20 January 2014

Why the Bundesbank is (slowly) repatriating (some of) its gold

I'll take it as given that my readers are aware of the German gold repatriation, which was driven by the release in October 2012 of a report by the Federal Audit Office that contained criticism of the way the Bundesbank managed its overseas gold reserves. The goldbug spin on this is that it shows that Germany doesn't trust the US or the Fed.

I agree with Jim Rickards, as paraphrased by GATA, "that Germany's Bundesbank really doesn't want any of its gold returned from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and has arranged for the return of a small part of it only as a political sop to agitation in Germany's parliament." (see this story CDU Politician Wants to Bring German Gold Home for an example of that political agitation.)

It is worth noting that "the Audit Court can only give recommendations and can't legally force the Bundesbank to act" so they could have ignored the calls for repatriation. However, as a result of the political fallout of the auditor report, the Bundesbank decided that "despite our different view of the law, the Bundesbank will, where possible, take up the audit court's suggestions".

In support of Jim's idea that it is just to pacify local domestic politics, consider this speech in New York in November 2012 by Dr Andreas Dombret (Board Member of the Bundesbank). If you read the whole thing it certainly doesn't sound like there is any distrust. Some key quotes:
  • bizarre public discussion ... on the safety of our gold deposits ... driven by irrational fears
  • conducting a “phantom debate” on the safety of our gold reserves. The arguments raised are not really convincing
  • the excellent relationship between the Bundesbank and the US Fed
  • looking back at sixty years not only of fruitful cooperation in many fields and international fora, but also of storing gold and trading via the New York Fed
  • we have never encountered the slightest problem, let alone had any doubts concerning the credibility of the Fed
  • Bill [Dudley, of the FED], I would like to thank you personally. I am also grateful for your uncomplicated cooperation in so many matters.
  • Bundesbank will remain the Fed’s trusted partner in future
  • we are confident that our gold is in safe hands with you
Some may say that this is just what is said in public, but that behind the scenes they really don't trust the US Fed. Possibly, but I think that central bankers are all of the same mindset and values, part of the same club - Andreas wants to thank his mate Bill personally. I doubt that the German central bankers put on a show to their fellow central bankers but really believe in the gold standard. In his talk, Andreas says that gold is important but that "we have to combat a crisis of confidence in the euro area. This is the task we need to concentrate on". Confidence in fiat is more important to these guys.

This then leads me on to the amount and timing of gold being repatriated. I cannot find any evidence that the rate of repatriation was at the Fed's insistence - this seems to be an assumption by goldbugs. Considering they trust their mates at the Fed, and are being forced to do it politically, my view is that the rate was decided by the Bundesbank.

As Deutsche Bank analysts said, "we believe that the slow transfer of gold ... is partly a reflection of its wish to avoid any perception of a change in confidence in the US Fed". Confidence is what is important, and confidence in the US dollar is realted to confidence in the Euro as they are both fiats.

Also, consider that the logistics and security of moving gold are complicated and expensive. As Forbes notes:

"the gold coming from the U.S. will probably have to be flown in. This will probably have to be done in 3 to 5 ton shipments, the maximum insurance companies will cover, meaning it will take between 60 and 100 flights. In 2011, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez brought 160 tons of gold from New York to Caracas at an estimated cost of $9 million." (Note it took Venezuela 4 months to get that gold.)

Then you have the issue that most of the gold they accumulated was during the 1950s and 1960s (see Andreas' talk) so the bar would not meet current wholesale market standards. Again, the Deutsche Bank analysts: "We believe much of the gold held in NY is old, known as ‘Fed Melts’ or ‘Deep Storage’ bars and may not be acceptable as is for transaction without additional processing" and that a "secondary factor could perhaps be the reluctance to put undue strain on the gold refining sector". As a side point, if "they have no intention of selling gold" (link) then I think it is worth asking why does the gold needs to be recast to current standards?

