Sunday’s presidential vote in France will be an election for the ages. euroskeptic extremists on the left and the right are both polling surprisingly well, and hope to draw enough voters from a fractured center to put them over the top. Centrist candidates are putting forth populist or anti-immigrant plans, hoping in turn to woo […]
The woes of Venezuela’s state-owned oil company PdVSA exploded onto the Washington, DC political scene this week, when doubts surfaced that it could meet a $2.2 billion bond payment due on April 12. Part of that total due last Wednesday included a payment on a $1.5 billion loan from Russian oil giant Rosneft. The Venezuelans […]
In tracking major trends in the global gold trade (i.e. large-volume sales), there are two (sometimes related) factors that tend to provide the clearest macro picture: central bank net purchases and raw domestic import number for various countries.
Indian gold demand is sharply higher right now, due to Hindu New Year festivals and the upcoming spring wedding season. A stronger rupee, which has gained 4.8% against the dollar so far this year, has helped moderate gold prices and stoke demand, and a good monsoon season last year has given rural Indians the money […]
For years, the government of India, the world’s second-most populous country, has made reducing gold demand one of its primary focuses. It seems that after years of failure, the government finally hit upon a fool-proof way to cut down on gold purchases: just take away the people’s cash!
Although it is today overshadowed by many of Europe’s more prominent government mints, the Royal Dutch Mint (Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt) boasts an impressive history that traces back to the 1500s. The Leeuwendaalder and America’s Silver Coins The Netherlands’ flagship silver coin, the leeuwendaalder (literally, “lion thaler”), was an especially important trade coin in the 17th and 18th centuries. The […]
The World Gold Council (WGC) publishes quarterly data about trends in gold demand around the world, from industry to investment to mining and new technologies. In February, the research group released its 2016 report on central bank gold demand. As central banks have consistently been net buyers of the yellow metal over the past five years […]
Central banks are notorious for bashing the usefulness of gold as a financial asset, dismissing the metal as a “barbarous relic” of a bygone era of backward economics. (This despite these same banks maintaining large gold reserves on their balance sheets. As former Fed Chair Ben Bernanke once absurdly suggested to former U.S. Representative Ron […]
From the time that gold prices dropped following the U.S. elections to their recent lows under $1,200/oz, gold mining companies saw a promising year end on a sour note in 2016. Many of the industry’s biggest players have staged major turnarounds to start this year, however.
India is almost always one of the top two nations (along with China) in terms of gold demand on a year-to-year basis, but government intervention has played a major role in actively suppressing that demand over the past year or so.
For the most part, the world’s most valuable gold deposits have all been tapped already. They are currently being exploited, or development on a new project has already begun. Yet one of the planet’s traditional sources for gold mining, Egypt, has largely deterred large-scale gold mining due to burdensome government policies. Now, however, the Egyptian […]
The Chinese Lunar New Year begins on February 8th, reckoned in this calendar as the year 4714. It is also a time to welcome in the Year of the Rooster in the 12-year Lunar cycle. For those curious about their own birth year, the Year of Rooster arrived in 1921, 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, […]
Like famous Las Vegas gamblers, economists are consistently sought after for their forecasts and predictions of the future. While it may be disingenuous to dismiss these views as “your guess is as good as theirs,” there have been a staggering amount of incorrect guesses on the part of the “professionals” over the last eight years. Analyst […]
For all of the hubbub over President Donald Trump’s alleged connections to Russia, one Russian company is putting aside partisan politics for an objective masterpiece: gold and silver Trump medallions.
The world’s financial elite, from finance ministers to central bankers to business leaders to high-ranking government officials, held their annual gathering in Davos, Switzerland this week. This year, the meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) from January 17th to January 20th was focused on how the changing political and economic landscape around the world […]
Customs officials in India may have a serious problem on their hands. Beyond the illicit trade of gold in the informal economy (i.e. the “black market”) and rampant gold smuggling in response to restrictive laws and duties related to the precious metal, the outright theft of gold from India’s customs agency now seems to be […]
In finance and investing, a “Black Swan” is a symbol for an unexpected event or factor that causes a sudden shock to markets. An unforeseen shift in political power, a war breaking out, or any number of troubling events could result in the market disruptions and dislocations that characterize a Black Swan. Investors (as a […]
Trading in Italy’s Monte dei Paschi di Siena bank was halted indefinitely by government regulators late Thursday, after shares fell 7.5%. Markets were reacting to news that the troubled bank’s last-ditch effort to remain solvent had fallen through. The nation’s third-largest bank, the 544 year-old Monte dei Paschi will now be nationalized by the Italian […]
Metallon Corp. is the largest gold miner in Zimbabwe. It operates the Redwing mine in the city of Mutare, which finally came back online last November after sitting idle for the previous eight years. The firm recently approved a noble initiative as Redwing boosts its output: allocating mining claims to small, artisanal miners in the […]
A great deal of news coverage has focused on the legislative war that the Indian government has engaged in against its domestic gold market, especially over the past two years. The unpopular effort seems to finally be having a noticeable impact, however, according to the latest data on gold smuggling from India’s Ministry of Finance.