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COMMERCIAL.

"Auckland Star" Office, ilarch ISth. 1009. There has been decided evidence of an improvement in business generally during the past week, and a much healthier tone is now noticeable in the orders coming forward. The state of the various markets abroad affecting local conditions as they 'do. no pronounced activity can be expected I here until a better inquiry is established 1 for the Dominion products than that which exists at present, but it is an encouraging sign to notice the country districts giving evidence of an improved state of trade, and viewed from a general standpoint a steady recovery from the depression which has so long prevailed, seems assured. Canned Fruits.—Quotations for the new pack of American fruit are awaited, and the general opinion is that higher flgures will be asked. The demand still remains very brisk, and buyers are turning their attention to replenishing orders. Dried Fruits.—A lame consignment him arrived per Tymeric. from Frisco, but the inquiry has fallen off considerably with 'the I fresh fruit on the market. Sardines.—An advance seems likely in this line, owing to a smaller quantity than usual being available from the packing houses. A keen demand exists. Tartaric Acid.—No change in prices has occurred, and although at present the position does not indicate any prospect of an advance, the opinion is held that higher ' figures will rule in the near future. Haricot Beans. —There is a moderate demand on light stocks held locally. Uraa beans are meeting with a better inquiry, aud are selling at slightly higher Camphor. — Advices continue 'to indicate an advance before lone;. Canned Mullet.-Some good parcels have been placvd in the leading brands. I Cod and Ling Fish. A steaiiy Lenten inquiry exists, and supplies have been reSalmon.—There is a goo,: ilem.-iml for this article, and at present rates buying is very safe, in view of the i.ositioti on the American market. Fungus.—Supplies have been coming in a little more freely. Prices remain unchanged.. Although building is not so brisk as it wfis, and properties are not selling so readily, still great difficulty is experienced by people in finding suitable houses to rent at about £1 per week, an evidence that the stoppage of building is not due to any absence of demand for houses, but the stringency of 'the money market. This haviag caused the rate of interest on mortgages to be raised to 6 per cent, has checked the sale of properties, as buyers prefer to hold off in the hope that money will b,> cheaper before Ion.?. TV- payment of the New Zealand shareholder in the Midland railway of about a quarter of a million in connection with the acquirement ot that line' by the Government, should tent] to relieve the tightness of the money market a little bur no doubt it will take some time to get over the hiss to the Dominion due to the sharp drop in wool in UhjS The flax trade continues in -. very un satisfactory condition. For the 17 clays of March, about -M 0 tons of flax were seiit in but advices as to condition of 'the London market are not very encouraging at present. Althohgh prices here are lon-, still they are stared to be above the quotation recently received from London The whole cause of the trouble is 'tiie large qnauiitv ot Manila hemp at present iimliug its w-iV to London at ion- quotations Business on the Exchange has continued quiet siuce last report, the transactions hi mining stocks being restricted tilnios; entirely to Waihi. Grand Junction aud*Taii<man shares. lower priced llii/s' being neglected. Apart from the question of the stringency of the money market i< the fact that for some time now. although a large of companies have been at work. portance. and investors appear to be* getting tired of an Industry that is ahvavs promising something in the distant future. The continual talk of developing the Thames deep levels, and 'the equally continuous hanging back from anything iike combined action to put in a crosscut at IOOOft is not calculated ro convince the public that there is much to hope for from that section of our goldfields. At Tairua a goodly nuruliT of companies have been floated, but so far the results have not borne out the bright expectations. Fp to date ihe Tairu i Broken Hill is the on.y company that . paid dividends, and at the present time • shares in that mine are down to about 1/1. whi'e the Golden Belt is still lower a.----1 though it has :i fine battery. Golden Hills ■ are still keeping their price and it 1- . hoped this mine will turn out all right in the future. The other properties are only in a prospecting stage. A movement is 1 being made in the direction of amalgamat- ; ins several smaller companies into on.