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Central Banks Buy Gold Bullion Hand Over Fist, Most Purchased Since 1967

Central Banks Buy Gold Bullion Hand Over Fist, Most Purchased Since 1967

 Central Banks Buy Gold Bullion Hand Over Fist, Most Purchased Since 1967 - Nathan McDonald (14/02/2019)

Cryptocurrencies have been crushed, the stock market looks poised for a slowdown and the world stands on the edge of a cliff, as geopolitical tensions flare across the globe, waiting for a spark to ignite the flames.

The smart money knows it, and they are starting to move. This includes Central Bankers, which are buying the king of metals, gold bullion, hand over fist.

As I stated at the start of this year, I believe 2019 will see significant accumulation in the precious metals market, which will finally break out of the horrible sideways trading pattern we have been in for years.

As many of you know, gold has been stuck in an abysmal trading pattern, moving slightly above $1300 only to be crushed back down toward the $1100 mark.

This comes in spite of the fact that we now face the most geopolitical uncertainty we have seen in decades.

However, not everyone has been unaware of these dangers.

Central Banks spent 2018 accumulating precious metals in a monumental way, increasing their holdings by the most in one year since 1967. Quietly accumulating while the rest of the financial world happily ignores the alarm bells going off all around them.

Recently, the World Gold Council stated that the world consumed 4,345.1 tonnes of gold throughout 2018, up from 4,159.9 tonnes in 2017.

The chief driver of this move higher was Central Banks, which bought 651.5 tonnes throughout 2018, a staggering 74 percent increase over 2017, and as previously stated, the largest increase since 1967.

Sadly, Western Central Bankers are still asleep at the wheel and were not the main contributors to this increase.

As I have been reporting on for years, countries such as Russia, India, China, Poland, Kazakhstan and Turkey were the main purchasers of gold bullion throughout 2018.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Italy’s Gold enters the Political Fray. But who really owns it?

Italy’s Gold enters the Political Fray. But who really owns it?

Italy’s unpredictable political situation continues to throw up surprises with a controversial claim in national newspaper La Stampa this week that the country’s coalition government wants to sell part of Italy’s gold reserves to cover spending plans and to prevent the need to increase VAT in a forthcoming Italian budget.

While the claims by La Stampa are not really based on anything new, they still managed to cause an international media frenzy as they came a few days after Italy’s governing coalition launched verbal attacks on Italy’s central bankers and financial regulators.

Note that Italy claims to be the world’s third largest sovereign gold holder behind the US and Germany, with claimed monetary gold holdings of 2451.8 tonnes. Interestingly, unlike most countries where sovereign gold is owned by the State but managed by the country’s central bank, the Italian gold is officially owned by Italy’s central bank, Banca d’Italia (Bank of Italy), and not owned by the Italian State.

The Banca d’Italia furthermore claims that 1199.4 tonnes of the gold (or roughly half), is stored in the Bank’s gold vaults under it’s Palazzo Koch headquarters building in Rome, with most of the other half stored in the vaults of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY), and a small balance kept the Bank of England in London, and in an account of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) in the vaults of the Swiss National Bank (SNB) in Berne, Switzerland. But without any documentary evidence or independent auditing or verification of any of its gold, especially the foreign held gold, these claims are impossible to verify.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Fables, Fairy Tales and the Gold Standard

Fables, Fairy Tales and the Gold Standard

President Trump often tweets about the strength and health of the U.S. economy, and two weeks ago, he tweeted that the U.S. economy was the Gold Standard throughout the World.

The fact that Trump capitalized the words “Gold Standard” may have piqued the interest of those who believe in sound money principles.  Trump has in fact spoken in the past about a return to the Gold Standard, and some of the issues surrounding this are summarized in an October 2018 article: Trump Puts Gold Standard On The Table.

A simple interpretation of Trump’s tweet means that the U.S. economy is the envy of the world, the benchmark by which other economies measure themselves.

Nevertheless, Trump’s tweet can be viewed as valid in another way, whether this interpretation was intended or not.  When the U.S. dollar was de-linked from the value of gold in 1971, the U.S. dollar and its economy became the Gold Standard.  The U.S. dollar is the primary reserve currency throughout the world, and therefore almost everything bought or sold in the world has a reference point to the value of the dollar.

The value of the dollar is related to the health of the U.S. economy, and the U.S. economy, absent a “real” gold standard, IS the monetary standard throughout the world.

