This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

German ProSieben TV Channel Finds 500 Gram Tungsten Bar At W.C.Heraeus Gold Foundry With Bank Origin

Tyler Durden's picture





 

German TV station ProSieben finds what appears to be some evocative proof of gold counterfeiting, in the form of tungsten gold substitutes coming to the W.C.Heraeus foundry, which is the world's largest privately-owned precious metals refiner and fabricator, located in Hanau, Germany. The foundry has isolated at least one 500-gram tungsten bar due for melting, originating from a (so far) unnamed bank, which as the head of the foundry stated made the unpleasant discovery that "not all the glitters is gold."

Full clip after the jump.

h/t Thomas

 


- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:41 | Link to Comment spekulatn
spekulatn's picture

Tungsten Bitches

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:59 | Link to Comment Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

black ops. counterfeits are planted to depress demand.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:04 | Link to Comment spekulatn
spekulatn's picture

black ops. counterfeits are planted to depress demand.

 

Don't forget hedge fund managers ;>

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:17 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:33 | Link to Comment Careless Whisper
Careless Whisper's picture

what lessons to learn from your book?

"don't trust your government"

http://www.infowars.com/harry-markopolos-dont-trust-your-government/

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:21 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:43 | Link to Comment Sam Clemons
Sam Clemons's picture

The math doesn't make sense.  They claim to leverage 2x or 3x against the performance of the real-estate index or the banking index.  Since Jan 08, XLF has fallen roughly 50% so SKF should be up 100%.  Somehow it is down 100 to 22, 88%.  The same math problem causes all of these to merely deteriorate on a long scale and only have short-term bounces.  Say XLF is priced at 100 and FAZ is priced at 100.  Assume XLF goes to 110, FAZ goes down roughly 30.  Assume XLF goes back to 100, FAZ (now ~70), goes up 30% (10% * 3) which puts it at 70*.30+70 = 91.  So even though you were right about XLF staying near 100, you lose.  This happens on all time scales.  Granted, the issuers do say they are for short-term trades only.

 

http://thelastcanary.blogspot.com

 

 

 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:20 | Link to Comment Budd Fox
Budd Fox's picture

It is well known...the leveraged ETFs are junk, the tracking error is ridicolous and they literally decay at the time value of an option...they should be outlawed fast ...

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 01:13 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 01:45 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 06:44 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Now THIS is as good as any reason to read the posters on ZH. Thanks Bud!. 

Just last week I opened a position on SRS the afternoon prior to the MBA report. All my work indicated that the res mortgage situation was going to crap, and sure enough it was. 

What happened to my position? SRS gapped DOWN overnight and continued to slide through the day. It didn't make a damn bit of sense. Now, I take plenty of small losses. That's the nature of the beast. And I closed this one pronto. But that's not what frosted me. What frosted me is how this ETF seemed to move opposite of the market information at hand. It's the one time that I screamed FOUL! and nearly lost it. My trading friends, who did not play it that day, couldn't understand it's odd movement either. It's as if the position was completely decorrelated from the market. Me felt like a "pigeon" that morning. 

What about SSO/SDS? I noticed that SSO moves well with SPX, but SDS is quite sluggish. Same thing? 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 09:21 | Link to Comment RhoRhoRhoBoat
RhoRhoRhoBoat's picture

Housing stocks rallied.  This is a no-brainer.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:18 | Link to Comment Howard_Beale
Howard_Beale's picture

The SRS tracks REITS. Top ten holdings are:

Simon Property Group Inc. 9.03% Vornado Realty Trust 5.00% Public Storage 4.15% Annaly Capital Management Inc. 3.81% Boston Properties Inc. 3.69% Equity Residential 3.67% HCP Inc. 3.52% Host Hotels & Resorts Inc. 2.92% Ventas Inc. 2.72% Avalonbay Communities Inc. 2.65%

 

Do your homework.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 04:17 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:33 | Link to Comment Sam Clemons
Sam Clemons's picture

Sorry, the math does make sense as I laid out above in the short-term - I misspoke.  What I meant to say is that investing in them for the long-term does not make sense.  My math example shows why the daily movements (10% up then ~10% back down) and why the daily calculations produce the long term results of declining towards zero. 

The person below this, yes, they will track towards zero and then they do reverse splits to keep their price up.

I think any inverse does this.  As for double longs, I'm not sure.  Never thought about it much.  I would think that it depends if it doubles the dollar amount or the percent to determine if the rate of return declines or increases. Moreover, try not to trade news too often.  It generally fails.  I've learned from experience.

