Archive for July, 2011

Gold demand mid-year review

Sunday, July 31st, 2011

We are late July and it is time to look at the gold accounts for the first half of 2011! Hinde Capital Fund Management conducted a study in June 2011 entitled “A Golden Renaissance, Precious Metal Dynamics ” which confirms the upward trends in physical gold (but not in “paper gold”).
Another analysis conducted by Goldsphere Edmond from the Rothschild Fund also confirmed this rise in demand in countries with a strong geopolitical risk despite stagnant mining production.
We were expecting a correction in the Gold Trend this summer and yet just the opposite has happened.
The Eurozone and American debt crises have helped this push upwards which has not been this significant since the beginning of the century.
Gold has risen an average of 19% per year since 2001. It is now facing an unprecedented demand.
Since the United States imposed the dollar as the world’s reserve currency and then subsequently flooded the market with it to increase consumption, the dollar has been heavily devalued. Their ability to stifle the price of gold has waned and globally investors have sought to ditch large reserves of weakening dollars for something safer. These investors initially thought the Euro may be the path to take but they got it wrong again and are now flooding into the only sure refuge which is physical gold. It is incredible how so many of these high flying know-it alls seemed oblivious to the obvious risks in the Dollar and then the Euro. Do they really research their options or just deal over expensive meals and golf holidays. Could they not see the blatant crisi of Sovereign debt affecting the major economies of the world? One has to ask what they have been doing for the last ten years and how apparently well-informed intellects make such poor judgments? (Must be the constant intoxication of self-appreciation, greed, drugs and alcohol)

A steadily increasing demand since 2003

Particular strength can be found in emerging nations where the demand for gold is rising to the detriment of the Green-back: 12% for India and 21% for China. Also, Mexico has filled its coffers of 93 tons of gold in the 1st quarter of 2011. Asia accounts for 62% of the demand, some of it cultural such as in India, but also other countries now active in the market are seeking to catch up for lost time (private investment now allowed in China) but also because “Governments wish to increasingly diversify their foreign exchange reserves and to disinvest from the US dollar or other currencies in trouble” (Option Finance Agency, France).

Other sectors such as jewellery are also in high demand (+ 55%) despite the rise in the price of gold (+ 3.1%). For this first half of 2011, the demand increased overall by 25%.
The paradox is that the demand for investment is still low, which proves that the course gold has nothing to do with any speculative flows. Indeed, it is also estimated that there is a mass of net flows out of “paper gold” (such as ETFs) equivalent to 55 tonnes. Overall, investments in gold are less and less by speculators, which is positive for the gold price trend. The attraction of a safe haven and sure value during these difficult and uncertain times is populating the gold investment market with serious investors, both private and institutional. This is hardly surprising when one calculates the increasing risks attached to most other forms of investments (which are largely based on owning bits of paper and have proved catastrophic to large funds in recent years).

Physical gold, a healthy investment

This study also shows that despite a growing demand, mining production did not increase accordingly and in fact was virtually stagnant. Recent fears have also surfaced that South African mines will be closed by strike action.

Another surprising finding is that gold sold by individuals to be recycled is steadily declining. This shows that the masses wish to hold on to something of value and also that they are fed up with being ripped off by those crooks who run incessant TV ads.
Even in Greece and despite the crisis, gold plays its role as a life insurance and safe haven since it is often kept in the home. Despite the attractive gold prices Greeks will not sell that they already have and they are still likely to buy more as a protection for their future survival.
Finally, another unexpected discovery, physical gold investment is disconnected from gold shares (the gold shares represent only 1% of world market capitalization). This disconnection is partly explained by the increase in the costs of production for mining companies and the difficulties encountered by countries which are politically unstable (Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire).

“Khrysos (Gold) is the child of Zeus, neither moth nor rust devoureth it; but man is devoured by this supreme possession” (Pindar, c. 522-422 BC).

Gold companies should eventually be seen as worthwhile value but for the moment it is physical gold that is benefiting from investment because it is a real, tangible asset that you own and not just a promise.