We are not suggesting that Trump will help navigate the world back to a Gold Standard, and any political, strategic or tactical discussions on that point are above our pay grade.  In fact, we prefer to summarize our understanding of the gold market by way of two children’s stories.

Fables and Fairy Tales

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

China Accelerates Renewed Gold-Buying Spree “To Diversify Its Reserves”

China Accelerates Renewed Gold-Buying Spree “To Diversify Its Reserves”

After China’s official gold reserves rose for the first time in around two years (since Oct 2016) in December, Beijing appears to have joined the global gold rush, increasing its gold reserves for the second month in a row in January to 59.94 million ounces.

As we previously notedChina has long been silent on its holdings of gold as many countries are turning away from the greenback.

The value the country’s holdings of the precious metal reached US$79.319 billion, increasing by more than $3 billion compared to the end of last year. 

China is also trying “to diversify its reserves” away from the greenback, according to Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at currency broker OANDA. The analyst told the South China Morning Post that the state of affairs in global politics, including a trade war with the US, are driving China’s interest to buy gold as a “safe haven hedge.” 

In January, China dropped to sixth place among the world’s largest holders of the yellow metal behind Russia. With its 67.6 million ounces of gold, Russia now stands in fifth place behind the US, Germany, France, and Italy.

Crucially, the size of the gold addition are far less important than the signaling effect – why did China decide now was the right time to publicly admit its gold reserves are rising?

After months of seeming stability in the yuan relative to gold, Q4 2018/Q1 2019 saw China seemingly allow gold to appreciate relative to the yuan

One wonders if Alasdair Macleod is on to something when he notes that if the yuan is to replace the dollar for China’s trade, officials will have to back it with gold

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Reason #437 to own gold: The Fed wants Negative Interest Rates

Reason #437 to own gold: The Fed wants Negative Interest Rates

And just like that, it seems we’re headed back to quantitative easing…

After cutting interest rates to nearly zero following the 2008 crisis, the Federal Reserve starting raising rates near the end of 2015 (from 0.25% to 2.5% today).

Following the most recent hike in December 2018, Chairman Powell seemed hell bent on further tightening, saying “some further gradual increases” were in the cards.

Then the stock market promptly fell nearly 20%. 

Investors were in panic mode and calling for the end of the world.

The pain was too much…

Last month, the Fed left rates unchanged… and Powell removed any language about further hikes.

Already Powell is capitulating.

The new chief economist for the International Monetary Fund praised the move, saying she sees “considerable and rising risks” to the global economy.

And no surprise here, but Paul Krugman also supported the Fed’s policy. He’s also worried about a possible recession… but more worried the Fed won’t be able to cut rates low enough.

Central banks tried raising interest rates, but the market wouldn’t take it.

Now, the market is putting the likelihood of a rate hike this year at ZERO… and it’s expecting a rate cut next year.

Both the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan were supposed to start tightening policy and raising rates… now, they are both considering cutting interest rates even deeper into negative territory.

And after a 20% drop in US stocks, the Fed has taken its foot off the pedal. But the people still want more…

The President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis thinks current interest rates are “too restrictive.” He too wants lower rates.

The San Francisco Fed agrees – they were singing the praises of negative interest rates in a recent research paper, saying they would have helped the economy recover even faster after 2008.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Frank Homes–Peak Gold is Here: No Major Gold Discoveries and Falling Exploration Dollars

FRANK HOMES – PEAK GOLD IS HERE: NO MAJOR GOLD DISCOVERIES AND FALLING EXPLORATION DOLLARS


SBTV speaks with returning guest Frank Holmes, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of US Global Investors, about gold. Has gold production plateaued and are there less capital invested in gold exploration? Frank shares his insights to both questions.

Discussed in this interview:

02:43 Disappointment in gold’s performance in 2018?
03:49 Outlook for gold in 2019
06:02 Peak gold: Discoveries and exploration dollars
11:53 Impact of the Newmont-Goldcorp merger on the gold market
12:54 Stock markets due for correction in 2019?
15:09 US & China: Who needs each other more?
18:49 Is the future of cryptocurrencies still bright?
24:06 Impact of bear market on HIVE Blockchain

A Survival Guide For 2019

A Survival Guide For 2019

How to safely navigate the ‘Year Of Instability’ 

As the first month of the year concludes, it’s becoming clear that 2019 will be a very different kind of year.

The near-decade of ‘recovery’ following the Great Financial Crisis enjoyed a stability and tranquility that suddenly evaporated at the end of 2018.

Here in 2019, instability reigns.

