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FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF ST. LOUIS
MONTHLY REVIEW
OF BU SIN ESS CONDITIONS
IN FEDERAL RESERVE DISTRICT No. 8
Released for Publication On and After the Afternoon of November 29, 1924

W I L L I A M McC. M A R T IN
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD AND FEDERAL RESERVE AGENT

S T E A D Y growth in industrial activity, renewed
confidence in the immediate outlook for trade,
advancing com m odity prices, continued strength
in the banking and financial situation, heavy distribu­
tion of merchandise, enormous freight loadings and
generally auspicious conditions for fall crops and
farm operations were among the factors favorably
affecting general business in this district during the
past thirty days. In a majority of lines investigated
October sales showed gains over the preceding month
this year, and while some minor decreases as com ­
pared with the corresponding month in 1923 were
developed, the losses were attributed largely to the
unusually warm weather which seriously hampered
the movement of seasonal goods throughout the
chief trade territories.
W hile the disposition to cautious buying contin­
ues among both merchants and ultimate consumers,
there was a perceptible relaxation on the part of the
former from the recent policy to purchase only for
immediate requirements. Ordering of merchandise
for selling in the spring was being pursued with great­
er confidence and on a larger scale than heretofore.
Retailers in the rural areas, whose stocks had been
allowed to run low in recent months, showed con­
siderably more interest in replenishing and filling out
their assortments. Initial ordering of holiday goods
in virtually all lines is reported satisfactory, and gen­
erally in excess of the corresponding period a year ago.
Production in a number of the basic industries
recorded excellent gains over the month before. Iron
and steel plants increased their activities, and the
placement of orders for their products during the
past several weeks has been in volume sufficient to
renew interest in raw materials. Purchases of pig iron
were the largest for any similar period this year, and
heavy buying of scrap iron and steel, coupled with
generally small stocks resulted in a sharp upturn in
prices for waste material. Manufacturers of special­
ties, particularly stoves, farm implements and other
goods consumed largely in the country, report sub­
stantial accretions to their unfilled orders.
Improvement in the drug and chemical, furniture,
grocery and electrical supply lines, noted in the pre­
ceding issue of this report, continued during the
period under review. Sales in these and several other
classifications were stimulated by ordering of holiday
goods. Reports relative to clothing and textiles gen­
erally were somewhat spotted. Price uncertainty and
the unseasonably low temperatures were responsible
for hesitation in certain quarters, particularly on sta­
ple goods. The movement of specialties, novelties
and styled goods, however, was in satisfactory v ol­
ume. The shoe industry continued its gains of recent
months, though O ctober sales while larger in volume



than a year ago, were slightly smaller in dollar value,
due to a decrease in prices.
A feature of the employment situation was the
sustained activity in building operations, the mild
weather having permitted of all sorts of outdoor
work, including highway and river improvement
operations, to be carried further into the season than
usual. This has resulted in a heavy call for common
labor, and skilled artisans in the building trades are
well employed. The demand for help on farms was
well sustained, particularly in the South, where har­
vesting of the cotton, tobacco and rice crops was be­
ing completed. Foundries and steel mills added to
their forces and the same was true of the railroads.
Meat packing plants and flour mills were operating
with close to normal complements of labor. Not
much change took place in the coal mining areas,
but full employment was the rule in the lead and
zinc fields.
Changes in crop conditions in the district during
October as contrasted with the preceding month were
in the direction of betterment. Heavier production,
based on November 1 conditions than at the opening
of October, was indicated in corn, cotton, tobacco,
and rice. A ccording to the Department of A gricul­
ture’s report, the average yield per acre of all cfops
combined in States wholly or partly in this district —
duly weighted— compared with the average for recent
years, was 94.4 per cent, against 91.03 per cent last
year, 97.4 per cent in 1922, 103 per cent in 1921 and
93.2 per cent in 1920. Marketing of farm products!
including live stock, was on a large scale, receipts
of corn, wheat, cotton, cattle and hay being well in
excess of the same period a year ago.
As was the case during the preceding thirty days,
cereal prices fluctuated broadly, but with the trend
upward, wheat making a new high record on the
crop. Between O ctober 15 and November 15, in the
St. Louis market, Decem ber wheat ranged from
$1.37*^ to $1.55^ , closing at $1.53 on the latter
date, which compares with $1.49^4 on O ctober 15, and
$1.04 on O ctober 15, 1923. Cash wheat was corres­
pondingly high, No. 2 red winter selling at $1.66 on
November 10, the highest in more than three years.
December corn closed slightly lower on N ovem ber 15
than the month before, but the more distant options
were higher. In face of the Government’s increased
estimates of production, cotton prices advanced, midd­
ling selling at 24c per pound on N ovem ber 15, against
2 2 ^ c a month earlier. H og prices declined in sym ­
pathy with lower quotations on fresh pork products.
W ith improved demand for fats and hides, beef prices
were in the main satisfactory. There was an active
market for mutton, and sheep prices were strong.

