Category Archive : Gold

Mitsubishi Head of Business Dev: “Smart Money” is Turning to Gold as a Hedge

Central banks continue to buy gold after a summer rally that stalled as the calendar turned to fall. The latest Mitsubishi precious-metals update says many factors could sour 2020, and so therefore “smart money” is looking to gold as a hedge.

“Illustrating lingering macroeconomic concerns, the importance of diversification away from dollar assets and tail risk hedging, central banks around the world have continued to be net buyers of gold: November saw Turkey, Russia, Poland and newcomer Serbia (which bought 9 tons of gold) all add to their holdings of the yellow metal,” wrote Mitsubishi head of business development Jonathan Butler. Read More

Survey: Bitcoin Mining Firm Finds Nearly One-Third of Americans Think US Dollar Backed by Gold

Genesis Mining, a cryptocurrency miner, found that one-third of Americans believe the US Dollar is still backed by gold. The dollar has not been backed by gold since 1973.

The survey, conducted in late September, included 1,000 participants. Its goal: to determine just how much U.S. citizens understood money. In late October, the miner found that 29% of those surveyed believed a gold reserve backed the U.S. dollar. 24% of respondents answered that the Federal Reserve was tasked to secure the nation’s gold reserve. Read More

Weak U.S. Industrial Data Leads Array of Worrying Economic Indicators, Gold Remains Steady

There are several reasons experts presently warn of potential economic downturn. China’s growth has been slowing, despite recent positive reports, as the trade war wages on and geopolitical tensions increase. Among others, countries like Singapore and South Korea, who export manufactured goods to China, are slowing.

Positive economic signs do persist, with consumption remaining steady at 2%, and private residential investment increasing in the third quarter of 2019. (though this has steadily declined since the end of 2017). Despite this, business investment has begun to fall. Read More

Chair of Slovakia’s Biggest Party: U.K. “Can Hardly” Be Trusted with Nation’s Gold

Slovakia’s former premier told parliament it should force the central bank to repatriate the nation’s gold, which is stored in the U.K. He said history has shown that allies “can hardly” be trusted.

Ex-Premier Robert Fico now chairs the biggest party in Slovakia. He seeks a special parliamentary session on the issue, claiming the gold isn’t safe in the U.K. because of Brexit and a possible global economic crisis. Read More

Gold Price Declines Monday Due to Bullish Factory Reports Out of China

Gold prices declined Monday with investors turning to other asset classes after reports of an expanding Chinese factory sector and a rising dollar reduced demand.

Spot gold fell 0.3% at $1,459.94 per ounce at 0645 GMT. Prices had earlier reached highs dating back to Nov. 22. U.S. gold futures declined 0/5% to $1,466.

An expansion in factory activity during November in China, which ranks as the world’s second largest economy and biggest consumer of gold, led investors into equity markets. Read More

An Interview with Steve Bellotti, Chairman of TCM Capital, An Advisor on The Perth Mint Gold Token

As we covered here, The Perth Mint Gold Token could prove to be an alternative to U.S. dollar-based stablecoins, such as Tether. While Tether is backed by dollars in a U.S. bank account, the Perth Mint gold token is backed by gold held by one of the most renowned precious metals refineries in the world.

GoldSilverBitcoin fielded answers about the Perth Mint Gold Token from the Chairman of TCM Capital, Steve Bellotti. TCM Capital AM Pty Ltd is the Advisor to the PMGT project. Read More

Poland Repatriates 100 Tons of Gold from Bank of England

Poland repatriated approximately 100 tons of gold from the Bank of England to demonstrate the strength of the nation’s $586 billion economy, according to central bank Governor Adam Glapinski.

The institution also brought 126 tons home in 2018 and 2019, increasing its gold reserves to 228.6 tons. The country is now the 22nd largest bullion holder in the world and holds the biggest reserves of the metal in the European Union’s east, according to the central bank. Read More

Goldman Sachs Bullish on Gold for 2020

Goldman Sachs has a bullish outlook on gold. Analysts at the investment bank see prices pushing to $1,600 an ounce next year. The price of gold currently sits at $1459.62. That is a nearly 10% gain from present day prices. December gold futures are trading at about $1,456.70 an ounce. Read More

Here’s What You Need to Know About INFINIGOLD & The Perth Mint Gold Token

Last month, Infinigold announced the launch of a digital token, The Perth Mint Gold Token, backed by gold stored in the vaults of Australia’s Perth Mint, a world-leading precious metal refinery. We spoke with Andreas Ruf, the CEO of Infinigold, about working with Perth Mint to launch the token. Read More

Perth Mint Gold Digital Token Could Be an Alternative to Stablecoins

InfiniGold is collaborating with the Perth Mint, the world’s largest refiner of newly minted gold, to release the digital token Perth Mint Gold Token (PMGT), which is backed 1:1 by GoldPass certificates issued by the Perth Mint. It could be an alternative to current stablecoins, especially Tether, which is backed by the US dollar. PMGT gives users ownership of government-guaranteed gold stored at The Perth Mint. The Mint touts benefits like real-time trading and settlement thanks to blockchain. Read More

Gold Reverses as Global Stock Markets Gain Momentum

Spot gold hit a six-year high late last week. It is the first time since April 2013 prices soared so high – peaking at a value of $1,5334.31 an ounce. Due to this price bump, US gold futures rose by roughly 1.3% to $1,537 an ounce. Despite the positive momentum, these high levels could not be sustained over the weekend.

