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Selling Gold at Fort Knox Emerges as Next Big Question in Debate on Federal Debt Limit

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DAVID PIETRUSZA
New York Sun
May 18, 2011

NEW YORK — The next big question on the federal debt limit could be whether to start selling the government’s holdings of gold at Fort Knox — and at least one presidential contender, Ron Paul, has told The New York Sun he thinks it would be a good move.

The question has been ricocheting around the policy circles today. An analyst at the Heritage Foundation, Ron Utt, told the Washington Post that the gold holdings of the government are “just sort of sitting there.” He added: “Given the high price it is now, and the tremendous debt problem we now have, by all means, sell at the peak.”

His comment came in the wake of not only the government having reached the statutory debt limit of $14.29 trillion but also the release of a report by the Heritage Foundation of a report on asset sales. The report outlined how a “partial sales of federal properties, real estate, mineral rights, the electromagnetic spectrum, and energy-generation facilities” might garner the federal treasury $260 billion over the course of the next 15 years.

The report did not mention the possibility of selling the government’s holdings of bullion, which at recent prices of $1,500 an ounce, would be worth about many tens of billions of dollars. But the possibility has not been lost in the policy debate now raging in Washington. The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that a group of Republican congressmen supports the idea of selling gold.

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This article was posted: Wednesday, May 18, 2011 at 3:23 am





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