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  • FT's Tett Says "Foolish Simply to Deride or Ignore GATA" - GATA Debate CPM re Silver

    Gold is trading at USD 1,653.80, EUR 1,196.10, GBP 1,038.40, JPY 125,832.0, AUD 1,594 and CNY 10,545 per ounce.

    Gold’s London AM fix this morning was USD 1,651.00, GBP 1,035.56 and EUR 1,191.37 per ounce. 

    Friday’s AM fix was USD 1,623.00, GBP 1,027.02 and EUR 1,178.14 per ounce.


    Cross Currency Table 

    Gold prices edged higher today in all major currencies. There are hopes that European leaders are moving closer to a concrete plan to solve euro zone's debt crisis which has lifted sentiment in commodities and equities. 

    Little progress was made by European Union leaders on Sunday and details remain very limited but optimism is high, likely too high, regarding a ‘Grand Solution’ at the second summit on Wednesday.

    Data regarding Chinese economic growth and Japanese exports led to Asian equities seeing good gains. European equities opened higher but have given up early gains.

    One of the major issues and talking points in the precious metal markets in recent years has been allegations by GATA and others that bullion banks and central banks may be intervening in free markets and surreptitiously manipulating gold and silver prices and keeping them artificially low.

    It is an issue that is quite divisive amongst investors and in the market - including in GoldCore where opinions differ.

    It is an important debate and one that has ramifications not just for the gold and silver market but for markets in general and for free market capitalism. 

    The ‘Great Silver Debate’ took place at the Silver Summit in Spokane, Washington on Friday where Bill Murphy of the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (OTCPK:GATA) debated Jeffrey Christian of the CPM Group.


    The Great Silver Debate - Manipulation: Fact or Fiction? – GATA V CPM Group

    The debate, hosted by Kitco, did not see a knockout blow with both contestants voicing their long held opinions regarding the manipulation of silver and precious metals.

    It was a bit short on time at just 30 minutes and a full hour may have been needed in order to flesh out some of the many issues raised. 

    Christian recently accused GATA of being "a group that makes money by basically bilking gold investors out of fees to support GATA so they don't have to get legitimate jobs." 

    In the aftermath of the debate, GATA secretary Chris Powell accused Christian of "graduating from his usual distortions to outright contrivance."

    Most of the mainstream media has ignored GATA’s allegations and the debate was not reported.

    However, an important development over the weekend was an op-ed piece by the respected Gillian Tett in the Financial Times.

    Tett is an award-winning journalist and author, and is the US managing editor of the Financial Times. She has been positive regarding gold and gold prices for some time due to the degree of financial and economic uncertainty in the world.

    Tett wrote in Saturday’s FT that it would be “foolish” to “deride or ignore” GATA and their allegations, not regarding manipulation in the silver market, but manipulation of the gold market.

    In an article entitled “Is there a shadowy plot behind gold?“ (see commentary), Tett wrote that “the idea of a central bank manipulating world markets packs an increasingly powerful emotional punch with voters.”


    Gillian Tett, US Managing Editor, Financial Times

    Tett acknowledged that central banks intervene in and manipulate interest rates and her article explored whether central banks might also be manipulating gold prices.

    “For my money, though, I think there are at least two reasons why it would be foolish simply to deride or ignore Gata, “ Tett concluded.

    Tett acknowledged that some of GATA’s points “have at least a grain of truth”. 

    “Even if you find it hard to believe that central bankers would be dastardly enough to create a plot – or competent enough to do what Gata claims – the fact is that global commodity markets are pretty murky, central banks are often opaque and western rhetoric about “free” markets is often hypocritical. Those issues merit far more debate, not just among journalists, but central bankers too.”

    She concludes that “whatever the “truth” behind these plot tales, the one thing that is clear is that these accusations are unlikely to disappear soon. Not, at least, while the world’s economy remains so unstable and terrifying for ordinary mortals. Or, possibly, until that gold price really soars.”

    Tett’s FT article may signal the beginning of a real debate about the allegations that GATA has made and that have yet to be rebutted. 

    It is an important debate as increasingly governments and central banks are distorting financial markets and the free market through constant interventions in markets.

