« ForrigeFortsett »
to employees of the exchange and students of New York Stock Exchange Institute Mr. PECORA. No,
Mr. Harris. No; that is right; to officers and employees of the exchange, 103; to economics faculties of colleges, 144; foreign economists, 63; to colleges and other libraries, 155; to newspapers, magazines, and so forth, 321; public officials, 583; miscellaneous, on hand, and so forth, 131.
Mr. PECORA. What was the nature of the public officials who received 583 copies of this book on short selling during the year 1932? What kind of offices did they hold !
(Mr. Harris examined data.) Mr. PECORA. Can't you tell us these things of your own personal knowledge, Mr. Harris?
Mr. HARRIS. Well, I believe a large number of these were sent to Members of Congress.
Mr. PECORA. And that was all done on the initiative of the stock exchange, wasn't it?
Mr. HARRIS. I believe so. Mr. PECORA. There had not been any widespread demand from Members of Congress to be enlightened on short selling? Mr. HARRIS. No; but it was a topic particularly at that time that they were much interested in. Mr. PECORA. How was that evidenced to you?
Mr. HARRIS. Why, there was a great deal of talk about it in the press.
Mr. PECORA. That is, the general subject of short selling was being considerably publicly agitated throughout the calendar year 1932?
Mr. Harris. As I remember, there was considerable agitation in the press on the subject of short selling.
Mr. PECORA. And in that agitation much argument was heard and advanced against short selling, was there not?
Mr. HARRIS. Yes; naturally there was considerable talk on both sides of the question.
Mr. PECORA. On both sides of the question; that is, both for and against the practice of short selling; is that right? Mr. HARRIS. Yes.
Jr. PECORA. So was it because of that that the stock exchange had its economist, Mr. Meeker, write this book?
Mr. HARRIS, Mr. Meeker wrote this book on his own free will and accord and on his own time, not in the hours he was employed by the stock exchange. It was his book.
Mr. PECORA. I presume, however, from the fact that the stock exchange as an institution has caused to be made at its own expense the distribution of that book that you have testified to, that the sentiments expressed in the book are approved by the exchange. Is that the correct assumption of fact, Mr. Harris?
Mr. HARRIS. Yes. Mr. Meeker published that. The stock exchange did not pay for the publishing of that book. The exchange did purchase some copies from him. The exchange naturally thought that it was a fine article on the subject of short selling and explained it clearly and adequately. Mr. PECORA. Do you know what Mr. Meeker set forth in that book? Mr. HARRIS. I have not read the book.
Mr. PECORA. The exchange gave this public distribution to this book in 1932 through the committee on publicity, didn't it?
Mr. HARRIS. Yes, sir.
Mr. PECORA. Well, now, as a member of the committee on publicity that year, did you approve of the purchase of 1,500 copies of the book and their distribution to hundreds of people, including Members of Congress, without knowing what the contents of the book were?
Mr. HARRIS. I had not actually read the book, Mr. Pecora. I thought that I knew the basic arguments in the book.
Mr. PECORA. How did you know-
Mr. PECORA. That without having read them? If the book represented the product of Mr. Meeker's mind
Mr. HARRIS. Well, I knew Mr. Meeker's attitude on short selling:
Mr. PECORA. Oh, then you knew that from the fact that he had been for a number of years an economist in the employ of the stock exchange?
Mr. HARRIS. Well, through conversation with him.
Mr. PECORA. And do you happen to know what salary or compensation Mr. Meeker receives as economist for the stock exchange?
Mr. HARRIS. I haven't got that figure here.
Mr. PECORA. Could you tell this committee, Mr. Harris, how much was expended during the calendar year 1931 by the committee on publicity in connection with its duty of—and I am quoting now from the constitution:
duty to keep the public correctly informed concerning matters of public interest having to do with the exchange?
Mr. HARRIS. Yes, sir.
Mr. HARRIS. For the year of 1931, which is broken up as follows: Salaries and wages, $52,893.64; president's speeches, $64,449; president's annual report, $13,988.20.
