GATA''s Murphy and Turk interviewed on National Public Radio broadcast


Gold group urges SEC to investigate JP Morgan

NEW YORK, Jan. 6 (Reuters) -- The Gold Anti-Trust Action
Committee (GATA), a group alleging banks and governments
are covering up a conspiracy to keep gold prices down, has
asked the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to
investigate JP Morgan Chase and Co.'s involvement in the
gold market.

The announcement by GATA in a press release Monday
came one business day after JP Morgan, one of the largest
bullion dealers, said Friday it had asked the SEC to check
into rumors propagated on GATA's Web site last year that
the bank had lost money in 2002 trading gold and gold
derivatives during bullion's rally to six-year highs.

"We are asking the SEC to investigate Morgan's role in
the manipulation of the gold market and to investigate
what these rumors are all about -- about Morgan and the
gold market," GATA founder and Chairman Bill Murphy told
Reuters. "What we have said is, 'It doesn't pass the
smell test.'"

The group said it appealed to the SEC to investigate
JP Morgan's denial of any exposure to changes in the
price of gold. The request came in a letter to the SEC
from GATA consultant James Turk, editor of the
Freemarket Gold and Money Report.

The SEC said it would not comment on the requests.

JP Morgan, which ran into trouble over its commodity
and derivatives dealings with bankrupt energy giant
Enron Corp., said in November that market talk that it lost
between $17 billion and $70 billion during the gold rally
was "false and irresponsible."

The rumors surfaced several times last year, hurting the
bank's stock price.

In December GATA said it would assist an anti-trust lawsuit
filed by U.S. coin and bullion dealer Blanchard and Co.
against JP Morgan and Canadian mining giant Barrick Gold
accusing each of manipulating the gold market to keep prices
weak. Barrick dismissed the allegations of the lawsuit as
ludicrous and without merit. JP Morgan declined to comment.