High temperatures extending through October
and the first weeks of N ovem ber resulted in serious
setback to the coal trade. Consumption by household­
ers was greatly below normal for this time of year,
and dealers generally were loath to contract for their
mid-winter supplies in view of the scant purchasing
by their customers. There was some improvement in
the demand for steaming coal in the chief industrial
centers, but in the country steam sizes are still slow.
In Arkansas several mines were obliged to close
down, due principally to the extreme difficulty of
moving screenings. In the Kentucky field business
was relatively more active than elsewhere, ow ing to
a wider selling radius permitted by non-union opera­
tion and slightly lower prices. Generally list prices
were unchanged, but in numerous instances conces­
sions were being granted in order to m ove tonnage.
The domestic coke situation continued dull, with
stocks on producers’ yards still heavy. T he demand
for metallurgical coke, however, was fairly active and
prices firm. Production of bituminous coal for the
country as a whole during the first 265 w orking days
of the calendar year, or to N ovem ber 8, totaled
392.849.000 net tons, which compares with 475,551,000
tons for the corresponding period last year and
342.883.000 tons in 1922. Reports from the mines
indicate that lack of demand remains by far the dom i­
nant factor in limiting production.
Reports o f railroads operating in this district
continue to reflect the movement of enormous tonnage
of freight, several important roads in October having
exceeded the record of any previous single month.
For the country as a whole a new high record for all
time was established during the week ended October
25, when 1,112,345 cars o f revenue freight were loaded.
This total was 10,009 cars greater than the preceding
week, the previous high record, and a gain of 38,504
cars over the corresponding week last year and of
112,627 cars over the same period in 1922. A con­
siderable portion of the gains were accounted for by
grain and grain products and miscellaneous freight,
both these classifications establishing new high
records. The Terminal Railway Association of St.
Louis, which handles interchanges for 28 connecting
lines, interchanged 229,275 loads in October, the
highest on record, and com paring with 213,480 loads
in September and 226,242 loads in October, 1923. D ur­
ing the first nine days of N ovem ber 62,868 loads were
interchanged, against 68,973 loads during the first nine
days of September and 66,020 loads during the corres­
ponding period a year ago. Passenger traffic of the
reporting roads decreased 12 per cent during October
as compared with the same month last year. Tonnage
moved by the Mississippi River section o f the Federal
Barge line during O ctober between St. Louis and
New Orleans amounted to 56,000 tons, against 80,537
tons in September and 55,306 tons in October, 1923.
Further improvement in collection efficiency is
indicated in reports from leading interests in both
wholesale and retail lines. Payments to wholesale dry
goods and shoe interests during O ctober and early
Novem ber were fully equal to expectations, and slight­
ly above those o f the corresponding period a year ago.
Continued heavy marketing of crops has resulted in
extensive liquidation of indebtedness in the farming
communities, particularly in the grain and cotton
areas. Country merchants are for the most part meet­
ing their bills as they fall due, and a general comment
am ong jobbers and wholesalers is that there are fewer
requests for extensions than at any time in more



than two years. Retailers in the large cities report
that with but relatively few exceptions their custom­
ers are paying promptly. Answers to 423 question­
naires addressed to representative interests in various
lines throughout the district show the follow ing
results:
Excellent

Good

Fair

*

Poor

38.2%
51.6%
6.0%
Oct., 1924..:.... 7 4 2 %
Sept., 1924......... 4.1
34.9
54.8
6.2
Oct., 1923.... .....0.9
35.3
57.1
6.7
Commercial failures in the Eighth Federal
Reserve District during October, according to Dun’s,
numbered 79, involving liabilities of $1,945,106,
against 71 defaults in September with indebtedness
of $3,586,174, and 84 failures for $1,308,833 in O cto­
ber, 1923.
T he per capita circulation of the United States
on November 1 was $43.12, against $42.52 on October
1, and $43.27 on N ovember 1, 1923.
M A N U F A C T U R IN G A N D W H O L E S A L E
Autom obiles
The increase in production of automobiles for
the country as a whole, which had continued each
consecutive month since May, was halted in October,
the combined output of passenger cars and trucks for
that month falling 0.6 per cent under the September
total. A s contrasted with a year ago, the October
production showed a decrease of 20.7 per cent. Manu­
facturers reporting direct or through the Autom obile
Chamber of Commerce built 257,839 passenger cars in
October, against 260,091 in September and 334,244
in October, 1923. The output of trucks by the same
companies in O ctober numbered 30,597, which com ­
pares with 30,154 in September and 29,639 in O cto­
ber, 1923.
A s compared with September, sales of new
automobiles showed a rather sharp decrease during
October, but the total for the latter month was about
equal to that of the corresponding period a year ago.
The decrease in October under September is seasonal,
and no greater than usual. Sales of 320 dealers scat­
tered through the district during O ctober were 10.4
per cent less than in September, and 0.2 per cent under
the October, 1923 total. The number of cars on deal­
ers’ floors at the end of October was slightly less than
the month before, and considerably below the total
of a year ago. Manufacturers are shipping cars as
required, and many of the most important producers
have announced they will not load up dealers during
the winter months with stock for sale in the spring.
As has been the case for the past several months,
business in accessories continues relatively better than
in new cars, sales of the reporting dealers during
October showing gains over September, 1924 and
October, 1923. Further improvement was noted in
the tire situation, both in point of stocks and volume
of sales. Prices displayed a stronger tendency. N o
change w orthy of note took place in the used car
market as compared with the preceding month.
Reductions in the price of new cars were announced
by several manufacturers.
Boots and Shoes
Sales of the 11 reporting interests during October
were 1.8 per cent smaller than for the corresponding
month in 1923, but 1.3 per cent larger than the Sep­
tember total this year. In actual pairs of shoes sold
the showing made in O ctober exceeded that of a year
ago, the decrease in dollar value being accounted for
by a reduction of 3 to 4 per cent in prices as com ­