On we have always preferred physical gold to “paper gold” for many reasons, but if one were to cite a single reason it is that the providers/suppliers of  ETFs (Exchange Traded Fund) can fail themselves as a Company which means you lose everything as you do not own a specific piece or pieces of gold, they do. On the other hand, if all ETF holders asked to recover in physical form their investment in gold, it would be impossible because they have sold more ETFs than they have Gold– sound familiar? It is the equivalent of Fractional Reserve Banking but applied to gold because these providers work and think like banks – and we know where that type of mentality led us to!!
Unbelievable Shallow Arrogance
Finally, as we approach the eve of the US debt deadline it is worth paying note to the despicable behaviour of so called elected democratic representatives who would be chastised in primary school for the same childish squabbling. Worse still is listening to them speak as they grandstand before the world’s media playing out their silly games. They sound like caricatures from the Simpsons with their phony accents and voices and yet we are to believe these are the best the “greatest nation in the free world “has to offer – I pity regular Americans who are governed by such an inconsiderate bunch of self-interested marionettes. Here at we have previously discussed the true nature of these politocrats in “Conspiracy, Collusion and Con-men – Why don’t they want you to buy Gold?”

As they push ever closer to the deadline it seems that they actually want the US to default and let’s face it so should we all – it’s about time the Fed and the Financial giants got their come-uppance by losing everything so we could start again and hopefully with something better- honest would be a start. Their brinkmanship may just backfire as the markets decide to take them down anyway even if they agree!
We have previously referred to this in “Financial Meltdown and Black Swans – Myth or Reality?” .
Should the Dollar collapse, which is an increasing possibility even when they introduce QE3, Americans and the rest of us should prepare for hard times not yet witnessed by most of the generations alive.

To give you an insight we suggest  reading “The chaos of a currency collapse” and multiply the effects by millions!

The stage is set for the Chinese Yuan to take the place as the World’s Reserve currency and the American politicians are doing their best to make sure it happens!!

The strengthening demand for physical gold investment is no accident as more and more regular folk know they need to protect themselves before the chaos and crisis ahead.
Don’t miss the opportunity, buy some gold now as insurance against losing everything when the Wall St bell falls silent!

Greek savers ditch Euros for Gold coins!

Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

The worsening crisis in Greece has prompted savers to empty their bank accounts to exchange their Euros for Gold coins.
Concern is growing over the stability of the Greek banking system and of course the astronomic sovereign debt which is crushing Greece.
The Prime Minister George Papandreou may well have persuaded the parliamentarians to back further austerity measures and have won the vote from them but that will not change the resolve of the Greek people.
Greece would need 12% growth annually for at least 30 years to come anywhere near having the means to repay its debts.
How likely is that?
The Greek economy does not have the means to recover and the fact that they have secured the next gigantic loan from the EU and IMF changes little in real terms. This money will only payback the Banks’ debts and therefore not stay in Greece. Surely the only way to help the Greek economy is to inject some funding into it. The only winner in this situation is the Banks who’ll feed their greed for profits and the loan sharks of the IMF and EU who obviously take their cut of interest.
The losers are the Greek people who will still have an impossible sovereign debt blighting their future whilst falling below the poverty line from increased austerity.
On top of this the Government has agreed to prostitute the future of Greece to the lowest bidders who have the cash to buy whatever “good” state assets they have.

A decision that Greece will regret

Without a doubt this line of action will never save the Greek economy or start to rebuild some confidence for a decent future. Greece will stay in Debt for generations. The Greek people will never accept this and their strong protests are understandable. Headlines talk of a possible Greek default – Why? Greece has been bankrupt for over a year, since it first asked for a “bailout”.