So if you step into the shoes of a central banker, who enjoy their "independence" of politics, you can see that the audit report and the resulting political storm could be considered an annoyance and affront to their independence. They then see that there is significant cost and security risks to moving the gold so naturally there is resistance to having to concede to the demands for repatriation, the arguments for which are "not really convincing" to them.

As final proof of this reluctance ("where possible [we will] take up the audit court's suggestions"), we now have reports that they only took 5 tonnes from the US and 32 tonnes from France. Does that rate of actual repatriation sound like someone worried about their fellow central banking mates?

Should they keep their reserves in Germany? IMO all countries should. Does it make sense that the Fed doesn't allow viewings "in the interest of security and of the control process" when they allow tourists to see the vault? IMO no. Is it acceptable that the Bundesbank just trusts a custodian and accepts as an appropriate auditing process:
  • "in 2007, "following numerous enquiries," Bundesbank staff members were allowed to see the facility, but they reportedly only made it to the anteroom of the German reserves."
  • "auditors from the Bundesbank made a second visit in May 2011. This time one of the nine compartments was also opened, in which the German gold bars are densely stacked. A few were pulled out and weighed."
IMO no. But it is clear to me that their public statements and (lack of) action reflect the fact that they consider the repatriation as "irrational" rather than showing any distrust in the US or France central banks.


  1. If the Bundesbank deeply distrusted the fed and had legitimate fears. I very much doubt the public announcements would be any different from what they are at the moment. One real fear for Germany is keeping it's gold within reach of the EU. Make no mistake... it is all about the gold

  2. IMO it doesn't matter what the Bundesbank feels. As you note they are part of the same club/cartel as the Fed with a very different current product they market - ie. fiat currency.

    The move to audit and repatriate was the desire of the German people. Any national institute that ignores and effectively ridicules the choices of its people is acting in a treasonous way.

  3. As much as I appreciate Bron's steely determination not to be swayed away by the populist beliefs (not many to be found these days), but I think Bron has gone overboard in his conquest to prove a point against the Au-Bugs this time. In the current financial world nobody trusts others be it the Central bankers or anybody else. Fed might have played poker when German officials were asking for the gold behind the scenes. The mere thought that the sheer power Fed has to disrupt Euro itself would have silenced the German officials, so there is no need for the Fed declining to cooperate explicitly.

    Looking things collectively I think ZeroHedge-based bugs have a case here.

  4. From the linked article a reason for keeping German gold in New York:

    "The Bundesbank also objects to this notion for another reason. It says the gold is supposed to act as an emergency buffer. In the extreme situation of a currency collapse, the bankers say that the gold bars could easily and quickly be exchanged on location for pounds or dollars to pay urgent bills."

    seems nonsensical in so far as the gold if kept in Germany could be put into a USA or English "account" at the Bundesbank and used in the same emergency manner.

    Trust is a two way process is it not? Why are the US Central bankers more trustworthy than their German counterparts?

  5. 100% ACK, well said Bron.

    Now, since you're in the business, what's your take about the german gold refining rumours?

    Greets, AD

    "It says the gold is supposed to act as an emergency buffer. In the extreme situation of a currency collapse,..."
    I have watched this official statement/interview in its original german version on TV. To me it says: The Euro is sucks&doomed, therefore we better have some of that stuff in NY, to get at least some good old dollars.

  6. Bron,
    I think that's a fair round up of what's been reported.
    I'd like to add the following if I may:

    1. $9m to repatriate 160t (Venezuela’s gold) sounds like money well spent to me at roughly 0.15% of value...sure there's a pretty good security risk, but with thousands of tonnes of gold being transported around the globe each year I'm sure it can be worked through effectively.

    2. Central banks hold gold as "insurance against the breakdown of the international financial system" (source RBA) therefore any repatriation at the level of Germany's holdings would give a very clear signal that the 'insurance' may be needed soon. The Central Bankers (with huge currency holdings and "part of the same club") wouldn't want such a clear signal to hit the FX markets

    3. I'm not sure how you can have the view that the repatriation rate was decided by the Bundesbank? Surely it would have been by mutual agreement considering the circumstances in 2 above and my last paragraph.