 

http://thelastcanary.blogspot.com

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 05:14 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:13 | Link to Comment Ghostdog
Ghostdog's picture

Its not so much fraud, as much as it is how much confidence you have in a 13 year old kid running most of these ETF's in their garage.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 16:41 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 18:39 | Link to Comment Sam Clemons
Sam Clemons's picture

I know.  I've read the prospectus.  Read my post about daily movements.  Which makes my proof correct.  I was mainly pointing out what has happened over the long term to SKF proving that it does not cumulatively track it.  Calm down.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:29 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:29 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:33 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 05:02 | Link to Comment merehuman
merehuman's picture

figured the prez was a stoner.

you took my money, but you aint gitten my stash

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:55 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 03:06 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 10:02 | Link to Comment Dr. Richard Head
Dr. Richard Head's picture

So should I cut open all my Pamp Suisse assay cards and go through each piece of bullion? 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 16:06 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Fri, 03/05/2010 - 00:18 | Link to Comment hbjork1
hbjork1's picture

No need to cut bars open. 

The speed of sound in tungsted is almost twice that for gold.  With the right apparatus, the bar can be "pinged" to determine whether or not it is gold. 

Vibration test suppliers sell accelerometer equipped "hammers" that can be used to check metal shapes to be tested for resonant frequencies.   The device will need an oscilloscope to store and observe the "vibe" response and perhaps a second accelerometer temporarly glued (superglue) to the bar to look for layers. Different metals will have differend slopes on the accelerometer output traces.

Anyone who has a large store of gold could afford the method.

 

 

The equipment could be rented.  It is standard hardware in the vibration test business.

 

 

 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 03:08 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:41 | Link to Comment Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

Courtesy of JP Morgan.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:47 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:16 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 01:19 | Link to Comment RossInvestor
RossInvestor's picture

The newsletter writer who broke the story on the gold T-bars is Rob Kirby.  According to him and a subsequent report by Jim Willie, the fraud was undertaken during the Clinton Administration by Alan Greenspan and Robert Rubin.  Kirby and Willie estimate 1.3 - 1.5 million 400 oz. gold-plated T-bars were fabricated.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:33 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

1.3 - 1.5 million 400 oz. gold-plated T-bars were fabricated.

$600,000,000,000 estimated street value. 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:08 | Link to Comment dark pools of soros
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:01 | Link to Comment Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

counterFIAT everythang!

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:35 | Link to Comment Gold...Bitches
Gold...Bitches's picture


Wolfram auf der ganzen Welt

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 15:09 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

Somebody neeeds to work on Google's German translator! 

The story is about, "tongues 10 (cm) in blonde," not, "tungsten in gold!"

http://www.ebaumsworld.com/pictures/view/80490673/

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:57 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:41 | Link to Comment Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Well well, the dam is beginning to show cracks and seepage. May I suggest that this will be spun as some local trying the game the system? Of course, no "official" media station will ask the really tough questions.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:44 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Like what amazing new technology did these alchemists use to turn gold into tungsten?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:13 | Link to Comment Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

LOL

Yeah, that's the ticket. Along those lines.

Or like "How did they pour the tungsten in the middle of the Gold? It is like making chocolate bunnies?"

Or maybe "Wow, tungsten. It must be worth even more than gold if it's in the center? Does it have chewy caramel and peanuts too?"

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:46 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

People often forget that metal of triple or 4-Nines purity is produced (refined) electrolytically.

Theoretically all you have to do is plate a shaped bar of tungsten with .999 gold to a thickness that will support the stampings. The tungsten bar could be easily formed into an ingot shape using a process called electrochemical machining (ECM) which I have done lots of over the years. (Great process to make turbine blades with a .1 thou tolerance!)

It looks like these guys however overdid the gold thickness and thus probably just heated a suspended tungsten bar in an ingot mold to around 2,200-2,500F (melting requires 6,000 degrees+) and poured a melt of .999 Au around it. (Rather wasteful)

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:52 | Link to Comment Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Based upon the video, it looks like the core was less than 50% by volume when you consider the total amount of top and bottom, sides and ends. I was also surprised how think the "coating" was.

Still, being paid Gold prices for 200 grams of tungsten times x number of bars per day is a decent days work, wouldn't you say? The first thing I thought was black ops to suppress the price of Gold.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:21 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

I think it will have the precise opposite effect!

