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A Comedy Of Golden Bundesbank Errors

Tyler Durden's picture


Follow this simple chronology of events:


October 24, 2012 (source: Bundesbank pre-revision; courtesy of Google Cache)

"The reasons for storing gold reserves with foreign partner central banks are historical since, at the time, gold at these trading centres was transferred to the Bundesbank. To be more specific: in October 1951 the Bank deutscher Länder, the Bundesbank’s predecessor, purchased its first gold for DM 2.5 million; that was 529 kilograms at the time. By 1956, the gold reserves had risen to DM 6.2 billion, or 1,328 tonnes; upon its foundation in 1957, the Bundesbank took over these reserves. No further gold was added until the 1970s."


October 28, 2012 (source: "Some Follow-Up Questions For The Bundesbank, And Its Gold" courtesy of Zero Hedge)

1. Thiele says:

"By 1956, the gold reserves had risen to DM 6.2 billion, or 1,328 tonnes; upon its foundation in 1957, the Bundesbank took over these reserves. No further gold was added until the 1970s"

This is factually incorrect. From a documented source such as Timothy Green's gold reserves report from 1999 (source), we find that German gold reserves were 1,328 tonnes in 1956 and contined to rise every year until 1969 when they hit 4034 tonnes, an increase of 200% since 1956! Offical German gold in 1970 was 3,537 tonnes and declined to 2,963 by 1979. Since then it has increased by just 400 tonnes.


October 29, 2012 (source: Bundesbank post-revision)

"The reasons for storing gold reserves with foreign partner central banks are historical since, at the time, gold at these trading centres was transferred to the Bundesbank. To be more specific: in October 1951 the Bank deutscher Länder, the Bundesbank’s predecessor, purchased its first gold for DM 2.5 million; that was 529 kilograms at the time. By 1956, the gold reserves had risen to DM 6.2 billion, or 1,328 tonnes; upon its foundation in 1957, the Bundesbank took over these reserves. Further gold was added until the 1970s."

* * *

Minor difference.

* * *

One can only hope that the Bundesbank does not apply the same level of quality-control and error-proofing to its gold holdings, as it does to its official statements debunking crackpot conspiracy theories.

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Mon, 10/29/2012 - 11:55 | 2928007 Zombie Investor
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"The U.S. Labor Department on Monday said it hasn’t made a decision yet on whether to delay Friday’s October jobs report, the final reading on the labor market before next week’s federal elections.'


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 11:59 | 2928020 insanelysane
insanelysane's picture

"Unbelievable"; I do not think that word means what you think it means.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:12 | 2928063 JohnnyBriefcase
JohnnyBriefcase's picture

He meant "inconceivable!".

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:18 | 2928078 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

He meant, "expected"!

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:20 | 2928089 CrockettAlmanac.com
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These boating accidents are getting serious.



Russian ship with 700 tons of gold ore missing



Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:42 | 2928165 icanhasbailout
icanhasbailout's picture

gold investors know you can't be cynical enough

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:46 | 2928179 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture
A Comedy Of Golden Bundesbank Errors

Leaving the DM.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:50 | 2928190 The Phu
The Phu's picture

Perhaps the work of Ragnar Danneskjold?  Ayn Rand was right!  </sarc>

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 13:16 | 2928280 Bansters-in-my-...
Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

He meant "undeliverable"

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 16:36 | 2928860 Sokhmate
Sokhmate's picture

he meant unconcievable

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:25 | 2928100 zapdude
zapdude's picture

Crocomire!  I love that game.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:30 | 2928122 JohnnyBriefcase
JohnnyBriefcase's picture

Best. Game. Evar.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:21 | 2928086 lunaticfringe
lunaticfringe's picture

Quite believable. The report will be offered up on the basis of whether or not it is helpful to the incumbent. If it is a negative or adverse report, somebody will deem it inappropriate for release.

As we get nearer to the elections, a yeti stepping off a spaceship in my front yard and delivering free pizza if I promise to vote democratic- would no longer surprise me.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:28 | 2928113 swissaustrian
swissaustrian's picture

They'll blame Sandy on CNBC come Friday.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 11:56 | 2928009 Karlus
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Gold, Hündinnen?

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:21 | 2928093 saveandsound
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Mon, 10/29/2012 - 11:58 | 2928017 apberusdisvet
apberusdisvet's picture

The new gold backed currency will be called the Rothschild.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:59 | 2928227 BigJim
BigJim's picture

abbreviated to 'rotters'

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 11:59 | 2928019 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Dow 12,999 today. What does it matter that markets are closed the number is still changine. Even CNBC crew came in today. They are sitting around with their tumbs up their ass and they have the lights out in the office

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 13:48 | 2928361 WillyGroper
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>>>>>They are sitting around with their tumbs up their ass

Does that mean they have ASSid indigestion? :)

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:01 | 2928024 aleph0
aleph0's picture

OK, it "is" Fox News, but still :


Ship with 700 tons of gold ore disappears off Russia


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:09 | 2928048 Tyler Durden
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1) It's Associated Press

2) 700 tons of gold ore would lead to the extraction of... 24 kilograms of gold.

