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Thursday, 3 October 1974
Page: 1649

Senator SHEIL (QUEENSLAND) - My question is directed to the Minister representing the Acting Treasurer. I draw the Minister's attention to the statement made by the Acting Treasurer that the Government will, where apposite, assist building societies as they collapse. Does the Government anticipate that other building societies are likely to collapse? Is not the fact that such a statement was necessary at all a reflection of the economic disarray resulting from the implementation of Government policies?

Senator WRIEDT -I am not aware that the Acting Treasurer had made any statement to the effect that the Government will support building societies 'as they collapse'. I am not aware of the word 'collapse' being used at all. The Acting Treasurer did make a statement yesterday to the effect that the Government, through the Reserve Bank of Australia, will treat sympathetically the problems of liquidity of building societies which have proper asset backing. It is the Government's purpose to ensure that stability of these institutions remains and that an atmosphere of fear should not be deliberately engendered as has occurred in recent times in order to take away from the people the confidence which is necessary to maintain these institutions. The Government is constantly watching the position and will ensure that the liquidity necessary to preserve these institutions is maintained.

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