Germany Sells 150,000 Troy Ounces Of Gold In October... But Not Why You Think

Tyler Durden's picture

Earlier this morning the anti-gold brigade was foaming in the mouth on the news that the German central bank had for the first time in a year sold gold. As it turns out they were half right: the bank indeed sold gold: a 'whopping' 150,000 toz or about $250 million worth... But not in the open market, and not even to natural buyers of physical like Sprott and everyone else not infatuated with voodoo theories of infinite repoability of debt. They sold it to the German ministry of Finance... to mint commemorative coins. Coins which we are now confident will be promptly mopped up by the general public. Following the sale Germany will be left with a modest 109,194,000 troy ounces, enough to allow the country to gladly tell Europe to do some anatomically impossible things and to fall back to a hard asset baked currency if and when it should so desire.

From the WSJ:

Germany has lowered its gold reserves for the first time in almost a year, selling 150,000 troy ounces in October while central banks of developing economies continued to beef up their bullion holdings in a bid to diversify their foreign reserves.


Bundesbank, the central bank of Germany, reduced its reserves to 109.194 million ounces in October, from 109.344 million ounces in September, according to International Monetary Fund data seen by Dow Jones Newswires.


A spokesman for Bundesbank confirmed 150,000 ounces of gold had been sold to the Ministry of Finance to mint commemorative coins. The last time Germany's reserves were lowered was in December 2010, when the Bundesbank reduced total holdings by 27,000 ounces, from 109.371 million ounces.

This simply means that any fears of the demise of the Bundesbank's gold are greatly exaggerated:

"There is no reason to start speculating about the future of German gold reserves," he said. "The German gold reserves are there for the impartial Bundesbank…There is no reason to change that."


The Bundesbank spokesman told Dow Jones Newswires that all gold sold by the Bundesbank since 2004 had been only for the minting of commemorative coins.


Germany is the world's second-largest official gold holder, with about 71% of its foreign reserves held in bullion, according to the World Gold Council. The only country with higher reserves is the U.S., at 261.499 million ounces.

As for the others...

Other central banks added to their reserves. Russia, a regular buyer from its own domestic market, continued its program of gold accumulation, lifting its reserves by 627,000 ounces to 28.005 million ounces.


Kazakhstan also reported significant additions in a second consecutive month of gold buying. Its reserves totaled 2.366 million ounces at the end of October, up from around 2.265 million ounces in September.


Recent purchases by the official sector have helped drive gold prices higher, because those purchases absorb supply and boost market sentiment.


"Day to day, gold is still trading against the dollar, but in the long run, this is very gold-positive," said VTB Capital Andrey Kryuchenkov. "Central banks are diversifying, and it has intensified to a rate that nobody had expected."

So while everyone is obviously seeing the writing on the wall, various theoretical economists who would be broke 10 times over in the real world if they put their money where their mouth is continue to preach what nobody cares about:

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iDealMeat's picture do some anatomically impossible things...

If you're loooong enough, and flaccid..  You can indeed accomplish the "impossible".


edit:  and the Greeks offer up Hermaphroditus .. 

Rakshas's picture

......sigh.... if that were my problem I'd never make it off the couch........

MillionDollarBonus_'s picture

I am shocked at the callus disregard for financial responsibility among the “precious metals” community. It is wholly irresponsible to recommend an investment, especially one paying no income at all, without the necessary qualifications. If you’re going to recommend a volatile and esoteric investment like gold, then at least attach a disclaimer. If people are going to get investment advice, they need to get it from professional portfolio managers who know what they’re doing. Honestly, I find it hard to comprehend the hubris of these redneck gold-bugs who equate themselves with experienced financial professionals with years of experience evaluating the markets and making stock recommendations.

RockyRacoon's picture

Thank you, MillionDollarBogus.

As seen by the green arrows to your comment, it becomes apparent that an average IQ is, indeed, 100.  Some of the double-digit types must be trolling ZH.

jimmyjames's picture

Honestly, I find it hard to comprehend the hubris of these redneck gold-bugs who equate themselves with experienced financial professionals with years of experience evaluating the markets and making stock recommendations.