Several factors drive the current and future value of gold and silver. Weakness in the Argentine Peso, civil unrest in Hong Kong, and the US-China trade war has forced investors to seek safehaven. Read More

Fed Could Cut Rates as Gold Hits Three Month High

Top Federal Reserve policymakers might cut interset rates if trade tensions continue to get worse.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell and his No. 2, Richard Clarida are watching disputes between the US and its trading partners. The next meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee takes place June 18-19, with Clarida noting that the Fed “can’t be handcuffed” by market pricing. Read More

Former Digital Gold Developers Launch Token Sale for Cash, Micro-Lending System

(GoldSilverBitcoin) – Everex, formerly Midas Reserv, is making waves in the crypto-cash industry thanks to its contributions in cash-transfer technologies. Based on the Ethereum blockchain, Everex’s central product, Cryptocash, allows individuals to transfer cash across borders instantly in form of national currency on a blockchain. Applicable to remittance and cash transfers, Cryptocash is a digitized form of cash backed by national currencies thanks to Everex’s partner institutions. Read More

Geopolitics Driving Gold

(Gold Silver Bitcoin) President Trump warned last week of a  “major, major conflict with North Korea”. He said he’d rather do things diplomatically, though it’d prove “very difficult.”

Trump has made no secret about tensions between North Korea and the US. “There is a chance that we could end up having a major, major conflict with North Korea. Absolutely,” the president said. “We’d love to solve things diplomatically, but it’s very difficult.”

Trump noted that he was confident in Chinese President Xi Jinping and his attempts to influence the North. The pair met in Florida earlier this month to discuss the situation in the Korean Peninsula.



“I believe he is trying very hard. He certainly doesn’t want to see turmoil and death,” Trump told Reuters. “He doesn’t want to see it. He is a good man. He is a very good man and I got to know him very well. With that being said, he loves China and he loves the people of China. I know he would like to be able to do something, perhaps it’s possible that he can’t.”

White House officials on Wednesday describe North Korea as an “urgent” threat to national security and a “top foreign policy priority.”

Military action by the US would likely snowball into a massive strike from the North on South Korea. North Korea could also attack Japan.




“My problem is that I have established a very good personal relationship with President Xi,” the president said. “I really feel that he is doing everything in his power to help us with a big situation. So I wouldn’t want to be causing difficulty right now for him. So I would certainly want to speak to him first.”

Russia blocked a Security Council statement proposed by the U.S. on Wednesday to condemn North Korea’s missile tests. China supported the measure.

“Russia is slowing this down, and it is not clear why,” the diplomat told CBS News. “The U.S. wanted to get the message out.” North Korea’s failed missile test launch on Sunday added to geopolitical tensions escalating between President Donald Trump and Pyongyang.

By Wednesday, the world learned that military aircraft headed for Australia were not on their way to North Korea, as President Trump had intonated.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said Wednesday that Washington would work with its allies and China but that United States would meet any attack with an “overwhelming response”.

The first of 1250 US Marines have begun to make landfall  “stand ready to fight” against North Korea.

“I think that the commitment that we’ve taken to put a task force here with a conversation to get larger over the years says that we do think this is an important region,” Lieut. Colonel Middleton said.

“We are seeing once again a little bit of a flight to safety as a result of the news over the weekend of North Korea’s attempted missile test. That’s resulting in a little bit of a weakness in the U.S. dollar,” said Omer Esiner, chief market analyst at Commonwealth Foreign Exchange in Washington.

The U.S. military intercepted two Russian bombers in international airspace off Alaska’s coast. A pair of F-22 Raptor aircraft intercepted the Russian TU-95 Bear bombers on Monday, according to Navy Commander Gary Ross, a Pentagon spokesman said. He called the intercept “safe and professional.”

On Tuesday, at an annual military parade in Tehran, Iran put on display new S-300 air defense missile system, as well as other weapons seen under banners calling for “Death to Israel” in Persian.

President Hassan Rouhani said at the ceremony that Iranian military was “avoiding tensions and encounters” but that it had to “remain vigilant in the face of plots hatched by the others and increase deterrent power.”

Gold has held firm in recent weeks, thanks to tensions surrounding North Korea other geopolitical uncertainty including the upcoming French presidential election. Still, it endured its worst gain in a month on Wednesday, falling 0.8 percent.

Poor U.S. economic data and a lack of confidence for the Trump administration on tax cuts have led to the expectation of faster inflation.

Economic turbulence, extended by President Trump, contributed to safe-haven bids for gold. Unrest in other parts of the world, like Syria and North Korea, also contributed to gold’s higher price.

Gold climbed on Friday, ensuring a monthly gain of more than 1%, as data showing weak U.S. economic growth weighed on the dollar.

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index, which helps measure the dollar, had fallen 0.1% and trading about 1.6% lower for the month.

Exchange-traded funds SPDR Gold Trust increased 0.2%, climing for the month 1.6%. iShares Silver Trust fell 0.2%, down 5.3% for the month. The VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF increased 2.5% Friday,  its monthly loss 1.9%.




Trump Wants Ride in Queen of England’s Golden Carriage for UK Visit



Donald Trump wants a golden carriage procession down the London Mall during his planned UK visit in October in what police believe will likely be the most extensive public order operation in years.

“If he is in a golden coach being dragged up the Mall by a couple of horses, the risk factor is dramatically increased,” said a source.

Trump

Hundreds of heavily-armed security agents travel with Trump,along with plain-clothed police officers, positioned snipers and firearms officers in the crowds.

The source added: “There may well be protections in that coach such as bulletproof glass, but they are limited. In particular it is very flimsy.”


Image: Shutterstock, The Sun

Police Take Tank Collector’s £2million in Gold Bullion Found in Vehicle’s Fuel Compartment



When a tank collector bought a new tank for £30,000 trade-in, he found more than £2million of gold bullion hidden in the tank’s fuel tank. And then, the police took the precious metals.

