Which Country has the Most Gold?

Gold Reserves

As every year, the World Gold Council analyzes the volume of gold reserves in different countries of the world. United States appears in first position in the ranking, with value of reserves at 314.980 billion. It is followed by Germany, with 131.17 billion dollars in gold assets. And at third comes Italy, with reserves valued at 94.950 billion dollars.

Which country has the most gold?

The top ten countries with the largest reserves of this precious metal is completed by the following countries:

  1. United States ($ 314.980 billion)
  2. Germany ($ 131.17 billion)
  3. Italy ($ 94.950 billion)
  4. France ($ 94.31 billion).
  5. China ($ 40.82 billion).
  6. Switzerland ($ 40.28 billion).
  7. Russia ($ 40.09 billion).
  8. Japan ($ 29.63 billion).
  9. Netherlands ($ 23.72 billion).
  10. India ($ 21.6 billion)

Here we will look more closely at its market. We start with some general curiosities:

  1. All the world’s central banks jointly hold 19% of the total gold that has been extracted from the earth.
  2. It is estimated that all the metal extracted until 2011 totals 171,300 tons.
  3. At a price of $ 1400 per ounce, this equates to USD 7.65 trillion.

If we try to look more broadly at this market, there are a number of questions that arise naturally. Who treasure the largest reserves of this metal? Which countries are the main producers of it?
In some of the top countries, the proportion of it is very high as compared to other countries of the world. This is the case of the United States, Germany, France and Italy. Take a look on the table to get more details about the total reserves.

Country Gold in Tons Total Reserves
United States 8,134.6 74.2%
Germany 3,382.1 68.5%
Italy 2,452.9 66.6%
France 2,436.5 65.1%
China 1,659.2 2.2%
Russia 1,276.0 13.5%
Switzerland 1,042.0 7.04%
Japan 765.2 2.1%
Netherlands 614.6 57.7%
India 558.8 6.1%

To complete the picture, what are the countries that are big consumers? The answer is India and China.

Gold is the real currency of payments in world, it is accepted by the whole world and its value is not affected by the debt. In the face of any economic crisis, it acts as a safe haven. Getting rid of this precious metal is a mistake that, as we have seen that the great economic powers don’t sell it. The abrupt fall in the rates of gold in mid-April 2013 was that Greece and Portugal were forced to liquidate their gold assets to pay off their debts. Although Greece does not appear among the first 20 countries, its position is at number 33. Russia, China and other emerging countries continue to increase their reserves.Despite doubts about it as a safe haven due to strong declines, analysts say the long-term outlook is positive and believe that the metal remains the most reliable asset, EFE said.

Keep in mind that in September 2015, the Central Bank of China (PBOC) has increased its reserves by 14 tons, reaching a total of 1,722.5 tons in late October 2015. Meanwhile Russia has expanded 34 tons of it in September 2015.

Figures reported by the WGC are questioned by some analysts in this sector. There are suspicions in US reserves; they are lower than what is reported. While Chinese reserves are higher and are hidden in monetary agencies such as SAFE. Some countries like Germany say they have a certain amount of this precious metal, but are taking longer than expected to repatriate these reserves. The reserves of many countries have also been provided in agreements of gold swaps and therefore the physical existence of some of assets could be questioned.

Where does IMF stand in the list?

We only discussed about countries in above section. A final comment on these tables is the remarkable holdings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). It stands at third position for holding this precious metal. Where does it come from? When it was created in 1944, its members had to contribute 25% of the subscription fee in gold. And this represents the main source.
In addition to this, the IMF’s interest in its loans was initially paid in gold (this ceased to be so in 1978). Since then the so-called “official price” of the metal no longer exists and the IMF stopped intervening the market to establish a certain price.
We leave you with something to keep in mind. Its price still has potential to rise as you begin to see that the United States can end its money issuing program. However, from 2003 to 2009, the world’s central banks have been net sellers of gold. And from 2010 to 2012, they have become net buyers of it (with strong growth in 2011 and 2012).

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