Gold prices are down slightly on Monday with a stronger U.S. dollar index. Gold last reported p.m. is $1206.90 down $7.20 and silver is $16.43 down 16 cents.
The Indian government did not lower the duty on gold imports as expected but pent up demand will continue supporting gold long term. Gold purchasers have waited on the side lines in hope of a cut but now they will move forward in purchases with seasonal demand in the coming weeks. Because of India’s high tariff’s, gold has been smuggled in and out of the country in large amounts. For the black market to see a decrease in demand, tariff’s will have to drop to rates that are low enough to compete with the illegal trading.
India estimates it has 20,000 tons of gold that is not being utilized in the markets and the government has announces initiatives to exploit these reserves. One, to encourage gold holders to deposit their gold into financial accounts that will have a fixed rate. The gold could then be loaned out to jewelers. Next, the government may create a Sovereign bond as an alternative to purchasing physical gold. The bond could be redeemed in cash for the face value of the gold and would also have a fixed interest rate. Lastly, the government could mint an Indian gold coin which would lower the needs of consumers to import gold coins from other other banks. No timeline has been set for implementing these plans as other similar programs have failed.
Today in North Carolina, robbers stole $4 million in gold bars from an armored truck. CBS reports North Carolina authorities and the FBI are investigating the alleged theft that took place along Interstate 95 on Sunday evening. Two armed guards were traveling from Miami to Minneapolis with a shipment of gold and silver when the truck apparently broke down at mile marker 114 on the interstate. The guards reported that 3 armed men in a white van approached them, ordered them to the ground, tied their hands up and forced them to walk into nearby woods. Investigators said the men took several barrels of gold and left while the guards were in the woods.
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