
28 Groceries
10 Dry Goods
5 Shoes
1U Hardware
12 Drugs
— 9.4
— 1.8
.8
— 12.9
— 4.4
Percentage increase in June 1929 sales, compared with sales in May 1929:
— 5.1
— 11.3
— 27.5
— (15.0
— 6.1
Percentage increase in total sales since January 1, 1929, compared with sales during the first half of 1928*
— 4.4
— 8.3
— 8.3
— 4.9
.6
Percentage increase in stock on June 30, 1929, compared with stock on June 30, 1928:
— 2.5(10*)
— 16.8(4*)
— 14.0(4*)
4.7(7*)
........
Percentage increase in stock on June 30, 1929, compared with stock on May 31, 11929:
— 6.2(10*)
13.8(4*)
9.6(4*)
— 3.3(7*)
........
Percentage o f collections in June to total accounts receivable on June 1, 1928:
61.7(18*)
32.0(7*)
32.1(5*)________
33.5(11*)
58.5(9*)
— Denotes decreased percentage.

* Number of reporting firms.

Wholesale trade in the Fifth reserve district in June 1929, as reflected in reports from sixtynine firms in five lines, was in smaller volume in nearly all lines than in either May 1929 or June
1928. Furniture is not shown in the table this month, an insufficient number of firms having re­
ported to reflect the trend in that line. Reporting shoe firms showed slightly larger sales in June
this year than in June last year, but the other four lines reported decreased sales during the 1929



7

month, hardware with a decline of 12.9 per cent showing the greatest drop. In comparison with
May 1929 sales, those of June 1929 were lower in every line reported upon. Cumulative sales dur­
ing the first half of 1929 exceeded sales in the first half of 1928 in drugs alone, the other four lines
falling behind their 1928 business. Stocks on hand increased last month over those on hand at the
end of May this year in dry goods and shoes, while grocery and hardware stocks declined. At the
end of June, stocks of hardware on the shelves of the reporting firms were larger than those 011
hand on June 30, 1928, but grocery, dry goods and shoe stocks declined during the year. Collec­
tions in June were slower in all lines than in May of this year, and were also slower in groceries,
hardware and drugs than in June 1928, but dry goods and shoe collections wrere better last month
than in the corresponding month last year.
(Compiled Ju ly 20, 1929)

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

Output of manufactures continued in large volume in June, while mineral production declined.
There was a rise in the general level of commodity prices, reflecting chiefly an advance in agricul­
tural commodities.
PRODUCTION. Activity of manufacturing establishments continued at a high rate in June.
Output of automobiles and of iron and steel showed a seasonal decline smaller than is usual from
May to June. Silk mill activity increased and there was a growth in the daily average production of cement,
leather and shoes. Production of copper at smelters and refineries decreased sharply and output of
cotton and wT
ool textiles was also reduced, although production in all of those industries continued
larger than in other recent years. The volume of factory employment and payrolls in June showed
a small seasonal decline from May, but, as in earlier months, was substantially larger than in 1928.
Output of mines was generally smaller in June than in May, reflecting declines in the production of
coal, copper, and other non-ferrous metals. Output of petroleum, however, increased to new high
levels. Reports for the first half of July indicate some further reduction in output of cotton textiles,
iron and steel, lumber, and coal.
The volume of construction contracts awarded decreased further in June, and for the first half
year awards were 12 per cent less than in the same period in 1928, reflecting chiefly a substantial
decline in residential building. During the first three weeks of July contracts awarded were larger
than in the same period a year ago.
Department of Agriculture estimates, based on the Ju ly 1st crop condition report, indicate a wheat
crop of 834,000,000 bushels, about 8 per cent smaller than production last year, but larger than aver­
age production in the preceding five years. The acreage of cotton in cultivation on Ju ly 1st was es­
timated at 48,457,000 acres, 3 per cent more than a year ago.
DISTRIBUTION. During the month of June, freight car loadings were slightly smaller than in
May, as a result of decreases in loadings of most classes of freight except grain products and ores.
In comparison with other recent years, however, loadings continued to show an increase. Sales of
department stores in June, as in earlier months, were larger than in the same month in 1928.
PRICES. Wholesale prices, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics index, advanced from
May to June on the average somewhat less than they had declined during the preceding
month. Farm products, particularly grains, cattle, beef and hides, showed marked advances in
price. Prices of mineral *products and their manufactures also averaged higher in June than in
May, the rise reflecting largely increases in the price of petroleum and gasoline. Prices of leading
imports, rubber, sugar, silk and coffee, showed a decline for the month as a whole.
During the first two weeks of Ju ly wheat and corn continued to move sharply upward, while
hides declined slightly in price. Hog prices increased and prices of rubber and tin, which began to
advance in the middle of June, continued to rise.
BANK CREDIT. During the first half of Ju ly the volume of credit extended by member banks
in leading cities declined somewhat, following a rapid increase in June. On Ju ly 17th loans and in­
vestments of these banks were about $400,000,000 above the level at the end of May. The increase
reflected chiefly a rapid growth in loans to brokers and dealers in securities and also some further
increase in commercial loans. The banks’ holdings of investments continued to decline and were on
Ju ly 17th about $700,000,000 below the middle of iast year.
The total volume of reserve bank credit outstanding showed an increase of about $120,000,000
during the four weeks ending July 17th, the increase being in discounts for member banks. Demand
for additional reserve bank credit arose chiefly out of a considerable increase in the volume of money
in circulation which accompanied the issuance of the new small size currency. There was also some in­
crease in reserve balances of member banks accompanying the growth in their loans and conse­
quently in their deposits.
Open market rates on 90 day bankers’ acceptances declined from 5 1/2 to 5 1/8 per cent between
the latter part of June and the middle of July, while rates on prime commercial paper remained
unchanged.




8