The world’s central banks are absolutely panicking. After last year’s bursting of the Everything Bubble, their coordinated plans for Quantitative Tightening have been summarily thrown out the window. Suddenly, no chairman can prove himself too dovish.

Jerome Powell, the supposed hardliner among them, completely capitulated in the wake of the recent -15% tantrum in stocks, which, as Sven Henrich colorfully quipped, proved what we suspected all along:

The global tsunami of liquidity (i.e. thin-air money printing) released by the central banking cartel has been the defining trend of the past decade. It has driven, directly or indirectly, more world events than any other factor.

And one of its more notorious legacies is the massive disparity and wealth and income resulting from its favoring of the top 0.1% over everyone else. The mega-rich have seen their assets skyrocket in value, while the masses have been mercilessly squeezed between similarly rising costs of living and stagnant wages.

How have the tone-deaf politicians responded? With tax breaks for their Establishment masters and new taxes imposed on the public. As a result, populist ire is catching fire in an accelerating number of countries, which the authorities are anxious to suppress by all means to prevent it from conflagrating further — most visibly demonstrated right now by the French government’s increasingly jack-booted attempts to quash the Yellow Vest protests:

Meanwhile, two other principal drivers of the past decade’s ‘prosperity’ are also suddenly in jeopardy.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

NEW ERA OF THE MODERN PRECIOUS METALS INVESTOR: The Coming Pension Fund Disaster

NEW ERA OF THE MODERN PRECIOUS METALS INVESTOR: The Coming Pension Fund Disaster

Get ready for a new era of precious metals investor.  That’s correct.  Up until now, the primary buyer of gold and silver have been the older generation, 40-65+, but that will all change when the next financial crisis hits.  The Millennials, or those in the 23-38 age group, have participated less in the stock market than previous generations.  And, rightly so.

According to one study, Millennials preferred cash (30%) as their largest investment over stocks (23%).  This should be no surprise as the older Millennials have experienced two market crashes, the dotcom NASDAQ crash and the 2008 market meltdown within a decade.  Furthermore, the Millennials are likely very concerned and worried about the massive underlying debt and leverage in the system.  Of course, it is probably true that most Millennials don’t understand the details of the financial markets, but have an excellent innate ability to recognize that SOMETHING IS SERIOUSLY WRONG.

In my newest video update, New-Age Precious Metals Investor:  Pension Fund Disaster, I discuss how surprised I was to learn that the largest age group that followed the SRSrocco Report website were the Millenials, not the older generation.  Now if that wasn’t surprising enough, the next largest group of readers came from an even younger group, aged 18-24:

The chart comes from my Google Analytics dashboard so that you can thank Google for that statistic.  How on earth does Google know the demographics of my website, that is a subject matter for another day?  Regardless, while the mainstream media suggests that the younger generation are less interested in finances and politics, I actually believe they are hungry for GOOD INFORMATION.  Unfortunately, they will not find quality information in the mainstream press.  Which is precisely why many of the Millennials are quite concerned about the future and continue to question everything.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Demand for Physical Gold & Silver Bullion Increase As Geopolitical Tensions Erupt Around the World

Demand for Physical Gold & Silver Bullion Increase As Geopolitical Tensions Erupt Around the World

Demand for Physical Gold & Silver Bullion Increase As Geopolitical Tensions Erupt Around the World - Nathan McDonald (31/01/2018)

You can sense it. You can feel it.

The tension in the air is all around us, and it’s not just isolated to one country. Rather, it is a global phenomenon.

Geopolitical angst is rising as trade wars rage across the globe, with countries picking sides and either moving radically to the left or to the right, with all middle ground rapidly evaporating.

This is a recipe for disaster, and we are soon to enter a period of incredible turmoil and unrest, as people become more and more desperate to assert their political will over their opponents, no matter the cost.

This will, as it always has, lead to great political upheaval, upending the proverbial apple cart in the process.

We already see this unfolding in politics all over the world, as people take more and more extreme measures, forgoing the traditional means of change and adopting more radical approaches.

Look at Venezuelalook at Francelook at the United States. Change is happening, and it is happening fast.

Now more than ever, it is vital to protect yourself, to take personal liberty over your finances and to prepare for the hard times that are soon to be upon us.

There are many steps that could be taken to mitigate the risks coming to you and your family. However, first and foremost is the acquisition of gold and silver bullion, both of which are tried, tested and true ways of preserving your wealth in times of increased tension and chaos.