pared with October, 1923. Orders received in early
N ovem ber have been in satisfactory volume and indi­
cate gains over the same period last year. The demand
in men's lines centers chiefly in the cheaper grades,
those selling from $4 to $6. Goods to sell at $8 and
higher are relatively quiet. A ll grades of w om en’s
and children’s footwear continue active, with the de­
mand for novelties particularly strong. Factory opera­
tion was at from 80 to 100 per cent of capacity. The
trend of prices is higher, the average being up about
2 y2 per cent since September 1. The upturn in finished
products is largely in sympathy with higher raw
materials.
Clothing
W hile the movement of clothing during the
period under review, according to the reporting inter­
ests, was considerably more active than thirty days
earlier, the unseasonably low temperatures had a
retarding effect on sales of heavy-weight goods, and
a spell of cold weather is much needed to produce
best results. Ordering of goods for spring wear is in
larger volume than a year ago, and assortments being
taken include a greater variety and larger percentage
of better class garments. Prices of finished goods
showed little change worthy o f comment, but the con­
tinued strength of raw w ool is having a strengthening
effect in apparel based on that staple. Sales of the 10
reporting interests during O ctober were 3.9 per cent
less than the same month last year, and 73.1 per cent
over the September total this year, the latter gain
being accounted for by seasonal considerations. M il­
liners complain of continued quietness, sales of repre­
sentative concerns showing decreases both as com ­
pared with the preceding month and a year ago.
Drugs and Chemicals
A s compared with a year ago, O ctober sales of
the 11 reporting interests showed an increase of 8.3
per cent, and the total was 11.5 per cent larger than
during September this year. Improvement was pretty
general through the entire line, but particularly no­
ticeable in medicinal drugs and fine chemicals. Buy­
ing for future requirements is in larger volume and
being pursued with greater confidence. Ordering of
holiday goods has opened up in excellent shape, with
total sales in this general category well in excess of
the same time in 1923 or 1922. Im provement in the
metal industries has had a favorable effect on the
demand for heavy chemicals. There was little change
in prices in drugs and fine chemicals, but the trend
was upward. O f twenty-five changes reported, eigh­
teen were advances and seven declines.
Dry Goods
Sales of the 12 reporting interests during October
were 3.9 per cent larger than for the same month in
1923, and 18.9 per cent under the September total this
year. Since the middle of O ctober there has been
steady improvement in ordering for January to March
delivery, and the volum e o f cancellations and returned
goods has fallen off perceptibly. Business for imme­
diate shipments continues satisfactory, and the com ­
ment is made that the number of small orders for deliv­
ery by parcels post and express is larger than ever
before. Fluctuations in the raw cotton market have
caused considerable irregularity in prices of cotton
goods, there having been advances and declines. The
demand for knitted goods has been unfavorably af­
fected by the warm weather, but there was a better
movement of overalls and men’s w ork clothes gener­
ally. W ash fabrics for spring sold more freely, but
for the most part retailers are confining their com ­



mitments to small lots of a wide variety and fancy
weaves. N ovelty weaves and crepes are reported the
most active section of the silk goods market. Buying
of staples is backward, ow ing to price uncertainty and
lack of demand.
Electrical Supplies
O ctober sales of the 12 reporting interests were
6.7 per cent under the corresponding month in 1923,
but 1.0 per cent in excess of the September total this
year. The movement of pole and line hardware was
reported in good volume, and the late fall has kept up
an active demand for new building installations. The
holiday demand for radio equipment, flashlights, fancy
lamps and other seasonal goods is being felt, with
advance sales somewhat larger than a year ago. The
general improvement in industrial activity has stimu­
lated the demand for motors and repair materials. The
chief price changes reported were a reduction in mild
steel pipe (conduit), and a further slight advance in
bare and insulated wire and cables.
Fire-Clay Products
A decrease of 12.1 per cent in October sales as
compared with the same month last year was shown
by the 5 reporting interests, and as contrasted with
the September total this year a loss of 1.1 per cent
was shown. Some recession in purchasing by the
cement and oil industry was reported, and sales to the
iron and steel industry were also smaller. Miscellan­
eous materials are m oving in fair volume, and several
sizeable inquiries for vitrified projects are pending.
Since N ovember 1 a fair volume of orders for first
quarter of 1925 requirements has been booked.
Flour
Production of the 11 leading mills of the district
during October was 375,858 barrels, against 383,922
barrels in September and 446,009 in October, 1923.
Business generally during the period under review
was described as quiet. There was a fair current
movement in a small way to the domestic trade, and
purchasing of soft flours in the South increased some­
what, but car lot buying continues backward. Mills
advanced their prices sharply in sympathy with the
rise in wheat, but buyers were disinclined to follow
the upturn, and buying was on a hand-to-mouth basis.
Shipping directions on flour previously purchased
were good, however, and the mills were kept busy
grinding on old orders. There was the usual routine
export business with Latin-American countries, but
bids from Europe were mainly too far out of line to
result in workings.
Furniture
Improvement in this classification noted in the
preceding issue of this report was accelerated by ap­
pearance of an excellent demand for holiday goods,
and O ctober sales of the 25 reporting interests gained
7.9 per cent over those in September and were 6.5 per
cent larger than the October, 1923 total. The demand
for household furniture, particularly suites, is reported
better than at any time in more than tw o years, and
there is an active call for hotel, hospital and school
equipment. Stocks in retailers hands are small, and
there is more disposition to replenish than heretofore.
Buying by merchants in the country districts, partic­
ularly in the South, has developed marked betterment
during the past six weeks.
Groceries
Greater purchasing power in the rural communi­
ties, good condition of roads, ordering for the holiday
trade and small stocks in retailers’ hands were men-

tioned as the chief factors favorably affecting busi­
ness in this classification. O ctober sales of the 22
reporting interests were 4.9 per cent larger than dur­
ing the same month in 1923, and 5.8 per cent in excess
of the September total this year. The trend of prices
continues upward, with further specific advances in
canned goods, cereals and several of the important
staples. Sugar, however, continued weak and the re­
cent upturn in coffee was checked. Purchasing of
dried and preserved fruits, nuts and candy for the
holidays is reported on a more liberal scale than for
any similar period in more than three years.
Hardware
October sales of the 12 reporting interests were
0.8 per cent greater than those of the same month in
1923, but 4.5 per cent under the total of September
this year. The comment is made that business in the
country is relatively better than in the large centers
of population. Agriculturists are filling their needs
more freely, and all seasonal goods for the farm are
m oving in good volume. The demand for builders
hardware and tools showed less than the usual
seasonal decrease. Considerable interest was mani­
fested in holiday goods. There was some reorder­
ing of hunters’ supplies, and advance sales of spring
sporting goods were reported in fair volume. Prices
average about steady with the preceding thirty days,
advances equalizing declines.
Iron and Steel Products
Activities at mills, foundries and machine shops
increased slightly during the period under review,
and reports from these interests indicate further grad­
ual improvement in the demand for their products.
W hile purchasing continues largely for nearby require­
ments, there has been considerable ordering for first
quarter of 1925 needs, particularly of raw materials.
The tonnage of pig iron engaged during the past thir­
ty days was the largest for any similar period since
last February. For the country as a whole, pig iron
production in O ctober scored a liberal gain, and steel
ingot output also increased, this being the third con­
secutive month in which gains were recorded in these
materials. The late fall, which has favored building
activities, is accountable largely for a heavy m ove­
ment of all varieties o f iron and steel going into con­
struction. The demand for bars, shapes and wire pro­
ducts has been well sustained at generally steady
prices. Manufacturers of specialties, notably stoves
and farm implements, report increased sales, and O c­
tober bookings -of several of the most important steel
mills of the district were largely in excess of the
preceding month, and in tw o instances the heaviest
in tw o years. Foundries specializing in gray castings
report the placement o f a good volume of orders since
Novem ber 1, and general purchasing by the railroads
is in excellent volume. Scant supplies and speculative
activity on the part of dealers resulted in a further
sharp advance in scrap iron and steel prices, the up­
turn affecting virtually all items in the list. W are­
housemen report a continued good movement o f their
entire line, but with sales chiefly for spot shipment.
The demand for oil field materials and general sup­
plies for the coal mining areas continues quiet. O cto­
ber sales of stove manufacturers, 7 reporting, were 2.0
per cent larger than for the corresponding month in
1923, and 4.1 per cent in excess of the September total
this year; railway supplies, 5 reporting, decreased 32
per cent under last year, but increased 12-3 per cent
over September this y e a r; farm implements, 6 report­
ing, decreased 5.2 per cent under October, 1923, but