Well-even if they don't know their ass from a hole in the ground and were and are just lucky-they've beat the snot out of the so called professionals for 10 years running-


Troll Magnet's picture

agreed. my bullions are only up 60% since i started stacking. terrible investment! TERRIBLE!!!

Smithovsky's picture

it was entertaining at first but now it's just predictable, boring and annoying.  time for a new shtick, mdb

TrulyBelieving's picture

It's ok Smithy, Let him go. I sometimes wonder if the people that actually think the way MDB writes, that after reading it in print might think how stupid this dribble is, and change their minds. Maybe that's MDB's angle.

Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

 @ MDB ....Fuck You,you little fucking weasel.

I'm shocked your still allowed to take on air...


Divine Wind's picture


We redneck gold-bugs just luvz us some PMs.

Sho nuff.



Stuck on Zero's picture

Why would an "experienced financial professional" not just heed his/her own advice and get wealthy through investing his own money?  Why do they always want your money?

joshua10's picture


The beauty of the Constitution is that it is not written in legalese. It requires no legal interpretation or interpolation. It was codified in such a way that any reasonably educated adult American could discern its meaning and intent. Just in case you don't have your copy of the U.S. Constitution handy, below is an except from Title I, Section 10, Paragraph 1. It tells Americans exactly, specifically, and in UNAMBIGUOUS LANGUAGE, what the constitutional definition of MONEY is.

"Section. 10.

No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility"

Gold and silver coins are the ONLY constitutionally recognized forms of money that can be used to settle debts for good reason. You cannot inflate gold and silver coinage as has occurred with EVERY fiat paper currency that has ever existed. I point out this very obvious simple fact to you because you're one of the few who fails to understand this very simple constitutional concept.

This isn't some "Redneck gold-bug" fantasy of mine. It's a basic constitutional requirement that few Americans seem aware of.

LuisF's picture

Currently most experts say no one undertant markets today and that experience is  useless. I prefer  myelf  to put confidence in my own judgement after reading  multiple posts and blogs. Advice for the  same kind of people that droeve our country  to where  we are now?

LuisF's picture

Currently most experts say no one undertant markets today and that experience is  useless. I prefer  myelf  to put confidence in my own judgement after reading  multiple posts and blogs. Advice for the  same kind of people that droeve our country  to where  we are now?

Al Gorerhythm's picture

I'm shocked at your callous disregard for spelling (or were you just being corny) and your complete disregard of the history of paper "money", its 100% failure as a store of wealth, its unmitigated destruction of honesty in settlement of account and the success rates of its plethora of adherents, who have been exposed as either shills or corrupted recipients of favors from the printing presses of the banks. 

I'm shocked that even with the amount of evidence in front of you of the demise of the banking system, the overt corruption in the paper system, the blatant theft of money in trading accounts (as exposed by MF Global's co-mingling of clients accounts), all of this as predicted by those "gold bugs and hacks" and your advice is to place your trust in the high priests of the system; the experts and professionals who didn't see it coming. Riiiighttt!

Bong on Dude.

You are welcome to your adoration of these dolts, thieves and tenured shills, such as Roubini. His blatherings above are an additional record of him protecting his tenured position; for instance, his spruiking that a stable inflation (oxymoronic mumbo-jumbo) is a good thing, is typical evidence of his duplicity and confirmation of the idiocy of economic theory as a standard of excellence. Pot/kettle cog dis. at its peak. Roubini, plant a flag. You have made it without the aid of oxygen.

MDB, your numeraire is showing. Make sure that you record your musings for posterity. Your decendents will want to remember you. 

Buck Johnson's picture

The reason why gold isn't shooting up is because it's being manipulated down in order to control the appearance or reality of debasement of fiat currency pure and simple.

Pladizow's picture

So Roubini's theory is we cannot use gold as a global currency because we wont be able to bail out the criminals?

