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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 …

Buy silver before it’s too late !

Thursday, October 29th, 2015
silver-mine

Silver mine

We would like to share with you an article written by Jeffry Lewis

The ongoing plight of the long term value investor continues – seemingly without end. However, decades of exuberance and greed have colluded. The financial establishment has created an accident waiting to happen. The mainstream has not “priced in” risk, which makes it even harder to travel the road less traveled.
And once the accident happens, it may be too late.
If silver prices were to suddenly move back toward natural price equilibrium, there would naturally (not always the best thing) be a rush to get on board.

This could very likely induce a shortage, which would temporarily stoke a new monetary enthusiasm for the buy side.

There would be some selling, but we remember that a large amount personally held scrap was purged years ago in its last run toward what would be at least $150 in today’s inflated dollars.

Of course, that was followed by a massive and complete drawdown in world government stockpiles.

There is only one way to protect one’s wealth : by buying gold and silver ! it is possible and you can do so by contacting us. You will be given a large choice of gold and silver coins to invest in with the possibility of free storage in our Swiss vaults outside the banking system !


Gold price goes for $1,300

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015
gold-coins-vault-600

How far can it go ?

Gold on Tuesday made a dash for the crucial $1,300 an ounce level as investors seek a safe haven from turmoil on financial markets rocked by the confidence-shaking move by the Swiss central bank last week.

In heavy trade of more than 20m ounces by noon in New York, gold for delivery in February – the most active futures contract – jumped just over $20 an ounce from Monday’s close hitting a high of $1,297.20 an ounce – the highest since August 19.

It’s the eighth positive trade session in a row and the metal is now trade up over $110 or 8.7% in 2015.

Gold’s gains this year also comes into the teeth of a rampant US dollar. On Tuesday, the greenback hit fresh 12-year highs against the currencies of major US trading partners, with the dollar index topping 93.

Since August 18, the last time gold could be traded above USD 1,300 an ounce, the USD has strengthened by 12%.

Commodities priced in US dollar usually have an inverse relationship to the world’s reserve currency, particularly gold. The US dollar index record high of 164.72 reached in February 1985 coincided with the bottom in the price of gold of $284.25 an ounce during that same month.

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Gold on Tuesday made a dash for the crucial $1,300 an ounce level as INVESTORS seek a safe haven from turmoil on financial markets rocked by the confidence-shaking move by the Swiss central bank last week.

In heavy TRADE of more than 20m ounces by noon in New York, GOLD for delivery in February – the most active futures contract – jumped just over $20 an ounce from Monday’s close hitting a high of $1,297.20 an ounce – the highest since August 19.

It’s the eighth positive trading session in a row and the metal is now trading up over $110 or 8.7% in 2015.

Gold’s gains this year also comes into the teeth of a rampant US dollar. On Tuesday, the greenback hit fresh 12-year highs against the currencies of major US trading partners, with the dollar index topping 93. Since August 18, the last time GOLD TRADED above $1,300 an ounce, the USD has strengthened by 12%.

Commodities priced in US dollar usually have an inverse relationship to the world’s reserve currency, particularly gold. The US dollar index record high of 164.72 reached in February 1985 coincided with the bottom in the PRICE OF GOLD of $284.25 an ounce during that same month.

Dollar up, gold down; why?

Thursday, September 18th, 2014

The U.S. Dollar Index closed last Friday at 84.25. For the ninth consecutive week, the Dollar Index has finished higher than the quote from the end of the previous week. This is the longest string of consecutive weekly increases since the first quarter of 1997.

The U.S. dollar reached its highest level in six years against the Japanese yen.

This is the highest the index has been over the past couple of years except for two days in May 2013.

In reaction, the price of gold fell to a multi-month low and silver dropped to its lowest levels since May 2010.

There are several reasons why the dollar is temporarily strong. The economies across Europe are proving to be weaker than the politicians were pretending, which had encouraged some investors to abandon the euro and replace it with the dollar. The military actions and economic sanctions involving the Ukraine and Russia are also putting more pressure on Europe than the United States. American politicians are still talking about the economic news in the United States being positive rather than negative as several reports (a horrible jobs report for August, mortgage applications are declining precipitously, the percentage of home sales being settled for cash is dropping sharply, a growing number of people qualifying for food stamps, the Federal Reserve’s continuing inflation of the money supply at far higher levels than it is admitting, and so forth) are indicating. This is quieting potential clamor from the public as we enter the final few weeks before elections.