I personally believe that taking physical possession of your precious metals is the first step in this process. This is an insurance policy that has worked for thousands of years, getting people through some of hardest times in human history.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bank of England tears up its Gold Custody contract with Venezuela’s central bank

Bank of England tears up its Gold Custody contract with Venezuela’s central bank

In early November 2018, it first came to light that the Bank of England in London was delaying and blocking the withdrawal of 14 tonnes of gold owned by the Venezuelan central bank, Banco Central de Venezuela (BCV). At the time, Reuters and The Times of London both reported that according to unnamed British ‘public officials’, the delays were being caused by the difficulty and cost of obtaining insurance for the gold shipment back to Venezuela, and also due to “standard measures to prevent money-laundering“.

As I explained in a BullionStar article on 15 November titled ‘Bank of England refuses to return 14 tonnes of gold to Venezuela’, the explanations given to Reuters and the Times for the withdrawal delays were completely bogus, and that the real reason for blocking the BCV gold withdrawal was undoubtedly US and UK joint government interventions to stall the withdrawal. As I wrote at the time:

“The reasons put forward by official sources in the Reuters and Times articles for why Venezuela can’t withdraw its gold from the Bank of England are clearly bogus. The more logical and likely explanation is that the US, through the White House, US Treasury and State Department have been liaising with the British Foreign office and HM Treasury to put pressure on the Bank of England to delay and push back on Venezuela’s gold withdrawal request.”

As it turns out, this was an entirely correct prediction, since by 25 January, Bloomberg confirmed in an ‘exclusive report’ (two and a half months later) that:

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Global Collapse Accelerating Buy Gold Now – Chris Martenson

Global Collapse Accelerating Buy Gold Now – Chris Martenson

By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com

Futurist and economic researcher Chris Martenson says a collapse is “a process, not an event.” Martenson contends the long awaited global collapse, on many fronts, has not only started, but is picking up speed. Martenson says, “Our prediction at PeakProsperity.com is these collapse trends, we have been following for 10 years now, are accelerating and continuing. None of them are reversing at this point in time. These will impact people’s future in a huge way. Environmentally, we see these signs, but we also have $245 trillion of debt in the global economy. We have been accelerating that debt cycle as if we could just keep that trend going forever—we can’t. So, what we see are all these unsustainable trends converging. They are going to happen . . . and people need to be ready.”

Martenson lays out the case to blame central banks for much of the geopolitical and economic friction in the world today. Martenson says, “The economic pie is not expanding anymore. It’s kind of stagnant. So, if you have one tiny group taking their fair share and the pie isn’t growing, it means they are taking from somebody else. This is the essence of central banking. They don’t create wealth, they redistribute wealth. When the Federal Reserve crams rates to zero, the savers lose out, but lose to who? The winners and losers are being picked by the central banks, and they have decided that the .01% should be the winners in this story and everybody else should be the losers. . . . Central bank policies have really benefited the elites at the expense of everybody else. This brings up the most important point and that is central banks are not our friends. They are redistributive organizations.”

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Crossing Borders with Gold and Silver Coins

Crossing Borders with Gold and Silver Coins

It’s well-known that you have to make a declaration if you physically transport $10,000 or more in cash or monetary instruments in or out of the US, or almost any other country; governments collude on these things, often informally.

Gold has always been in something of a twilight zone in that regard. It’s no longer officially considered money. So it’s usually regarded as just a commodity, like copper, lead, or zinc, for these purposes. The one-ounce Canadian Maple Leaf and US Eagle both say they’re worth $50 of currency.

But I’ve had some disturbing experiences over the past couple of years crossing borders with coins. Of course, crossing any national border is potentially disturbing at any time. You might find yourself interrogated, strip searched, or detained for any reason or no reason. But I suspect what happened to me crossing a few borders in recent times could be a straw in the wind.

I’ve gradually accumulated about a dozen one-ounce silver rounds in my briefcase, some souvenirs issued by mining companies, plus others from Canada, Australia, China, and the US. But when I left Chile not long ago, the person monitoring the X-ray machine stopped me and insisted I take them out and show them to her. This had never happened before, but I wrote it off to chance. Then, when I was leaving Argentina a few weeks later, the same thing happened. What was really unusual was that the inspector looked at them, took them back to his supervisor, and then asked if I had any gold coins. I didn’t, he smiled, and I went on.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

If You Could Design A Perfect World For Gold…

If You Could Design A Perfect World For Gold…

Are you sick of your gold just sitting there when it was supposed to have long since made you rich? Have you been fantasizing about a world in which your gold really does make you rich?

If so you’re in good – or at least numerous – company. 

