Monday, March 21, 2011

A Lesson from Gaddafi about Gold

Mummar Gaddafi has never bought into the propaganda that the dollar is king.

The Libyan central bank – which is under Colonel Gaddafi’s control – holds 143.8 tons of gold, according to the latest data from the International Monetary Fund,  and FT says some suspect the true amount could be several tons higher.

Those reserves, among the top 25 in the world, are worth more than $6.5bn at current prices, enough to pay a small army of mercenaries for months or even years. says FT.

And the sly devil that Gaddafi is, he never shipped his bullion to the United States for safe keeping. FT again:
While many central banks hold their gold reserves in international vaults in London, New York or Switzerland, Libya’s bullion is in the country, said people familiar with the country’s activities in the gold market.
Even FT gets what it is all about (though it is FT, so ignore their snarky attitude about who owns gold):
The political turbulence in the Middle East – besides boosting the price of gold to a record $1,444 a troy ounce – has highlighted the property that has for centuries made gold so appealing to criminals, investors and dictators alike: it does not rely on a government for its value.
Gold gives you flexibility even in the most difficult situations. When others may not want to take a check from you, or have you wire money into their account, they will be much more willing to take gold from you in exchange. As the old saying goes, "gold has no smell".


  1. Why should the westerners be worried about Gaddafi's gold? It's not real money. Gold gets dug out of the ground in Africa, or someplace. Then we melt it down, dig another hole, bury it again and pay people to stand around guarding it. It has no utility. Anyone watching from Mars would be scratching their head.. Who are these dingalings that would accept payment in gold? What do they know? Stupid barbarians. They deserve to be bombed.

  2. I'm not sure if Caroline is being sarcastic or is simply MR.

  3. 'that has for centuries made gold so appealing to criminals, investors and dictators alike: it does not rely on a government for its value.'

    Notice how they framed the owners of gold in that sentence. Criminals, investors, and dictators. Such swell company we investors keep, hmm? I wonder how this would be phrased once annual price inflation goes above 50% for food and gas. I think it is time to be VERY considerate who one talks about PM with.

  4. "gold has no smell"

    It also is inflationary in and inflationary environment - wow, now that's really amazing. =-8

  5. Jaison De MontalegreMarch 22, 2011 at 12:27 AM

    I have a sneaking suspicion Caroline is "trolling". If she isn't then well... alright then!

    I suppose Federal Reserve notes would have value to Martians? Maybe they like the Euro? The key is all value is subjective. Nothing has intrinsic value but this doesn't mean markets and people can't desire X as a medium of exchange.

  6. I think Caroline's use of "Barbarians" sets off the old sarcasm alarm.

    Cute, Caroline.

  7. @Capn Mike: But what about "dingalings"?

    Anyhow, the plot has thickened. So when will the bankers' uniformed thugs begin their looting?

    And what do Obama's warrior women know about the gold? Who is whispering into their ears?