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British Still Paying For That Whole Empire Business

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The sun never set on the British Empire, until it did 60 years ago, give or take. Prior to that, the U.K. ran up a lot of debts to pay to defend it.

Well, things are going so well on the sceptere’d isle that Her Majesty’s Treasury want to take care of some of that old business. Crimean- and First-World-War-financing, three-hundred-year-old-bailout, perpetual-debt-issued-by-Winston-Churchill-when-he-was-Chancellor-of-the-Exchequer old business. Not because it matters, especially—the country never has to repay it, and we’re only talking about £218 million—but because it can. Or because someone walked past the Tower of London recently and remember that World War I started 100 years ago. Either way.

The U.K. Treasury said Friday it plans to repay the £218 million note ($348.8 million) which was issued by the then Chancellor of the Exchequer Winston Churchill in 1927….

A rally in global government bonds this year has pushed down U.K. borrowing costs, although they remain above the levels seen at the height of the eurozone crisis when talk of repaying the War Loan became widespread.

U.K. to Repay First World War Bonds [WSJ]



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