Did Roubini get any offers on his firm - because this interview wont help!

tekhneek's picture

People like that just don't understand what unit of measurement means and what gold really is. You can't print it. It's finite. It's only being mined so quickly and not really "picking up" a whole lot faster any time soon. Thus natural inflation. If mining doubles capacity and production then things might slowly cost more in terms of gold but that's simply because there's more gold chasing the same number of goods and services.

This whole "we can never be on a gold standard" argument is bullshit. It's not that gold is the only thing there is to base money on, it's just the most useful when applied to finance. It has a natural inflation rate, it can come in many forms such as coins, bars etc. It's small and mobile. It looks fucking cool and it's basically the remnants of dead stars. How fucking awesome is that?

This Roubini fuck face is the same kind of guy who probably would argue that doubling the money supply would allow everyone to afford more goods and services because there's more "money" in the supply for people to use. Jackasses. All of them.

joshua10's picture


Very well said!

thorgodofthunder's picture

Gold mattered prior to the digital age. Now anyone can trade FOREX from their mobile phone or roll into Swiss Francs, Brazilian Real or oil futures. Gold has value only as jewllery. That value is probably under $1000 according to real demand. Everything else is speculation.

Pope Clement's picture

Well said Teknheek, but to quibble a bit the 'remnants of dead stars' remark is not really awesome but a prejudice from the 20th Century dark age of astrophysics which includes many hallucinatory denke experiment type concepts (i.e. no heavy backwork in the lab required) such as black holes, dark matter, space/time continuum etc. Electric Universe is where it's at bitchezz. Much laboratory confirmation in plasma physics at Los Alamos and elsewhere that confirm that Plasma Cosmology is the leading edge of the queen of the sciences.

Pladizow's picture

I would pay to see a debate between Rickards and Roubini!

HoofHearted's picture

Just me...but I'd rather see Roubini against Kyle Bass. Bass has this calm demeanor that would just eat Roubini alive.

I think I need to buy a gun's picture

i want schiff vs roubini


I haven't seen one thing roubinis firm has been correct about since 08. They were insistent to go all cash at the march 09 bottom and he's been anti gold since beginning

baby_BLYTHE's picture

Marc Faber vs. Nouriel Roubini!
Faber told all that would listen to 'get all in' agressively at bottom of equities in 2009. Any who listened had an opportunity to double their original investment. Till this day he recommends gold as the best investment one can make. He knows the current system is unsustainable and set to implode predicting the inevitable outcome is hyper-inflation due to the staggering debt levels, base currency outstanding, trillions in derivitaves floating in the system, massive amount of unfunded liabilities in the Western World and the United States leadership's desire for endless war and intervention through out the world.

Pope Clement's picture

Jim Willie thinks that the brilliant Rickards may be a shill for the the precious metal manipulators...

Vengeance's picture

Let me start by saying that I don't own physical gold or silver (though I do trade them), and am neither a gold bug nor anti-gold bug. I just trade them for profit with no real view or care as to where they're going down the road or why.

That said, after reading some of the comments I thought I'd post some thoughts/observations/questions or in gold speak, my own two-grams.

It's always talked about that gold can't be 'inflated' and it's not 'fiat' but isn't that only a half truth since when coinage  was used as 'money' it quickly became common practice to debase it to create profit? Thank you Romans!

So realistically, what's to stop the gov'ts from debasing the metals if a gold standard were reintroduced? Wasn't there a gold standard before but it failed because governments printed more currency than there was gold at the stated official fixed rate? Did the people stop them then? It didn't work in the past so why would it work now? history repeating itself doesn't always seem the best way to go about things...

So could we construe that gold is something in which one can store one's wealth, but it is not in fact money since money as we know it, and have know it for hundreds (thousands?) of years is really more an intangible (i.e. accounting entry) than tangible good...?

And saying gold is a hedge against the government devaluing one's currency or wealth denominated in a given currency is certainly true, but it's also true that any tangible good is a hedge against this. Nonetheless, gold does have a uniqueness to it in that it is the same regardless where you go.