gained 13.4 per cent over September this year; job
foundries, 5 reporting, decreased 6.0 per cent under
October, 1923, and 1.1 per cent under September this
y ea r; manufacturers of boilers, stacks, elevators, wire
rope and miscellaneous products, 14 reporting, de­
creased 0.5 per cent under October, 1923, and gained
32.6 per cent over September this year.
Lumber
Favorable building weather through October and
the first half of this month served largely to offset
the tendency to cautious buying, and an improvement
in most w oods has taken place. Small and broken
stocks at mills and in dealers’ yards, and a disposition
on the part of jobbers to fill out their assortments has
resulted in the placement of some fair orders and
strenghtening of prices. Specific advances have been
recorded on several items of yellow pine. Some sub­
stantial orders have been placed by the car builders,
and demands of the automotive industry continue
large. Dullness in the hard w oods is still general, but
the feeling for the future is optimistic and prices firm.
The export demand continues good.
D E P A R TM E N T STORES

Annual rate of
Stocks on hand stock turnover
:
Net sales comparisons
Oct. 31, 1924 For 4 months
Oct. 1924 Four months ending
ending
comp, to
O ct 31, 1924, to
comp, to
Oct. 1923
same period, 1923 Oct. 31, 1923 Oct. 31, 1924
1.79
— 16.5%
— 7.7%
Evansville .........— 10.2%
2.11
— 0.4
+ 2.0
Little Rock.... ......+ 1.4
2.41
— 9.2
+ 5.8
Louisville .....
2.21
— 3.8
— 0.2
.... + 2.8
2.20
— 4.0
.....— 12.7
-f 3.3
2.80
— 5.2
St. Louis....... ......— 8.1
+ 1.4
1.43
— 19.1
— 15.3
Springfield ......... —23.2
2.48
— 1.9
— 1.8
8th District....

CONSUM PTION OF E LECTR ICITY
Consumption of electricity during O ctober by
selected industrial customers of the public utility com ­
panies in the five largest cities, of the district was
greater by 4.0 per cent than during September, but
fell 2.5 per cent under the total for October, 1923. As
compared with the preceding month, the only notable
reductions were those of a seasonal character in ice
manufacturing and cold storage, good gains being
shown by the flour milling, mining, cement and w ood
working industries. Losses as compared with last year
were attributable to heavily reduced loads ta.ken by
several large individual companies, the aggregate of
which more than offset general gains distributed
through most classes of consumers.
Detail figures follow
No. of
customers
Evansville ...........40~
Little Rock.........35
Louisville ...........67
Memphis .............31
St. Louis............ 82

Sept., Oct., 1924
Oct.,
comp, to
1924
1924
*K.W.H. *K.W.H. Sept. 1924
1,029
928
+10.9%
1,096
1,366
— 19.8
4,264
3,990
-f* 6.9
1,477
1,025
4-44.1
13,159
12,904
+ 2.0

Totals...........255
21,025
*In thousands (000 omitted).

20,213
20,213

+ 4.0

Oct.,
Oct. 1924
1923
comp, to
♦K.W.H. Oct. 1923
1,273
4,246
1,146
13*012

— 13.9
+ o;4
—28.9

20,731

— 2.5

+

1.1

The follow ing figures, compiled by the Department of Interior, give kilowatt production for both
lighting and industrial purposes for the entire cou n try :
By water power
September, 1924............... ...... 1,496,127,000
August, 1924..........................1,517,621,000
September, 1923......................1,491,969,000

By fuels
3.309.732.000
3.217.650.000
3.079.267.000

.
'4,805,859,000
4,735,271,000
4,571,236,000

A G RICU LTU R E
During the period under review weather condi­
tions were peculiarly favorable for agricultural opera­
tions, and farmers made marked progress with fall
work. Harvesting of late vegetables, fruits, and fo r­
age crops was completed, and yields were for the most
part up to or in excess of expectations. The m ove­
ment of all varieties of farm products has been on an

extensive scale, the long dry spell having put roads
in excellent condition for hauling to railroad termin­
als. In the case of cereals and cotton a further incen­
tive to marketing has been the high level of prices.
Seeding o f winter wheat, which extended over an
unusually long time because of the dry weather, has
been completed. Early planted fields are up to a
good stand, and generally the plant will enter the cold
weather in fine condition. Late-sown grain was
greatly benefited by the rains during the first weeks
o f November. Latest reports indicate some increase
in acreage over last autumn. There are scattered com ­
plaints of hessian fly, but nothing serious, immunity
dates having been almost universally observed.
W eather conditions throughout October and ear­
ly Novem ber were ideal for corn in this district, and
much of the crop which it was thought would turn
out o f poor quality has dried thoroughly and will
make fine grain. Cribbing is generally backward, but
this fact is proving beneficial rather than otherwise,
as the corn will be in better condition than if it had
been housed earlier. A general killing frost was not
experienced until October 21, and meantime much of
the crop had matured. In Illinois, the chief corn
State of the district, the average yield is placed at 33
bushels per acre and the total production estimated
at 302,775,000 bushels, or only 37,350,000 bushels un­
der the 1923 output. T he average in Missouri is 26.5
bushels per acre, and indicated yield 179,113,000 bush­
els against 196,960,000 bushels harvested in 1923. In
Arkansas, however, the yield is only 16.5 bushels to
the acre and in Tennessee 21.5 bushels. Generally the
merchantable portion of the crop is small. The high
prices paid for old corn have resulted in heavy ship­
ments and reserves on farms are below the 10-year
average. Live stock feeding in some sections will be
below , the average o f last year. Production o f corn
for the district as a whole is estimated at 350,074,000
bushels, against 403,090,000 bushels in 1923.
Corn — T obacco
The U. S. Dept, of Agriculture, in its report as
of N ovem ber 1, 1924, gives condition of corn and
tobacco in states of the Eighth Federal Reserve Dis­
trict as follow s:
Corn
1924
(Prelim.)
Bu.
Illinois........33.0
Indiana ....27.0
Kentucky 25.0
Missouri ..26.5
Tennessee 21.5
U.S.Total 23.5