However, behind the scenes, various regulatory changes are coming that are all likely to hurt American financial markets.  As they impact the value of other kinds of assets, there will be fallout for the values of gold and silver.

On Aug. 28, the CME Group, which owns the COMEX, NYMEX, GLOBEX and other commodity and financial exchanges in New York and the Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in Chicago, announced a change to its Rule 575, which became effective Sept. 15.

– See more at: http://www.numismaticnews.net/article/dollar-up-gold-down-why?et_mid=692339&rid=246216569#sthash.Dig5y3l7.dpuf

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Australia’s Perth Mint gold sales hit four-month high

Friday, July 4th, 2014

Gold sales from Australia’s Perth Mint, which refines all the output in the world’s second-biggest producer of the precious metal, hit the highest level in four months last month, driven by a rally in prices that stimulated demand.

Sales of gold coins and minted bars rose to 39,405 ounces from 36,127 ounces in May and the most since February, according to data from the mint published by Reuters. In comparison, the mint sold 47,692 ounces in June last year.
US sales, instead, went downhill, with American Gold and Silver Eagle bullion coins dropping when compared to the same period in 2013. The decline for the silver comes as the US Mint recently lifted their allocation program, which had been limiting the number of coins authorized purchasers were able to order.
During June 2014, Silver Eagle sales reached 2,692,000 ounces. This amount was down from the prior month when sales were a more robust 3,988,500 ounces. The amount is down by 17.8% compared to the year ago period of June 2013 when sales were 3,275,000 ounces.
Extract : Mining.com and Reuters

The Premium on Gold Coins

Friday, April 4th, 2014

Some of you have been enquiring about the Premium. What is it ? What does it mean ? Here are a few answers.

sovbb3

Sovereign Price= Premium + Price of Gold

In the United Kingdom, the current premium is dependant on source, quantity, supply and demand and currently can range from 5% to over 40% depending on source and condition.  But what is this premium for gold coins?

The premium is the difference between the current gold value contained in the coin and the price paid for the coin and is usually expressed as a percentage. The price and premium depend on market factors at the time and are constantly changing.

e.g. a Sovereign may contain gold with a value of £160 but be worth £199 and for a newly minted proof coin £299 . The difference between these two figures, expressed as a percentage, is the premium thus a the proof coin is sold at approximately 46% premium

The premium for a coin is linked to several criteria:

· production: The smaller the coins and the harder they are to produce, the more chance there is that they will have a high premium, this principle that explains why the smaller half sovereign have a higher premium .  The quality of a proof coin usually demands a higher premium

· speculation: the premium changes to reflect supply and demand. In a period where more coins are being sold than are being bought, the premium is zero or slightly negative (in this situation, coins of moderate quality are often melted down). When there is high demand or excess speculation, the premium resulting from this speculation climbs sharply. The premium is therefore a very good indicator of the balance between supply and demand, the latter’s potential and also what actions should be taken. A negative, zero or slightly positive premium should stimulate purchases whilst a high premium of should lead to selling.

calc

· conservation: a quality coin that has no trace of being handled will retain all its premium. Poor conservation conditions (contact with fingers, scratches, wearing…) results in a reduction of 4 – 10% and can lead to a negative premium. When this happens the coins are melted down and sold for the price of their precious metal

· collectors: some coins are rarer due to them being minted in small numbers or because they have special characteristics related to numismatic rarity criteria. In certain years where very few coins were minted a sovereign can cost several thousand pounds depending on its rarity and its condition. This value is therefore completely unrelated to the value of the coin’s gold content.

· geographical location: gold coins are not equally popular in every country and generally speaking coins that were the currency of a country are more popular in that country e.g.: Napoleons are very popular in France but are much less well known in China or the USA and people there prefer to buy local coins the exception is the Sovereign which is the most popular in the UK but also has an international reputation.

Premium differential: This the differential between the basic (normal ) premium and the highest sale price usually in times of crisis where there is great demand.