The only route to recovery is to restructure the debts or simply declare the country bankrupt. This would be the best solution for the Greeks but of course they’re in a weak position and all recent decisions, including the political waffle and rhetoric, have been taken to secure the European banks that are hugely exposed to the Greek debt. Be under no illusion that the only reason for this action is to appease the power brokers that support the European Governments. The politicians including the Greek government don’t care one iota for the regular people of Greece and why would they because they are all sufficiently immune to the deepening crisis because their deep pockets are lined with personal wealth that removes them from harm’s way and any sense of reality or empathy with those suffering the effects.

The people’s retribution

The one way Greek people have of preserving and protecting their personal wealth is to opt out of the normal system and there is evidence that they have started to empty their bank accounts (maybe à la Cantona – see Eric Cantona’s French Revolution).
Firstly they are taking retribution on the Banks by weakening them and also showing their distrust for reckless, uncaring institutions.
Secondly they are storing their wealth in something tangible and much more reliable than invented currency which could devalue or collapse anytime – they are buying gold coins as they did during the Second World War because they know that this will maintain real value and purchasing power through the difficulties ahead.
Here is some evidence provided recently in the Financial Times by Kerin Hope

ATHENS — Greek citizens are emptying savings accounts and buying gold as they brace themselves for the possibility of a sovereign default and a run on the banks.

Pledges by socialist Prime Minister George Papandreou that his government would “save the country” have been widely discounted by the public. However, parliament gave him a vote of confidence late on Tuesday night. The socialists have a six-seat majority in the 300-member house.

Sales of gold coins have soared as savers seek a safer and fungible source of value.

“When the global financial crisis started, our sales of coins to investors overtook bullion for the first time,” said Harry Krinakis, at Sepheriades, a Greek precious metals trader. “Now the sales ratio has reached five to one.”

Tomas, a computer technician, has exchanged his euro savings for gold coins: “I keep them at home just like my grandmother did in the Second World War.”
Monthly bank withdrawals were running at E1.5 billion-E2 billion in the first quarter. Last year, depositors withdrew E30 billion, equivalent to 12.3 per cent of total savings, according to the central bank. Greek deposits worth an estimated E8 billion were transferred to banks in Cyprus in 2010. But the flow has dried up this year amid fears that Cypriot banks could suffer contagion.

Andreas, a supermarket manager, transferred the family savings to Munich earlier this year. “The Swiss banks aren’t interested unless you’ve got several hundred thousand euros,” he said.

“We can’t trust the politicians to get us out of this mess [and] have to protect our families,” said Sakis, a garage owner, at an anti-austerity protest in Athens’ Syntagma Square. “A bank collapse has got to be in the cards.” He added he had withdrawn his savings and placed them in a bank safe deposit box “for security. Who cares about interest right now?”

Others put their savings into land when prices fell after Greece’s first European Union-led rescue last year. Angelos, a software specialist, bought a neighbour’s olive grove. “I grabbed the opportunity,” he said.
“A year ago I wouldn’t have considered making such an old-fashioned investment.”

It is no accident that other European countries, particularly Germany and France, have experienced dramatically increased investment in gold coins during the last three months. In France investors own more gold than the Bank of France and transactions in coins have increased by 35% (source since January. These countries have aan historical reference to gold coin investments and their benefits so it is no surprise to witness such an increase during periods of crisis. In fact one can determine the “temperature” of concern from this rising activity and people are seriously concerned about an impending crash on the horizon that will have global significance.

Countries like the UK are rather slow on the uptake and the gold investment market tends to be reserved for the extremely well-off and well-connected. What a shame so many people are misled by false information to detract them from participating or they are just ignorant of the facts.

Anyway their loss is someone else’s gain and come the day they will be left holding bits of paper good for burning while their European neighbours use their gold coins to pay for provisions and ultimately survival!

Remember that the signs of crisis were ignored by myopian political rhetoric pre-2008 leaving millions of ordinary folk open to its consequences. The signs of crisis have been with us ever since and still they pretend all will be well and their policies are “working”.

2008 was just the prelude and the worst is yet to arrive.
Be warned and be prepared or once again you will be hung out to dry!

An investment in gold is a survival kit for your future.



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"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."