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:23 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 06:49 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Holy crap. You can get .1 mil tolerance?? I work on printed circuit board technologies and we etch to .5 mil. .1 mil is incredible. 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 09:29 | Link to Comment Hughe Crapper
Hughe Crapper's picture

No problem. I sport one out every hour. ;)

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 19:50 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Not a photoresist/circuitboard/FeCl situation... ECM on turbine blades. If you are out a bit well you know what happens.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 11:00 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:51 | Link to Comment Shameful
Shameful's picture

Alright this blew my mind, how deep does this run?  I mean 500g is not that much, it's about 16 troy ounces.  That's nothing in the greater scheme of things, less then $20,000.  I mean shit if you can't trust a 500g bar then 1kilo bars are right out too, and then one has to ask what is safe.  When I heard the tungsten rumor I was leery of it and even if it was true assumed it would be only in the big bars.  Tungsten is not that easy to work it's not like a good counterfeit would be easy for an amateur to make.  The fact it would be so hard makes me think a pro or group of pros is doing this and most likely not just "a bar here and a bar there".

My knee jerk on this is that it hits two targets.  First it kills trust in gold.  Second it allows gold fraud and those with means to accumulate good gold while bad gold goes into the market.  But this could also cause disruption ins the paper gold market which would bring about more chaos if they start not being able to meet physical delivery and word gets out about it.  Are the oligarchs ready to bring the system down so early?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:11 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:37 | Link to Comment Shameful
Shameful's picture

I'm familiar with the article, and they talked about the process of counterfeiting the large bars.  Remember 500 grams is not very much.  It's about the same as 1lb.  It's not something I could do in my kitchen with a few free hours and no training.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:00 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Tungsten ECM/ gold electroplating you could do in your kitchen with a 100 amp rectifier, cyanide solutions and tanks. (Don't forget to heat treat after to expel the absorbed hydrogen and 'soften' the gold)

Easier (but more expensive gold-wise) to make them with a small outdoor foundry powered by propane or NG.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:38 | Link to Comment Shameful
Shameful's picture

I understand it's feasible, but to get the right stamp it would have to come from the mint, or be an excellent forgery of the stamp right?

My question is how far down does this go, are we to fear 1 ounce coins?  Also I'm assuming the count would sound different right?  And on any real scale multiple people would have to be in on it, especiallythe mint workers right?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:52 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

1 ounce coins and similar ingots will be safe and easy to detect counterfiets if tungsten is the underlying base metal. Bite, bend and a dull sound when struck as compared to a high 'ting' note on hard dense metals like tungsten. Depleted uranium (19.1 g/cm3) would be tougher to detect but would emit low amounts of radiation.

Easy way is to get one gold coin that you know is real and compare others by 'tapping' the edge of the coins...

Unfortunately there is absolutely no way to gaurantee that a proper looking stamp is real... that's the easiest thing to duplicate!

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:53 | Link to Comment Shameful
Shameful's picture

Well at least I can play with my 1 ounces...now makes me question the pamp suisse bars with assay cards, most of the rest of my gold is small fractional pieces, if they are going to fractions then the situation is truly dire!

Thanks for your insight, it's appreciated.  Like I said I didn't expect smaller scale counterfeits to hit the public till after paper money hit the wall.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:07 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

You were correct in assuming the real risk is in the larger bars... just google every now and then to make sure it hasn't spead to the small stuff. When that happens... they will by necessity employ electroplating (and easy to detect fraudwise)... rather than cast.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:25 | Link to Comment Howard_Beale
Howard_Beale's picture

You have been one hell of an educating kitty cat this morning Zerohead. Thanks for some great info.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:38 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 13:18 | Link to Comment Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

If you want to test facebook and twitter coins. There's easy way.

Take 1 coin set it on a padded surface, the carpet if it's a non shaggy weave but a mouse pad will do too. Then drop another coin on top of it from about 8 to 10 inches above it. If the coin on top "sings" when it hits it's gold or silver. Do this many times. You will eventually learn to recognize the frequency.

I bought a 1 ounce eagle and 10 ounce bullion of silver the other day and the 1 ounce eagle sounds thuddy. Somethings not quite right with it. So I'll have to check it dimensionally and for weight. Good thing I got a nice gram scale for blueprinting rods in engines. But I believe it might have just a tad bit of lead in it.