r acre
*Total production
10-yr. 1924
5-yr. av.
av. (Prelim.) 1923
1918-22;
*57
Bu.
"Bu.' ' 1 '"gji""
34.6 302,775 337,312 317,273
36.3 124,281 192,616 177,513
27.7
74,000
87,866
89,159
27.4 179,114 196,860 173,702
25.3
68,134
73,941
83,241
27.6 2,477,538 3,046,3872,899,428

Farm Price
per bu.
10-yr. October 15
1924
av. 1924 1923
TT TT cts. cts.
70
8
2 104 77
57
8
2 108 76
72
83
120 93
73
80
109 86
85
124 104
78
63.2 83.4 108.9 84.8

Tobacco
lbs.
lbs.
lbs.
lbs.
lbs.
Indiana ....870
18,270
19,800
892
16,202
Kentucky 785
868 385,435 494,190 446,072
Tennessee 760
774 101,840 109,500
87,796
U.S.Total 713
799 1,213,975 1,491,066 1,360,661
*In thousands (000 omitted).

82
79
78
76.5

87
86
88
83.5

...i

The production of hay was only slightly below
that of a year ago, but due to the long, wet harvest,
a considerable part o f the crop is o f inferior quality.
W ith but few minor exceptions, fodder is plentiful
in all sections, though corn cut for fodder is less than
in 1923. Total output of hay for the district is esti­
mated at 18,007,000, against 18,876,000 tons in 1923.
Pastures in some sections were badly dried up during



the drouth of October, but were revived by the precipi­
tation early this month. In the South it will be pos­
sible to pasture live stock later into the year than
usual, thus effecting econom y of prepared feeds.
No change w orthy of comment occurred during
the period under review in prospects of late fruits.
The apple crop was picked under ideal conditions, and
shipments have been heavy. Arkansas has a total pro­
duction of 3,630,000 bushels and commercial crop of
787.000 barrels, against 3,025,000 bushels in 1923, of
which 656,000 barrels comprised the commercial crop.
In Missouri and Illinois, both total yield and com m er­
cial crop were under a year ago. The peanut crop
suffered from bad weather, and was the smallest in
more than a decade.
The yield of white potatoes in the district,
19.771.000 bushels, compares with 18,223,000 bushels
harvested in 1923, and quality of the current crop is
generally high. Disappointing market prices, however,
have held down shipments, and in some sections far­
mers are feeding potatoes to live stock and poultry.
On the other hand, drouth and other factors in im­
portant producing states damaged sweet potatoes, and
the output is considerably below the average o f the
past five years.
Total production of tobacco of all types in this
district is estimated at 315,418,000 pounds, against
396.737.000 pounds a year ago. The quality of the
crop varies considerably, and final results will depend
in large measure on weather conditions during the
curing period. Conditions during the grow ing period
were unauspicious for best results. The late, wet
spring interfered with planting, and fears of frost
and field rust in fall caused much premature cutting.
The extreme dry weather prevailing in O ctober pre­
vented farmers from stripping the leaf, though these
same conditions proved favorable for curing the late
crop, and such tobacco as was cut too soon. The re­
cent rains have materially benefited housed tobacco,
and it is thought the principal markets will open about
December 1, and that considerable tobacco will be
ready for sale at that time. Sales of old tobacco by
the marketing associations and independent dealers
while comparatively small, have been at steady prices.
The rice crop has been entirely harvested, and
about 75 to 80 per cent threshed. Due to exceptionally
favorable weather, the movement of rice to mills has
been large. Quality in the main is good. Yields are
shorter than usual, but on account of the splendid
harvest weather garnering is thorough and at rela­
tively cheaper cost. There is an active market for
all qualities of clean rice, and sales have been heavy,
including a considerable export tonnage to Europe
and South America. No. 1 blue rose rice sold as high
as $1.45, and the average price of all grades is around
$1.38 per bushel. Stocks of old rice have been practi­
cally exhausted.
Weather conditions were unusually favorable for
opening and picking the remainder o f the cotton crop,
and fields have been thoroughly cleaned up. In a
number of sections late bolls matured well, and yields
are turning out somewhat better than earlier expecta­
tions. The indicated yield for the district on N ovem ­
ber 1 was 2,316,000 bales, a gain of 57,000 bales over
the estimate of O ctober 1, and comparing with
1.274.000 bales harvested in 1923. The movement to
date has been heavy, and for the most part quality
of the staple is high.

Cotton
The condition of cotton in states of the Eighth
Federal Reserve District and the United States is
given by the Department of Agriculture as fo llo w s:
Condition
or prospect in per
^Production
centof normal or *ProducFinal Census Ginnings Forecast full yield per acre
tion
Oct. Oct. Nov. Forecast
10-yr. av.
Oct. 18,
25, 18, 1,
Nov. 1,
1914-1923 1922
1923 1924
1923 1924 1924
1924
1,018
628
1,130
60 62
' 1,150
Arkansas .....* 947
Mississippi .... 941
989
604 1,135
36 58 61
1,120
Missouri .......
79
143
121
200
49 59 56
190
Tennessee ..... 320
391
228
400
35 58 59
365
U. S. Total....l 1,484
9,762 10,140 12,67547.8 54.7 55.9
12,816
*In thousands of bales (000 omitted).