    4. Would not the recasting be related to an audit and/or current valuation purposes for Germany's sake more so than getting it ready for sale?

    5. As you correctly point out, it's all a confidence game and they can't afford to show any lack of trust in any Central Bank. Labelling any other view as "irrational" plays the hand as expected.

    In Australia's case (also part of the club), our gold is used by the RBA as a management tool and therefore needs to be highly liquid (RBA Annual Report 2013).

    The time that it would take for Germany to repatriate its reserves and audit (recast)in one short burst would mean that 66% of Germany's foreign reserves would be out of action...I bet they can't afford to let that happen...and that's without coming across any 'issues'.

    I think Central Banks are stuck in their positions...whatever they may really be.

  7. PS, maybe I should have declared my position and posted as

  8. If central banks' aim is to undermine their credibility, they're overachieving.

    If the gold is there, annual delivery of 50 tonnes is easily doable and it should be done, for the credibility's sake alone. Five tonnes is a joke and an insult to the German people who are the owners of the gold.

  9. I am surprised how this author is employed? I think he does not have a fair mind, biased talks from both sides. The author seems to know soul of German Bundesbank.

  10. Bron,

    I am living in Germany. You clearly overestimate the public upheaval regarding gold holdings overseas. 99% of the German population is not interested in the Gold holdings of the Bundesbank nor they know where it is located. This is definitely not the reason for the repatriation.

    It is no secret that Bundesbank has a deep problem with Mario Draghi, therefore it is a simple conclusion that they do not want to have their "last standing currency" with somebody like Bernanke or Yellen. As Rickards explains, holdings overseas in London or NY does not make any sense now for Bundesbank. Thats my point of view.

    I really appreciate your comments, but this time it is to speculative.

  11. I think the point made is clear. CONFIDENCE in fiat currencies is paramount, and this focus on gold repatriation is damaging to this affect.
    As far as any speculation on who holds what gold, I think we are in store for some "surprises", but we are not yet at the point where the central banking "curtain" is about to be drawn back to reveal the "wizard of oz."
    That time, however, approaches (IMHO) quite a sooner than many predict.


    First, you are quoting speeches from 2012. My problem is that this was before the New York Fed took a whole year to provide 5 measly tonnes when China gets this amount in less than a day. You take at face value statements from representatives (I am being polite because I really want to add a number of descriptors) that become so steeped in "perception management" as to make Orwellian double speak seem positively lucid.

    Second, I may be uninformed here but since when did the repatriation of the German gold be required in good delivery bars. If Germany had deposited gold in the US and France, then if they had the brains that God gave a peanut they would have a list of what they deposited, in what form and purity. If what they deposited has been modified in any way, shape, or form It would make legal sense for me that the custodians who did this to have informed Germany. And then Germany still would have list of their modified holdings. Then delivery of enough gold to maintain credibility for both parties would not be a problem. The delivery of five tons (in one year) has gone from a tragedy to a farce.

    Third, if maintaining "confidence" in fiat is their goal, they SUCK at it. OneEyedBug is absolutely correct. To maintain credibility, they should have shipped over coin melt of 30 or 40 tons (New York shipment) and both Germany and the US could have said with hand over heart that this was what Germany originally stored fo safe keeping.

    As I see it, if the Bundesbank is dragging their feet on repatriation, it's not because they want to keep it in New York and Paris but because they know it's not BLOODY WELL there. Jim Rickards does some excellent work, but he dances around the physical delivery issues.

    I view the "As Forbes notes:" as a red herring, pretty weak and besides the point. nuf said.

    The central banks are in collusion on Gold but they seem to forget that it's NOT their gold but held in trust for their citizens. I don't think they're stupid but I DO think that they are delusional and have been drinking their own Koolaid.

