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Friendly Societies' Finance.

The anuoal report on Friendly Sooietie by Registrar Mason is, as usual, voluminous Ihe Registrar remarks -.-" Of the member of friendly societies, very many are too caw less of the future to be interested in th solvency of their lodges, while others ar misled by tue reckless assertions of a fei who, utterly incompetent to form an opiniqi on the subject, do not hesitate to assert wit. a confidence in proportion to their ignr ranee that the rates of contributeare adequate to provide the benefit assured. Outside the ranks of friendh tocieties many are asking 'How can i sound society be distinguished ?' Then is a simple answer to this question The result of a society's valuation is th« true index of its position, so that it is eaßs within the reach of everyone to ascertain whether a society is established on a seenn foundation, and whether it is beiDg managed with prudence and care. From time to time paragraphs are inserted in the loca' newspapers in which the membership ant funds of friendly societies are set forth, accompanied by congratulatory remarks on their financial position and numerical progress These notices cannot be regarded at trustworthy evidence of the soundness of the society. _ If societies would publish their true position, as ascertained by valuation, the public would have an exact means of deciding which of them in any given locality it is prudent to join. It may be taken for granted thas if a society suppresses its valuation report, it is because that report is unfavorable." Of the societies generally he states that of the 13 central bodies 8 hold accumulated benefit funds, and of these 8, 1 shows a surplus and 6 a deficiency. Of these 6, in regard to 3 inadequate contributions" is assigned a»1 j the sole cause, and in regard to 3 as one Of' , the causes of such deficiency. Of the 161 branches of the 13 central bodies, 39 show » surplus and 102 a deficiency. Of these 102 i in regard to 18 "inadequate contributions"• is assigned as the sole cause, and in regard to 76 as one of the causes of such deficiency. In 7 of the 39 which show a surplus in respect to the branch benefit fund, sucb surplus is more than swallowed up b~ the deficiency in the central body. Of' the funeral fund of the 11 separately registered lodges 1 shows a surplus and lf> a, deficiency. Of these 10, in regard to T inadequate contributions" is assigned arj Jhe sole cause, and in regard to 3 as one oti the causes of such deficiency. Such beinir the general result of the valuation of the' year, the Registrar believes that the advocates of an adequate i eale of contributions as a condition of registration will, doubtless, find therein an argument in favor cf their tention. The societies in which some bond of union, whether religious or social, other than that of mutual insurance of life and health is a sine qua non of membership, are conspicuously the worst financially Of those societies whose financial positions has been declared unsound, and especially on those which for the second timo have been weighed in the Actuary's balance and found wanting, the Registrar u-gea immediate reform both on the ground of self-interest and on that cf houcsty. Ho says: " Worse than the folly of a blind disregard of earnest warning is the action of those who admit a, new member into their society, which has been shown to be actually insolvent without informing him that if he shall live to be old, there is no reasonable probability that hewill receive the benefit which he is being led to expect-, and it should bo borne in mind that the breaking up of an insolvent society does not affect its own members only ; its collapse brings discredit on all kindred societies, because the general pablic do not distinguish between the sound *ud the unsound."

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Bibliographic details

Friendly Societies' Finance., Evening Star, Issue 7946, 29 June 1889, Supplement

Word Count

Friendly Societies' Finance. Evening Star, Issue 7946, 29 June 1889, Supplement