Commodity Prices
Range of prices in the St. Louis market between
October 15, 1924, and N ovem ber 15, 1924, with clos­
ing quotations on the latter date, and on November
15, 1923:

of building for the season was reported in the small
towns and on farms. Production of portland cement
for the country as a whole during October totaled
14,820,000 barrels, which compares with 14,519,000
barrels in September and 13,350,000 barrels in O cto­
ber, 1923.
Building figures for October fo llo w :
New Construction______
Permits
*Cost
1924 1923
1924
1923
Evansville .... 216
142
$ 391 $ 269
Little Rock.... 126
92
437
253
Louisville .... 403
313
2,036
766
Memphis ..... 380
391
1,638
988
St. Louis.......1,000
968
8,530
1,711
Oct. totals....2,125 1,906
$13,032 $3,987
Sept. totals....2,243 1,739
7,073
8,013
Aug. totals....1,922 1,869
5,506
5,330
*In thousands of dollars (000 omitted).

______Repairs, etc.______
Permits
*(^ost

1,163
1,067
946

1,133
1,029
1,075

FIN AN C IA L
The principal developments in the banking and
____________ Close____________
financial situation during the past thirty days were a
Wheat
High
Low Nov. 15, 1924
Nov. 15, 1923
December .......
somewhat better demand for funds from general
$1.04
$1.53
$1.37515
May ................. .... “
1 2 / 1.435/6
.6 5 s
1.60
1.09
sources, a sharp gain in deposits of commercial banks,
July ................. .... “
1.28
1.38 *4
1-39
1.0454
No. 2 red winter.. “
1.69
$1.10 @ 1.13
1.47 $1.65 @ 1.66
further good liquidation in the rural sections and a
No. 2 hard...... .... “
1.56
1.35j>2 1.51J4 @ 1.53
1.05 @ 1.0554
slightly stronger trend in interest rates. The im­
December ...... .... “
.7V proved inquiry for credits, however, has not been
6&
.99 54
1.14J4
1.11-54
May ................. .... “
.7354
1.1754
1.19H 1.0324
sufficient to absorb the loanable resources of the com ­
.73*4
1.1854
J^y .................. .... “
1.1854
1.1854
No. 2...............
1.02
1.02
1.12
mercial banks, and in a number of notable instances
No. 2 white...... .... “
1.03
1.02
1.11 @ 1.12
1.15^2
Oats
they were seeking temporary investment for their sur­
December ...... .... “
.48
.54
.43 54
.52^4
plus funds. W eather and the condition of roads have
May ...............
.46
.52J4
.58
No. 2 white.... .... “
.48
.45
.5654
.5554
been ideal for the movement of crops from farms
Flour
Soft patent...... ...per bbl. 8.75
and marketing of all varieties of agricultural products
5.25 @ 6.25
7.25
8.00 <> 8.75
a
Spring patent....... “
8.50
7.10
7.85 @ 8.20
5.85 @ 6.00
Middling cotton... ...per lb.
.24
.3 3
?A has been on an extensive scale. This has resulted in
.24
.2254
Hogs on hoof...... ...per cwt.11.75
5.25 @ 6.90
7.00
9.25 @ 9.50
heavy payments by the producers to their merchants
Commodity Movement
and banks, which in turn is reflected in extensive
settlements with financial institutions in the large
Receipts and shipments at St. Louis, as reported
centers, and a further reduction of discounts with the
by the Merchants’ Exchange, were as follow s:
*Receipts
* Shipments
Federal Reserve bank. In the cotton States there has
Oct.
Sept.
Oct.
Oct.
Sept.
Oct.
been considerable liquidation, due to the early and
1924
1924
1923
1924
1924
1923
heavy movement of that staple. Requirements for
Beef, lbs......................
123
1,173
3,763
26,765
25,092 32,527
Com, bu...................... 2,397
2,149
1,998
1,492
1,236
1,110
financing the tobacco crop are reflected in increased
Flour, bbls..................
469
475
524
655
598
631
borrowings in Louisville and elsewhere in the tobacco
Hides, lbs.................... 11,113
6,929
9,967
14,562
9,928 12,167
Lard, lbs...................... 6,663
4,149
7,291
9,116
8,647
9,737
belt. Loans to the milling interests show little change
Lead, pigs................ 289
279
119
236
228
176
19
17
22
13
12
15
Lumber, cars..............
from thirty days ago, save that the recent accelera­
Oats, bu...................... 2,946
3,012
3,580
2,437
2,399
2,748
tion in the movement of corn has resulted in some
Pork, lbs.................... 22,902
22,820
25,692
34,214
37,643 35,153
Wheat, bu.................. 5,363
5,567
3,141
4,673
4,142
2,456
borrow ing on that account. The inquiry for credits
Zinc, slabs.................... 235
245
196
374
286
184
from live stock interests is slightly more active than
*In thousands (000 omitted).
a month ago, particularly in the northern stretches
Live Stock Movement
of the district. Demand from manufacturing and mer­
Receipts and shipments at St. Louis, as reported cantile customers of the banks was moderately active
by the National Stock Yards, were as follow s:
only, though some improvement has taken place since
*Receipts_____
* Shipments
the second week of November. A ctivity in the secur­
Oct.
&ept.
O ct/
Oct.
Sept. Oct.
1924
1924
1923
1924
1924 1923
ity markets is reflected in a perceptible increase in
Cattle and Calves....................171
179
197
107
112' *717
loans secured by stocks and bonds at the member
Hogs .................. .......................379
312
480
267
228
315
Horses asnd Mules.................. 6
7
13
6
6
12
banks. Deposits of reporting member banks contin­
Sheep ....................................... 46
48
53
21
25
25
ued to gain, a new high record being made on N ovem ­
*In thousands (000 omitted).
ber 12. Since the first week in October a feature of the
BU ILD IN G
activities of the Federal Reserve bank has been the
The dollar value represented in permits issued large volume of bill of lading drafts, drawn chiefly to
for new construction in the five largest cities of the cover cotton shipments, discounted for member banks.
district during O ctober was the greatest since these
records were first compiled, early in 1916. The total, Commercial Paper
Conditions in the commercial paper market were
$13,032,000, was 84.2 per cent larger than in Septem­
similar in most respects to those obtaining during
ber, and 227 per cent in excess of the October, 1923,
aggregate. The large increase was accounted for prin­ the preceding thirty days. M oney is plentiful and the
cipally by the issuance of permits for an office build­ demand practically limitless, but available paper to
supply it is extremely scarce, particularly the more
ing in St. Louis and several large structures in Louis­
ville. Throughout the period under review building desirable grades. Sales of the reporting brokers dur­
ing October were about 4 per cent in excess of the
operations were favored by unusually mild weather,
September total, but 24y2 per cent under those of
and considerable progress was made on structures in
October, 1923. D uring the past tw o weeks there was
course of erection. W ork on highways proceeded
a slight improvement in rates, that is the 3 per cent
without interruption, and an unusually large amount



