Britain: More Weight to the Pound

Trying to preserve the value of the pound is a frustrating and sometimes exasperating task. Noting that British unions continue to make inflationary demands while management clings to ancient inefficiencies, Prime Minister Harold Wilson recently accused Britons of "sheer damn laziness," demanded of both sides "a full day's work for a full day's pay." But despite Wilson's exhortations and despite his government's voluntary "prices and incomes policy," which aims at limiting wage escalation to 3.5% annually, wages last year jumped by 8% while prices rose by 4.5%. Productivity increased only 3%.

Wilson last week took personal charge of last-minute efforts...