Nick Mead found five gold bars while restoring the Russian T54/69 he recently added to his collection of 150 military vehicles.

The 55-year old and his mechanic friend Todd Chamberlain filmed the finding of the gold in case they found munitions and needed to show it to bomb disposal crews. They found instead gold bars weighing up to 12 pounds or 5 kilograms each. The bars are altogether worth more than £2million, reports The Sun. But, the tank collector is no longer in possession of that ancient money.

He said: “We didn’t know what to do. You can’t exactly take five gold bullion bars down to Cash Converters without questions being asked, so we called the police.”

Mr. Mead owns Tanks-a-Lot, where customers can drive any of his tanks on his farm located in Helmdon, Northants in the United Kingdom. He gave up an Army lorry and an Abbot self-propelled gun to procure the T54/69 in the £30,000 after seeing the tank advertised on eBay.

They had found machine gun ammunition before finding the gold. They think the gold was looted by Iraqi soldiers in Kuwait during the Gulf War where-after the tank was captured and shipped to Britain.

Nick said: “They must have cut a hole in the fuel tank and rammed it full of gold bars.”

Two officers took away the bars and gave them a receipt.

Nick said: “Even if I don’t get any of the gold back I will still have my beautiful tank.”

A Northamptonshire Police spokesman did not comment to press.



El Salvador is First Nation to Ban Gold, Metals Mining

El Salvador will prohibit gold and other metal mining after lawmakers overwhelmingly voted on Wednesday for the ban. Environmental activists say the country is the first in the world to ban metal mining.

Related: How to Start Your Own Gold Dealer Website



El Salvador’s delicate environment was cited as being unable to sustain metal mining operations, and legislators from many parties approved the ban, supported by the popular Roman Catholic Church. Proponents said a ban would proect the country’s supply of clean water.

“Today in El Salvador, water won out over gold,” tweeted Johnny Wright Sol, a legislator from the center-right Arena party.

Around the world, some bans on cyanide use to extract gold from low-grade ore exist, and Costa Rica has a national ban on open-pit gold mining.

Researchers Discover Way to Make Gold & Silver Nail Polish

Researchers believe they have discovered a way to add gold and silver to nail polish to create a durable, tined and perhaps even antibacterial nail coloring, extending the precious metals’ ancient uses for fashion in the form of jewelry.

Related: World’s Second Largest Gold Coin Stolen From Berlin Museum


The research, published in the ACS’ journal Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, highlights how modern techniques depend on pigment powders and additives. Scientists, investigating nano-particles in polishes, discovered they can make nail polish more durable, in the case of silver nanoparticles, treating fungal toenail infections.

To break silver, gold and platinum alloy, they shot lasers into gold in short bursts for periods of fifteen minutes. They learned that this resulted in colored, transparent polishes with a metallic sheen. Researchers used laser ablation to create a master batch of metal nanoparticles in ethyl acetate, a polish thinner, which could then be added to individual bottles of polish.

Gold Investment is Still on the Rise

For the fourth straight year, gold investment will increase in 2017. Global political and economic factors have driven to increased gold demand despite the fact that the yellow metal has yet to reach once more its highs of fall 2011.

“There has been a return of opportunistic generalist investors who had exited gold in late 2011 and early 2012,” New York-based CPM Group said in its Gold Yearbook 2017.

Related: How to Start Your Own Gold Dealer Website



CPM projects investment in gold bullion to be 17.6 million ounces in 2017. 2016 saw 17.4 million ounces of gold bullion purchased, which was the highest since 2012 – just after the peak – when 29.2 million ounces were purchased.

CPM, which reseraches commodities, conjectured global gold coin demand to be 7.5 million ounces in 2017, an increase over 2016’s 7 million ounces – also, the highest since 2013.

“Most long-term gold investors do not seem to expect the world’s financial and political systems to collapse. Rather, they see them as facing major structural problems that will not be easily resolved or repaired in any short period of time,” CPM said. “In the near- to medium- term as it is becoming clearer to (shorter-term investors) that, while there may not be a collapse in the financial system, clearly the present interest rate environment, global economic growth profile, levels of unemployment and underemployment, and political turmoil globally are all factors that warrant owning at least some gold as a portfolio diversifier.”

CPM, furthermore, cited convoluted policies from Trump’s administration for more sideways precious metals prices in 2017.

World’s Second-Largest Gold Coin Stolen from Berlin Museum

Thieves in Berlin stole the world’s second-largest gold coin from a Berlin museum using a rope, a foldout ladder and a wheelbarrow. The heist took place right by Angela Merkel’s inner-city apartment, to boot. 

Related: The IMF Says Donald Trump is Good for the American Economy



The Big Maple Leaf coin is one of five such gold commemorative coins made by the Royal Canadian Mint in 2007. They weigh 100kg, and their diameter is 53cm and a thickness of 3cm. Its value is estimated at nearly €3.8m (£3.3m).

The coin was on loan to the Bode Museum from a private collection of a German property investor. The coin was at one time the heaviest on the planet. The “Australian Kangaroo One Tonne” gold coin in 2011.  The Big Maple Leaf has been on display at the museum since 2010, encased in a bullet proof cabinet at the museum on Berlin’s museum island, located along the Spree river in the Mitte district. On the walls outside the museum in neo-baroque design advertised its current show Muse macht Moneten (or “Be creative and get rich”).

Between 3:20am and 3:45am, two thieves entered the museum via the third-floor window at the back of the 113-year-old building.  The placed a ladder on elevated tracks on S1 railway between the last train on Sunday and Monday morning.

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The window led the thieves into the security guards’ changing room. They smashed their way into the bulletproof cabinet with a tool like a sledgehammer and used the same route to get out with the coin. The thieves used a wheelbarrow to push the coin 100 meters along the tracks and across a bridge over the river to Monbijou Park, where they dropped the coin while abseiling down to the ground.