File:Gold 30g for a 860kg rock.jpg

Relative sizes of an 860 kg block of gold ore, and the 30 g of gold that can be extracted from it. Toi gold mine, Japan.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:10 | 2928054 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

Nothing a little gold spraypaint can't fix! I mean if they can use it over tungsten, why not?

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:31 | 2928120 francis_sawyer
francis_sawyer's picture

That foto is only "phase one" of the operation... Then ~ after the Rothschilds [& friends] have stolen their bit, the refined gold brought to market is about the size of one of those grains of sand...

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 13:04 | 2928244 Matt
Matt's picture

You can probably gold plate a few hundred tons of tungsten with 24 Kg of pure gold.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 14:36 | 2928538 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Mmm, tungsten -- tasty, tasty tungsten!

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:27 | 2928109 walküre
walküre's picture

Is it possible they made a mistake when editing the piece before release?

Further gold was added ..

I'm not an English expert but can a sentence commence with "further" ? Where are our grammar experts today? Swimming? Seriously, I tend to think the sentence should have read "No further gold was added ..."

Which would make sense and correspond with the other accounts.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 13:57 | 2928390 JohnG
JohnG's picture



Interesting question.  Yes, a proper sentence may begin with further.  "was added" is however a grammatical error - passive voice.  Should be active voice as it is not clear "who is doing what."

Should be something along the lines of "We added...."

Hell you asked for an english person......I took a minor.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 16:11 | 2928778 Unholy Dalliance
Unholy Dalliance's picture

Try: more gold was added…

And it is OK to say was added.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 18:53 | 2929220 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

You may be genius- even though my German sucks- it's the same in Google cache (10/26) as is currently on the website.

Bis in die siebziger Jahre kam weiteres Gold hinzu.


Current German


Cached German as of 10/26


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:37 | 2928145 malikai
malikai's picture

24 KG? Sure, I'll take it. Not sure I'd want to be found afterwards, being Russian gold and all.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:02 | 2928026 dariomilano
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pirates bitchez O.O

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 18:16 | 2929181 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

....argh!!! Bytchez! x.O

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:02 | 2928030 Dr. Engali
Dr. Engali's picture

That looks like a Wonka bar. Except in this case you get a tungsten ticket.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:09 | 2928049 krispkritter
krispkritter's picture

I'd still like to keep the wrappers...

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 13:49 | 2928367 GolfHatesMe
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And Everyone is a winner

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:04 | 2928032 glenlloyd
glenlloyd's picture

This revision should surprise no one....

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:06 | 2928038 Itch
Itch's picture

um, yeah because its just a typo

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:51 | 2928178 Skateboarder
Skateboarder's picture

One frickin word can make the difference between a) a couple of decades, and b) a few thousand tonnes of gold...

Nice catch TD, excellent sleuthin as always.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:07 | 2928041 francis_sawyer
Mon, 10/29/2012 - 14:38 | 2928542 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Ya gotta wonder how some people are even smart enough to remember to breathe!

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:10 | 2928052 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

I'm just surprised that the Bundesbank feels compelled to respond in any way to the 'show us our gold' outcries from whoever.  The fact that they feel the need to respond makes me think that they probably don't actually have any gold, that all the rumors are actually true. 

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:19 | 2928085 Unprepared
Unprepared's picture

"I did not have --- relationship with that women."

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:10 | 2928053 Diplodicus Rex
Diplodicus Rex's picture

The grey bar in that photo is not tungsten. The shaped dent was made by a drill bit which would have been selected to cut through the soft gold expecting the gold to be consistent throughout the bar. That drill bit could not have made the dent in the tungsten. Tungsten is very hard and requires special tools for machining. I never liked that story at the time. Something does not smell right about it.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:26 | 2928104 Svendblaaskaeg
Svendblaaskaeg's picture

Bingo! - it's fools tungsten


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:38 | 2928150 Hedgetard55
Hedgetard55's picture


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:29 | 2928118 Random_Robert
Random_Robert's picture

You have to read the original story -

Certified Assayers don't drill holes with 1/8 inch drill bits - that is NOT an Assayer's hole- it was drilled by the bar's owner, using his garage drill press.

Now, any rank hobbyist with a neighborhood Lowes, Home Depot or Sears can get a set of Tungsten carbide or Titanium drill bits, and YES, a carbide or Titanium bit could dig into a chunk of refined tungsten for a little bit before it became too dull to dig any further...

Now, I can't certify from a photo that the grey bar in that picture is Tungsten (the way you seem to be able to), but the rest of your argument is rather capricious, and arbitrary...

 I detect no order from that photo, or from the original story.


Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:56 | 2928213 Diplodicus Rex
Diplodicus Rex's picture

Thank you for the correction. I stand corrected and withdraw my statement. That may also explain the slice that has been taken off the corner like a bar of chocolate.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 14:16 | 2928469 philosophers bone
philosophers bone's picture

Rip Ben a new assayers hole.

Mon, 10/29/2012 - 12:36 | 2928142 RSBriggs
RSBriggs's picture

Not quite true - Tungsten the metal is fairly ductile - it can be cut with hardened steel tools; a tungsten carbide drill bit could easily have made the mark shown in a bar of tungsten.   Tungsten carbide is hard and brittle as is alloyed Tungsten, but Tungsten in pure form is not all that difficult to machine.

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