Gold is no deader than John Barleycorn


10:27p ET Monday, August 12, 2013

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

News reports tonight suggest that the Indian government's crackdown on gold is not only failing in India but prompting an explosion of gold imports into neighboring countries, presumably to facilitate smuggling into India but causing concern among government officials in those neighboring countries about their own potential imbalance in trade.

Of course those concerns are bogus, insofar as any country exchanging paper or electronic money for metal is getting the better of the deal -- the gold will last, the paper and electrons will devalue. Indians are showing their silly government that they prefer gold to the rupee as currency, and the government's restrictions on the import of gold may inspire similar preferences among the neighbors.

Just as the journalist Daniel Okrent noted that the best way to get kids to brush their teeth would be to outlaw toothbrushes and toothpaste, the best way to re-establish gold as the superior currency may be, as India's government is doing, to try to obstruct its possession. And now, as the story from The Indian Express appended here reports, the Indian government is -- oh, happy day! -- raising import duties on silver as well -- and of course silver used to be pretty good money too.

... Dispatch continues below ...


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For 14 years GATA has been engaged in a long struggle, a tiny part of humanity's endless struggle to understand and democratize money, and while that struggle is far from won, today central bankers from New Delhi to Basel to London to Washington can be seen scurrying desperately to prop up their financial system as it crumbles under its own weight of deception, expropriation, plutocracy, and corruption.

Thus in our trenches tonight we're humming the old English folk song "John Barleycorn Must Die," remade so well by the English rock band Traffic 43 years ago:

There were three men came out of the west ...

-- maybe Keynes, Nixon, and Bernanke? --

Their fortunes for to try,
And these three men made a solemn vow:
John Barleycorn must die.
They've ploughed, they've sowed,
They've harrowed him in,
Threw clods upon his head.
And these three men made a solemn vow:
John Barleycorn was dead.

But he wasn't:

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

* * *

India's Gold Guzzling Still High, Spurs Neighbors to Act

By Jo Winterbottom
Monday, August 12, 2013

NEW DELHI -- Indians bought more gold in July than June despite a series of moves by the RBI to strangle supplies, and their insatiable appetite has forced neighbouring countries to take steps to curb their own imports. India's gold imports hit $2.9 billion in July, up from $2.45 billion in June, official data showed on Monday, confirming Finance Minister P. Chidambaram's fears that despite hikes in import duties and steps by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to stem supply, demand is on the rise again.

... For the full story:

* * *

Duties on Gold Import, Non-Essential Items May Go Up: P. Chidambaram

From the Press Trust of India
via The Indian Express, New Delhi
Monday, August 12, 2013

Duties on gold and silver imports and non-essential goods are set to go up even as the government announced a slew of measures including easier overseas borrowing norms to fetch an additional $11 billion this fiscal year to arrest the Indian rupee's fall and check the burgeoning current account deficit (CAD), Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said.

The interest on foreign currency non-resident accounts has been liberalised to attract more deposits.

The customs notifications on the import of these items will be placed in Parliament tomorrow, P. Chidambaram told a press conference hours after he made a statement in both the Houses on measures to contain the CAD at US$79 billion or 3.7 per cent of GDP.

He refused to disclose the actual figures on import duties, saying Parliament was in session and he would not make any statement outside.

"CAD is a problem (but) we have solutions. We will implement the solution (and) there is no room for panic," the minister told reporters, adding that these initiatives would help in reducing foreign exchange volatility and contain the CAD.

"CAD is as much a red line as the fiscal deficit. If we can contain CAD, sentiment about the currency market and rupee will significantly improve", he said.

As regards the measures to increase capital flows, Chidambaram said that permission would be given to IRFC, PFC, and IIFCL to collectively raise US$4 billion through quasi-sovereign bonds for the infrastructure sector.

Chidambaram said that PSU oil companies would be permitted to raise additional External Commercial Borrowings (ECBs) to the tune of USD 4 billion.

He further said the liberalisation of the ECB norms and non-resident deposit schemes (NRE/FCNR) would fetch US$2 billion and US$1 billion respectively.

The minister also expressed satisfaction over the decline in oil and gold imports in the current fiscal year.

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