So the real problem at hand is not confusing money and gold as one and the same but the bloody government and its continued, and neverending fiscal mismanagements. Doesn't matter where you live as every gov't is deplorable, corrupt, and self serving to those in power.

So until heads in gov't roll and the 'you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours' method du jour is done and gone, we're all fucked!

What say you?



TrulyBelieving's picture

Many good points there. Maybe there will never be a sound way to protect what would be used as money. But certainly gold coin is at least a more honest attempt at discouraging debasement. You see the coin, you see what you expect.  Holding paper doesn't tell you anything. How much is backing it? Will it be the same value tomorrow? Was it made for use with the express purpose of being debased for some bankers gain, or for convienence sake?  Knowing the human and all his iniquities tells me that there will always be theives, i.e., have you ever stolen anything, no matter how small? You get my point. So the short answer is, 'There is no solution, only some better than others'.  The US Constitution requires that only gold and silver coins be used as currency. Myself, very inclined to agree.

Vengeance's picture

I'm certainly not in wholesale disagreement with most arguments against the devaluation of our fiat paper. And you, along with others in this comments section, certainly have some valid points, but the crux of the issue is not what medium is used as money, we could use sea shells if we wanted to, it is the blatant usurpment of our wealth through gov't bungling and over spending financed by debt.

All I'm saying is that many people seem to think the only answer, which will fix everything, is a return to a gold standard where gold backs the paper, but this is not a panacea to all these 'fiscal' problems created by the ones we elected.

And I agree with you that perhaps coinage is better way to potentially discourage gov't debasement of money, but ever heard of the term seigniorage (During the era of metal-based money, the monetary base consisted of precious metal coins. The difference between the face value of the coins and the cost of acquiring the metal and minting them generated a financial benefit for the State treasury, known as seigniorage).



covert's picture

may they be happy free and prosperious forever


Dog Daze's picture

GOLD, Bitchezzzzz

transaccountin's picture
Roubini: Supporters of a Gold Standard Are ‘Lunatics and Hacks’
HedgeAccordingly's picture

Euro not looking good.. biggest spread between german 10 year and us 10 year. - 

tellsometruth's picture

truly interesting timing with the not so hot bond auction coupled with everything else

tellsometruth's picture

truly interesting timing with the not so hot bond auction coupled with everything else

Island_Dweller's picture

Do they have to have this 150,000 troy ounces shipped from NY? 

Bear's picture

Does anyone have a reference for who (what countries) own what gold?

TheSto's picture

That site is wrong when it says the U.S. only has 100 billion in gold. If we have 8000 tonnes, that's 17,632,000 pounds. If we just say an ounce of gold is worth in the area of $1,800 at the moment, and as we all should know, ex mary jane dealers or not, 16 ounces are in a pound, so that's roughly $507 billion dollars. 8000 x 2204 x 16 x 1800. What the hell? Are we pricing it at wholesale? 

Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

The USAGovt are dolts.

They still have their gold on the books at $42.50 a troy ounce.

They would not wan't anyone to think it was worth anything,like real money.


Only 12 troy ounces per Troy pound.

And there is 31.1? grams pr troy oz.

Iam_Silverman's picture

"gold on the books at $42.50 a troy ounce"

Isn't it amazing that it is so close to the going price for Titanium?

Sokhmate's picture

maybe because the gold on the books is actually the right shade of yellow Titanium.

hedgeless_horseman's picture



...tell Europe to do some anatomically impossible things ...

Clearly, you have never been to the more interesting parts of Paris.

GoodMorningMr.VanRumpoy...'s picture

Very Strange time to start minting your gold supply into  "commemorative" golden coins.


Wonder if it will be a monthly occurrence? I am sure they'll sell so well that Germany is justified in minting more "commemorative" coins solely because the German peoples love things of “commemoration” and not the barbarous relic.


fuu's picture

I am curious how these coins will be marked.