Below is some translated correspondence that occurred with our partner in France:

LORetLARGENT.info editor and a reader about the premium:

Xavier (blog reader): Why do you consider that the ingot is “banal”? Although its premium is not high, or even zero, isn’t this the simplest means of buying investment gold at its market price? When the price goes up (very high, I hope), the deal becomes interesting. A coin currently has a high premium so is interesting if you want to sell but not necessarily if you want to buy…

LORetLARGENT.info: If you want to invest 2,000 Euros, don’t buy an ingot. Wait until the premium for Napoleons drops below 5% to develop your position.
The premium has a real lever effect. Consider the cases of buying, in a few months, an ingot or the same value of 20 FRF Napoleons with a premium of zero. If you sell when you need your capital (don’t forget that gold is an insurance against the crisis but not against life’s challenges – in this latter case, other investments are better), you will have at least 20% more for equal weights with your coins (the premium) without considering the greater ease of selling them.
In summary, starting from the principle that gold coins are an anti-crisis investment, an insurance where you get back what you pay (normally insurance is lost money), you have to take account of the concept of the premium from the start, especially the premium differential. You must buy gold coins with the greatest potential growth from their base premium (the average premium outside of crisis periods) and the highest premium recorded during a crisis. There is a differential of 5% for an ingot but 76% for a half Napoleon. Consider what this means for our investment of 2,000 Euros when we come to sell. Obviously, the coins must be in excellent condition. (Above all, avoid buying via generalist on-line auctions where about 1/3 of the coins are good for the smelter even if the photos are flattering).
Bear in mind that the only thing that should determine your gold purchase (coins or other) is its resale (when and how). Usually, you should do it quickly and at the best price. The ingot is not a winner in this type of competition…

Xavier: (…) Can the premium fall as the value of gold increases ?

LORetLARGENT.info: Trying to compare the changes in the price of gold with the premium on a Napoleon is like trying to compare the ethics of American and English bankers with those of French households. My proposition is a bit exaggerated but it is a good reflection of the fact that the criteria leading to an increase in the price of gold are not the same as those determining the premium on a Napoleon. To confirm this, look at the sharp rise in the price of gold in March 2008 and the dead calm for the premium during the same period. In March, the French only had a vague idea that a crisis was coming and continued to sell Napoleons until September 2008. You should be aware that our own bankers were using every conceivable method to try and sell gold coins to us in January 2008 whilst they had no difficulty in offering us LYXOR GOLD. In summary, we are talking about the same precious metal but certainly not the same investment instrument and the premium is an excellent indicator of the difference between the price of gold on the markets, linked mainly to changes in the price of oil and the US Dollar, and the value of gold coins sold in France, which is more linked to the moral of small investors with tangible values such as the readers of this blog.

Xavier: OK, I accept your arguments, which are logical. It’s a question of investment instruments.



Gold as a private currency

Friday, March 28th, 2014

For the system to function once again, gold should constitute a private currency for which only users would be the guarantors; as in the spirit of SALT (system or service of local exchange), but with the advantage of a quick exchange, which would not rely on waiting for a service rendered by a neighbour.
“Gold was always the currency of choice of the free man, but the statesman does not want free men.” (Andre Dorais, in Le Québécois, September 21st, 2009).
Over recent years, gold has been exploited for political purposes, for instance the Chinese government’s policies on increasing gold holdings, or, equally politically inspired, Gordon Brown’s sale of nearly half the UK reserves. Yet gold is essentially apolitical: it has the same value beyond borders; it is the savings of conservative voters, the private currency of people of the left and even of the anarchists who await a new world order.
Could gold then be the federator, the currency of the future around which everyone would get together and exchange, without an intermediary as manipulator? It has after all the necessary qualities to constitute a private currency.

In opposition to the currency issued by a central bank, private currency is a financial security issued by a private bank (or free bank). A contract defines the conditions according to which the issuer guarantees the value and the liquidity of its currency, as well as the standard by which to measure the value of the currency.
If the value which one gives to a currency remains subjective, that of gold is universally recognized so that it can very well be used as a “value meter” (of standard) for any currency – and gold has itself the advantage of having once been actual currency, for example, French 20F &10F Napoleons or British gold sovereigns (Fig. 6).
Moreover, the value of the private currency is decided only by the currency contract, the private contract signed between the issuer and the user: thus, its value does not depend on the political whims of a state. The growing mistrust of citizens with respect to official currencies may one day encourage them to use a non-governmental currency tied to gold. It would thus constitute a true shield to the benefit of individual freedom.