quotation disappeared, brokers advancing their offer­
ings at that quotation to 3J4 per cent. The range
during the period under review was 3 to 3*^ per cent,
the same as the month before, and comparing with
4 % to S% per cent a year ago. Bankers were firm at
a minimum of 3% per cent, and in the immediate past
brokers were less disposed to purchase paper at the
prevailing levels.
Savings Deposits
The changes in the amount of savings deposits,
exclusive o f postal savings deposits, since a month
ago and a year ago, as reported by the largest mem­
ber banks in the leading cities of this district, are
shown in the follow ing table
No. of
*Amount of savings deposits
Nov. 1924 Nov. 1924
Oct. 1,
Nov. 7,
comp, to
comp, to
banks
Nov. 5,
reporting
1924
1924
1923
Oct. 1924 Nov. 1923
$ 9,255
$ 8,962
— 3.4%
Evansville .... 4
$ 8,939
— 0.3%
7,615
7,102
+ 8.5
1.2
Little Rock.. 4
7,703
26,807
24,725
+ 8.7
Louisville .... 7
26,869
- f 0.2
Memphis .... 4
16,952
16,636
— 4.4
17,736
+ 1.9
+ 10.0
80,563
77,934
St. Louis.....12
73,216
+ 3.4
Totals.....31
$141,026
$138,247
$131,741
+ 2.0
+ 7.0
*In thousands (000 omitted).

+

Debits to Individual Accounts
*For four weeks ending
Nov. 1924 Nov. 1924
Nov. 21, comp, to comp, to
Nov. 19,
Oct. 22,
1924
1923
Oct. 1924 Nov. 1923
E. St. Louis and
1924
Natl. Stock Yards, 111..$ 40,133
$ 42,349
$ 46,109
5.2% — 14.9%
El Dorado, Ark............
5,871
6,653
— 13.8
6,814 — 11.8
Evansville, Ind.............. 25,239
26,273
— 13.7
29,254 — 3.9
16,781
+ 20.0
Fort Smith, Ark........
18,139
8.1
15,115
Greenville, Miss............
5,768
4,779
+34.3
4,294 +20.7
Helena, Ark..................
6,898
8,923
6,811 +29.4
+31.0
82,807
Little Rock, Ark.......... 87,039
+25.5
69,338 + 5.1
156,747
Louisville, Ky.............
+ 9.6
152,278
143,056 + 2.9
Memphis, Tenn.............. 163,714
138,058
163,982 + 18.6
— 0.2
Owensboro, Ky............
4,909
4,685
5,198 + 4.8
— 5.6
Quincy, 111...................... 10,215
10,874
9,910 — 6.1
+ 3.1
654,805
St. Louis, Mo.............. 671,723
2.6
630,139
6.6
Sedalia, Mo....................
3,992
4,178
— 4.5
— 15*2””
Springfield, Mo............ 12,257
11,546
6.2
14,4*57
+ 8.6
Totals.................... ’.$1,214,669 $1,162,964 .............. + 4.5
*In thousands (000 omitted).

+

+
+

+

Condition of Banks
Loans and discounts and deposits of the 34 report­
ing member banks continued their upward course dur­
ing the period under review, both items scoring new
high records. On Novem ber 12 loans and discounts
totaled $493,301,000, a gain of $10,282,000 over October
15 and of $20,848,000 over Novem ber 14, 1923. Depos­
its on Novem ber 12 amounted to $610,694,000, which
compares with $585,548,000 on O ctober 15 and
$529,008,000 on N ovem ber 14, 1923. Investments in­
creased approximately $2,000,000 between October
15 and November 12.
The follow ing statement shows principal re­
sources and liabilities of reporting member banks in
Evansville, Little Rock, Louisville, Memphis, and St.
Louis :
*Nov. 19, *Oct. 15, *Nov. 21,
Loans and discounts (incl. rediscounts)

Investments

Bills payable and rediscounts with
Federal reserve bank
Secured by U. S. Govt, obligations..

1924
t33

1924
t33

1923
35

.$ 9,708
. 164,116
. 319,501
.$493,325

$ 9,869
153,747
319,403
$483,019

$ 12,849
141,912
315,855
$470,616

.

. 14,356
14,807
15,193
. 25,000
22,924
22,060
. 2,257
2,256
7,009
. 10,160
10,160
17,172
. 2,708
5,369
2,607
. 96,546
94,548
85,815
.$151,027' $147,302 $152,618
. 57,266
45,496
37,622
. c
7,895
73
,9 2
7,980
. 383,361
375,393
329,605
. 217,136
206,549
193,795
.
2,378
2,361
3,606

557
977
10,138
5,244
36,831
*In thousands (000 omitted).
tDecrease due to consolidation. Total resources of these 33 banks comprise
approximately 54 per cent of the resources of all member banks in the district.