They then entered their getaway car. A burnt-out Mercedes found in a parking garage might be related to the theft, but police had yet to confirm this.

A member of Bode Museum’s security staff noticed at 4am. Police are unsure how such a high-end heist could be pulled off so easily.

“Some elements of this story raise questions, and we are currently asking those questions,” police spokesperson Winfried Wenzel said.

Angela Merkel’s apartment is only a “stone’s throw” from the window through which the thieves entered. CCTV cameras and the security system may have been disabled.  Police were using footage from nearby stations and municipal buildings.

Many believe the coin has already been melted down, an act police call “hardly insurmountable in technical and logistical terms”.

The gold, at melt value, is currently worth  $4,300,000.

Images: Royal Canadian Mint, Express

11 Killed in Gold Mine Accidents in Central China

(GoldSilverBitcoin) – 11 people were killed in accidents in two neighboring gold mines in central China’s Henan province on Friday.

The thick smoke engulfed a pit at the Qinling gold mine, run by the China National Gold Group in Lingbao City. Twelve workers and six management staff were trapped inside, as reported by Xinhua on Saturday.

Related: How to Start Your Own Gold Dealer Website


Seven bodies were retrieved by rescue workers on Friday night. Ten people were taken to hospital and are recovering. One failed to respond to treatment. Another body was retrieved on Saturday afternoon.

In a neighboring gold mine on Friday afternoon, a similar accident took place, reported by Xinhua based on reports by the provincial work safety administration.

Six workers were trapped and four had been rescued. The other two were found dead later in the evening.

“Industrial accidents are common in China,” reports Ryan Woo for Reuters. “Anger over lax standards is rising after 30 years of breakneck economic growth marred by incidents from mining disasters to factory fires. Earlier on Saturday, an operation platform collapsed at a power plant in southern China, killing nine people.”

A-Mark Precious Metals CEO Sells 3,300 Shares of Stock

A-Mark Precious Metals CEO Gregory N. Roberts sold 3,300 shares of the company’s stock on Thursday. Sold at $17.66, the overall sale totaled $58, 094.96. A-Mark Precious Metals Inc sales, which trade 0.35% during midday trading Thursday, reached $17.45.

Related: Spanish Government Limits Cash Withdrawal 1,000 Euros

Overall, 23,027 shares of the company traded hands, and the company’s 50 day moving average ended the day at $19.22. It’s 200-day moving average is $17.67. A-Mark Precious Metals Inc’s twelve month low of $14.02 and 12-month high of $22.00.



A-Mark’s market capitalization is $122.69 million. A-Mark’s net margin is 0.10%.

Idaho House of Reps Doesn’t Want to Tax Capital Gains on Gold

The Idaho House of Representatives voted by a 56-13 margin last week to cease Idaho taxation on precious metals, including gold and silver coins and bars.

Related: China and Russia are Stockpiling Gold

Bill Sponsor Representative Mike Moyle (R) and the entire Republican caucus voted in favor of the measure. Now the Republican-controlled Idaho Senate must also vote in favor of the bill and Governor Butch Otter (R) must sign the bill.


HB 206, backed by the Sound Money Defense, Idaho Freedom Foundation, Money Metals Exchange and grassroots activists builds on Idaho’s sales tax exemption on precious metals to end income taxation on the sales of “precious metals bullion” and “monetized bullion.”

Representative Ron Nate (R), said from the House floor: “According to the U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 10, there is only one thing that a state can declare as currency if they think that our federal currency is going out of whack and some might argue that they think our federal currency is going out of whack already. If we are not going to allow people to declare capital losses on their Federal Reserve Notes or their dollar holdings, it would also be unfair to tax people for their gold and silver holdings. Gold and silver is an alternative to holding Federal Reserve Notes and it is the ONLY alternative that the U.S. Constitution says that the state can allow as another currency. It’s unfair to tax it just as [it’s unfair] to tax losses on Federal Reserve Notes.”

Taxpayers who sell their precious metals might be on the hook for capital gain taxes. “Policies that discourage precious metals ownership reduce the likelihood that Gem State citizens will take prudent steps to insulate themselves from the inflation and financial turmoil caused by the Federal Reserve System,” said Stefan Gleason, director of the Sound Money Defense League. “Precious metals bullion is already exempt from Idaho’s sales tax. HB 206 removes the final disincentive in Idaho tax law that stands against ownership of the monetary metals.”

Utah and Oklahoma have enacted similar income tax measures. Arizona is considering similar legislation, and states like Tennessee, Maine, and Alabama seek to remove precious metals from the sales tax.



Image: Shutterstock

Man Stashes Cash & Gold Around Northern Colorado

A Colorado man has people in the Northern part of the state rushing to find the cash and gold he stashes around the area per a treasure hunt he conducts on social media.

Related: Treasure Hunter Who Stole Gold Bars Arrested in Florida 

Man Stashes Cash & Gold Around Northern Colorado

The man, who wants to only go by Matt, started a Facebook page last month called ‘Northern Colorado Treasure Hunters.’

He now has 4,000 followers. That might have something to do with his giving away gold.

“Quite honestly, it was just an idea I had. I started the page and it went from there, just snow balled out of control. It’s been fun,” Matt said.

During the week, Matt stashes either cash or gold somewhere in northern Colorado. After snapping a photo, and posting it on social media, people then must look for clues in markings and landmarks to track down the prize. This has led to people getting outside in parks and fields trying to find the hidden treasures.

“We try to do it every time. I have their text alerts so as soon as it hits, I get it,” Courtney Beers said.

“It’s a fun thing to be able to do as a family, especially with the weather being so nice,” Rebecca Garcia said.