-. Shares in the Komata Keefs have dropped back to sellers at 7}d. and even allowing for the fa<-r that there are Wo.om shares in rhis company, the capital value at th ,, present market price is less than the output of bullion for one year. The last reports from the Waihi Grand Junction mine show satisfactory values, ami shares sold this week up to 2e/R. while 2/C is stiil offered for the option to take up shares within 12 rnonthsh at 30/ each. Waihi Ex shares firmed up to sales, at ' LSI ' Talisman Consolidated shares remain about 4« , to 4-o/fi, but there have been fewer trims- , actions during the past week. Investment ■ stocks have not shown many changes in . value since last report- National Banks ■ were in steady request at Htt/1, and most . insurance stocks were wanted at late rates. but few sales rook place. Sternly business wa,-s done in N.Z. Cement shares which . have changed hands almost daily at about . 35/9 and 29/ for the new issue". Wilson's Cement were also in request at 36/6. The tenders for Auckland Gas shares were ao cepted this week and since then br.yeis ' offered £13 l-V, but no sellers quoted. Potatoes.—This week has seen the first arrivals of the Southern potatoes for the present year. These arrived in a ,<atis- [ signs of blight on the Up-to-Dates. As values in the South are now very low for ■ potatoes. It is expected that constant shipments will come forward from Lyticlton • and ports further down. In conjunction with the Southern arrivals, there have also been good supplies sent in of locally grown, and, therefore the firming tendency notice last week has not been followed up and . to-day values are given as £:■! 15/ per . ton for local, and £4 07 for Southern, rle- ' livered ex wharf. So far there has not been ' any definite movement in Australia in the ■ direction of taking ofr the restrictions on i potatoes imported from New Zealand. More than usually heavy exports of potatoes weie made to the Islands this week, which may i be takeu as evidence that Auckland mer- ! chants are in & position to quote lower , than they can from Sydney, where the bulk of the supplies are mostly drawn from. Maize.—The market is rather weaker. heavy since last report, bur the previous large arrivals noted a week ago had practically filled up the buyers, added to which : the cheaper rates ruling for other grain ; has caused a falling off In the demand for maize. Further importations from Australia may be expected, as the new crop is ; ready in Queensland and New South Wales. The prospects, therefore, are that prices will rule lower here for maize. As far as the Bay of Plenty and East Coast is con- : cerned, stocks of maize are reported to be almost exhausted so there will not be much more to be' sent up until the new grain is ready for the market next April or May. Oats.—The markets in the South have firmed slightly since last report, but this is practically only pending fuller details as to the return from the crop in Southland. where the harvest is still proceeding down there, and. consequently, these figures are nto yet available. As prices are still very low, it is thought by those well informed that any change will be in ihe direction of hardening present rates. Locally, business has been good in oars during the past week, n fair amount of transactions having taken place. Quotations ex ship Auckland are g-tvec at 1/111 for B grade and » penny less for Puns. Danish, and C grade oats. Inquiry for Algerian seed oats is not good at present, and this may be probably ex plained as being due to the fact that such arge quantities of these seeds were imported last season, that growers here are in a position of being able to use their own seed for the present sou-lug, as Algerians are understood to do better the , second than the first year after importa- ; tiou. It is. Therefore, more than likely that importations of Algerians from Australia and South Africa will not be so heavy this year. The crops throughout the Dominion have turned out excellently, the £rain being well matured and dry aud. therefore, well fitted for seerl purposes. Fowl Wheat.—At present values fairly , good business is being done in fowl when . owing to the reported firming vi the Aus ■ fact that the crop of wheat in* New Zea- - land has been so well saved thus season . that there will be comparatively little fowl wheat to offer. The price at the present time i≤ 4/5 ex ship and i/1 ex store lor 3 prime wliole grain. Chaff.—Deliveries of chaff from country • districts still continue very heavy, .and $b