A tabulation of the reports of condition of all
members of the entire Federal Reserve System, fur­
nished under call of O ctober 10, 1924, shows that
loans and investments of all member banks increased
$1,189,000,000 between June 30 and O ctober 10. On
the latter date they aggregated $28,451,000,000,
which is the largest amount ever reported and is
$5,032,000,000 above the total reported on March 10,
1922, the low point of the post-war period. The total
increase in loans and discounts amounted to
$556,000,000, while investments went up $633,000,000.
Total deposits increased $1,242,000,000 to $30,772,000,000. Over half o f this increase was in amounts due
to banks. Demand deposits increased $421,000,000,
time deposits, $394,000,000, and U. S. deposits,
$123,000,000.
The follow ing statement shows changes in the
principal resources and liabilities of all member banks
on the last call date, October 10, 1924, as compared
with figures for June 30, 1924 and September 14, 1923.
Increase( + ) or decrease(— )
On October 10, 1924, since
June 30, 1924
Sept. 14, 1923
Loans and discounts (including over­
drafts) ...................................................... + $ 556,000,000 + $ 963,000,000
172,000,000
United States securities............ .................4- 287,000,000 +
818,000,000
Other bonds, stocks and securities............ +
346,000,000 +
Total loans and investments.............. + 1,189,000,000 + 1,953,000,000
Demand deposits (including certified
90.000.000 + 1,282,000,000
and cashiers’ checks)................................+
394,000,000 + 1,131,000,000
Time deposits.................................................+*
70.000.000 — 688,000,000
Bills payable and rediscounts......................—
39,000,000
52.000.000 +
Acceptances outstanding........................ ..... +

Federal Reserve Operations
There was a sharp decrease in the amount of
paper discounted by the Federal Reserve Bank of St.
Louis during O ctober and early November, the total
receding to the lowest point of the year. On November
18 the amount of bills held was $15,480,000, which
contrasts with $20,892,000 on October 18, and
$71,773,000 on November 18, 1923. There was a small
increase in Federal reserve notes in circulation, the
total being $57,239,000 on November 18, as compared
with $56,649,000 on October 18. The combined reserve
ratio against deposit and Federal reserve note liabili­
ties on November 18 was 75.1 per cent, against 72.4
per cent on October 18 and 57.5 per cent last year.
During October this institution discounted for 236 of
its member banks, which compares with 239 banks
accommodated in September and 287 in October, 1923.
The discount rate remains unchanged at 4 per cent.
COST OF L IV IN G
Several slight increases in the average prices of
the major items comprising the total cost of living
occurred between September 15, and October 15, 1924,
according to the monthly survey by the National
Industrial Conference Board. Increases were approxi­
mately 1 per cent for food, 1 per cent for fuel and 2
per cent for clothing. These increases, however, are
largely due to seasonal influences. Other items re­
mained unchanged. The total increase for all items
combined during the month was eight-tenths of one
per cent. Between July, 1920, when the peak of the
rise in the cost of living since 1914 was reached, and
October, 1924, the cost of living decreased 19.3 per
cent. The increase in the cost of living since July,
1914 was 65 per cent.
The purchasing value of the dollar, based on the
cost of living in October, 1924, was 60.6 cents as con­
trasted with one dollar in July, .1914.

(Compiled Nov. 21, 1924)

BUSINESS CONDITIONS IN T H E U N ITED STATES
Production
The Federal Reserve Board’s index of production in basic
industries, adjusted to allow for seasonal variations, increased
six per cent in October, and was 16 per cent above the low
point of midsummer, though still considerably below the level

Latest figure, October— 109
of the early months of this year. Output of iron and steel,
cotton and woolen textiles, lumber and bituminous coal was
substantially larger than the month before.
Factory employment increased 2 per cent in October,
reflecting larger working forces in most of the manufacturing
industries. Building contract awards increased and were 14
per cent above a year ago.
Crop estimates by the Department of Agriculture in
November showed increases in the expected yields of corn,
cotton, tobacco and potatoes. The movement of crops to
market in October reached the largest volume in five years
and exports of grain and cotton were in greater volume than
in the corresponding month of any recent year.
Trade
Railroad freight shipments were larger in October than
in any previous month owing to exceptionally heavy loadings
of miscellaneous merchandise and grain. Wholesale trade in­
creased slightly but was 3 per cent less than in October, 1923.
Sales of drygoods, shoes and hardware were considerably
smaller than a year ago while sales of groceries and drugs
were larger. Department stores sales showed a seasonal in­
crease, but w ere 4 per cent less than last year, and sales of
r
mail order houses and chain stores also increased and were
in greater volume than in 1923.
In preparation for Christmas trade merchandise stocks at
department stores increased substantially and were 2 per
cent larger than a year ago.




Prices
The wholesale price index of the Bureau of Labor Statis­
tics rose 2 per cent in October as a result of considerable ad­
vances in the prices of farm products and foods, and slight
increases in the prices of clothing and chemicals. Fuel and

Index of U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Latest figure, October— 152
metals prices declined and prices of building materials and
house furnishings were practically unchanged. During the
first half of November quotations on all grains, cotton, silk,
copper, and rubber advanced, while prices of raw sugar and
bituminous coal declined.
Bank Credit
Loans for commercial purposes at member banks in lead­
ing cities, which had increased rapidly from the beginning of
September to the middle of October, advanced only slightly in
the following four weeks. The growth of loans secured by
stocks and bonds was also relatively small, notwithstanding
great activity in the securities market. Holdings of invest­
ments by these banks continued the increase which began
in the early months of the year. A large part of the increase
in demand deposits during the four weeks ending November
12, when they were higher than at any previous time, was in
bankers balances, indicating a continued movement of funds
to the large centers.
At the Reserve banks an increase in earnings assets was
the result of larger offerings of acceptances, reflecting firmer
money conditions. While discounts and holding of United
States securities remained practically unchanged during the
four weeks ending November 19, the increase in acceptances
carried total earnings assets to the highest point since the
early part of the year. Money in circulation increased in Octo­
ber for the third successive month and the total on November
1 was $215,000,000 larger than in August.
Money rates continued to show a firmer tendency and by
November 23 were generally from % to ^ of one per cent
higher than in October. _________________________________.

M EM BER B A N K C R E D IT
BILLIONS OF DOLLARS

BILLIONS OF DOLLARS

Weekly figures for member banks in 101 leading cities
Latest figure, November 12.