    They have corralled their "brethren" so far. We'll see how ling this trust can last. But physical deliveries (and recasting to 1 kilo bars) is going to, in the end, bring this "central bank" era to a calamitous end. Whether any of these people land up decorating lamp posts remains to be seen. whether they think (or can justify it to themselves) that they were doing the "right" thing will be irrelevant.

  13. "they seem to forget that it's NOT their gold but held in trust for their citizens."

    just like it is "your tax money" right? LOL
    Grow up and learn what is yours and what is your emperors.
    So actually I really dont give a sh!t about "my" german gold, it is not mine, since I never ever will get it anyway, regardless if it is in NY, China or Frankfurt, it is the petty cash of my emperor.

  14. @AD

    Beware the thundering herd.


    I think the natives are restless.


    Oh Sinner Man


  15. "3. I'm not sure how you can have the view that the repatriation rate was decided by the Bundesbank? Surely it would have been by mutual agreement considering the circumstances in 2 above and my last paragraph."


    No doubt that there was consultation with the NY Fed, but it seems likely the rate of repatriation was requested by Bundesbank. It was the same rate (just over a longer time frame) as initially organised for testing purposes:

    "In the next three years, we will repatriate 50 tonnes of gold annually from New York to Germany. That will give us the opportunity to inspect these bars, melt them down and convert them into “Good Delivery Standard” bars."

    Bundesbank via ZH


    ...since when did the repatriation of the German gold be required in good delivery bars.


    It was not required, it was at the request of Bundesbank, see above.

  16. @BB

    From what I read of this which seems to be a translation of a Der Spiegel article, it seems the verification was to be done in Germany. This article throws up even more questions. Complying with the German court is one of them.

    So Germany wasn't asking for "Good Delivery Standard" bars but were going to perform this recasting themselves.

    Bundesbank gets tons of gold from New York

    The Court had determined the order of the Bundestag that the Federal Bank reviews its overseas gold reserves stored exactly. It is disputed whether the Bundesbank experienced for years practice sufficient to rely only on a written confirmation to the gold bars by the foreign central banks.

    The Court recommends that the Bundesbank to negotiate with the three foreign central banks the right to physical verification of stocks. With the implementation of this recommendation, the Bundesbank has begun according to the report. They also decided to bring in the next three years to 50 tons each of the past at the Fed in New York gold to Germany to get it here to undergo a thorough examination. In the report, several points are blackened. In effect, the paper is not clear exactly how much gold is in which foreign central bank.

    The information held in the Federal Bank headquarters holdings consist of 82,857 according to the report bullion stored mostly in sealed containers with 50 bars, which are kept in four separate locked safe boxes. Part of it (6183 bar) stored on open shelves, therefore in a separate vault – the so-called gold chamber. To secure the gold it says in the report: “The vault closure is double, the inner seals and the gold chamber under a triple lock.”

  17. Rickards said in the same piece:

    “[Countries] want physical custody of gold…[they're] positioning for the day when there’s a massive loss of confidence in paper money…

    "You’re seeing it with massive acquisitions of gold by Russia and China taking place through channels that bypass the London Bullion Market Association…They’re buying mines in Western Australia. They’re having the ore refined right there in Australia at the Perth Mint, and then shipping the gold straight to Shanghai.

    "They’re completely bypassing the London market where they minimize their market impact, which is a smart move. That’s what you would do if you were trying to buy gold and not run up the price. You would do everything in secret and that’s what’s going on.”

    Out of context it tends to contradict Rickard's Bundesbank-repatriation view.

    Note: GATA's extract doesn't appear in the linked paraphrased transcript on the source website of interviewer Tekoa Da Silva.

  18. Bundesbank is not really a Central Bank anymore - the ECB is - they were slighted and pushed out of the elite BIS Club to a degree. That's why their Reps could be twice bullied in NY. The real story is in leasing in days gone by when they and their smelters would bitch about the poor quality of gold they were getting from NY. The Yanks and BOE knew and didn't let on, other than to cut a side deal to try to keep people more or less happy. Thing is, they may have incriminated themselves on old gold holdings and re-smelting for SWAPS or Leases along with the FBNY and BOE. I don't know how long we have, especially if the Chinese dark banking deal slows them down, but we are headed for a train wreck....if the truth ever gets out.

