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Archive for February, 2013

Buy Gold – AAA rated for 6000 years

Monday, February 25th, 2013

The UK has now joined other developed economies, like the US and France, and has lost its precious AAA credit rating.

George Osborne promised in 2009 that it would his top priority if he became The Chancellor.

Obviously not true then or he’s incompetent.

Similar to every budget statement ever given which make wild predictions of growth, inflation targets and unemployment targets – none are ever right, all are revised down consistently. This is seldom reported in the media who play the game of making a noise around Budget Day but never following up with what actually happens, analyzing the figures and revealing if the budget was right. Is the Chancellor any good at his job? Are his panel of celebrity economists and advisors right? They all share the same path of being posh twits with an expensive education but none of them seem to be effective as they are consistently wrong.

It begs the question why on earth are we still trusting these political prostitutes.
We are expected to pay for a mess they continuously keep creating.
They are never affected personally as they have the means to live away from reality and hardship.
They are never wrong or culpable either – a by-product of political class immunity.

Politicians would act differently if they were on performance related pay as would greedy civil servants.
But they’re not and so they keep on making a mess and people keep closing their minds and eyes to it.

If losing AAA status is not the Chancellor’s fault as he stated clearly on TV then who is responsible?
When will these parasites who suck large salaries out of our economy for being incompetent be brought to justice. Never, they are given huge lump sum pay-offs (paid for by taxes).
The truth is Governments don’t care about AAA ratings really -they only care about their own personal plans which is to get re-elected or ensure a cushy well-paid, Directorship & speaking tour post-politics

The UK economy will suffer from the increased borrowing costs and impact on Sterling.

£ Sterling has been downgraded as a result.

The problem with paper currency is that you can print more of it by just having paper and a printing press. The pool of paper is increased but no value is added so the overall value remains the same thus each part is reduced by a diluting effect. If you print the same amount of dollars already in existence again each dollar bill would be worth an equivalence of 50c because there would be twice as many bills in circulation.

I am no great economist by far but I do confess to being logical and possessing a modicum of common sense.
Treasury departments with their great plethora of economic advisors the world over produce budgets like clockwork and they always produce a great huh Ha in the media. However, what is sorely missing is an evaluation of their worth as they are always wrong and often wide of the mark.

The good news is that since Basle III Gold has been reclassified from atier 3 to a tier 1 asset, effectively allowing it to be used as money.

This is no surprise as Gold has had a AAA rating for 6000 years.

Gold has stored value, created trade routes and whole economies because it has something paper money never will have – Integrity of value.
Remember Gold can never fall to zero value but most other investments can – paper deals and promises are no match for a real tangible physical asset that is recognised the world over.

Buying gold is a vote against further control by banks and central banks.
Buying gold is an act for freedom.

Right now is an excellent time to enter the market since the price consolidation.
The Global economy is still sorely damaged and there is no supposed recovery happening soon so don’t be fooled and protect yourself before it’s too late.

An Olympian Task at the Trial of the Pyx – 2012

Thursday, February 14th, 2013

The Trial of the Pyx is an ancient custom, and indeed a trial, dating back many centuries. You can read a previous article here. The 2012 trial may have had an added dimension. The jury would have literally had an Olympian task added to their duties this year.

A 1kg Gold coin was created to commemorate London hosting the 2012 Olympic Games. The coin is legal tender, having a face value of £1,000 and retailed for £100,000. Since the price of 1kg of Gold is, at the time of writing, just below £40,000, this represents a premium of 250%!! We know that one of the main premium drivers in investment Gold coins is rarity and that must explain this enormous markup. Only 60 have been minted and all are sold and in the hands of private collectors. Normally, the 1971 Coinage Act would limit the weight but it was specially amended to allow this coin to be made. It was produced by renowned sculptor Sir Anthony Caro.

There is an interesting video which originally appeared on The Daily Telegraph website.

GOLDEN NUGGETS: WHAT ARE SILVERSMITHS?

Friday, February 8th, 2013

An occasional series of curiosities of Gold, its history and ideas about it.

By Mark Rogers

At first blush that looks like a daft question, but not when you know the answer, which is that silversmiths are goldsmiths.