I found a better way to test for sound. Take a coin (any coin a quarter will do) and the throw the testing coin in the air and use the tightly held coin to flip it. It should give you nice ringing singing display. If it's silver with lead in it no singing ringing, If it's tungesten should be much much lower pitched ringing. If it's fine gold fine silver it'll sing and ring till you catch it or it falls to floor and starts new ringing.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:09 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:53 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:46 | Link to Comment Gold...Bitches
Gold...Bitches's picture

thats one reason i really like the older US pre 1933 gold coins that are a little beat up (little/no numismatic value) as they go for just about the gold value, but they have much less chance of not having the gold in them they are supposed to.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:47 | Link to Comment Gold...Bitches
Gold...Bitches's picture

even better is pre 1965 US silver coinage.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:23 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Exactly!

Wed, 03/03/2010 - 15:13 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:45 | Link to Comment Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Tyler Durden you are the man!

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:05 | Link to Comment boiow
boiow's picture

+1000

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:48 | Link to Comment hedgeless_horseman
hedgeless_horseman's picture

This is one reason why per oz premiums on coins is higher than bars.

Tungsten coins not so profitable, or as easy to make.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:57 | Link to Comment Postal
Postal's picture

So how can I verify that my silver dollars are real silver?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:02 | Link to Comment Ragnarok
Ragnarok's picture

I wonder what the smallest size they can get away with is?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:09 | Link to Comment deadhead
deadhead's picture

think zinc pennies and history.

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:16 | Link to Comment Ragnarok
Ragnarok's picture

The platting or casting around the tungsten would have to be a certain thickness so that when the bar or coin is struck/pressed one would only see gold.  So I imagine there is a technical, if not practical, limit to the size of the coin/bar.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:56 | Link to Comment perchprism
perchprism's picture

 

Big differences in melt temperature and malleability.  The problem is the density is about the same.  Anyway, as soon as it's put in the cup to melt, the tungsten remains behind.  It could not practically be put into coin blanks with a gold cladding, since the striker would know immediately something was wrong when the dies got worn out right off.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:07 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

And the final product would not pass the bend or bite test!

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:52 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:18 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:34 | Link to Comment DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

I hope you are right about it being difficult to make tungsten-fake gold coins to 1 oz. size.

Nonetheless, this is very bad news.

I hope someone can invent / supply a cheap way to check our gold!

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:53 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:27 | Link to Comment bchbum
bchbum's picture

Gold coins are not pure gold, too soft.  They have copper (or other metal) added to make them harder.  97 or 98 pure.  I think you have to drill to be sure.  This guy said that gold makes a plunk and tungston a plink, I guess I'll just believe whatever I'm told, its much easier.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:05 | Link to Comment Frank Owen
Frank Owen's picture

That is not true of all coins. Canadian Maples, the Aussie coins, American Eagles, the Philharmonic coins are all .999+ The 22 karat coins are about 92% pure.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 10:53 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:18 | Link to Comment merehuman
merehuman's picture

Ok i will bite. After i find my dentures

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:38 | Link to Comment Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

heehee.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 14:48 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Wed, 03/03/2010 - 08:15 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:18 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:31 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:16 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 13:57 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:22 | Link to Comment chumbawamba
chumbawamba's picture

Metal is metal.  As small as you want.

Ounce coins (or smaller) are not immune.  It depends on the economics of the fraud.

I am Chumbawamba.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:45 | Link to Comment Hulk
Hulk's picture

I had a nightmare last month in which I was melting all my Maples to make sure they were not tungsten. I woke up just as they were starting to melt I think I'll melt all my maples tonight just to be sure.
1st annual Maple Melt, 03/01/2010.. JEEZ LOUISE.....

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:49 | Link to Comment WaterWings
WaterWings's picture

Silver stampede and dig a bigger hole to hide it?

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:16 | Link to Comment Orly
Orly's picture

Silver should be no problem.  Tungsten and gold have very similar displacement and weighting properties that can fool a quick survey.  Once the brick has been assayed, however, it is a different story.

Apparently, some smart Deutschlanders assayed the brick.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:42 | Link to Comment chumbawamba
chumbawamba's picture

Wrong.

As long as the density of the fake metal you're introducing into the mix is higher than that of the metal you are trying to fake then the counterfeit is easy.  You simply start with a slug that is an alloy of cheap metals that has the same density as the target metal.