  19. Ok, listening to the interview, the perspective becomes clear. Of course, Germany "has the gold" so there's no contradiction.

  20. @BB,
    The official statement would have to suggest that the repatriation rate came from Germany...its the only (weak) tactic they have.

  21. ROFLMAO!!


    Bullion Baron keeps resisting that German's decision is based on trust from Dave in Denver's blog to here. This is equivalent to lying 1000 times and hoping the audience would believe him.

    Germany is dealing with a superpower with nukes and troops on the German territory and Bullion Baron still thinks German's decision is based on trust?? Sure! You have a gun pointed at your head and of course you trust the power of the gun.

    The US has 200+ Boeing C-17 Globalmaster III, each of which can carry 60+ tonnes. Why does Germany need commercial flights and insurance? During the Berlin Blockade, the Allies transported 4700 tonnes of cargo daily to Berlin. So the US has suddenly become a miser? But Germany is a rich country and can of course foot the bill!

    If Mr Suchecki believes flights are not safe, we can use ships! Germany has 12 frigates and 5 corvettes and the US has 10 Nimitz class aircraft carriers. All can be used to transport the gold! If the soldiers couldn't protect the gold, do you think they could protect their motherlands??

    Oh, right. Mr Suchecki and Bullion Baron would insist that Germany wants something cheap. Cheap?? Germany spent 119 billion euros on the EFSF to bail out the PIIGS and Germany's annual military expenditure is 45 million USD. All of sudden, Germany grudges paying some money for her own affairs? What do we call this? Altruistic or Moronic?

  22. You clearly have no understanding of how gold vaults are operated and the logistic issues involved in getting large amounts of gold out of a vault - they don't run a loading dock like a supermarket warehouse.

    As to the flights/warships idea, yes that is possible, but what message would such a highly public process send about Germany's confidence in US fiat.

  23. y only question is, Bron, why did they take the gold from London?
    Are the Amis better CBankers than the English ones? Are they more trustworthy?

  24. come on, Bron......

    All the Germans had to do was to ask the Chinese about these "logistic issues". They seem to have this down to a science.

    If the Germans couldn't get 15 tons of gold on just one of their 71 Transall C-160 and give a good cover story for it's trip to New York and back............. stretching disbelief, is a gross understatement.

  25. Where did I say they couldn't move 15 or more tonnes in a month?

    I take issue with this idea that you can move such or more amounts in one go.

    Do you think Hugo trusted the central bankers? Yet it took him 4 months to get 160t. As we can be sure he wanted to get his gold ASAP, that would have to be the fastest rate possible.

  26. You said "You clearly have no understanding of how gold vaults are operated and the logistic issues involved in getting large amounts of gold out of a vault - they don't run a loading dock like a supermarket warehouse." But you didn't explain anything. Why? Just to show some mystique?

    You also said "As to the flights/warships idea, yes that is possible, but what message would such a highly public process send about Germany's confidence in US fiat." So Germany MUST show confidence in the US fiat? Why? Is it in the The Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany?

  27. 1. Because I'm busy right now and will deal with the logistics issue in a post.

    2. Because people questioning US fiat means opens the door to questioning all fiats, and central bankers. Read this http://www.salientpartners.com/epsilontheory/notes/American_Bandstand.html it is about maintaing the Narrative of Central Bank Omnipotence

  28. "As to the flights/warships idea, yes that is possible, but what message would such a highly public process send about Germany's confidence in US fiat."

    Hahahaha... If even the public can know so easily the tasks and routes of military aircraft/warships, don't you think it's too easy to work as a spy? Do you think a military force that can't keep such minimal secrecy can fight in a war?

