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Archive for November, 2015

Silver Bullion Coins on Allocation at Major National Mints

Thursday, November 12th, 2015

Silver Investment Bars Also in Short Supply
(Washington, D.C.  October 13, 2015) – Retail investors in recent months have seized the opportunity to significantly increase their holdings of silver bullion coins and, to a lesser extent, bars.  Due to strong demand, the U.S. Mint, the Royal Canadian Mint, Australia’s Perth Mint, the Austrian Mint and the British Royal Mint have put their silver bullion coins on allocation, where the volume of distribution of coins is controlled due to bottlenecks in the manufacturing process. This is an unprecedented industry-wide phenomenon. In recent history, putting bullion coins on allocation has only occasionally been done by the U.S. Mint.  The practice points to considerable tightness in the silver coin business at the moment.

VERA SILVER ZANZIBAR ONE OUNCE

VERA SILVER ZANZIBAR ONE OUNCE

Globally, silver bullion coin sales reached an all-time high of 32.9 Moz in the third quarter of this year, according to GFMS Thomson Reuters data. This volume was a 74% quarter-on-quarter and 95% year-on-year increase.  Sales in North America, Europe, Japan and other Asian countries (predominantly China) saw quarter-on-quarter growth of 74%, 72%, 95% and 202%, respectively.
As a result, lead times for silver coins have been stretched from immediate delivery to 3-4 weeks in some cases.  This is an unusual occurrence in the industry, with several dealers stating this is the first time they have experienced lag times for certain coin products.  Additionally, the shortage is apparently both a supply and demand issue.  While demand is very strong, given the slow global economic outlook and attractive silver price, the mints are finding it difficult to source the blanks needed to produce the coins.
“It is clear that investors are continuing to demonstrate their desire for silver bullion coins and we encourage national mints across the globe to examine their manufacturing pipeline to ensure that this strong demand is met with immediate fulfillment,” stated Michael DiRienzo, Executive Director of the Silver Institute. Read more
We also noticed a greater demand for the Vera Silver Zanzibar, our legal tender silver coin. Do not hesitate to read our article about this coin at 99.95% pure silver.

This Vera Silver Zanzibar one ounce is part of a very limited edition (only 50K coins will be struck). This is the very first coin of a long Map coins family.

Why does Austria wish to repatriate its gold ?

Tuesday, November 10th, 2015

Austria official gold reserves 2009 - 2013

Austria official gold reserves 2009 - 2013

Many central banks around the world are aware the international monetary system is moving away from the US dollar and that the role of gold will (officially) be much greater in the future. In this development central banks benefit from a smooth and slow transition to a new system, as sudden shocks will bring the global economy in a free fall and more time provides better preparations. Central bankers prefer slow and attentive change. Signs of the slow development towards gold by central banks can be seen across several continents. In Europe slowly more and more countries are repatriating their gold from the UK (Bank Of England) and the US (Federal Reserve Bank Of New York).

Austria reserve assets

Austria reserve assets

Certainly not all their gold but weighed amounts and in the case of Germany and Austria the gold is repatriated over several years. If all European countries would repatriate all their gold at once it would cause a panic in financial markets. In the East, Russia and China are increasing their gold reserves every single month by relative small amounts, respecting the slow development towards gold. Asian central bankers differ from their European colleagues because they verbally acknowledge the role of gold in finance.

In 2004 Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People’s Bank Of China, said:

… China’s gold market should move from commodity trade to financial product trade. Gold is a commodity that combines the attributes of a currency, financial commodity and general commodity. … gold still has a strong financial nature and remains an indispensable investment tool. In financial centers in the world, the gold market – together with the money market, securities market and FX market – constitutes the main part of the financial market.

Obviously all these central banks are aware what the future will hold. How else can we explain Europe’s repatriating gold policy and Asia’s buying gold policy?

Candid statements from European central bankers regarding their gold policy are scarce. The slow developmenttowards goldpreviously described is usually covered in excuses by European policy makers. I can recall the Dutch Minister Of Finance, Jeroen Dijsselbloem, was asked in a television interview why the Dutch central bank (DNB) had covertly repatriated 123 tonnes of gold from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York in 2014. Dijsselbloem answered with a condescending smile, saying, “ the decision was made by DNB to spread its gold stock in a more balanced way, but it was of little importance”. Of course the military operation that DNB had carefully planned and executed over the course of two years was of utmost importance for the financial well being of the Netherlands, but Dijsselbloem could not openly acknowledge this importance because of the sensitivity of the subject. Just like Jean-Claude Juncker said in 2011:

“When it becomes serious, you have to lie.”

Read more …

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Thoughts
"For a mountaineer, the important things are the effort, the posture and the muscles. The rope that holds him serves no purpose when everything works but it gives him a sense of security. In the same way, all gold does is ensure confidence; it's a safe haven."