far as Auckland is concerned merchants are now fatr.y well supplied, but. unfortunately, there is no outlet to which the surplus can be exported. As far as the King Country ami Thames is concerned, supplies of "chaff are now being drawn direct from the country districts, and not 'tluough the Auckland merchants. One of the results of the opening of the Main Trunk railway is that chaff is now being delivered in the King Country from Rangitikei. Grass Seeds.—Orders are now being sent in very freely, as a result of the recent rains, and merchants are now in full swing filling the demand that has set in later than usual this season. If the demand keeps up as at present for a few weeks, the season will prove a fairly average one. New cocksfoot is now available, and is quoted at I.V per bushel wholesale. Ryegrass is a little easier but clovers and other lines remain unchanged. Some lines are rather short, particularly Lotus Major. Manures. —Fair business is being done in bonedust and other fertilisers for laying down grass, also for basic slag. Onions.—Very heavy shipments of onions are being made by the Tweeddale to California. The local market is, however, still well supplied, it is, therefore, evident that I had not this export of the surplus taken I place, values hero must have gone still lower. Canterbury is quoting the new crop of onions at low prices. The present quotation here for prime hard onions Is £o 10/ per ton.

G. W. BIXXEY AND SONS' REPORT.

f)n Tuesday wo submitted large catalogues of hides, skins, tallow, etc., all being (Inured under strong competition. Uiucs. -Market very linn. We quote: Ox, extra slum to 7Jd, stout Bid to 7d, medium Oil to <>Ad light .">id to nid; cows', best lines r,!<l Xi :>iti. good iict to '.Jclii seconds. 4d to -Hd; stags', :ijd to 4d; kips. ■M tv 4d; calfskins. Lest Tμ! to 54d, good 4id k> 4yl; cut ami damaged hides. 3d to lijil per Hi. Sheepskins.- Extra large to 6/. large 4/ t., -I i> iruod 3:! t n G/n, medium 2/§ to 8/. <i,,:,1: l ,: i,, " ; p<-lts and lambs', best to 3/, good 1 ii to 2 .". seconds o<l to 1/3 each. Tallow. Best mixed, to 25/: Rood, -V to ■JZ ii: inferior, l.j/ to 10/ per em. Hi:uirh fat. ltd to ljd per lb. f.iwtails, 1/8 per dozen. Bones, £4 Xi, per ton.

AUCKLAXD MARKETS-

Farm and Dairy rrocruce.— Barter, factory, 1/01 per lb. farmers', or dalrv butter. HJd per lb: fresh eggs, 1/2 per doz"ii wholesale; cheese, farmers' from 5d to Gid per lb; factory, Oid to 7d; bacon, siiks t.vd rolls OJd: hams, OJd. Grain — H giade. 2/2, ex store; Southern milling wheat, 4/7 to 4/8, f.ob., sa'-ks extra' fowl wheat. 45. ex store (sacks mi; maize, J.J, for wholesale lines on the wharf. Potatoes. Local. £?, 15,'. Southern, £4 3/ per ton. Chair. — Xew local. £3 IV, at stations. onions — Local, £•"> 10 per ton. Flour.—£l2 (less discounts;; wneatai-ai, £12 (.less discov-uls); sharps, £6 15/ per ton: brim. £4 I.V; oatmeal, £13 per ton for 25's. wholesale. i miner. — Ordinary bulldiug timber, undressed, up to 24ft long, Siu to lln or more In thickness, and from Bin to 12in wide, nrst-class 20,'. medium 17/, second class 12/ per lOtJft; undressed boards, up to 24ft long, not exceeding 12iu wide aud *ln thick, 17/, I.V. !i, ; rough heart palings, srt x 6in x Jin, 2S/ nor luu palings; rough heart palings, Oft x Oia x Jin, 31/ per 100 palings; rough lining boards. Olu by Sin, 8/G; wide boards, 6d per 100 ft superficial, extra for every inch iin width over 12in aud up to lSln; over lSln lup l> -iit\, Hd; over 2-lin to 301n, 1/; 30ln to 42iu. 1/6; over 42;u, by arrangement; rough heart, i 7/6 per 100 ft, superficial; super, planing. 1/ per 100f-. extra; planed j both sides, 1/6 per 100 ft extra; three and four sides, 2/ ditto. Flooring boards! Planed tongnpd. and grooved. 22/6, 19/6, 14/6. Lln-, ing boards: Planed, tongued. grooved, beaded or V jointed, 22/, 10/, 14/. Feather-edge wpntlier Ijourds, planed, nnet shoti Out of ' ljin material, face measurement, 21/. 18/, 13/; out of ljiu material, face measurement, 20/, 17/, 12/. Rusticated and special weather boarding, 22/6, in/6, 14/6. Ordinary buliding totara. scantling. 15/; boards. 4Jln . to 12In, 16/; second-class totara, scantling. 11/ C, boards 12/; cleau heart o! totara for joinery, scantling. 22/; rough heart ot totara scantiing, 16/; rough heart of totara scantiing, 6x2 and uuder, 14/; heart matal. ling, 13/; ordinary building rlrnu boards, 15/6; second-class rlmu. hoards, 12/; rough heart rlmii, srantllng. 13/; heart rlrou (framing and bridge quality), scantling, 17/; clean ; heart rlmu (dresslus quality), icantllna, 20/.

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COMMERCIAL. Auckland Star, Volume XL, Issue 66, 18 March 1909

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