Amazingly it is in the US that this has already started happening in the state of Utah where they have remonetized gold. Discontent with the erosion of their wealth and purchasing power arising from the effects of quantitative easing (devaluation of the dollar) citizens have campaigned for and forced new laws into being that have led to the establishing of a state depository where gold and silver coins can be stored. This new currency allows participants to conduct commercial transactions including paying their taxes using the value of their stored gold. They have introduced a card which can be “loaded” with dollar equivalents of their gold holdings so even though they have to spend dollars it is deducted from their precious metal account balance. This is effectively the reintroduction of the Gold Standard in one forward-thinking state whose citizens have lost patience with the dollar and the “untouchables” who manipulate it.

Extract from the English adaptation of the French book : L’or, Un Placement qui (R)Assure (2011) written by Jean-François Faure,President and founder of AuCoffre.com.

Mexican Funds could consider investing in gold

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

It would seem that Mexican pension funds are interested in gold and in particular after the lifting of years of strict investment regulations according to the World Gold Council.

Legislation from 2012 allowed Mexican pension funds to invest in gold and other commodities in 2013 and more over in foreign assets. Not such a long time ago, we also read about some pension funds in Japan (which actually hold the world’s second largest pool of retirement assets) which have also decided to invest in gold.

Mexican pension funds account for 22% of Mexican savings and could double up in assets by 2018 according to the Wall Street Journal . Although they will have to determine how much they can invest in commodities and foreign assets, they won’t be able to invest more than 10% of their assets in commodities.

One has to know that pension fund interest in gold rarely impacts the gold price  since it plays a very small role in the global market estimated at $236. According to Bloomberg, it was estimated  in 2012 that only $9 billions in Mexican pension assets will be eligible for commodities investment overall while US hedge funds sold gold heavily in 2013 .

It will be interesting to know how Mexican pension funds perform with gold in the future. There again, are we talking about ETF or real physical gold … ?

To be continued …

When the Bank of Canada decides to sell its gold coins in order to balance the books … or pay the public debt

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

According to the Globe and Mail, The Bank of Canada would have decided to melt down more than 200.000 gold coins from the years 1912 to 1914. Some collectors have been curious to find out what had happened to the $5 and $10 gold coins that Ottawa had pulled out of circulation. Finally, the Bank of Canada informed that they would be offering 30.000 of the bank’s 246.000 coins for sale to collectors.

This sale is just one of the recent moves of the federal government which has decided to unload public assets as it moves to balance the books by 2015, so they say ….

Just like many other foreign governments, they have decided to sell public assets at low prices so to pay off their debts. We are talking about public assets such as foreign embassies, port lands, gold or silver coins, paintings and so on … For example, the $10 dollar coins were sold for either $1,000 or $1,750 each, depending on their quality and premium. This sale created a kind of gold rush among the collectors.

Some buyers are very proud to hold gold coins that had been sitting at the Bank of Canada in Ottawa for several decades and were officially recorded as part of Canada’s gold holdings in the Exchange Fund Account of foreign currency.

On the other side, some collectors are quite unhappy about this public sale since it drove down the value of their collections.

So far the federal government has not published the official figure of the coins sold although the sale is closed at the present time. Needless to say that the Canadian government can expect to make some profit from the coin sales. The Canadian government will consider other options for the remaining gold coins either melting them down or plan any resale …

Let’s not forget the main explanation provided in a private agreement between the Department of Finance, the Royal Canadian Mint and the Bank of Canada  which objective was to improve the liquidity of the government’s assets, provide a piece of Canadian history to coin collectors and to “extract value from coin sales for the government and taxpayers.


