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Costly Tin Plate

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The New York Tribune and other. hig tax papers are going into ecstacies ove the report of Ira Ayer, special agent o the treasury departnient, on the ti plate industry. This report shows tha during the quarter ending March 31 1892, nineteen manufacturers producec about 3,000,000 pounds of tin and tern plates, about two-thirds of which wer terne plates, and that the production for the past fiscal year has been 4,527, 230 pounds, of which 1,335,068 pound were tin plate. As our annual con sumption of tin plate is about 400,000, OCi pounds, our last year's product woulc supply lis for abont three days, and i equal to about 1 per cent. of our tota needs. To attain this magnificent standing among the tin plate manufaeturing mi tions of the earth we are now taxing ourselves at the rate of ten or twelv rnillion dollars per annuin, and have ex pended during the last thirty years per haps $150,000,000 for the same purpose This expense, however, as great as it is does not begin to equal the indirect cos to us, due to the in jury done to other in dustries by high priced tin plate. An idea of this indirect expense and injurj can be gained by reporta fronj variou large consumers of tin plate, made in The National Provisioner of April 30 1892. The National Provisioner is the "organ of the 'provisión and meat indus tries of the United States." It advocates the interests of its 6ubscribers and is not biased in favor of any theory. The following extracts are from this numbex of The National Provisioner: In view of the fact that the bilí o the Hon. T. L. Bunting providing foi the reduction of the duties of tin an terne plates, a copy of which was pub lished in a recent number of this journal has been introduced in congress and wil coine up for discussion in a week or two the directors of the Tin Plate Consumers association have endeavored to ascertain what the effect of the increased duty has been upon the business of the consumers of tin plate throughout the country. They have therefore sent out a circular asking consumers of tin plates what the effect of the tariff has been on their business, and in response have received answer8 from most of the large consumers. For want of space not all of these anewers can be published, but a selection is made which constitutes a fair average of their general tone, which shows pretty plainly what the effect of the increased :ariff has been upon the people who cut up in their business four-fif ths of the enire quantity of tin plate used in the United States. Fairport, N. Y.: "We used 4,800 boxes ast year. Payment of McKinley dufy required additional capital. In some branches increased cost of our goods compelled us to cut down wages of laborers to meet popular prices. In making baking powder cans increased cost of article and unwillingness on the part of our customers to pay increased price caused us to lose the business of some of our best customers. After two or three months of experimenting with others they returned to us, having learned that we were nót trying to rob them, but were, like others, only asking a fair price on the basis of the government making us pay heavier taxes for the wivilege of doing business. We have )een heavy exporters of canned goods, )ut we fear that we will have to give up or greatly reduce our export trade. n the English and Scotch markets, esecially, Canada is selling at lees than joods cost us. Canada pays no duty. iebate does not place us on an equality. On fifty cases of pears rebate would not )ay expenses of obtaining it. We pay .uty on a full sheet of tin. The rebate .oes not cover waste in cutting round )lanks. We have substituted galvanized ron for tin in consequence of the increased cost of the latter." Adrián, Mich.: "To increase the cost of No. 3 cans, the size most used by us, an average of sixty cents per hundred, and other sizes in proportion. We are not extensive packers, but the cans used y us last season cost over $1,000 more han the same quantity would have cost in 1889. This loss must be borne by us or by the producers of fruits and vegetables, or both. The canning industries have been greatly crippled by the increase of duty on tin plate. We have used the same help as before, but paid less wages per day." Indianapolis: "To reduce our profits to such a narrow margin as to cause the desire to have our capital invested in some other enterprise or abandon the present business altogether." From a Boston packing house: "Packed in our East Boston factory in 1890, 56,000 cases; in 1891, 35,345; falling off, 20,655; decrease of help, 25 weekly hands." Gutterpipe, etc., etc., Cambridgeport, Mass.: "To increase the cost one dollar a box, instead of a natural decrease of some thirty cents a box. This bas prevented those engaged in our line from making such a drop in prices as has occurred in almost every other line of business. Prices have therefore been too high in proportion to other prics, with the result of a decided check to the business. Not nearly so much business in our line is done as there should be. Results: Fewer hands employed, consumers paying more than they ought, manufacturera not making fair profits. Decrease of help, se ven hands." From Bufi'alo: "Increased cost of tin plates, diminished profits, the substitution of other materials for tin plates, ;i good deal of misrepresentation and demoralization. We have hojte that the business will settle later on." From a Boston can factory: "That business has decreased some on account of the higher prices for goods, and it i.s harder to sell goods at high tha low prices; profits also less. W keep the same number of hands, bu there has been no' increase in wages. Baltimore: "To &dd the duty to th cost of the goods, and neoessarily w have sold at' a higher price than if ther had been no increase." Philadelphia: "Unfavorable, increasec cost of material, and not being able t advance prices we are out the difference The tendency is also to use inferior ma terials and decrease wages and variou ways to inake np." Waverly, N. Y.: "Sold out my busi ness in Febroary last, but noticed be fore that that it was helping the iron roofing trade and decreasing my ti roofing tiusiness." Philadelphia: "To advance the pric of tin abont one dollar per box, with th same cost of packing, and goods selling at same price as before the increase o duty." Worcester, Mass. : "That we are doing less business. Decrease of help, thre hands." Syracuse, N. Y. : "To add the cost o the tin to the cost of the lanterns." Syracuse, N. Y.: "To cut down my trade in roofing tin more than one-half maHnpr a considerable loss to my inconie and, more than this, has forced a nmn ber of my smaller customers to retir f rom the business and to seek other occu pations. I am not able to purchase roof ing tin of American manufacture a marketable prices, only high priced good being offered- too high for the average consumer." Baltimore: "To increase the cost o production.'' Buffalo: "Decreasing consuinption economie labor; smaller ruargins. New York city: "Compelled us too raise our prices." Baltimore: "Quite a falling off in the demand for cans owing to the increasei duties, which have advanced the cost of tin platea alxrat $1.30 per box. We have had to decrease our help about one-flfth." Green wich, N. Y. : "Very much against us. Forcing us to use oíd inachinery instead of new, as we cannoi buy improved machinery, as ourprofits at present will not admit it. We are running a smaller f orce and will have to put up less goods than formerly. Decrease of help, three hands." Northville, Mich. : "To reduce oui profits. We cannot charge any more f 01 our condensed ïnilk than we did before. We are taxed to help others establish the manufacture of tin plate in the United States. Our output is small yet. We are paying $1,000 a year to help others. The decline in sugar has helped us about $1,000 a year, so between the two it is a standoff." Cleveland: "To increase the cost of our goods by the extra duty." Detroit: "In previous y ears our business has increased about 50 per cent. each year and last year only about 15 per cent. , entirely owing to the increase of prices made necessary by the duties." Philadelphia: "To lessen profits by increase of cost in materials. We have ïad to decrease our help irregularly. " Louisville: "Decrease the sales on erne plates. Many persons refusing to pay the advanced prices due to the :ariff. Decrease of help, 5 per cent." Subletts, Va. : "To make us pay $230 more for 215 boxes of tin."


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