Punctuated by a sharp increase in gold holdings by South Korea’s central bank, world central banks are moving into gold, expanding their gold holdings in a major way.
What do these ultimate insiders know that the average investor doesn’t know? Central bankers have access to information and statistics that we are kept in the dark about. This makes their move into gold an important signal for the rest of us.
Do not dismiss South Korea as a minor player in the world economy and financial markets, they’re not. South Korea is an Asian economic juggernaut, with one of the fastest growing economies over the past quarter century.
More from Reuters:
South Korea buys gold; central bank purchases set to riseSouth Korea boosted its gold holdings by nearly a third in July, buying 16 tonnes as part of the central bank's efforts to diversify its massive foreign exchange reserves. South Korea is Asia's fourth largest economy and its central bank said on Thursday that it now holds 70.4 tonnes of gold, after paying $810 million last month for the purchase. The increase barely lifted gold prices but supported expectations that central banks will remain gold's key buyer as increased volatility in global markets and waning confidence in the U.S. dollar fuel a global drive to vary foreign reserves away from the U.S. currency and government debt securities. CENTRAL BANKS TO BUY MORE GOLD The latest purchase was the third by the Korean central bank since June last year, when it started increasing its reserves after leaving them unchanged for more than a decade. In the last 13 months, South Korea's gold reserves have grown five-fold but remain only a fraction of China's over 1,000 tonnes and Japan 765 tonnes, according to the World Gold Council (WGC). Central banks bought 80.8 tonnes of gold in the first quarter, adding to 2011 purchase of more than 450 tonnes, the WGC said. In recent months, a number of countries including Russia and Kazakhstan also increased their gold reserves, data from the International Monetary Fund showed. "We have been of the view that we would increasingly see more diversification of reserves and investments into gold," said Chirag Mehta, gold fund manager at Quantum Mutual Fund in Mumbai, India. "This trend is likely to continue".