Peter Krauth: Germany, Poland, Venezuela, Ecuador, Mexico, the Netherlands, and Switzerland are just a few of the countries that have recently repatriated their gold or hosted movements to do so.
And now France joins the list.
This growing trend provides a clue about gold in 2015 – and we’d be wise to track it very carefully…
Netherlands Repatriates 122 Tons of Its Gold
The Netherlands’ central bank, De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), recently had 122 tons of its gold shipped to Amsterdam from New York.
According to DNB, 31% of its gold reserves are now held in Amsterdam, with the rest held outside of the country. About 31% is with the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 20% is with the Bank of Canada, and 18% is with the Bank of England.
Here’s what’s really interesting about the repatriation of Holland’s gold: It was only made public after the fact.
It’s possible that Holland wants to prepare in advance of a potential future crisis.
In a recently released statement, the DNB said, “In addition to a more balanced division of the gold reserves… this may also contribute to a positive confidence effect with the public.”
And Holland is not alone.
As I discussed recently, the Swiss gold referendum held last Sunday did not pass. In fact, a large and concentrated campaign against the initiative was mounted by both the government and central bank.
Their main arguments were that the conditions of the initiative would tie the SNB’s hands, constraining its ability to maintain its current peg to the euro and to weaken the franc against other currencies should it be deemed necessary.
Although it didn’t pass, the referendum may have had a profound effect on people, governments, and their central banks – and how they view their nation’s gold.
The push to repatriate and shore up Switzerland’s gold reserves looks to have inspired its neighbor France to bring home its own gold.
Here’s why this is so remarkable – and what it means for gold in 2015…
French Leader Calls for Gold to Come Home
Marine Le Pen is the leader of the Front National party of France, which finished first in European parliamentary elections this past May.
While the next federal election is still only set for 2017, should she run, Le Pen is a frontrunner to become France’s next president, potentially unseating current President Francois Hollande.
Given Le Pen’s popularity, her recent requests regarding France’s management of its gold reserves are all the more remarkable.
In an open letter to the Banque de France (France’s central bank), Le Pen made several demands that closely echo those of the Swiss initiative.