  29. It is the getting of the gold out of Fed building that can't be done in secrecy. In fact the more army you have the more public it is. Have a hink about my loading dock statement.

  30. You have a bad habit of painting speculation as fact. A scenario equally as plausible as yours is that the New York Fed has leased/swapped/sold Germany's gold. The Bundesbank, as a member of the club, is hardly going to come out and humiliate the New York Fed by publicly acknowledging that Germany's gold, supposedly held in the U.S. is in fact gone. This would cause a global crisis in the gold market, hence the slow trickle of gold returned to Germany. This could quickly be cleared up by allowing a full independent audit of gold bullion held by the New York Fed, as well as actually establishing true ownership of the bars. However they don't seem too keen on that, do they.

  31. I doubt that the Bundesbank have a partnership of equals with the Fed. If they did, it would be a complete anomaly to the rest of american government (yes, the Fed is not govt). I'm not aware that america has any "partnership of equals" with any country. So, I'm sure they both had a "respective, professional meeting", but at the end of the day, the Fed advised the Bundesbank what would be an appropriate amount of gold to receive back. The Fed is an expert in these matters, and the Bundesbank knows to respect their professionalism. As Jim Rickards says long ago, if there is a currency crisis, the Fed will just seize the german gold and hand them a paper IOU. Does this sound like an equal partnership?

  32. Bron, you are not considering the repeated paper gold dumps, at COMEX. We have seen numerous multi-second intervals where prices are taken down by the offloading of huge tonnages of paper gold that overwhelm even robust demand. Someone is desperately trying to manage down the price of gold even at the cost of losing money.

    The COMEX gold dump that kicked off the April gold price collapse was even larger than more recent ones that triggered trading stops, although it was done over a multi-minute interval, rather than multi-second intervals. About 400 tons were reportedly sold in the morning of April 12th. About 300 tons more sold the following Monday morning.

    Logic tells us that someone is willing to bankroll non-economic short selling to manage the price of gold. The US government has been overtly managing gold prices for the entire history of the nation up until the late 1970s when they claim to have stopped. Even in 1867, when a NY gold trader tried to corner the gold market, then-President Ulysses Grant ordered the sudden sale of a huge tonnage of gold to destroy the upward manipulation scheme. Even before that, in 1963, with fears of national collapse having caused gold dollar coins to be worth triple the value of paper greenbacks, the US Congress passed the so-called "Anti-Gold futures Act", in an attempt to break the gold market.

    In the 1960's and 70s, with the dollar under great pressure from US deficit spending and high inflation, US officials also openly sold gold with the overt admission that the sales were designed to reduce prices. The world population is much larger, and US gold stocks much smaller, than before. It is no surprise that, after the failures in the 1970s, the US government would turn to covert methods starting in 1980. The market simply became too big to openly manage. This is documented in newly released archives, wherein former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was advised that the US had "lost control over the gold market."

    Eric Sprott discovered that US Census Bureau records show 5,000 tons of physical gold bullion exported from the USA, between 1992 and 2010, above and beyond what is possible given known levels of mining and scrap supply. That implies that US gold has been deployed for many years to support covert paper market manipulations.

    Where did this exported gold come from? The Federal Reserve' gold vault, underneath 33 Liberty Street, contains the only easily accessible location. Remember, Fort Knox, West Point and the Denver Mint are all guarded by the US Army. Taking the gold from those depositories would become public knowledge very quickly. Only the Fed could covertly supply 5,000 tons of gold for export. But, the USA owns only 2% of the gold held by the Fed. The rest is owned by foreign nations, including Germany.

  33. (continued from above)

    The balance of the gold exported from the USA necessarily came from gold held on behalf of foreign nations. The only remaining question is whether it was transported with or without their consent. The theory that the Fed's gold vault is nearly empty is strengthened by Alastair MacCleod's discovery that the April paper gold manipulation was backed not by the US Fed, but by the disappearance of some 1,300 tons of physical gold from the Bank of England's gold vault.