Alternative Currencies are not new

Monday, January 27th, 2014

Around the world there are numerous examples of local currencies which have been introduced to promote local business, local produce, customer loyalty and awareness to trade issues and climate control. They all tend to be run in parallel to the national currency but are based on creating a thriving local, fully functioning economy incentivised by promotions and discounts. In recent years they have been launched in the UK as part of the Transitions Towns initiative and these include the Totnes Pound, The Brixton Pound, The Stroud Pound and the Lewes Pound. Lewes had previously introduced its own currency in 1789 which lasted until 1895. These pounds are obtained by exchanging pounds sterling for equivalent face value “local” pounds. Various denominations have evolved such as the 5, 10 and 21 Lewes pounds issued in 2009. There have also been schemes in the US such as the BerksShares in Massachusetts which are bought for 95 cents yet are worth $1. These are available in 1, 5, 10, 20 and 50 denominations. Similarly there have been examples in Canada with the Toronto Dollar, the Calgary Dollar and also in Australia with the Baroon Dollar. Most of these initiatives have been launched since 2006 or later and may well be a local solution in the fightback against the worldwide economic problems. They are viewed as trustworthy currency with real value to the local economy and in certain cases well-meaning because of the positive impact they have on local services and prosperity. Although these models function locally they do demonstrate a widening appeal for taking control of currency and introducing stability to the functioning of an economy.
Are National Economies really functioning?
If they are then for who are they functioning- surely not the majority? What’s happened to the Utopia of Globalisation? One has to ask where we are heading with the daily drivel of mixed messages to suit the media’s demand for sound bites and politician’s short term ambitions for themselves far outweighing the long term requirements of the National interest (daily or decades of proof – take your pick!).
What can be said of today’s global currencies which are currently being prostituted by their governments in a global exchange war to meet their “protectionism” objectives by stealth. Who is controlling their value and to what end?
The “trust” in these currencies is gradually being eroded to the point that Central Banks and the big “clever” money of investors are seeking sanctuary in what may be the only true trustworthy currency – physical gold.
This is fine for the multi-billionaires of this world like George Soros who can afford vaults of the stuff but what about the smaller investor.
Is it time to think that Gold may well become the only currency we can truly rely on? It may also be time to consider exactly what is a trustworthy currency for the future and will it be issued by central banks? There is definite interest in creating a currency of confidence at a time when traditional currencies lose appeal on a daily basis in the unpredictability of an unstable economy and the ever fluctuating foreign exchanges around the world.
This theme is even more current if one observes the trend in the US where Gold is being adopted in Utah and possibly other states as a more reliable store of value and wealth. The website for the Utah Gold and Silver Depository, set up as the means of this remonetization, states:
“On March 25, 2011 history was made when Utah Governor Gary Herbert signed into law Utah HB317 [The Utah Sound Money Act] thereby monetizing precious metals in the form of Gold and Silver American Eagles and United States numismatics (rare coins dated 1792 to 1964) in the state of Utah. The Utah Gold & Silver Depository was founded on the belief that every citizen of the global community has the fundamental right to legally create, preserve and store wealth. To meet the global demand for safe, secure transactions and storage, UGSD has developed a number of depository account options from which a customer can choose and tailor to best meet that customer’s needs and goals.”
The idea is that citizens who wish to monetize their gold and silver will lodge it in an account with the Depository which will then issue them with electronic money in the form of a debit card, which stores the dollar equivalent which is debited against the gold and silver which backs it. The beauty of the Utah scheme is that the “gold debit card” is so clearly linked to the actual gold and silver, the value of which is constantly audited: the card represents the actual gold, which is also personally yours. The technology cannot trump the value or manipulate it. The gold backed debit card is analogous to the old promise printed on, say, Bank of England notes, whereby the possessor of the note was entitled to redeem the face value of the note in gold specie if he produced the note at the bank.
So, this example shows that it is desirable and possible, using modern technologies, to monetize gold making it an alternative to the so called real currencies. A Currency of Confidence with ongoing real lasting and meaningful value. A dream or reality? We shall see… when the austerity measures around Europe are judged, deficits reduced or not and belief in the status quo currency and its current custodians is ultimately maintained or evaporated.

Extract from the English adaptation of the French book : L’or, Un Placement qui (R)Assure (2011) written by Jean-François Faure,President and founder of AuCoffre.com.

Buying a Vera Silver 1 ounce is possible now …

Friday, January 10th, 2014

VERA SILVER 1 OUNCE

VERA SILVER 1 OUNCE

It is all ours and it is all nice, coming from the same Mint as our Vera Valor 1 ounce but the difference is, it is made of 999,7‰ pure silver, with the same DNA as the Vera Valor. It is also QR coded on the observe as a guaranty of high security.


Unlike other coins which are legal tender such as the Philharmonic Vienna and the Maple Leaf, the Vera Silver does not depend on any arbitrary decisions coming from markets or states. Therefore, the Vera Silver protects you from any risk of lack of supply that causes higher prices.


Part of the LSP range, the Vera Silver 1 ounce is available in pack of 10, 100 and 1000.