    In the western world, we have seen interest rates cut close to zero, capital injections and bailouts, lending guarantees, saving and deposit guarantees, favouring certain banks and institutions over others,  banning short selling and now the latest intervention is the absurd - consideration of banning sovereign credit ratings.

    At the same time competitive currency devaluations are taking place globally with central banks debasing currencies and outright intervention in currency markets in order to lower the value of national and supranational currencies. 

    Japan is the glaring example of this and Switzerland’s recent ‘pegging’ of the Swiss franc was in the same vein.

    With governments surreptitiously and openly manipulating their currencies, it would seem like the logical that some governments might have an interest in not seeing gold and silver prices soar.

    Surging gold and silver prices are a vote of no confidence in fiat paper currencies and government and central banks stewardship of these currencies. This is especially the case with the US dollar as the global reserve currency and all governments have an interest in maintain faith in the dollar and in fiat currencies which is a possibly motive for intervention in the gold and silver markets. 

    The ‘Great Gold and Silver Debate’ is set to continue. It is an important debate that all investors, savers and market participants should be aware of as it has obvious ramifications with regard to preserving and growing wealth in the coming years.

    For the latest news and commentary on financial markets and gold please follow us on Twitter. 

    SILVER 
    Silver is trading at $31.56/oz, €22.77/oz and £19.79/oz 

    PLATINUM GROUP METALS 
    Platinum is trading at $1,531.00/oz, palladium at $627/oz and rhodium at $1,525/oz. 

    NEWS
    (Reuters) 
    Gold inches up on hopes for Europe debt deal

    (Bloomberg) 
    Gold Climbs Amid Concern Europe Won’t Find Debt Crisis Solution at Summit

    (Bloomberg) 
    EU Rules Out ECB Help in Boosting Fund

    (The Times of India) 
    Cost no bar to city gold rush

    COMMENTARY
    (Zero Hedge) 
    Dalio: "There Are No More Tools In The Tool Kit" - Charlie Rose Interviews Head Of World's Biggest Hedge Fund 

    (Gold-Eagle) 
    The Five Myths Of Silver Investing

    (Mineweb) 
    GATA gold/silver suppression spat with Jeff Christian getting personal

    (King World News) 
    Jim Rickards - Western Gold Policy Threat to National Security

    Gold is trading at USD 1,653.80, EUR 1,196.10, GBP 1,038.40, JPY 125,832.0, AUD 1,594 and CNY 10,545 per ounce.

    (You Tube)

    Gold’s London AM fix this morning was USD 1,651.00, GBP 1,035.56 and EUR 1,191.37 per ounce. 

    Friday’s AM fix was USD 1,623.00, GBP 1,027.02 and EUR 1,178.14 per ounce.


    Cross Currency Table 

    Gold prices edged higher today in all major currencies. There are hopes that European leaders are moving closer to a concrete plan to solve euro zone's debt crisis which has lifted sentiment in commodities and equities. 

    Little progress was made by European Union leaders on Sunday and details remain very limited but optimism is high, likely too high, regarding a ‘Grand Solution’ at the second summit on Wednesday.

    Data regarding Chinese economic growth and Japanese exports led to Asian equities seeing good gains. European equities opened higher but have given up early gains.

    One of the major issues and talking points in the precious metal markets in recent years has been allegations by GATA and others that bullion banks and central banks may be intervening in free markets and surreptitiously manipulating gold and silver prices and keeping them artificially low.

    It is an issue that is quite divisive amongst investors and in the market - including in GoldCore where opinions differ.

    It is an important debate and one that has ramifications not just for the gold and silver market but for markets in general and for free market capitalism. 

    The ‘Great Silver Debate’ took place at the Silver Summit in Spokane, Washington on Friday where Bill Murphy of the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (OTCPK:GATA) debated Jeffrey Christian of the CPM Group.


    The Great Silver Debate - Manipulation: Fact or Fiction? – GATA V CPM Group

    The debate, hosted by Kitco, did not see a knockout blow with both contestants voicing their long held opinions regarding the manipulation of silver and precious metals.

    It was a bit short on time at just 30 minutes and a full hour may have been needed in order to flesh out some of the many issues raised. 

    Christian recently accused GATA of being "a group that makes money by basically bilking gold investors out of fees to support GATA so they don't have to get legitimate jobs." 

    In the aftermath of the debate, GATA secretary Chris Powell accused Christian of "graduating from his usual distortions to outright contrivance."

    Most of the mainstream media has ignored GATA’s allegations and the debate was not reported.

    However, an important development over the weekend was an op-ed piece by the respected Gillian Tett in the Financial Times.

    Tett is an award-winning journalist and author, and is the US managing editor of the Financial Times. She has been positive regarding gold and gold prices for some time due to the degree of financial and economic uncertainty in the world.

    Tett wrote in Saturday’s FT that it would be “foolish” to “deride or ignore” GATA and their allegations, not regarding manipulation in the silver market, but manipulation of the gold market.

    In an article entitled “Is there a shadowy plot behind gold?“ (see commentary), Tett wrote that “the idea of a central bank manipulating world markets packs an increasingly powerful emotional punch with voters.”


    Gillian Tett, US Managing Editor, Financial Times

    Tett acknowledged that central banks intervene in and manipulate interest rates and her article explored whether central banks might also be manipulating gold prices.

    “For my money, though, I think there are at least two reasons why it would be foolish simply to deride or ignore Gata, “ Tett concluded.

    Tett acknowledged that some of GATA’s points “have at least a grain of truth”. 

    “Even if you find it hard to believe that central bankers would be dastardly enough to create a plot – or competent enough to do what Gata claims – the fact is that global commodity markets are pretty murky, central banks are often opaque and western rhetoric about “free” markets is often hypocritical. Those issues merit far more debate, not just among journalists, but central bankers too.”

    She concludes that “whatever the “truth” behind these plot tales, the one thing that is clear is that these accusations are unlikely to disappear soon. Not, at least, while the world’s economy remains so unstable and terrifying for ordinary mortals. Or, possibly, until that gold price really soars.”

    Tett’s FT article may signal the beginning of a real debate about the allegations that GATA has made and that have yet to be rebutted. 

    It is an important debate as increasingly governments and central banks are distorting financial markets and the free market through constant interventions in markets.

    In the western world, we have seen interest rates cut close to zero, capital injections and bailouts, lending guarantees, saving and deposit guarantees, favouring certain banks and institutions over others,  banning short selling and now the latest intervention is the absurd - consideration of banning sovereign credit ratings.

    At the same time competitive currency devaluations are taking place globally with central banks debasing currencies and outright intervention in currency markets in order to lower the value of national and supranational currencies. 

    Japan is the glaring example of this and Switzerland’s recent ‘pegging’ of the Swiss franc was in the same vein.

    With governments surreptitiously and openly manipulating their currencies, it would seem like the logical that some governments might have an interest in not seeing gold and silver prices soar.

    Surging gold and silver prices are a vote of no confidence in fiat paper currencies and government and central banks stewardship of these currencies. This is especially the case with the US dollar as the global reserve currency and all governments have an interest in maintain faith in the dollar and in fiat currencies which is a possibly motive for intervention in the gold and silver markets. 

    The ‘Great Gold and Silver Debate’ is set to continue. It is an important debate that all investors, savers and market participants should be aware of as it has obvious ramifications with regard to preserving and growing wealth in the coming years.

    For the latest news and commentary on financial markets and gold please follow us on Twitter. 

    SILVER 
    Silver is trading at $31.56/oz, €22.77/oz and £19.79/oz 

    PLATINUM GROUP METALS 
    Platinum is trading at $1,531.00/oz, palladium at $627/oz and rhodium at $1,525/oz. 

    NEWS
    (Reuters) 
    Gold inches up on hopes for Europe debt deal

    (Bloomberg) 
    Gold Climbs Amid Concern Europe Won’t Find Debt Crisis Solution at Summit

    (Bloomberg) 
    EU Rules Out ECB Help in Boosting Fund

    (The Times of India) 
    Cost no bar to city gold rush

    COMMENTARY
    (Zero Hedge) 
    Dalio: "There Are No More Tools In The Tool Kit" - Charlie Rose Interviews Head Of World's Biggest Hedge Fund 

    (Gold-Eagle) 
    The Five Myths Of Silver Investing

    (Mineweb) 
    GATA gold/silver suppression spat with Jeff Christian getting personal

    (King World News) 
    Jim Rickards - Western Gold Policy Threat to National Security

    (You Tube) 
    The Great Silver Debate - Manipulation: Fact or Fiction? - GATA vs. CPM Group

    (Financial Times) 
    Gillian Tett - Is there a shadowy plot behind gold?