Matt hopes to attract business as sponsors so he can offer bigger prizes.

“I plan on doing it for a long time,” Matt said. “It gets people out and about. They have fun and it gives families something to do. And there is incentive at the end of the tunnel. That’s what I like about it. To watch everyone get hyped up about it and run around the parks.” The activities have indeed brought families together.

“It’s just something to do with the kids and they like looking for things, kind of like Easter,” Colton Phelps said.

“I think it’s awesome. I think it’s a lot of fun. Gives people an excuse to get out and go find stuff, see new places,” Cameron Espinoza said.

NTR’s “Modern-day Pablo Escobar” Will Fight Laundering Case

Juan Pablo Granda was employed by NTR Metals to go into the Latin America jungle and buy gold. U.S. investigators eventually caught on that this practice could have been abetting cocaine traffickers turn their money into cash. NTR made efforts to evaluate their business practices, hiring Jones Day to review its business practices. Granda said he would help.

Related: NTR’s “Modern-day Pablo Escobar” Will Fight Laundering Case

NTR

When NTR flew him home last week, he didn’t exect to be fired. But that’s what happened. Then his mother called from the home they shared in Miami.

“Listen, I’ve got all these FBI agents here, they might want to arrest you,” she said. “So he got into his car and went to mom’s house and they arrested him.”

The 35-year old was arrested for conspiracy to commit money laundering per the network in which NTR helped launder international drug dealer funds.  Granda was denied bail on Monday.

“The scope of this is enormous, and right in the middle of it is Mr. Granda,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank Maderal told the judge.

Maderal says Granda has handled over $200 million in gold, and earned tens of thousands of dollars in kickbacks. NTR bought Peruvian gold from illegal mines, and thus supported human trafficking, forced labor and environmental destruction. NTR’s Miami office laundered billions for Peruvian narco-terrorists.

“Gold smuggling goes hand-in-hand with narcotics trafficking,” Maderal said.

U.S. Customers records show NTR likely began purchasing illegally mined gold in Peru starting in 2012, as Bloomberg reports.

The complaint, which suggests NTR imported $3.6 billion worth from 2012 to 2015, says the wholesale gold distributor started “smuggling illegal gold through a shifting array of Latin American countries.”

 

 

NTR Launders Money for “Modern-Day Pablo Escobar”




A conspiracy involving employees at NTR Metals was outlined in a criminal complaint against Juan Pablo Granda, 35, and implicates the North American precious metals refinery and trading company in a litany of serious actions.

The conspiracy involved the purchase of massive amounts of gold from illegal mines in Peru supporting human trafficking, forced labor and environmental devastation. The NTR Metals office in Miami laundered billions of dollars for criminal organizations like Peruvian narco-terrorists since it bought gold from their mines. It’s could be that the employees at the Miami office were not properly vetted by NTR’s corporate office, as no charges have been lodged against the company, a subsidiary of Elemetal. 

Related: Mergers In Precious Metals Market

The U.S. complaint, filed in Miami, is part of a U.S. crackdown on smugglers using gold mined in the Amazon basin illegal where laborers use fire hoses and mercury to extract the nearly pure precious metal.

Smugglers, refineries and traders supply gold  from illegal mines in Latin America, smuggling it into Miami and the international market.

A Bloomberg report outlined how one Chilean smuggler sold thousands of pounds contraband gold to NTR’s Miami office before being arrested in Santiago. NTR, based in Dallas, isn’t charged in the case. General counsel for parent company, Elemetal, did not comment.

NTR has likely been buying illegal gold since at least 2012.  The company allegedly started “smuggling illegal gold through a shifting array of Latin American countries.” The company eventually imported $3.6 billion worth from 2012 to 2015, according to the complaint.

“For all of the billions of dollars’ worth shipped from Latin America to NTR in Miami, NTR sent billions of dollars in wire payments to Latin America from the United States,” HSI agent Colberd Almeida wrote in an affidavit.

Chilean smuggler, Harold Vilches, told U.S. and Chilean prosecutors that he sold 4,000 pounds of illegal gold mostly to NTR Metals Miami. Mr. Vilches said two NTR employees in Miami knew his gold was illegal and even coached him on how to smuggle it into the U.S.

In 2013, Peru seized $18 million, including some headed for NTR financed by narcotics money laundering.

Several Latin America  countries have begun investigations, “many of which involve gold being sold to NTR,” Almeida wrote.

Ecuador arrested in a $400 million money laundering scheme involving gold mined in Peru and bound for NTR, the agent wrote. Chile arrested individuals regarding Peru and Argentina gold sold to NTR. NTR bought Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Chile, Guyana and the Caribbean from what the U.S. calls “highly suspicious gold imports.” One of these sellers refered to himself as a “modern-day Pablo Escobar.”  

According to the complaint, he said: “I’m like Pablo coming to Ecuador to get the coke.” 

There’s a Cryptographic Treasure Hunt for Gold Art Objects in a Small English Town



An artist hid five, £1,000 small gold objects around Scunthorpe, North Lincolnshire. If you find these valuable pieces? They’re yours…

It’s not as easy as just finding these objects and cashing in, however. You will have decode encrypted messages starting with five paintings at the local arts centre and the encrypted codes within.
“I like the idea that ancient objects that were once hidden beneath the earth and were discovered and displayed at the museum are now being rehidden,” said designer Luke Jerram. “I hope the public will enjoy visiting 20-21 Arts Centre and exploring the town and surrounding countryside.”

goldart2

He added: “There’s a real mixture including one that could be solved by a child, others that could be deciphered by the average person and more challenging puzzles for mathematicians or code-breaking enthusiasts to try their hand at. One of the puzzles may take some months or even years to solve, if indeed it is ever cracked.”

