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A valuable return showing the business of the Post Office Savings Banks in New Zealand, year by year from the date of their establishment to the 31st December, 1888, has recently been presented to Parliament. Commencing with forty-six offices and £71,197 standing to the credit of depositors in 1867, there has been a progressive increase, subject to some inconsiderable fluctuations, up to 1888, at the termination of which year there were 290 offices with a credit balance of £2,048,441 in favor of depositors. This may fairly be assumed to be the savings of the working classes, since the average amount credited to each depositor, of whom there are 84,488, is no more than £24 4s lOd. In 1870, 1876, 1870, 1883, and 1886 the withdrawals were in excess of the deposits. In 1883 this excess amounted to £117,245, and in 1886 to £87,881. The deposits exceeded the withdrawals in 1887 by £129,741, and in 1888 by £157,276. No better indication of the financial condition of the people could be afforded, and it is satisfactory to find that so vast an improvement in this respect has been effected. With the two exceptions of the year 1881, when the excess of deposits over withdrawals amounted to £286,817, and 1882, when the excess was £183,253, the returns for last year head the list in this respect. In 1886, when the depression reached its culminating point, the withdrawals amounted to £87,881. In | the two succeeding years the scale turned, and £432,000 was added to the deposits. Taking the present year, there is an increare of deposits throughout the Colony in all but two postal districts. Withdrawals have exceeded deposits by £309 in Gisborne district, and by £1,566 in Greymouth district. The increases in the four most considerable districts during 1888 have been —in Auckland, £29,195 ; in Wellington, £11,997 ; in Christchurch, £29,676 ; and in Dunedin, £22,786. In all Otago, including Southland, the excess of deposits during the year amounted to £31,507, with an average of £36 to the credit of each account, which, as will be seen, is higher than the general average for the Colony. No more gratifying evidence of the return of the tide of prosperity could possibly be adduced ; and if there are yet any faint-hearted ones amongst us, we commend these figures to their careful consideration.

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Bibliographic details

SAVINGS BANK RETURNS., Evening Star, Issue 8012, 14 September 1889

Word Count

SAVINGS BANK RETURNS. Evening Star, Issue 8012, 14 September 1889