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Tuesday, 8 March 1966

Mr MCMAHON - As I have said before, I have had frequent consultations with the Decimal Currency Board in order to try, to the maximum of our capacity, to ensure that prices do not rise as a result of the changeover to decimal currency. The Board has reported to me that it has tried, to the limit of its capacity, to keep prices down.

Mr Calwell - But it has not.

Mr McMAHON - Because probably, in many cases, it is beyond its capacity to do so, as it is beyond the capacity of most people to do so. But what the Decimal Currency Board has done is to report to me that there have been many cases of a reduction of prices, as there have been many other cases also of an unjustifiable increase in prices.

Mr Pollard - Name one decrease.

Mr McMAHON - I said that tobacco and cigarettes were a classical example where there had been a significant reduction in price.

Mr Webb - What about haircuts?

Mr McMAHON - That shows the degree of seriousness with which honorable members opposite view this question. Therefore, I refrain from any further comment.

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