Mathematician and professional code-setter Dan Fretwell encoded the artwork.

Code crackers lined up at the 20-21 Visual Arts Centre located in Church Square, United Kingdom.

goldart1

“There is no way I could crack the most difficult one, I could certainly crack probably two or three of the paintings,” Jerram said to the BBC. “Some are really easy to decode, whereas the most complicated painting, it would take maybe a month for someone to perhaps work it out.”

Some of the codes could take months to decode. The five objects cast in gold are based upon items seen in the North Lincolnshire Museum.

The Treasured City exhibition runs through April 29.



China & Russia are Stockpiling Gold



Gold refineries in Switzerland sent a record amount of gold to Shanghai last December, and Russia is buying gold in droves as well, as the United States experiences a time of tumultuous politics and the european banking system is reported to be on the verge of collapse.

Figures released at the end of January by Federal Customs Administrations showed that Switzerland, a world leader in gold production, sent 158 tonnes of gold to China, a five time increase over November’s sum and nearly three times the volume in December 2015. Read More

2017 Might be Your First Chance to Tip the Moon thanks to Dogecoin



“To the moon!” That’s the cliche slogan for so many digital currencies, perhaps made most famous not by Bitcoin, but by , whose users since the beginning have proudly proclaimed the slogan. Read More

Don’t Miss this $40,000 24k Gold Bar get Totally Crushed

YouTube channel Crushit recently crushed a gold bar worth nearly $40,000 provided gold company Baird & Co.  Check out the cascading of gold that doing so produced. 



Many individuals claim that gold is a good investment. They usually cite economic uncertainty as a reason for owning gold, which is seen by mainstream investing knowledge as a ‘safehaven’ to protect one’s wealth in times of economic crisis.

But, the YouTube channel Crushit doesn’t really care about savings. They care about views. The video got nearly ten million views in just a few days. 

The 1 kilo or 32 troy ounce gold bar puts on a show demonstrating golds malleability along the way. 

“This will be by far the most expensive crush we’ve done yet here on Crushit,” the host says.

Gold bar came sealed in plastic with corresponding serial number. The bar isn’t huge. More like  aperp weight. “Wow it is really heavy for its size of course its one of the most densest and expensive if you drill a hole through it,” he says. “…The things I could buy with this.” The gold acts similar to liquid as its smashed. 

The hydraulic press indeed has its way with the gold.

“Wow,” the host says, “just look at that it looks like a gold nugget so cool…

The gold wasn’t destroyed, to be sure. Intead, it could easily be sold for face value or melted again into new bullion product. Sure, something was spent on the totally cool experiment, but not $40,000. Whatever it was, it was totally worth it (for Crushit and the viewers, at least).

 

Royal Mint Experimenting with Blockchain-based Gold Trades



The Royal Mint partnered with markets operator CME Group to build a gold market with blockchain technology as a means of broadening London’s hip-factor when buying and selling gold bullion.

The Roya Mint, owned by taxpayers, plans to accept trades from the middle of next year on the Royal Mint Gold platform, intended to log each transaction using blockchain. Read More

Islamic Financial Institutions get Standard for Gold Products




Islamic Institutions, which follow guidelines issued by a Bahrain based group, now have a new sharia standard for gold-based products so as to incorporate bullion into Islamic finance.

Gold has long been seen as currency in Islamic finance. Investors, however, have yet to speculate on its future value since no clear policy on how to trade gold. Read More

£100 million in Hitler’s Gold found in Nazi Shipwreck

Adolf Hitler’s lost gold has been found, according to a British diver in the  Baltic sea. The ocean explorer’s claims he found gold the Nazi’s stole as they ransacked Europe during World War II horrors.

The discovery is reported to approximate £100 million, has been sought by treasure seekers time-and-time again never to be found…until now. Read More

Australia Gold Miners Are Digging Deep on Weak Australian Dollar

A weak Australian Dollar has led gold miners there to dig deep, according to quarterly production figures.

In the third quarter, the second largest gold miner after China, Australian output increased 3 percent or 2 tonnes (64,301 troy ounces) to 75 tonnes over the same period from the year prior. This despite heavy rainfall which flooded some pits and derailed operations, according to Melbourne-based Surbiton Associates. Read More

Check Out President Trump’s 24k Vodka

Trump’s 24k vodka might now be defunct, but its demonstrative of the President’s love for the yellow metal, and a big reason why the goldbug community supported the businessman for President. The vodka bottle even looks like a gold brick.

Donald Trump predicted back in 2006 it’d be America’s favorite vodka. Read More

India Considers Ban on Gold Imports to Undermine Black Market

Is India thinking about banning gold imports?

That could be as the trade body Indian Bullion & Jewellers Association (IBJA) informed its 2500 members through text that the government is considering a ban on gold imports into the country per part of a larger crackdown on black money. Read More

Obama Administration Blocks New Gold Mining Claims Outside of Yellowstone

The U.S. moved Monday to block gold mining outside of Yellowstone National Park, and the Obama Administration is seeking to keep industry out of natural and environmentally sensitive areas. 

Mining claims on 30,370 acres to the north of Yellowstone would be prohibited for at least two years. A long-term ban is being considered, according to Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on a visit to Montana’s Paradise Valley, according to The Missoulian. Last week interior officials blocked new oil drilling in the Arctic Ocean, and cancelled 25 oil and gas leases in west Colorado, as well as 15 in northwestern Montana. Read More

India Currency Controls Lead to Thaw over Gold Market

Capital controls often lead people to alternative assets, and it seems India’s decision to phase out 500 notes and 1000 notes is doing just that as India’s jewelry stores were left with empty shelves as gold demand spikes in the region.

