BANKING: Profits in Bonds

Last week U. S. banks great and small sedately advertised their annual year-end statements and financial pages reported their year-end earnings. No news were their latest over-all statistics: that they had more deposits than ever before ($42,022,000,000 in Federal Reserve member banks, up $4,596,000,000); that due to the inflow of war-scared gold from Europe they had record excess reserves ($5,200,000,000, up $2,128,000,000); that they had a record amount of idle cash (almost $6,000,000,000, up over $2,000,000,000).* But a striking fact was that in spite of this torpor, more than one bank succeeded in improving its profits in 1939. Most...

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