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Central banks are selling gold, FT reports -- or want markets to think so

With its report below the Financial Times assumes today that all official central bank gold-reporting data is accurate and complete, that central banks have no secrets about the monetary metal, and that they don't sometimes stash it in accounts not reported to the International Monetary Fund or World Gold Council.

Of course that's not true. Central banks often accumulate gold for a long time before reporting it, if they report it at all.

The FT also forgets here that in the first decade of this century central banks regularly reported selling gold even as the gold price rose steadily. Most likely the central banks were not really selling gold at all but just granting cash settlement to gold leases they had issued, and no new metal was hitting the market. The gold involved had hit the market many years earlier and was long gone from central bank possession.

 

But pursuing these issues critically would constitute journalism, which isn't permitted in mainstream financial news organizations in regard to gold. The report here is significant mainly for indicating the message central banks want conveyed to the markets, and as always the Financial Times is a most reliable messenger.

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Central Banks Flip to Gold Sales After Record Rally

By Henry Sanderson
Financial Times, London
Wednesday, October 7, 2020

Central banks became net sellers of gold in August for the first time in a year and a half, in the latest indication that demand for the metal is slowing following a record-setting rally.

Global central banks sold a net 12.3 tonnes of gold over the month, according to estimates published on Wednesday by the World Gold Council, an industry-backed body. The shift came just as the precious metal reached a record high above $2,070 a troy ounce in early August. It has since fallen more than 8 per cent to $1,890 per ounce.

The latest data reflect the pullback of some major buyers as countries free up resources to deal with the coronavirus crisis.

"All central banks around the world are facing a lot of pressure for liquidity," said Bernard Dahdah, an analyst at Natixis in Paris. "Now is not the time to hoard gold. The hospitals need the money," he said.

Uzbekistan led the sales, exporting $5.8 billion worth of gold in the first eight months of the year, according to government statistics. ...

... For the remainder of the report:

https://www.ft.com/content/09b0a30f-2997-4e8a-92bf-f9eb61952b92

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