Stored in our free zone in Geneva (Switzerland), exempted from VAT, it is actually on sale from the very beginning of January 2014.


Rather good news : why paying more money when mints are actually running out of Philharmonic Vienna or Maple Leaf silver coins ?

Silver just like gold is a safe value and just like diamonds are. These are different means to diversify your wealth.

The Vera Family is extending so please yourself by buying one Vera Silver 1 ounce.



Buying gold coins as a safe haven

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

Gold coins struck for liberty

Gold is an asset able to provide real freedom of action. It has had an inherent value for over 6000 years and is still going strong. It provides the reassurance to your savings and wealth that allow you to sleep easy at night – real freedom. This concept of freedom should increase with the value of our assets but today it is so often used as just a lure of clever marketing that distorts the truth about your savings and investments without the reassurance.

The culprits? Banks, once again. Indeed, our bankers have long forgotten the fundamentals of their activity and prefer to sell us complex financial products or random diversifications like mobile phone contracts. Many contracts tie us to them day after day. They have forgotten that they were to be the guarantors of our freedom by means of the values and valuables that we entrusted to them and included the right for our investments to remain our property.

We became completely dependant on these same banks: obligatory bank accounts to cash our wages, money blocked on accounts which pay hardly more than inflation (and sometimes less), credit, risky investments, etc. With gold coins it is quite the reverse.

Gold coins as an investment

Gold coins as an investment

Today in France, as in many other countries, their holding, their transport, their purchase and their sale are free. But that was not always the case. During the Second World War, Germans prohibited the French from having more than 6 g of gold, not even a 20F Napoleon coin. To deprive the French of their gold, was also to deprive them of their freedom. Very happy were those who could rely on their treasure being locked up in vaults

in Switzerland, able to convert it into cash on the local market and return to France with the revenue of the resale. Those who could not travel abroad could obviously buy or sell some in France, but they were exposed to the risks, including theft, blackmail and denunciation. Feeling confident with this assessment, many sought to shelter their treasure in Switzerland but not having anticipated the war, they subsequently had to take enormous risks in order to

smuggle their coins across the border by using secret compartments in their walking sticks that would be stacked full of Napoleon gold coins.

Another example: between 1933 and 1975, the possession of gold was prohibited in the USA. That did not prevent Americans from being among the largest hoarders of gold currency. The Swiss vaults were then filled with Eagles, Double Eagles and Sovereigns which reappeared at the end of the prohibition on gold or which were directly converted into cash in Europe.

During the Cold War, the Americans were right and gave their pilots (or their spies) gold coins so that they could have the possibility to buy their freedom in certain countries. Proof that even the king dollar would be insufficient in some cases. In the eyes of the Vietcong soldiers for example, it was just a vulgar piece of green paper bearing the marks of an enemy culture.

A gold coin, even struck by the American administration, remains above all gold with universally recognized and accepted values.

Contrary to bank notes, gold does not preach politics or try to impose any lifestyle. Gold does not have a nationality, it is neutral, and does not preach a doctrinaire approach. Gold coins are thus the last obstacle against attacks on our freedom and they will always be recognized at their rightful value. This is not the case with the fiduciary currencies in the form of banknotes, coins, and today of electronic currencies, which are sometimes so difficult to get accepted from one country to another.

Geographical locations

Gold coins are not in demand in the same way in all countries. Thus, in China or in the USA, Napoleon gold coins are not so well known and investors prefer to buy local coins or Krugerrands and Sovereigns which have an international appeal. In France it would be the reverse: in a period of crisis, the Napoleon national coin will tend to see its price shoot up beyond the value of the metal content whilst coins from other countries will maintain a steady premium.

Ideally, one would want to buy coins that are less in demand in a certain country and sell them to a market with a high demand for that particular coin.

This is possible today using systems like LinGOLD.com, AuCOFFRE.com and LingORO.com which unite French, Spanish and English speaking gold investors around the world, providing opportunities for a Chinese Member to buy Pandas from a UK Member for example.

Extract from the English adaptation of the French book : L’or, Un Placement qui (R)Assure (2011) written by Jean-François Faure,President and founder of AuCoffre.com.

The gold buyer is a contrarian

Monday, January 6th, 2014
contrarian-etfs

Contrarian mind, are you ???

