Wed Jan 16, 2013, 12:51 AM
FarCenter (17,316 posts)
Bundesbank to pull gold from New York and Paris in watershed moment
The move marks an extraodinary breakdown in trust between leading central banks and has set off ferment among gold enthusiasts, with some comparing it with France’s withdrawal of gold from the US under President Charles de Gaulle as the Bretton Woods currency system crumbled in the early 1970s.
Handelsblatt said the Bundesbank will announce on Wednesday that it intends to relocate the gold to vaults in Frankfurt, said by insiders to include parts of the old archive library. Germany has 3,396 tons of gold worth roughly £115bn, the world’s second-largest holding after the US. Most of the reserves were stored abroad for safety during the Cold War.
The bank holds an estimated 45pc of its gold at the US Federal Reserve in New York, and 11pc at the Banque de France, lower than originally thought.
The latest shift in strategy follows criticism by the German Court of Auditors, who said in a confidential report that the gold held abroad had "never been verified physically" and was not under proper control. A growing chorus of lawmakers in the Bundestag has demanded a return of all Germany’s gold in case the financial crisis escalates.
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