asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury (1) what surplus has been shown on the working of the Post Office Savings Bank during each of the past five years; and what proportion of the surplus has been paid to the Treasury;(2) what were the reasons for reducing in 1925 the proportion of the surplus retained by the Post Office Savings Bank out of the annual surplus on its operations?
The law provides that when the interest earned by the Post Office Savings Bank Fund is insufficient to pay interest at 2½ per cent. to depositors, any deficiency shall be voted by Parliament. On the other hand, any surplus is payable to the Exchequer after deduction of a sum to be fixed by the Treasury to provide against depreciation. In 1877 this deduction was fixed at 5 per cent. of the surplus. The figure was raised to 50 per cent., representing in actual cash only £4,000, in 1912, and was reduced to 20 per cent., representing, however, in cash about £700,000, in 1925. The ground for the decision reached by my right hon. Friend's predecessor was presumably that the latter amount was considered a sufficient allocation for reserve. The surpluses on income account for the last five years have been:
|Total surplus.||Paid to Exchequer.|