Many people came in and cleaned up the shelves with the big notes, but by Tuesday they had disappeared and now a thaw has taken hold over the gold market. There’s panic in India.

People must endure long bank lines to exchange or deposit old currency notes after the government’s demonetization plan to undermine countefeiters and Indians with undeclared income stashed away. 1/4 of India’s economy is on the black market, according to the Finance Ministry, and not many Indians pay income taxes.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeks to end corruption. He says the move is a fight for the “honest” citizens against those with “cash lying under the mattresses and in the sacks of the corrupt.” He wants to steer the country, which is historically cash centric, towards bank accounts and digital payments.

“The people who have their vaults can shake governments. They are very powerful people. Should I be scared of such people?” Modi said at a rally Monday in the state of Uttar Pradesh.

“No!” the crowd roared back.

“I have your blessings. That is why I have taken on such a big fight,” Modi said.

Half of the citizens in India are said to use cash, and the decision has caused great concern for these individuals. ATMs are short on cash and who knows how long until they can be reconfigured.

“Parents cracked open their piggy banks, the sick deferred medical procedures, and others struggled to find ways to pay tea sellers, auto rickshaw driver and vegetable merchants who take cash only,” according to the Washington Post. “Civic offices, hospitals and gas stations were instructed to accept the old currency but this edict has not always been followed, resulting in some panic, fistfights and even sporadic reports of looting.”

Thus, few are buying gold. Some jewelers were raided. They were suspected of accepting the old currency and issuing forged receipts. Some shops didn’t open, fearing raids.

Jewelers believe in a few months, sales will continue once more. Gold imports will likely have fallen on the year after posting more than 900 tons last year.

The government added new excise duty on gold in recent years, and last spring a 42-day jewelers’ strike added to the issues in the gold market.

Royal Mint Employee Steals £133,000 in Gold By Putting it Up His Rearend

Gold-Brit-Sov-Pre-1933What if the  Gold Sovereigns you were looking to buy had been up someone’s bum?

The Royal Mint has been known for beautiful gold and silver bullion products at the national mint level. Their Britannia is not so common in the US, but is in Europe and, of course, the United Kingdom.

Read More

Precious Metals Are The Big Losers Headed Into the Weekend

Markets did not know what to do after election results poured in, although many markets had been pricing in a possible Trump victory for about one month prior to the election, as polls were too close to call and also the accuracy of many mainstream polls were thrown into question.

Gold futures fell precipitously Friday, their lowest finish since June, thanks to strength in the U.S. dollars and equities. The Federal Reserve, according to many analysts, might increase interest rates next month. The main reason for precious metals decline is similar to why global currencies have fallen: the strength of the dollar. Read More

Donald Trump Said He’d Consider A Gold Standard



Marijuana for medical purposes? President-elect Donald J. Trump is for it. Helping people when they come to the US asking for help? “Absolutely,” he says, with a caveat: “People have to come into the country legally.” Man buns he admits have “never been my thing.” 

As for bringing back the gold standard, the global economy order until World War II, President-elect Trump thinks it will be hard but is open-minded.

“Bringing back the gold standard would be very hard to do, but boy would it be wonderful,” he said. “We’d have a standard on which to base our money.” Read More

Gold Price Volatile Post-Election: What does it mean?

Gold prices increased 5% as election results rolled in and declared Donald Trump the U.S. presidential elect, and on November 9th skyrocketed to $1,330 before a hard correction to pre-election levels. The yellow metal currently sits at $1251.30 heading into Friday morning eastern standard time in the US.
Read More

Mariana Mining Disaster One Year Later

The Mariana Mining disaster, considered the largest environmental disaster in Brazil’s history, left unforgettable memories of devastated landscape and lives. It separated families in Mariana.

As Deutsche Welle describes: “Among the few homes left – almost all without doors and windows – a bush is trying to grow on on of the mountains of debris left throughout the village of Bento Rodrigues.”

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The rural town located in Brazil’s state of Minas Gerais, located in the country’s southeast, still has the color brown mud throughout much of it when, on November 5, 2015, the mines Fundão dam (Samarco mining company) collapsed. 19 people were killed.

“Over the past weeks, the movement of workers and heavy machinery at the site has became more intense,” Deutsche Welle writes. “Construction work on a new dam, called S4, are in a race against time.”

The structure is planned to be opened in January, at the height of the rainy season.

“The lake will be created in the area already impacted,” said Eduardo Moreira, manager of the Samarco works.

“From a technical point of view, it is an important alternative within the waste containment system,” he said in reference to other measures.

As Deutsche Welle describes: “The ruins of a chapel, built in 1718, will be saved – but will keep a mark from the tragedy. 70-year-old José do Nascimento de Jesus, a Bento Rodrigues community leader, said he will not go back there to give his service.”

Rodrigues said: “We go there and see only mud.”  The devastation displaced many.

“Where we used to live, everything will be flooded,” said Irene de Jesus. “Now people are hoping, expecting to move soon to the new Bento, to have our home. And, who knows, to be happy as before.”

 

About 3,000 laborers in shifts work around the clock, “rebuilding infrastructure and the barriers between the poisonous debris and the Gualaxo River, which flows into the Doce.”

the Brazilian environmental institute Ibama surmises the efforts will fail to prevent Brazil’s largest environmental disaster.

On the streets in Mariana’s downtown, merchants and taxi drivers complain about the lack of customers and complain about the difficult financial situation. The local government is struggling to balance its books since it stopped collecting taxes when the mining company stopped operating. It was among the main source of revenue for the city.

 

Fitbit Goes 22 Karat Gold

Fitbit Alta is one of the second biggest selling fitness trackers in the US thanks to a tracker, with a screen. Now, it’s going gold.  FitBit is going designer thanks to this new gold-plated style.

