"For investors, buying gold is similar to casting a no-confidence vote," saidItsuo Toshima, 68, an investment adviser and former regional manager for the World Gold Council in Tokyo. "Gold is the unprintable currency, unlike the yen. The yen’s appreciation in spite of the adoption of the negative-rate policy has kindled skepticism about the policy’s benefits. It’s also led to investors seeking to protect their assets in case Abenomics fails.”
Chinese wholesale gold demand, as measured by withdrawals from the vaults of the Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE), reached a sizable 973 metric tonnes in the first half of 2016, down 7 % compared to last year.
"China and other countries do not want to be in a situation where all their international assets are in effect dependent on the US. Of course the US would not want to renege on its debts, but if some awful conflagration occurred, then all China’s assets in the US might be annulled."
Venezuela’s gold reserves have plunged to their lowest level on record after the country sold $1.7 billion of the precious metal in the first quarter of the year to repay debts. The country is grappling with an economic crisis that has left it struggling to feed its population.The OPEC member’s gold reserves have dropped almost a third over the past year and it sold over 40 tonnes in February and March. Gold now makes up almost 70% of the country’s total reserves, which fell to a low of $12.1 billion last week
While it must be painful for those who have such disdain for the pet rock, the fact is that central banks are losing credibility with the market, and gold is one way of expressing that. As Elliott Management's Paul Singer said last month regarding investor confidence in the central planners: "If judgement continues to weaken, the effect on gold could be very powerful." Perhaps the markets are starting to wake up to the fact that the all-knowing central planners literally have no idea what they're doing, and if so, we'll let investors borrow our tinfoil hat.
HSBC’s main gold vault in London regularly comes under the media spotlight for a number of reasons. These reasons include: a) the HSBC London vault stores a very large amount of gold on behalf of the well-known SPDR Gold Trust (GLD); b) along with the Bank of England vaults and JP Morgan vault, the HSBC vault is one of the 3 largest gold vaults in London; c) the location of the HSBC vault in London is not publicised and so the secrecy creates intrigue; d) HSBC every so often throws out some visual or audio-visual media bait about the vault, most famously in the case of CNBC’s Bob Pisani; Despite all of the above, no one seems to have ever tried to figure out where this gold vault is actually located. Until now.
Coming ‘sharia gold standard’ or shariah compliant gold could lead to a very significant source of new demand for physical gold coins and bars in the Islamic world as some of the $2 trillion of assets held in Islamic financial institutions are allocated to the very small physical global gold market.
Overnight a historic event took place when China, the world's top gold consumer, launched a yuan-denominated gold benchmark on Tuesday as had been previewed here previously in what Reuters dubbed "an ambitious step to exert more control over the pricing of the metal and boost its influence in the global bullion market."