The office of the economist spent, further, an approximate total of $45,000, which was divided as follows: $44,203.55, salaries and wages; $1,404.99, stationery, supplies, books, subscriptions, and so forth.
Mr. PECORA. Making a grand total of $284,863.94 for the year?
Mr. PECORA. Now I notice that among the figures given by you representing the moneys expended by the committee on publicity in the fulfillment of its duty of keeping the public correctly informed during the year 1931 is the figure of $52,893.64 representing salaries and wages of the committee on publicity. To what kind of employees does it pay salaries and wages aggregating a little over a thousand dollars a week!
Mr. HARRIS. Of course, that is divided up among 24 employees, Mr. Pecora.
Mr. PECORA. No; it is 24? Mr. HARRIS. I am sorry. It is 15. I was adding in the department of the economist.
Mr. PECORA. What sort of services are performed by these 15 employees of the committee on publicity?
Mr. HARRIS. They have a great deal of statistical work to do. They are getting up data of all sorts all the time. There are these educational pamphlets that are sent out which have to be prepared and very carefully gone over, which requires a great deal of time and a great deal of work.
Mr. PECORA. I notice that most of the pamphlets sent out during the year 1931 were copies of two addresses of Mr. Whitney.
Mr. HARRIS. Yes, sir. Mr. Pecora. Those addresses were not prepared by the employees of the committee on publicity, were they
Mr. HARRIS. No; those were not. Mr. PECORA. Or any of them. Mr. HARRIS. A great many of the pamphlets are. Of course, the year book, Mr. Pecora, takes a great deal of work, and there is a great deal of mail constantly coming into that department that must be answered, various members of the public asking questions.
Mr. PECORA. I show you, Mr. Harris, a typewritten statement entitled “ Schedule C. Committee on Publicity covering items of expenditures for the years 1929 to 1933, both inclusive. Will you look at it and tell us if it is a true and correct statement of the items referred to therein?
Mr. HARRIS (after examining paper). That is a true statement.
(Copy of statement entitled “Schedule C, Committee on Publicity
1929, to 1933, both inclusive, was received in evidence, marked Committee Exhibit No. 109”, Feb. 23, 1934, and the same will be found at the conclusion of today's proceedings.)
Mr. PECORA. The document has been marked in evidence as mittee's Exhibit No. 109” of this date, and shows the moneys expended by the committee on publicity for each of the years in the 5-year period, 1929 to 1933, both inclusive, as follows: For the year 1929, $174,846.11; for the year 1930, $243,964.91; for the year 1931, $284,863.94; for the year 1932, $206,439.25; for the year 1933, $92.970,51.
Mr. HARRIS. Mr. Pecora, that is only up to September 1. Mr. PECORA. That is, for 1933 ? Mr. HARRIS. For 1933. Mr. Pecora. That makes a total for that approximate 5-year period of $1,001,084.72, if our calculation is correct.
Mr. HARRIS. I have not totaled it here yet. Mr. PECORA. Subject to correction, I think you can safely accept that total.
Now, I notice in this statement or recapitulation marked “ Committee's Exhibit No. 109", an item of expenses attributed to " yearbooks, miscellaneous, other publications, gallery pamphlets, motion
picture expenses, postage, et cetera.” What are the motion-picture expenses included therein?
Mr. HARRIS. Several years ago the exchange had two films showing the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange, and actual trading conditions as they existed, and those have been shown in various theaters throughout the country,
Mr. PECORA. What were the titles of these two motion-picture films?
Mr. HARRIS. I am sorry. I have seen them both. They have slipped my mind. One was called “ The Nation's Market Place."
Mr. PECORA. When was that film made?
Mr. PECORA. Isn't it The Mechanics of the Nation's Market Place, Part I, The Training of the Boys?
Mr. Harris. Yes; that is right.
Mr. Harris. Likewise several years ago. There have been new cuts put into it within 2 years, but it is an old picture.