A contrarian is a person who buys or sells his position against the opinion of the market and which is wary of the majority opinion while intervening in the contrary direction. The most famous contrarian is none other than Warren Buffet… the richest man on the planet. One of his best pieces of advice is not to follow the herd. His secrecy lies in a sentence typical of a contrarian: “The average is what everyone else is doing; if you want your shares to perform above the average, you must do something else”.

Among the politically incorrect followers of gold, one finds visionaries like William Bonner, historian and specialist in the US economy, who warns his compatriots living on credit:

“Imagine a shopkeeper whose biggest customer was having a hard time paying his bills. The shopkeeper extends credit, hoping the man will get his finances in order. But the more credit he gives him, the worse the man’s finances are. It would be very nice if that could work out. But it rarely does. Instead, it eventually blows up. The customer has to stop buying and the shopkeeper has to stop lending. There’s going to be hell to pay, in other words.”

“What should an investor do to protect himself,” our friend asked.

“Buy gold.”

“Gold? What a strange idea. I haven’t heard anyone mention gold in many years. It seems so out-of-date. I didn’t think anyone bought gold anymore.”

“That’s why you should buy it.”

And that is the person who is currently buying gold.**Extract from the book by William Bonner Empire of Debt : The Rise of an epic financial crisis(published by John Wiley & Sons, 2005).

To put an end to the generally accepted idea according to which gold savings is the act of nostalgic older men, one only needs to go onto some specialized forums to realise that this type of saver is not only younger than the average but that he or she also has a very informed view on the global economic system. From his profile one would say above all that he or she is a careful saver with a different vision of value in the future. This new generation of gold investors is logical, practical and in search of a different type of security than that offered with traditional investment or savings instruments. They have witnessed the demise of their parents “trusted” plans and they are not keen to

repeat the mistake. They may share the perfectly normal aspiration to save for their future but they are looking for security, reliability and protection of the

purchasing power stored up in their savings.

Given the current high street offerings with returns on investment equivalent to a net loss due to the effects of inflation, it is no surprise that savers and investors are turning to something tangible and an asset they can own.


Gold, an alternative Currency of Confidence?


Where would we turn to if the known currencies of the world suddenly devalued and became worthless in real terms?

Throughout history there have been instances when all faith has been lost in the official currency usually because it has become worthless and therefore all confidence has been lost. However, people have always looked for an alternative to maintain commerce and everyday survival. This has sometimes taken the form of bartering but it is limited by the difficulty of assigning recognisable value to a wide range of goods and services. There has to be some common denominator and unit value that is commonly recognised and therefore allows the cycle of trade to turn.

During the French revolution the state coffers were completely empty and so the emerging Constitutional Assembly created a system based on “assignats” which gained their value through selling off the assets of the church. These “assignats” would be guaranteed by the state and the objective was to reconstruct a functioning economy. However, they became greatly over subscribed to the tune of 47 billion causing inflation, zero rates of interest and

ultimately ended in collapse.

Extract from the English adaptation of the French book : L’or, Un Placement qui (R)Assure (2011) written by Jean-François Faure, President and founder of AuCoffre.com.

The Australian Nugget 1 ounce

Monday, December 16th, 2013

The Australian Gold Nugget is a popular series of Gold bullion coins issued by the Perth Mint. They
have legal tender status in Australia and are one of the few legal tender bullion coins to change
their design every year, the most notable other being the Chinese Panda.

Details

Australian Nugget 1 ounce

Australian Nugget 1 ounce

Australia issued its first Gold Nugget coins in 1986. From 1986 to 1988, the reverse of  these coins featured images of various Australian Gold nuggets, hence the name. From 1989, the design changed to feature different Kangaroos, a more world-recognised symbol of Australia. The coins are sometimes referred to as Kangaroos but the name

Nugget seems to have stuck. The coins up to 1 Toz change design each year. Each year, a Proof edition is issued and that design becomes the bullion coin design for the following year.

The coins have a unique market niche for two reasons; a “two-tone” frosted design effect and individual hard plastic encapsulation of each coin. Provided they remain as they came from the mint, the quality is maintained and thus premium.

The initial sizes offered were 1/20 Toz, 1/10 Toz, 1/4 Toz, 1/2 Toz and 1 Toz. In 1991, the 2 Toz, 10 Toz and 1 Kg sizes were added. These were created with the intention of using economies of scale to keep premiums low. The face values of the two larger coins were lowered in 1992 in order to bring them more in line with the smaller sizes.