Gold is difficult to counterfeit because it is one of the highest density metals in the periodic table, and the available cheap metals that are near in density are few (W being the most ideal), and the more dense metals are rarer and more expensive (Pt, Os, etc.)

I am Chumbawamba.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:51 | Link to Comment DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture

Chumba, doesn't pure silver have a really nice ring when dropped onto something hard? 

I would think that silver would be OK, up to the 1 toz sizes anyway.  And, as you mentioned earlier, the economics have to add up for the counterfeiters (on the other hand the cost of slave labor in North Korea is almost zero).

Agree re gold being hard to counterfeit in coin sizes.  By the way, I think Osmium and Iridium are cheaper than gold: www.thebulliondesk.com

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:01 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Yes it does. Practice with both a Maple or a .999 round and then an eagle as they have different purities (that's why an eagle is larger than a maple, an eagle contains 1 troy oz of .999 but it's NOT .999 pure through and through). 

You will find the distinct clang of all of them to be rather pleasurable. Sort of like the sound of.... 

money. 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:55 | Link to Comment A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Verbal silver porn. Kinda like the "articles" that everybody "reads" in Playboy.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:16 | Link to Comment chumbawamba
chumbawamba's picture

Yes, silver has a beautiful ring when you strike it.  You'd have to put any smaller denominations (like 1ozt coins) on some sort of padded upright supports to get them to ring, then again, I don't know anyone dumb enough to try to counterfeit 1ozt silver rounds.

Not sure about the current price of Os or Ir, but again, economics...

I am Chumbawamba.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:49 | Link to Comment ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Correct... however depleted uranium is 19.1 grams per cubic centimeter. Plenty of that on the ground in Iraq.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:57 | Link to Comment Cognitive Dissonance
Cognitive Dissonance's picture

Now wouldn't that be the ultimate payback if the Iraqi's were picking up depleted uranium, making bogus Gold bars, and then selling them to Americans.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:49 | Link to Comment Howard_Beale
Howard_Beale's picture

Well there's that idea but what about the Chinese putting high levels of lead in jewelry sold to Mattel or all their crap on Ebay--A slower longer poisoning of sorts.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 06:14 | Link to Comment gilligan
gilligan's picture

Straightforward way to detect a fake would be to use ultrasonics.  Ultrasonic probes are routinely used in aircraft non-destructive inspection.  It would pick up the gold-tungsten interfaces in a fake.  Would even work for coins. 

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultrasonic_testing

 

 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:40 | Link to Comment Gunther
Gunther's picture

+1

Fri, 03/05/2010 - 00:33 | Link to Comment hbjork1
hbjork1's picture

gilligan:

Correct!

Another one is a resonance "hammer" used in vibration testing as posted further up the chain. The hammer would not be as quick and easy as what you suggest but would be less expensive.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:02 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I wouldn't worry about Ag. 

Not now at least. It wouldn't likely be cost effective. 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:04 | Link to Comment merehuman
merehuman's picture

Silver, so far has not a high price.

That may change now.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:18 | Link to Comment chet
chet's picture

Can't imagine that anyone would bother to counterfeit silver dollars.  Too small fry, unless you have the ability to really churn them out.  If you wanted to pass them of in numbers you'd have to have different dates, with different levels of wear and tear.

But maybe I'm wrong.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:29 | Link to Comment JohnG
JohnG's picture

http://coins.about.com/od/goldrarecoininvesting/f/fake_coin_fraud.htm

The best way is the "ring" test (imho).  A real silver coin has a very distinct ring when dropped on a hardwood table.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:47 | Link to Comment Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

If they are already faking 500 gram bars then the game is almost up.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:40 | Link to Comment SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Yep, my thinking exactly.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:16 | Link to Comment tip e. canoe
tip e. canoe's picture

...or maybe that's what they want you to think...

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:47 | Link to Comment AnonymousMonetarist
AnonymousMonetarist's picture

Ruh roh ..

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:48 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:52 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Holy shit. 

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:54 | Link to Comment carbonmutant
carbonmutant's picture

 I thought they were counterfeiting the kilo bars...

If they're doing it to the small stuff it's gonna be hard to treat gold as currency...

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 17:58 | Link to Comment cocoablini
cocoablini's picture

Wow- the gold market is in deep shit. Holding physical in your hands in now a dubious, dubious insurance.
I suggest people start moving into smaller miners, in safe countries like Canada as they are going to have to make up all this gold that has been promised, counterfeited, stolen, derivatized. The big boys are probably making this stuff so when comex hasto deliver they deliver bricks .