The Gold series Alta comes in 22 karat gold-plated edition with a black or pink sport band for $149.95. It comes with an optional shiny, gold-plated bangle named the Alta Luxe Metal Bangle for just an extra $129.95. Altogether – that’s just $280. Read More

Best Gold And Silver Affiliate Programs

Make money today, sell gold. You can set up affiliate links on your gold related website – or any website – and possibly start earning today but probably not. Read More

Bitcoin Turns Investors Away From Gold



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Despite a strong year so far, gold was down for its first month in 2016 in May. While the fundamentals most goldbugs champion – uncertain economic conditions and central bank policy – remain, demand could fall as younger generations turn to a new type of gold – digital gold.

In particular, millennials have less interest in physical gold. This isn’t necessarily a value statement. They simple have less experience of it. They don’t recall the days when the US dollar were on a semi-gold standard.

Today, they are more interested in digital gold, and Bitcoin has long been marketed as digital gold. Many young people claim that, although it is relatively new, Bitcoin offers similar savings aspects as does gold. Many, however, claim that Bitcoin is merely speculative, and thus very risky.

There are many parallels between Bitcoin and gold. For instance, when he designed the digital currency, Satoshi Nakamoto incorporated a mining aspect, similar to how gold is mined, but for computers.

Many millennials working in the Bitcoin industry, furthermore, are hoping to put gold on a blockchain. Projects like BitGold, Digix and others highlight this.

Older generations have bought gold because of the absolute privacy it offers. One can buy physical bars, and store them in a closet where nobody knows. It’s more similar to cash under a mattress than a gold stock. It seems, millennials interested in versions of digital gold are okay with sacrificing a bit of privacy, although many proponents claim blockchain technologies like Bitcoin and others are private. Still, it’s hard too argue they can be more private than bullion.

According to a survey by Global Metal News, millennials (age 19-35) showed better knowledge about lithium than gold, underscoring young people’s fading interest in gold – they are more interested in lithium.

Lithium is having its own Gold Rush of sorts, with hedge fund managers, pension funds and young retail investors entering investing in the commodity. Lithium is important for ion batteries, needed in the devices becoming more common. Lithium is also important electric vehicles. One need not look further than Tesla’s $5 billion lithium-ion battery subsidiary. The idea is that Tesla is going to be consuming lots of Lithium.

Millennials and younger in the coming years will likely be more enticed by digital gold than they are by gold bullion. There has already been a major motion picture about Bitcoin, Dope, on which the popular musician Pharrell Williams was an executive producer. There is no such equivalent Hollywood film portraying the gold industry. What’s more, it’s currently cheaper to buy one bitcoin than it is to buy one ounce of gold.

On the popular social media website, Reddit, a Bitcoiner expressed his relationship to gold and Bitcoin: “I had both for a while, but the practical aspects of Bitcoin ended up disillusioning me on gold, I no longer believe in it strongly enough to hold it.” Others recounted similar experiences.

Goldbugs who were adamantly against Bitcoin have turned towards it. Peter Schiff, a leading gold advocate who appears regularly on mainstream media, being one. Andrew Hoffman of Miles Franklin, Andy Hoffman and Chris Duane have also warmed up to digital gold as gold prices cooled off following their enticing 2011 price increases.

“My first few investments were in gold bullions back in 2007/2008. My portfolio was ~90% metals at that time,” another Reditor related. :They now make up ~3% of my portfolio while crypto makes up about 75%.”



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How Will Gold Prices Shape Up in 2016?

Gold prices have had quite the struggle over the past five years as the global economy has slowly recovered from the financial crisis of the late 2000s. The precious metal has posted annual losses three years in a row now, with 2015 seeing a 12% loss alone.

So as 2016 begins to take shape and investors take a look at what’s worth a buy, are we looking at a fourth year of losses? The answer is most likely.

Read More

Environmentally Friendly Gold Extraction

Northwestern University scientists discovered a cost-effective and environmentally sound method to isolate gold from raw materials by using cornstarch.

The method is considered a green alternative, compared to modern methods, to extracting gold from other materials, such as consumer electronic waste.

Current methods involve the use of highly poisonous cyanides, which contaminates the environment. Gold-mining companies exclusively use this toxic method.

“The elimination of cyanide from the gold industry is of the utmost importance environmentally,” said Sir Fraser Stoddart, the Board of Trustees Professor of Chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. “We have replaced nasty reagents with a cheap, biologically friendly material derived from starch.”

Sir Fraser’s team found the process by accident via test tube chemistry and then tested rigorously their findings.

China Changes 2016 Precious Metal Coin Designs After 2015 Failure

GoldSilverBitcoin – People’s Bank of China will release on October 28, 2015 the 2016 Panda coin set.

The coin’s pattern will show the Beijing Temple of Heaven, and feature the country name, reign. The reverse patterns will show a panda climbing a tree, published denomination, weight and fineness. This is different from the 2015 version, which left out weight and fineness, and troubled many precious metals dealers due to this lack of detail.

“I won’t sell it,” one wholesaler told me, who chose to remain anonymous. “Without the date, fineness, and all the details you normally get on not only a government issued coin, but also a private coin, I wouldn’t trust it.” Chinese Pandas are already known as one of the more counterfeited coins on the market. Read More

Was Gold Found On Those 22 Shipwrecks Found in Greece?

GoldSilverBitcoin – In many shipwrecks, gold is among the items found on-board a fallen vessel. For goldbugs, that is what makes a recent shipwreck discovery in Greece so intriguing.

A joint Greek-American archaeological expedition in the small Fourni archipelago, an area of merely 17 square miles, has turned up one of the great archaeological finds of 2015, according to Discovery. Read More