So let’s sketch out such a world. 

Start by envisioning an America in which a handful of oligopolies have captured banking, media, healthcare and several other important industries, while a tiny group of super-rich neo-aristocrats control as much wealth as the 200 million least-rich citizens. 

Toss in a US president who goes out of his way to pick fights which he then proceeds to lose, leading to both falling poll numbers and derisive headlines around the world. 

That’s a good start but probably not enough to take gold to its rightful price of $10,000. So let’s add a US opposition party – which, given the above president’s declining popularity, has at least a 50-50 shot at taking power in the next election – that is skewing madly, unprecedentedly to the left. For more on the three most popular Democrats:

Elizabeth Warren proposes ‘wealth tax’ on Americans with more than $50 million in assets

Ocasio-Cortez buzz hits Davos with talk of 70% tax-rate plan

[Socialist frontrunner] Bernie Sanders set to announce 2020 presidential run

Meanwhile, imagine that that same opposition party recently gained control of the branch of Congress that can investigate the President, leading to an escalating battle between legislature and executive that adds an element of legal chaos to what would already have been a presidential campaign of off-the-charts vitriol.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bank Of England Refuses To Release Venezuela’s Gold After US Lobbying

Bank Of England Refuses To Release Venezuela’s Gold After US Lobbying

With Maduro desperately clinging to power in Venezuela – albeit protected by Russian “security contractors” – The Bank of England just ‘virtue-signaled’ another jab in the socialist utopia’s back by confirming its refusal to hand over Venezuela’s gold from its vaults.

Bloomberg reports that Maduro’s embattled regime, desperate to hold onto the dwindling cash pile it has abroad, was stymied in its bid to pull $1.2 billion worth of gold out of the Bank of England, according to people familiar with the matter.

The Bank of England’s (BoE) decision to deny Maduro officials’ withdrawal request comes after top U.S. officials, including Secretary of State Michael Pompeo and National Security Adviser John Bolton, lobbied their U.K. counterparts to help cut off the regime from its overseas assets, according to one of the people, who asked not to be identified.

Mike Krieger recently dug into the gold part of the Venezuelan coup sagaIn case you forgot, Hugo Chavez didn’t make any friends in the empire back in 2011 when he repatriated around 160 tonnes of gold from banks in the United States and Europe. But the story doesn’t end there. As Reuters reports:

The government of Nicolas Maduro has since last year been seeking to repatriate about $550 million in gold from the Bank of England on fears it could be caught up in international sanctions on the country.

Its holdings at the bank more than doubled in December to 31 tonnes, or around $1.3 billion, after Venezuela returned funds it had borrowed from Deutsche Bank AG through a financing arrangement that uses gold as collateral, known as a swap, one of the sources said.

Venezuela last year started carrying out gold barter operations with Turkey to import food following U.S. sanctions that have made international banks reluctant to handle Venezuelan transactions.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Gold Bullion Will Protect From Politicians, Brexit and Increasing Market Volatility In 2019

Gold Bullion Will Protect From Politicians, Brexit and Increasing Market Volatility In 2019 

Historically, gold has proven to be a very safe investment – could it remain so in times of a massive global debt bubble, Brexit, trade wars and an uncertain world economy?

“You have to choose between trusting to the natural stability of gold and the natural stability of the honesty and intelligence of the members of the government. And, with due respect for these gentlemen, I advise you, as long as the capitalist system lasts, to vote for gold.”

The words of the witty Irish playwright and philosopher George Bernard Shaw, will resonate with investors in Ireland , the UK and internationally today given the UK government’s handling of Brexit and the rise of Trump and other radical politicians on the left and right.

Populist politicians are creating increasing political, economic and financial risks for us all. This is clearly seen in the complete mess that is Brexit – for Ireland, the UK and indeed the EU.

Shaw was a keen student of history and saw the economic problems that monarchies and governments have created over the years. Only the most foolhardy investor would claim that the coming years will be any different than our past.

Gold’s safe-haven historical status

A massive global debt bubble, Brexit, the risk of Italy leaving the EU, an increasingly fractured EU, aggressive Trump foreign and economic policies and an increasingly polarised and uncertain world cast shadows over our economies and financial markets.

There are very real risks posed by the gigantic global debt bubble – the world is nearing $250 trillion in debt and the global debt to GDP ratio has risen to 320%.

Shaw was also alluding to gold’s safe-haven status throughout history. Paper currency devaluations and indeed stock, bond and property market crashes are much more common throughout history than many people realise.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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