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:58 | Link to Comment chumbawamba
chumbawamba's picture

Bullshit.  A simple acoustics test (tap on it like a tine on a xylophone) will tell you what you need to know.

Let's not get all hysterical and throw away the only protection the little guy has.

Physical metal in your hands is the only thing between you and corporate/statist-induced destitution.

I am Chumbawamba.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:03 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

+17

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:38 | Link to Comment TheGoodDoctor
TheGoodDoctor's picture

An ounce? :)

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 00:25 | Link to Comment wake the roach
wake the roach's picture

"Physical metal in your hands is the only thing between you and corporate/statist-induced destitution".

Not trying to start an argument here but I just do not see that point as valid...

To purchase gold you must believe either.

1. That you will sell at or before market top for fiat currency.

2. You are holding out for the introduction of a new gold standard.

3. You are waiting for armageddon and a new physical gold currency/barter system.

4. Huge increase in demand for gold fillings, electrical connectors or bling bling.

From what I gather most physical investors here on ZH fit into catagory 2 or 3 so it begs the question(s).

What chance is there for the introduction of a new gold standard and if so, what is the liklihood that governments are going to allow gold to be redeemed for the new currency at the value required for the standard to work?

What is the chance that if armageddon arrives, you will be able to trade a kilo of gold for a tin of sardines?

Ok, gold will retain some value over fiat currency but lets face it, gold is not going to make average Joe a wealthy man. Gold will take whatever new value that governements say it has unless your last name is Soros, Rogers or Faber.

 

 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 01:33 | Link to Comment WaterWings
WaterWings's picture

Actually, only the last half of door #3. Armageddon is "game over" because Jesus shows up. He doesn't care about gold and neither should you in that case. 

But most readers here either a) don't believe in Jesus b) believe Jesus still has a few years (decades, centuries?) before John's writings come to pass. So having food supplies, precious metals, and the means to protect it, and one's life, isn't a bad idea considering the unpredictable nature of societal collapse.

What is the chance that if armageddon arrives, you will be able to trade a kilo of gold for a tin of sardines?

Save it to buy the Brooklyn Bridge instead.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 02:40 | Link to Comment wake the roach
wake the roach's picture

hello again haha.... Point taken, replace "armageddon" with "complete global economic and social systems disintegration".

"So having food supplies, precious metals, and the means to protect it, and one's life, isn't a bad idea considering the unpredictable nature of societal collapse."

Thats kinda the point I was hoping someone would make, for most people who have very little wealth to protect (the growing majority), there is much better value to be found in products that protect our only true wealth ("one's life").

I hate to think of all the scared, financially illiterate ma and pa PM's investors out there (search youtube), spending their life savings on the advice of Faber, Schiff or Rogers only to get completely and utterly destroyed...

As we know, Pm's are not risk free investments and I believe its important to make that clear for the growing number of people frequenting ZH who with all probability, found their way here via sites like prisonplanet.com and believe they will wake up one morning filthy rich...

To give people who have very little knowledge of economics/finance the idea that PM's are a sure bet is completely irresponsible and no different to the government, banks and MSM's deception that realestate and the markets will only ever go up. Not that I'm accusing anyone here of that  ;-)...

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 09:31 | Link to Comment SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

As we know, Pm's are not risk free investments and I believe its important to make that clear for the growing number of people frequenting ZH who with all probability, found their way here via sites like prisonplanet.com and believe they will wake up one morning filthy rich...

PMs are not investments.  Miners are investments.  PMs are IMO the best way to move wealth from one currency regime to the next.  This is especially true if all paper currencies have the same set of problems, and in the current case that is true.  Gold is capital.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:32 | Link to Comment WaterWings
WaterWings's picture

Hopefully the Ma and Pa's have a diversified portfolio of tangibles - not only PMs. The first few years will be about staying alive. Barter will be based on what other people need to stay alive as well. Only short-sighted morons will invest more in precious metals than what it takes to stay above room temparature.

Dealing in precious metals on black market terms is asking for unwanted attention anyway. Anyone with an ounce of gold is either going to take a haircut or literally get scalped - better to have a sardine stash to exhaust long before you need to tap into your PM stash. Gold is golden but only if you plan on holding it until you can find a trustworthy buyer that understands its value. 

But there is nothing better.

