On Sunday, World Bank President Robert Zoellick wrote a remarkable article in the Financial Times of London. (FT subscribers, click here to read. Others, click here for a summary.) He called for a renegotiation of the global monetary order and – incredibly – the introduction of a new gold standard. In response, gold broke $1,400/oz on Monday.
This is a tremendous breakthrough for gold investors. For the head of the World Bank to make such a statement is unheard of in modern times. Among top bureaucrats and their economist friends in academia, the gold standard has always been a taboo – mostly because it prevents governments from using the “inflation tax” to finance military expeditions and entitlement programs. So, for such a high-ranking official to publicly express support for gold-backed currency, the dollar system must be nearing its end.
In fact, since the Fed’s announcement last week of a new round of stimulus using $600 billion freshly printed dollars, world leaders from Brasilia to Tokyo have been protesting like never before.
This may be remembered as the moment the world rose up and said, “enough!”
While Zoellick danced around the edges of calling for a true gold standard, I believe that the transition is already taking place. Investors and foreign central banks are re-monetizing gold as they move their savings out of the dollar. In Zoellick’s words: “Although textbooks may view gold as the old money, markets are using gold as an alternative monetary asset today.” That’s why gold is breaking one record after another, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future.
If gold were officially remonetized, the price would have to be about 47 times higher to pair central bank holdings with the assets of the global banking system (according to 2008 estimates from the McKinsey Global Institute). To look at it another way, central banks would be in the market for about 42.6 million ounces of gold to back up all the fiat money in circulation. Martin Wolf, columnist for the FT, asserted that a new gold standard “would generate huge windfall gains to holders of gold.”
It has only been since 1971 that the world money system has functioned without a gold-backing. I believe this experiment is rapidly coming to a close. Commentators are right when they say there is no currency ready to take the dollar’s place as the global reserve – but there is a metal with a great track record that has been waiting patiently in the bullpen.
It is hard say when the Fed’s monetary Ponzi scheme will fall apart, but many of its biggest “investors” are wisening up. I strongly recommend preparing for a dollar collapse before it’s too late. When the president of the Washington-based and Washington-funded World Bank speaks out against the dollar system, what more warning do you need?
Here is a recent Peter Schiff interview covering much the same ground: