Friday, May 9, 2014

Swiss Parliament Rejects 20% Gold Reserve Rule

Switzerland already has over 1,000 tons of gold (officially), but this measure would require the SNB to keep 20% of reserves in gold at all times.  The bank and Swiss parliment oppose it, but if 100,000 signatures can be gathered, it will be voted on by the people democratically.

LINK to Bloomberg via Mineweb:

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Modified Production Process for US $1 Dollar notes (Federal Reserve Notes)

Instead of 32 notes per sheet there will now by 50 per sheet.  The main difference is the size font of one of the identifying numbers on the note.  This will provide collectors with something interesting to look for in the 2009 series - the "pre" and "post" versions of this change.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Japan's Sales Tax Increase Means More 1-Yen Coins

While Australia, New Zealand, and Canada have all done away with their penny, the United States, Great Britain, Euro-zone, and Japan all see at least some use for retaining their lowest unit coin despite the eroded value after decades of inflation.  Specifically, 1/100th unit coins are needed to make change due to government sales taxes.  One interesting thing I learned from the story is that Japan has "100 Yen stores" the same way we have "Dollar stores" in the US.  There are currently 38.8 billion one-yen coins in circulation.

Gold sales in Japan are also up due to the coming sales tax increase:

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Rare gold found in California

California couple finds $10 million in rare coins on their property

Very cool story!  Most of the coins were preserved in fantastic condition.  Always investigate old stuff you come across. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Banknote of the Week 2.18.14 - Canada 1954 $10

Yes I realize I hardly ever post a "banknote of the week" so it should be more like "banknote of the four months", but what can I say, I'm easily distracted. 

Bank of Canada $10, series 1954

This particular note is very attractive to me for its simple elegance.  Purple has been a symbol of royalty for thousands of years and its a very under-used color in the design of banknotes.  I think it fits perfectly for this note bearing the image of Queen Elizabeth II and it really makes the red serial numbers pop out.  The reverse is a beautiful Canadian landscape.  All Canadian notes are bi-lingual in English and French.  Printed by the British American Banknote Company Limited.  The current producer of Canadian banknotes is the Canadian Banknote Company Limited - I am not sure if there is a connection or if they are distinct entities.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Friday, August 23, 2013

British Pound Debasement: UK Royal Mint begins pulling Cupro-Nickel 5 & 10p from Circulation

As Canada has been doing with their old pure nickel coins, the UK has begun pulling in all the cupro-nickel 5p and 10p coins that have been in circulation since the early 90s.  Britain stopped making coins of .925 Sterling in 1920 and debased to .500 silver.  Then in 1947 they took the silver out entirely and went to Cupro-Nickel.  In 1970-1971 when the British Pound was decimalized, the equivalent coins stayed about the same size until 1990-1992 when the 5p and 10p were made smaller (the size circulating today).  Now the cupro-nickel is being recovered and replaced by nickel-plated steel.  As you can see, the debasement has been consistent and ongoing, robbing the British saver of the value of their money.  What comes after steel coins, plastic?  Hopefully this is a clear case study of why many people have concluded gold and silver are the safest physical money to save.

"In January 2013, the Royal Mint began a programme to recover cupronickel five pence and ten pence coins from circulation.
All new five pence and ten pence coins have been made from nickel-plated steel since January 2012 and to date 330 million nickel-plated steel coins have been issued into circulation.
This programme will recover the metal alloy contained in the old specification coins. The value of the metal in both the cupronickel and nickel-plated steel coins is still less than their face value.
HM Treasury and the Royal Mint will continue to ensure that there are enough coins, of the right denominations, to meet public demand. This programme will not affect the number of coins in circulation, and coins made of cupronickel alloy will continue to be legal tender."