Wed, 03/03/2010 - 00:58 | Link to Comment fromthebleachers
fromthebleachers's picture

"the growing number of people frequenting ZH who with all probability, found their way here via sites like prisonplanet.com and believe they will wake up one morning filthy rich..."

Oh darn. Now I am disappointed.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:45 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 21:41 | Link to Comment Crime of the Century
Crime of the Century's picture

I don't know why someone junked you, I thought it was quite humorous. I also would not lose one bit of sleep over small bars from a name refiner.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 23:20 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 07:05 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I think argentum is absolutely beautiful. More volatile, so the risk is much higher, but the rewards are too. 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 10:48 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 03:57 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 20:01 | Link to Comment Rusty_Shackleford
Rusty_Shackleford's picture

How is it that the actual world above ground SUPPLY of gold being significantly LESS than what has been assumed lead to a drop in it's price (in FRN's)? 

If this is true and statistically significant, all faked bars will simply be assayed out of existence. No?

If you learned that the US secret service had just seized a large amount of counterfeit $1000 bills, would prices in the economy start immediately rising?

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 07:08 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

Rusty. Go to the USGS, and if you have the inclination, tabulate the known silver reserves from their downloadable *.csv files. Tabulate both total and recoverable reserves. 

Next, get a hold of a CPM Ag Yearbook, and tabulate annual output. 

Then.. track the COT report for a bit, and cross-correlate the short open interest with the aforementioned data. 

IIt doesn't add up. Try it yourself. Don't rely on "experts" to tell you of course. 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:01 | Link to Comment dogbreath
dogbreath's picture

like

 

 rainyriverresources.com

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:00 | Link to Comment MarketTruth
MarketTruth's picture

So you can not short the Euro, the dollar is being printed like there is no tomorrow and now proof that gold is being 'forged'.

Can you say End Game?

Wonder what the IMF is holding and why China is not a good candidate? Is it because China would want to take physical delivery and they know China would test all bars.

 

 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:04 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

It's not end game yet. I see more and more people waking up everyday. 

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 19:22 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:01 | Link to Comment truont
truont's picture

Oh $h!t

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:09 | Link to Comment tpberg7
tpberg7's picture

It seems that things could change quickly once the word gets out about which bullion banks are involved.  It will be interesting to watch the mainstream press continue their attempts to obsure this story.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 22:22 | Link to Comment mouser98
mouser98's picture

i chuckled in agreement when i read your comment, but then i realized that the mainstream media's response will likely be: Brittany's sister is pregnant/not pregnant again.  (replace Brittany with any of your favorite celebs).

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 01:34 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 07:10 | Link to Comment 35Pete
35Pete's picture

I don't have a clue why the British people put up with that parasitic hag. Question for the Brits. 

Why do you keep funding this ultimate welfare queen? Tell the royal family to go out and get some goddamn jobs just like the rest of you!

The Middle Ages are long past. Get with the program. 

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 09:54 | Link to Comment SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Amen, brother.

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 10:48 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Tue, 03/02/2010 - 12:01 | Link to Comment SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Nationalsocialist healthcare is a tax increase, and a government takeover of a huge swath of the economy; it has nothing to do with social equity or saving people from bankruptcy due to health expenses.  We will all pay more and we will all get less.  We will be expected to take what we get and like it, or else.  There is no way to save significant money on health care without reducing the amount of care delivered.

"Our point, however, is not that dictatorship must inevitably extirpate freedom but rather that planning leads to dictatorship because dictatorship is the most effective instrument of coercion and the enforcement of ideals and is, as such, essential if central planning on a large scale is to be possible.  The clash between planning and democracy arises simply from the fact that the latter is an obstacle to the suppression of freedom which the direction of economic activity requires.  But in so far as a democracy ceases to be a guarantee of individual freedom, it may well persist under a totalitarian regime.

The fashionable concentration on democracy as the main value threatened is not without danger.  It is largely responsible for the misleading and unfounded belief that, so long as the ultimate source of power is the will of the majority, the power cannot be arbitrary. The false assurance which many people derive from this belief is an important cause for the general unawareness of the dangers we face.

-  Hayek, The Road to Serfdom

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:10 | Link to Comment Anonymous
Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:10 | Link to Comment pocomotion
pocomotion's picture

If my wife ever checks that ring, I am doomed.

Mon, 03/01/2010 - 18:24 | Link to Comment deadhead
deadhead's picture

+1

that was my only laugh of the day...thanks!

and, I love Poco!

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!