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

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
ZerOhead's picture

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

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.

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.

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.



hbjork1's picture



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.

35Pete's picture

I wouldn't worry about Ag. 

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

merehuman's picture

Silver, so far has not a high price.

That may change now.

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.

JohnG's picture

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

Hephasteus's picture

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

SWRichmond's picture

Yep, my thinking exactly.

tip e. canoe's picture

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

Anonymous's picture

Gold will shoot up on this news item !

35Pete's picture

Holy shit. 


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...

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 .

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.

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.



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.

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 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  ;-)...

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 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.

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.

fromthebleachers's picture

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

Oh darn. Now I am disappointed.

Anonymous's picture

Agreed. Sell all physical and pile into COMEX futures and ETF's. They are the only safe gold investment. Real metal is too dangerous.

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.

Anonymous's picture

Not worth forging 1 ounce ingots. Stick with 1 ounce ingots or coins and you'll be all set. If they're resorting to this, verifiable P.M. will be going through the roof. Just took delivery of 30 oz. silver coins, may not be as precious as gold but damn, it's just as pretty! The buffaloes are nice.

35Pete's picture

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

Anonymous's picture

Actually, the buffaloes are the one silver round that had a publicized knockoff problem. The round looked ok, but where it should have had "999 fine silver", the word "silver" did not appear. Weight was off, so would only fool the careless, considering Amazon sells accurate gram/grain scales for @ $20.

Anonymous's picture

Excellent point. Physical gold locked in private vault is far too risky a bet. Better go with those ETFs, for convenience AND safety!

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?

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. 

dogbreath's picture



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.



35Pete's picture

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

Anonymous's picture

It's a specious argument to say that gold is worth less because it was counterfeited at a big foundry. People have been trading fake and counterfeit stuff forever. Fake gold isn't new.

Gold might become worth more if the counterfeiting is exposed because of public outrage.

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.

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).

Anonymous's picture

(replace Brittany with any of your favorite celebs)

Queen Elizabeth?


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. 

Anonymous's picture

Not saying our system is perfect, but how are the Democrats getting on with installing a healthcare system which already exists in every other industrial country and was backed by an overwhelming electoral mandate in yours before vested interests started scaring the bejeezus out of the population about how terrible it would be not to get screwed over by an uncaring corporation every time somebody in your family got seriously ill?

Eyes, beams, etc

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

Anonymous's picture

Tungsten via North Korea, the new Federal Reserve Note! Get yours today!

pocomotion's picture

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

deadhead's picture


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

and, I love Poco!