It thus appears that the profit is lowest when the premium is highest; that at any market price it is higher when the market rate of interest is lowest; that the profits on the 2's may be as great as on the 4's, since the purchase price of the bonds may equalize the earnings. Roughly speaking, in the light of the prevailing prices of these bonds, the circulation privilege adds 1.5 per cent to the earnings of the bond and therefore gives the bond an exceptional value in the hands of the national banks; any other buyer, capitalizing the earnings which he would receive alone as interest, could afford to pay less than par. The bonds have an artificial value, part of it being the capitalized value of the monopoly note issue privilege; the recent popular notion that the government could borrow freely at 2 per cent is beside the point.