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Soviet Union Information Bureau


DOMESTIC TRADE


DOMESTIC trade is handled in the Soviet Union by State, cooperative and private enterprises.

The State trading enterprises consist largely of wholesale trading organizations conducted by State producing organizations (the trusts), and by the organs acting as distributors and purchasers of supplies for the trusts (the syndicates). These organizations conduct over 70 per cent of the State trade. The special State trading organizations, the Gostorgs, organized in the Constituent Republics or on a regional or local basis, also play a considerable role in the scheme of distribution. The Gostorgs purchase goods from agricultural and manufacturing producers and import them from abroad for sale to consumers and retailers. They also make purchases for export. Still other State trading enterprises include the agencies for procuring various agricultural products and other joint stock companies specializing in certain products.

Cooperative trade is handled by the Consumers Cooperatives, the Agricultural Cooperatives and the Handicraft Cooperatives. Their shares of the total co-operative turnover (now about $11,000,000,000 a year) are respectively about 70, 20 and 10 per cent.

Of the total turnover in 1927-28 the State and co-operative enterprises handled 90.2 per cent, about evenly divided, and private traders 9.8 per cent. For 1926-27 the figures were respectively 81.8 per cent and 18.2 per cent and for 1925-26 respectively 77.1 and 22.9 per cent.

The share of the private trader in the total turnover has been steadily decreasing of late years. In wholesale trade the role of the private trader fell to 1.5 per cent of the total in 1927-28. In retail trade private enterprise accounted for 24.2 per cent of the turnover. The business of the State trading enterprises is conducted largely in the wholesale field. In the retail field the State enterprises, like the private dealers, are yielding ground to the cooperatives. In 1927-28 the share of the State enterprises in the retail trade was only 13.4 per cent of the total. The co-operatives conducted 62.4 per cent of the retail trade.

The gross trade turnover for 1927-28, including sales of original producers to jobbing organizations, was 54,130,000,000 rubles ($27,876,950,000), an increase of 20 per cent over the previous year. The gross domestic trade turnover during recent years has been as follows (in rubles):

1924-25 25,517,100,000
1925-26 38,749,700,000
1926-27 45,016,000,000
1927-28 54,130,000,000

The figures for retail trade in 1927-28 were as follows (in rubles):

State 1,795,000,000
Cooperative 8,325,500,000
Private 3,222,000,000
Total 13,345,500,000

NIZHNI-NOVGOROD FAIR.- The annual fair held at NizhniNovgorod is an important and spectacular feature of Soviet internal trade and trade with the Eastern neighbors. The trade turnover at the Fair held in September, 1928, was $154,500,000, of which $17,730,000 represented trade with the Eastern countries. In all 2,050 business organizations participated in the Fair, including 380 foreign firms. Foreign firms represented at the Fair included 263 from Persia, 82 from Western China, 20 from Afghanistan, 9 from Turkey, 3 from Iraq, 2 from Mongolia. Attendance at the Fair was about 200,000 persons.



 
Purchasing Power of the Ruble
(1913 = 100)
  On the Basis of:
  Wholesale Price Index Retail Price Index
April 1, 1924 55.3 47.4
Oct. 1, 1924 60.9 47.7
April 1, 1925 51.4 46.1
Oct. 1, 1925 57.4 46.5
April 1, 1926 51.0 41.5
Oct. 1, 1926 55.9 43.5
April 1, 1927 56.4 44.1
Oct. 1, 1927 58.8 50.5
Jan. 1, 1928 58.4 49.8
April 1, 1928 58.6 49.3
Oct. 1, 1928 56.8 47.4

 

 
General Wholesale Price Index
(1913 = 100)
  1923-24 1924-25 1925-26 1926-27 1927-28
(Annual Average)
Products of Mining and Manufacture. 215.7 192.4 200.9 196.7 188.4
Farm Products 134.2 166.9 171.3 156.6 157.2
Weighted Average 170.2 179.2 185.6 175.5 171.7
Ratio of industrial to agricultural index, "scissors". 161 115 117 126 120

 

 
Retail Price Index
(1913 = 100)
Average Private, Cooperative and State Trade Indexes
  Oct. 1, 1926 Apr. 1, 1927 Oct. 1, 1927 Apr. 1, 1928
Grain 175 177 177 186
Vegetable 188 233 209 323
Meat 204 193 204 190
Dairy Products 196 205 197 218
Fish 229 226 213 227
Vegetable Oil 185 190 195 191
Salt 252 238 182 178
Sugar 211 206 203 202
Tea 190 190 189 187
Liquor 225 221 216 222
Tobacco 216 209 201 201
Dry Goods 245 234 223 227
Shoes 233 222 214 216
Metals 206 193 187 187
Silicates 230 219 207 208
Chemicals 173 165 155 156
Kerosene 109 108 106 106
Timber 215 204 199 197
Paper 223 210 188 188
Average 207 203 198 203
Of this:        
Cooperative Trade 197 189 183 185
State Trade 200 191 183 185
Private Trade 224 227 220 239