     

     
    The Great Silver Debate - Manipulation: Fact or Fiction? - GATA vs. CPM Group

    (Financial Times) 
    Gillian Tett - Is there a shadowy plot behind gold?

     

    Oct 24 9:02 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Is Gold a Bubble? 14 Charts, the Facts and the Data Suggest Not

    Gold reached new record nominal highs in majors yesterday and remains close to these record highs today and close to record highs in most fiat currencies. Gold surged 4.2% in Australian dollars yesterday – from $1,478 to $1,540 AUD to 1516 AUD. Gold is up nearly 12% in Australian dollars since July 1st – from $1,380 to $1,551 AUD today.

    This shows that gold’s rally is broad based and is not solely a U.S. dollar phenomenon. It shows that markets and currency markets in particular are concerned about slowing economic growth, growing inflation pressures and continuing currency debasement.

    After all the noise and theatre of the US debt ceiling debate and the botched deal and kicking the mother of all cans down the road, it is important to again focus on the primary fundamentals driving the gold market.

    Is Gold a Bubble? 14 Charts, the Facts and the Data Suggest Not

    Introduction

    For more than 3 years - since gold rose above its nominal high of $850/oz in February 2008 - there has been much talk about gold being a bubble.

    Nouriel Roubini, professor of economics at New York University's Stern School of Business, is one of the more prominent financial and economic experts who said gold was a bubble and many other experts internationally echoed his sentiments.

    On December 10th, 2009, with gold at $1,100 per ounce, Roubini, said, "all the gold bugs who say gold is going to go to $1,500, $2,000, they're just speaking nonsense". Roubini went on to say ,"I don't believe in gold."

    Gold has now risen 50% since then and Roubini has been silent on the gold price.

    We believe that he was wrong regarding gold as he, like many in the western world, is simply not aware of the facts and the fundamentals driving the gold market. He also is not aware of gold’s diversification benefits.

    The fundamental drivers of the gold market are not appreciated by most and rapidly get forgotten by many due to the daily barrage of noise and fear emanating from the markets.

    The facts and charts below strongly suggest gold is not a bubble.

    However, even if it were a bubble, those calling gold a bubble should acknowledge the diversification benefits of owning gold and urge diversification rather than vainly trying to predict the future and the future movement of asset prices.

    Gold Drivers

    The precious metals of gold and silver are driven by a wide variety of factors, including money supply, debt levels, currencies, CDS spreads, interest rates, inflation and fabrication demand from downstream sectors such as jewelry, electronics, and solar applications.

    Investment demand has been one of the primary drivers more recently as investors have used precious metals as a store of value in the face of dollar and currency depreciation as well as a general hedge against inflation.

    Investment demand includes significant and growing demand from store of wealth buyers in Asia, investment and diversification demand from hedge funds, pension funds and central banks and monetary demand from central banks.

    This demand is due to concerns about the global economy, growing inflation risks and the real risks posed by currency debasement being seen globally.

    Gold remains the preserve of the smart money, many of whom predicted the current financial and economic travails. 

    Risk aversion and concerns about wealth preservation due to currency depreciation remain the primary demand drivers.

    Demand is due to ‘risk aversion’ hedging and diversification and can be broadly characterized as ‘prudent diversification’ rather than the ‘fear trade’ that some have called it.

    There is no irrational exuberance or broad based belief amongst journalists, analysts, experts and the public in general that gold is a one way ticket to being rich. Indeed, there continues to be very little coverage of gold in local media and only the occasional coverage in the non specialist financial press. This is especially the case in the UK and Ireland and in the European Union.

    There is no “greed trade” or buying of gold by the general public in the belief that making a return or a profit is guaranteed.

    This was seen in the Nasdaq bubble and more recently in the property bubble that afflicted western countries.

    Thus, retail demand, contrary to some hype and silly talk of people “piling in”, remains negligible but is gradually increasing from a very small base.

    Increasing global demand (especially from Indian and Chinese savers, investors and their central banks) is being confronted with anemic supply as mining supply is marginally lower than the record levels seen in 2001 (see chart below).

    This year scrap supply (due to the global ‘cash for gold’ craze) will be much lower than last. Hard pressed consumers internationally, and especially in the western world, have already misguidedly parted with the ‘family gold’.

    All of the gold in the world that has ever been mined, if refined (0.9999 pure), would fit into a 21 metre high cube and is very rare. Thus, if even a fraction of flows in global capital and currency markets flows into gold, prices could rise very sharply and go parabolic.

    Another factor, not known by most, is the massive concentrated short positions held by a few Wall Street banks.

    The Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (OTCPK:GATA) has gradually amassed evidence of market manipulation and a covert attempt to keep gold and silver prices low. Its London conference is this week and will hear from very astute analysts that there is now the real risk of a massive short squeeze that will lead to a gold cartel losing control of prices and a parabolic surge in the gold price and significant dislocations in financial markets.

    GoldCore does not endorse GATA but has always found its work thorough and thought provoking. Indeed, its key contention has never been refuted or rebutted by the banks in question or in the media.

    Should gold go parabolic, it may be time to reduce allocations to gold – but we appear to be a long way from there yet.

    This is not the end game which unfortunately looks increasingly like an international monetary crisis – centered on either the U.S. dollar or the euro or both.

    Having looked at the reality of supply and demand in the gold market let us now look at some important charts courtesy of Bloomberg Industries. 

    Gold Charts

    These 14 charts from Bloomberg Industries strongly suggest that gold remains far from a bubble.

    Declining U.S. Dollar Continues to Drive Precious Metals Higher

    A declining U.S. dollar has been one of the primary drivers for precious metals. If the historic negative correlation between the dollar and precious metals continues to  persist, further dollar declines will ultimately be positive for precious metals.

    Gold Outperforms Currencies as Demand for Hard Assets Rises

    Dow-to-Gold Ratio: Financial Assets vs. Hard Assets

    The ratio of the Dow Jones Industrial Average to gold displays the cyclical nature of the battle between paper and hard assets.

    Paper assets (i.e., financial assets) have excelled when economic growth has been strong. When growth has faltered or the outlook was less certain, hard assets have outperformed.

    Gold and TIPS Moving in Tandem Amid Record Low Interest Rates

    Record low interest rates have moved gold and TIPS higher in  2011. While the correlation between gold and TIPS declined  earlier in the year, the recent rise suggests investors are more willing to pay more for inflation protection. New highs in the gold  price may be signaling increased TIPS prices and inflation expectations.

    World Gold Production – 2000 - 2011

    China Consumers Increase Jewelry Purchases at Quickest Pace

    China has been the largest buyer of gold jewelry since  2008; its demand has grown rapidly during the past decade,  and it has surpassed India, which had been the largest  buyer for decades.

    Chinese consumers are fearful of rising inflation, and have diversified into gold.

    China and India Jewelry Demand Rises

    Demand for jewelry has increased steadily as individuals buy gold and other precious metals as a hedge against inflation.

    China, in particular, has had a large increase in jewelry demand, spurred by a change in government rules allowing easier access to precious metals.

    U.S. M2 Growth Expands in June, Correlates High With Gold

    The U.S. M2 money supply accelerated in June to a 6.0% yoy pace, the highest reading in 22 months. The U.S. consumer price index (urban consumers) remained at a 3.6% yoy pace in June, in line with May's results. The correlation between the total U.S. M2 and gold has exceeded 0.90 since November 2004.

    China M2 Money Supply: M2 Growth is Decelerating, Yet Still Rising

    Gold Moves Higher with Chinese Inflation

    China’s M2 money supply has been rising by 20%, Switzerland’s by 25%, Russia’s by 30%, and the world’s by 8%-9%. Japan’s M2 is expected to move higher after recent events. In order to fight economic and debt issues, paper currency has been printed at historically high levels.

    Rising Debt Levels Drive Gold and Silver Higher

    Precious Metals Outperform Other Asset Classes

    Institutional investors have avoided precious metals during the last decade. Comparable performance from other assets such as stocks and bonds has been poor and as this gap widens and the need to diversify intensifies, institutional ownership in precious metals could increase driving prices higher.

