Wednesday, August 5, 2009
In a report released Monday, precious metals consultancy GFMS, for Societe Generale, looked at the recent rate and volume of gold sales from official sources and concluded that in the first half of the current year the net sales volume was a relatively minuscule 39 tonnes – down a massive 73% year on year. Indeed in the second quarter, GFMS estimates that banks were net buyers of gold after being net sellers in the first quarter.
In effect, the majority of these sales came from within the Central Bank Gold Agreement, with its signatories selling some 92 tonnes, but this was offset by net purchases from Central Banks and institutions in other countries which turned out to be net buyers of around 56 tonnes. There were also a few tonnes of sales from banks outside the CBGA. GFMS notes that all these figures may be subject to alteration due to the lag that often exists between Central Bank activity in the gold market taking place and it being identi?ed.
The biggest sellers of gold in the period included France which had announced some time back that it would sell 600 tonnes over the life of the five-year CBGA, which ends on September 26th. France sold some 44 tonnes in the first five months of the year and it is likely, says GFMS, that it would also have sold a little more in June. With a total of 576 tonnes of sales over nearly 5 years under the Agreement up until May that left only a further 24 tonnes to sell June to September.
The second biggest seller was the European Central Bank with 35.5 tonnes.