In October 2011, the Perth Mint created a one tonne Gold coin to break the record for the biggest and most valuable, previously held by the Royal Canadian Mint. It is approximately 80 cms diameter and 12 cms thick. The face value is A$1 million but at the time of minting, the Gold price made it worth over A$53 million.

As mentioned, the reverse of the coin features in the early years a Gold nugget and thereafter a Kangaroo. It states the year of the coin, the weight and Gold fineness.

There is also a mintmark ‘P’ which signifies the Perth Mint.

The obverse features a profile view of Queen Elizabeth II designed by Ian Rank-Broadley. The portrait is surrounded by her name, the denomination of the coin and the word AUSTRALIA.

The Australian Gold Nugget coins should not be mistaken for the Australian Lunar Gold Bullion coins. Both coins are minted by Perth Mint and have 999.9‰ fineness but Lunar coins use different animals from the Chinese calendar instead of the Kangaroo.

Investment Advice

There are various grading systems in use around the world. However, the British system is as follows:

All Nugget coins are issued as pure Gold finewness, 999.9‰ and in theory have a low premium just above the value of the Gold.

However, their intrinsic beauty makes them very collectable and they attract good premiums.

As with any coin, the best quality grades will attract the best premiums. The three early years in particular will be those with the highest premium. Although the coins

were issued in Proof form, many were unpacked and have thus been damaged and are at lower gradings. The mintage figures for all sizes of Nuggets are in general quite low, thus every coin will have numismatic premium value also. All round, the Nugget is both a collectable and investable product.

Specs

Tax Free Savings

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

A Tax Free Savings Account in physical gold that you own

UK Taxpayers have a unique opportunity to save in pure gold, a real tangible asset, without paying VAT or Capital Gains Tax. Start from just 1 gram a month.

Gold Britannia and Sovereign investment quality coins offer a unique advantage to investors because they offer between 18% -28% additional benefits over other investments. Why? … because they are completely exempt from Capital Gains Tax. Furthermore, they are exempt from VAT.

Britannia 1 ounce_averse

Britannia 1 ounce averse

Gold Britannia 1 ounce coin

Britannia 1 ounce obverse

Britannia 1 ounce obverse

A beautifully struck gold bullion coin that has UK legal tender status and a face value of £100 – although its actual value is many times greater. The Gold Britannia coin was originally alloyed with Copper, but from 1990 the decision was made to alloy with Silver. This is why the earlier Gold Britannia’s have the deep Gold colour, as opposed to the lighter yellow gold colour of the Britannia since 1990. The latest 2013 coins have no alloy and are pure gold and 999.9°/oo fineness.

Sovereign Elizabeth II_averse

Sovereign Elizabeth II averse

British Gold Sovereign coin

Sovereign Elizabeth II obverse

Sovereign Elizabeth II obverse

The full British Sovereign is one of the most recognised gold coins in the world, with UK legal tender status and it can attract a healthy premium as it is always in demand, at home and abroad. Their legendary reputation comes from their use in a pilot’s survival kit by many air forces, being sewn into their jackets and used to negotiate their safe passage home if downed during a mission. The attraction was the integrity of their British origin which provided the utmost trust to their owners.

Capital Gains Tax (CGT)

Coins which are legal tender in the UK are exempt from CGT. The Britannia and Sovereign investment coins fall into this category. The UK Customs authority has issued a notice to accountants and financial advisors numbered CG12602 which deals with exemptions and in particular currency in sterling. It refers to:
– TCGA92/S21 (1)(b) which states “Currency in sterling is not an asset for capital gains purposes”. >Learn more
– Further notice from HMRC is given in CG78308 which states “Sovereigns minted in 1837 and later years and Britannia Gold coins are currency but, like all sterling currency, are exempt because of TCGA92/S21 (1)(b) >Learn more Value Added Tax (VAT)
Coins which are of investment quality do not attract VAT. Investment quality is defined as coins which contain a minimum of 900 one thousandths Gold. (900.000 ‰). Rather than being a specifically British rule, it is in fact from the European Union. See notice number 2011/C 351/07. The notice refers to all coins from various countries which would fulfill the investment quality criteria. >Learn 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."