Mr. PECORA. It was brought down to date, that is, up to 2 years ago, by revisions. Mr. HARRIS. I believe so. Mr. PECORA. Are they sound pictures ?
Mr. HARRIS. The original picture was not a sound picture. I believe the second picture is a sound picture--at least parts of it.
Mr. PECORA. How are these two pictures exhibited, under the direction of the committee on publicity?
Mr. HARRIS. They were shown in various theaters throughout the country. One concern had exclusive rights. They were shown where there seemed to be a demand in any locality. If there was a demand for a stock-exchange picture, this picture was put on.
Mr. PECORA. How would that demand become manifest to stock exchange's committee on publicity?
Mr. HARRIS. The agent of these pictures would get a demand from a certain theater for a picture of this type, and would then write the stock exchange about it.
Mr. PECORA. Would he get the demand, or would he go out and create it?
Mr. HARRIS. I cannot speak for the agent, Mr. Pecora.
Mr. PECORA. Was the use of these films made available free of charge by the stock exchange?
Mr. HARRIS. It was.
Mr. PECORA. Do you know throughout what area they were exhibited ?
Mr. HARRIS. Practically throughout the country.
Mr. Pecora. Were they exhibited in motion picture houses principally?
Mr. Harris. Principally motion-picture houses.
Mr. PECORA. Have you any notion that the owners of motion-picture houses observed any demand on the part of their patrons for the exhibition of these pictures?
Mr. HARRIS. Yes; from time to time the committee on publicity has had letters from various theaters saying that there was a demand from the public for one of these two pictures. Mr. PECORA. Have you available to you any records or statistics showing the aggregate number, approximately, that composed the audiences to whom these pictures were exhibited during the year 1931
Mr. HARRIS. I have not, Mr. Pecora, but we might be able to furnish you with those figures.
Mr. PECORA. There is a yearbook issued annually by the New York Stock Exchange, is there not? Mr. HARRIS. Yes, sir. Mr. PECORA. Don't you know that that yearbook contains those figures! Mr. HARRIS. As I say, I came down very hurriedly and, as this was not specified, I did not bring it. Mr. PECORA. Have you ever read the yearbook? Mr. HARRIS. I do not think I have read it word for word, but I have always gone through it yearly as it comes out.
Mr. PECORA. Do you recall that at one time, or at any time when you have read the yearbook, reference was made to the number of exhibitions of these motion pictures as a part of the work done by your committee on publicity? Mr. HARRIS. Yes; I believe it is so mentioned. Mr. PECORA. I have what purports to be a copy of the yearbook of the New York Stock Exchange for 1931 and 1932. From page 73 thereof let me read as follows (reading]: Two motion pictures of the activities of the exchange have been made under the supervision of the committee on publicity and are now available for exhibition purposes. The two films are entitled “ The Nation's Market Place” and “The Mechanics of the Nation's Market Place, Part I, The Training of the Boys." By the way, who picked out that title? Mr. HARRIS. I do not know. I did not. The CHAIRMAN. Who was the agent who handled these films? Mr. HARRIS. The committee on publicity controlled the pictures. The CHAIRMAN. You made your contract with some agent for the handling of the films. You did not go about the country exhibiting them yourself. Mr. HARRIS. Oh, no. It was a company that acted as our agents. The CHAIRMAN. I am asking who that was. Mr. HARRIS. They recently went bankrupt, Mr. Chairman, and we had to get the films back from them. I cannot think of their
Mr. PECORA. Apparently the demand for these films has died down. Mr. HARRIS. I do not think that is what caused their bankruptcy. The CHAIRMAN. That does not quite identify them. Mr. PECORA. In the title of this second picture, called “The Mechanics of the Nation's Market Place, Part I, the Training of the Boys”, does the word “ mechanics” refer to the machinery of the exchange, or to any of its members?
Mr. HARRIS. They are more or less combined. It refers to the general operation, the general mechanism of the exchange.