    Conclusion

    As a percentage of assets, gold ownership remains negligible vis-à-vis assets such as equities and bonds. Ownership of gold is likely to be less than 2% of global investable assets. This is in marked contrast to the end of gold’s last bull market when gold and gold stocks accounted for over 20% of global assets.

    Gold remains badly analysed, under-owned and under-appreciated. This will change in the coming months and years when the importance of gold as an investment and currency diversification and as a store of wealth is appreciated again.

    Aug 03 11:27 AM | Link | Comment!
  • $1 Billion of Gold Bars Taken Delivery of by Pension Fund Due to Risk of COMEX Default and Shortages

    Concerns that the sovereign debt crisis may be entering a new phase and the risk of contagion has seen peripheral eurozone bonds fall sharply and the euro fall against major currencies and gold today.

    Sovereign debt risk, global inflation concerns, geopolitical risk, disappointing European earnings and concerns about Japan's coming reporting season have seen equities weaken and new record nominal highs for gold and silver (all time and 31-year).

    Cross Currency Table GoldCore
    Cross Currency Table

    Greek bond yields have continued their relentless march higher and have risen above 14.07% (10-year) and Portuguese debt (10-year) has risen to a euro era record over 9.27%. Spanish and Irish debts are also under pressure this morning.

    Gold in EUR - 1 Year (Daily) GoldCore
    Gold in EUR - 1 Year (Daily)

    Euro gold has been in a range between €900/oz and €1,070/oz for nearly a year (since last May - see chart) and this period of consolidation looks set to come to an end as gold pushes higher. Once the technical resistance at the record high of €1,072/oz (12/28/10) is breached, gold will challenge €1,100/oz.

    In the current bull market, euro gold has seen many long periods of correction and consolidation prior to rapid gains and sharp moves upwards. The length of the recent correction (almost a year) suggests that the coming move could be very sharp and see gold rise to €1,200/oz in the coming weeks.

    Cross Currency Table and Precious Metals GoldCore
    Cross Currency Table and Precious Metals

    Gold is increasingly being seen as the superior currency in a world of trillion dollar and euro deficits and bailouts. Indeed, the printing and electronic creation of billions and trillions of the major paper currencies is increasingly making gold and silver the currencies of last resort.

    Governments and central banks are debasing currencies through bailouts, deficit spending and quantitative easing that is leading to a massive increase in the supply of fiat currencies. Precious metals are rare and finite and this is why major currencies are falling in value versus gold and silver.

    One of the largest pension funds in the world, the University of Texas Investment Management Co (which manages the endowment for the Texas teachers pension fund), has realised this and has put 5% of the pension fund into gold bullion (see news).

    Unusually, but likely to be seen more frequently in the coming weeks and months, the pension fund has opted to own physical bars worth nearly $1 billion dollars in allocated accounts.

    The fund has previously expressed concerns about the counterparty risk in ETFs. However, the reason given for opting for taking delivery of 100 oz gold bars in a warehouse was that if the holders of just 5 percent of COMEX futures contracts opted to take delivery of the metal, there wouldn’t be enough to cover the demand leading to a COMEX default.

    The risk of a COMEX default increases by the day and appears to be moving from the realms of a “conspiracy theory” to that of “of course we knew it would happen, it stands to reason and was inevitable”.

    A COMEX default would have serious ramifications for the dollar and all fiat currencies as it would further erode trust in central banks, fiat currencies and today’s monetary system.

    Gold

    Gold is trading at $1,482.65/oz, €1,035.43/oz and £910.80/oz.

    Silver

    Silver is trading at $42.81/oz, €29.91/oz and £26.31/oz.

    While silver is overbought in the short term, the fact that silver remains in backwardation even after the recent sharp move up suggests that higher prices may be imminent and the 1980 nominal high of $50/oz may be reached sooner that most expect.
     

    Cross Currency Table GoldCore

    Platinum Group Metals

    Platinum is trading at $1,783.50/oz, palladium at $755/oz and rhodium at $2,300/oz.

    Apr 18 11:45 AM | Link | Comment!
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