    Why was Bank of England gold used? Remember, the April gold smash that started on April 12, 2013 was prefaced by the dumping of some 400 tons of paper gold contracts created by derivatives dealers at COMEX. The day prior, on April 11, 2013, a meeting had been held at the US White House. This is a matter of official record. Every single CEO of every single primary dealer of the Federal Reserve attended this meeting, and it can be found on the White House's official calendar.

    Based on the proximity of the meeting to the next day's gold price smash, it is rather clear that the price reduction was a US Treasury operation. In all probability, the Fed was panicking at the thought that it needed to deliver gold to Germany when it didn't have any to deliver. A failure to deliver, or an admission that the German gold was stolen, would devastate the US dollar and economy. Wars have been started for less.

    There was no reason to use Bank of England physical gold to supply a US government operation. It would only happen if part of the manipulation event involved a location swap between the Bank of England and the US Treasury. There is no doubt in my mind that location swap liens have been placed against gold held at Fort Knox or another Army-guarded depository that is not easy to enter.

    If gold bars were still at the Federal Reserve, they would have been used directly. The implication, and it is a strong one, is that the Federal Reserve has loaned out most of the gold bars. Remember, JP Morgan had a division known as "Morgan Capital". It was dissolved by absorption into the corporate shell of the parent company, but it was not disbanded. The former Morgan Capital is still the main agent of central banks in the New York market. This includes carrying out policies laid down by the New York Federal Reserve and the Bank of International Settlements. Mysteriously, it is now taking delivery of a huge amount of gold futures contracts at COMEX. That implies that the firm is being asked to repay past gold loans, so that the Fed can come up with gold with which Germany and/or others can be repaid.

    Bottom line: The Federal Reserve vault is empty, and the Bundesbank probably knows it.

  34. In light of recent revelations that only 5 tons have been repatriated by the Fed over the past year, and 32 tons by the Bank de France, one must wonder about both entities. Repatriating gold from France does not even require air flights, and, yet, of the 374 tons that is supposed to be returned by that entity, in an entire year, only 32 tons have been delivered!

  35. Anon,

    The Sprott import gap theory debunked here http://fofoa.blogspot.com.au/2013/09/what-about-sprotts-4500-tonne-export-gap.html

    The Alsadiar Boe 1300t theory debunked here http://www.screwtapefiles.blogspot.com.au/2013/07/bank-of-england-vault-floor-layout.html

  36. Bron, I just read the attempt to "debunk" Eric Sprott's work. It is a very weak argument that revolves around a claim that "private" American sellers parted with the gold bullion. That is basically an impossibility. Remember, all gold bullion in the hands of banks, individuals and other entities was seized by the US government under President Franklin Roosevelt in 1933. That resulted in the coin-melt bars at the Fed and Fort Knox. At the beginning of the 1970s almost no gold, other than jewelry (old jewelry melt is the scrap supply and already counted) and numismatic coins. The vast majority of gold trading, in the USA, during the 1970s, when it became legal again to own gold bullion, was in the futures markets. Americans NEVER accumulated large quantities of private bullion in bar form. The only physical gold, accumulated by Americans in the 1970s, during the gold fever period, were gold coins. Census statistics have two categories of exports in gold, separating gold coins from non-coin bullion. It would be extraordinarily unlikely for private owners of coins to melt them down into bars to export, since the coins are worth more, everywhere in the world, in coin form. Since Americans and American banks, by and large, accumulated ONLY gold coins and futures contracts, during the 70s, the source of the gold bullion bars being exports CANNOT be private American sellers.

  37. The German people would have had a better chance of getting their gold back from the Russians. The role the Fed may be playing in propping up the EU banks may explain why the Bundesbank is not raising more of a fuss over the lack of response to their request for their golds return.

  38. Anonymous on 22 January, 2014 08:55: No, you clearly didn't read the attempt to "debunk" Eric Sprott; not if you came away with the notion that FOFOA tries to explain the discrepancy with private exports. Please read it again - all the way through this time!