I was visiting my goldsmith friend Jocelyn Burton just recently and the subject came up. We were discussing a book I had found cataloguing the hallmarks of London’s goldsmiths from the 17th to the 19th centuries, and she suggested that, as it was unlikely that the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths would want another copy, The Silver Society might be interested. Why, I asked, would The Silver Society be interested in the hallmarks of goldsmiths? Because, she replied, it is full of silver hallmarks. That only perplexed me further, so she explained that historically no distinction was made: a goldsmith was a craftsman who worked in gold and silver. At that point the light dawned and I realised that of course there is no Worshipful Company of Silversmiths, there was no need: goldsmiths inevitably worked in silver as well, and the craft is named for the more precious of the metals.

As we were discussing the prospectus I had written for her next major project (which shall remain secret for now), I asked had it been wrong, then, to describe her in it as Gold- and Silversmith of Holborn? Well, she replied, in all accuracy, yes, but, she thought, that as a distinction within the craft has been growing of late it was probably useful to spell it out like that, not so much to reinforce the distinction itself, but to emphasise the roll of the goldsmith.

How recently has this distinction been made? The Silver Society was founded in the late fifties to foster the study of silver in its own right, so that would be a good date to start from, but it is only very recently that The Goldsmiths’ Company decided that it would hold a separate British Silver Week to accommodate the increased number of smiths who only work in silver. How has this come about? An obvious answer is that silver is vastly cheaper than gold and so is more affordable to potential clients. It is a less risky investment for the smith. And perhaps, we thought somewhat cynically, that as so many of the younger generation of smiths are not taught the traditional craft, and perhaps disdain it, less money gets wasted on the unfortunate results. Alas, the world of smithery has gone the way of the rest of the arts, where all is “concept” and “design” and little depends on ability.

Jocelyn Burton insists in her own work not only on the highest standards of craft and aesthetic delight but also on utility: if it is a teapot, for example, it must be capable of pouring, if it is cutlery, it must be balanced and a pleasure to hold.

She reckons that there are some 2,000 smiths in the UK, only 200 of whom have any grounding and ability in the traditional craft – and of those 200, the best work for her.

For a statement of what she tries to accomplish in her work, please go here, where you will also find a link to her online exhibition/catalogue.

TRADING SUSPICIONS

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

By Mark Rogers

Currently being played in London is a revival of British dramatist Peter Nichols’s 1977 farce Privates on Parade, which is based on the writer’s own experiences  in the Combined Services Entertainment,  the wartime ENSA (Entertainments National Service Association) in its post-war incarnation, and is set in the Malaya Emergency. The revival has received rave reviews, which are posted in large display outside the theatre.

The Guardian reviewer summarises the politics lying behind the play, which is posed as a question: what was the British Army doing in Malaya anyway? Was it “protecting a corner of the empire from communism, or preserving the commercially vital rubber trade?”

This is the sort of confusion that underpins the anti-globalization view, and, still, today, the subject of communism. In the first place, the Army was putting down an insurrection: that it was a communist one means that it was more than merely a local one. The rubber trade was indeed vital. And given that we know what communists do when they take over an economy, the real answer to that question is: both.

But there is a further moral and intellectual maladjustment lying behind the phrasing, and one that plagued the twentieth century, and which it is still the fashion to indulge in.

Why is it assumed that trade is dishonest and that an economic motive is invariably tacky, devious and immoral? Indeed, the need to dress up the question as implying that the first motive was a cover-up for the latter, implies that so immoral are economic motives that even those who entertain them know that this is the case. But – people need jobs, people need goods (even anti-capitalist cyclists need rubber for their tyres), these are the motives for economic activity from time immemorial, and they are blatantly obvious. Marx it was who began the habit of thinking that economic motives were furtive, but another source of the blame for this type of thinking must be Keynes who had a more aesthetic disdain for economic motives.

Readers curious as to why articles of this nature should be appearing on a gold investment website should read: GOLDCOIN.ORG: MIXING POLITICS AND NUMISMATICS

And for background on the writer: CONFESSIONS OF A LAW AND ORDER ANARCHIST

And for a review of one of the most important books on the financial crisis published last year: THE MESS WE’RE IN: WHY POLITICIANS CAN’T FIX FINANCIAL CRISES

DEVELOPMENT: IS IT THE RIGHT WORD?

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

By Mark Rogers

Developing economies. Less developed countries. Third world countries. And then of course, developed economies.

But is there not a question being begged by these terms?

Let us look again at what I characterised as Keynes’s self-indictment:

“We take as given the existing skill and quantity of available labour, the existing quality and quantity of available equipment, the existing technique, the degree of competition, the tastes and habits of the consumer, and disutility of different intensities of labour and of the activities of supervision and organization, as well as the social structure.”

I call this a self-indictment because it displays an extraordinary degree of complacency and ignorance about how economies work (see the previous article in which I examine Lord Bauer’s response to the Keynesian approach).

What is fundamentally wrong about the Keynesian starting point is that not only is it not a starting point, it isn’t even an endpoint: this paragraph posits a certain stasis as the foundation of an economy. It is true historically that economies can stagnate and thus civilizations disappear, but any functioning economy, such as those Lord Bauer discovered when he left the academy and looked at what was actually happening in West Africa and Malaya, is dynamic, in short developing.

Looked at from the other end, the idea of “development” as a comparative term also suggests that there is an end result, i.e. something called a “developed economy”. But as we have seen in The Knowledge Economy, the western economies are headed on a path to what we could call “de-development”. With heavy government regulation and intervention, with QE, with the loss of paper trails in, for example, the subprime mortgage crisis, the legal underpinning of a free economy seems to be in freefall. I suppose that is one form of dynamism, but it is not a desirable one.

Readers curious as to why articles of this nature should be appearing on a gold investment website should read: GOLDCOIN.ORG: MIXING POLITICS AND NUMISMATICS

And for background on the writer: CONFESSIONS OF A LAW AND ORDER ANARCHIST

And for a review of one of the most important books on the financial crisis published last year: THE MESS WE’RE IN: WHY POLITICIANS CAN’T FIX FINANCIAL CRISES

JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES: A SELF-INDICTMENT

Friday, February 1st, 2013

By Mark Rogers

Keynes described his working assumptions thus:

“We take as given the existing skill and quantity of available labour, the existing quality and quantity of available equipment, the existing technique, the degree of competition, the tastes and habits of the consumer, and disutility of different intensities of labour and of the activities of supervision and organization, as well as the social structure.”

Lord Bauer says of this passage:

“This drastic simplification is doubtfully appropriate even for the analysis of short-term growth in an advanced economy. It is altogether inappropriate to discussion of the long-term progress of less developed countries.” (Reality and Rhetoric, first quoted here.)

It is a sizeable package one is being asked to take for granted; indeed, once all these things have been taken as given, what is there left to explain?!

As a young man, first entering onto the study of development economics, of which he was to become a master and for many years the leading critic of the orthodoxies that prevailed in the academy, Peter Bauer spent many years in West Africa and Malaya (as it then was). His detailed field work made him realise how inadequate the prevailing attitudes were, lacking as they did any substance in actual knowledge of the less developed economies as they actually were. He says:

“I came to this general area through two studies, one of the rubber industry in South-East Asia and the other of the organization of trade in the former British West Africa. I spent more than ten years on these studies during the 1940s and fifties, when I was for substantial periods in each of the two regions. What I saw was starkly at variance with the components of the emerging consensus of mainstream development economics.”

And he explicitly points the finger of blame at Keynes as having, through the “givens” listed above, infected the academic understanding of these matters. What need even to go into the field to study the farmers and traders and politicians and social structures of the ldcs when Keynes so conveniently lets you off the hook of the need for evidence.

Hunter Lewis (first drawn on here and here) points out in his book Where Keynes Went Wrong that Keynes quite explicitly, as it were, provides no evidence for his economic musings and theorizings. What Peter Bauer encountered in the field was the living refutation of the Keynesian approach to economics.

Readers curious as to why articles of this nature should be appearing on a gold investment website should read: GOLDCOIN.ORG: MIXING POLITICS AND NUMISMATICS

And for background on the writer: CONFESSIONS OF A LAW AND ORDER ANARCHIST

And for a review of one of the most important books on the financial crisis published last year: THE MESS WE’RE IN: WHY POLITICIANS CAN’T FIX FINANCIAL CRISES