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Gold market manipulation is 'too inflammatory' to be debated at Hong Kong conference

By: Chris Powell, Secretary/Treasurer, GATA

 -- Published: Thursday, 26 March 2015 | Print  | Disqus 

Dear Friend of GATA and Gold:

Yesterday's concentration on gold at the spectacular Mines and Money Hong Kong conference may have inadvertently proved GATA's longstanding contention that gold market manipulation simply can't be discussed in polite company almost anywhere in the world.

For at the outset of a panel discussion described as a debate about the direction of the gold price, its moderator, Rod Whyte, a longtime gold advocate and member of the Board of Directors of Australia-based business information provider Aspermont Ltd., announced that the panelists had agreed that gold market manipulation would not be discussed because the topic is "too inflammatory."

Since Whyte has expressed support for GATA at other venues, the calculated avoidance of the manipulation issue would seem to have been someone else's idea. In any case the panel included two members who could not have been expected to want to discuss the issue: Philip Klapwijk, formerly an analyst for Gold Fields Mineral Services, now managing director of Precious Metals Insights Ltd. in Hong Kong, and Albert Cheng, Far East managing director for the World Gold Council.

While Klapwijk predicted that the price of gold will fall substantially, predictions for the gold price are of no particular concern to GATA. We recognize that as long as the futures markets are operating, central banks can drive the price down to zero or up to infinity.

But your secretary/treasurer was in the audience and would have liked to ask Klapwijk and Cheng a few questions.

For example:

-- Was the Banque de France's director of market operations, Alexandre Gautier, telling the truth when he told the London Bullion Market Association meeting in Rome in September 2013, that the bank is secretly trading gold for its own account and the accounts of other central banks "nearly on a daily basis"? (See:

-- Is the Bank for International Settlements telling the truth when it maintains in its annual report that it does the same sort of secret trading on behalf of its member central banks, trading not only gold itself but also gold futures, options, and other derivatives? (See:

-- Is the BIS sincere when it advertises that it undertakes secret interventions in the gold market for its members? (See

-- If these central banks are indeed doing so much secret trading in the gold market, what are their objectives and might this secret trading manipulate the market and thereby deceive and cheat investors?

-- And for the World Gold Council's Cheng in particular: In its various analyses of the gold market, does the World Gold Council ever consider this secret trading by central banks, and does the council have any opinion about it?

Unfortunately the program did not permit questions.

An hour later your secretary/treasurer began his own presentation by noting the gold debate panel's determination that discussion of market manipulation is "too inflammatory" to be discussed and reminding the audience that they had been warned and might want to leave so as to avoid the ensuing unpleasantness. It was gratifying that no one walked out, though of course Klapwijk and Cheng had not stuck around.

Your secretary/treasurer said that GATA has spent 15 years collecting the documentation of largely surreptitious manipulation of the gold market by central banks and clamoring and litigating against it --

-- and that the presentation of this documentation had served mainly to get GATA disparaged as "conspiracy theorists."

But your secretary/treasurer added that there is such a thing as conspiracy fact -- as when the European Central Bank gathers its members secretly every few years to determine their policy in the gold market and then announces that this policy indeed has been determined in secret and that it will continue to be determined in secret and executed in secret as well:

It is also conspiracy fact when the G-10 Gold and Foreign Exchange Committee, representing the treasury departments and central banks of the industrial world, undertakes the same sort of secret meetings for policy formation and execution --

-- just as it is conspiracy fact when the U.S. Federal Reserve secretly undertakes and executes gold swap arrangements with foreign banks --

-- and when members of the International Monetary Fund swap and lease gold in secret to facilitate their secret interventions in the gold and currency markets:

Indeed, insofar as it operates largely in secret much of the time, government itself is by definition one big conspiracy.

Any serious analysis of the gold market, your secretary/treasurer said, must begin with these questions:

-- Are central banks in the gold market largely surreptitiously or not?

-- If central banks are in the gold market largely surreptitiously, is it just for fun -- for example, to see which central bank's trading desk can make the most money by cheating the most investors -- or is it for policy purposes?

-- If central banks are in the gold market for policy purposes, are these the traditional purposes of defeating a potentially competitive world reserve currency (see or might there be other purposes as well (see

Then your secretary/treasurer presented as many documents as the remainder of his 20 minutes allowed. Fortunately this allowed citation of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission documents indicating that central banks are secretly trading all major U.S. futures markets and contracts:

Grateful as he was to be allowed to participate again at the Hong Kong conference, your secretary/treasurer would be even more grateful to participate in any forum at which anyone of any standing in the gold market who dismisses complaints of gold market manipulation as "conspiracy theory" would be prepared to address the questions and documents cited here.

Of course it would be ideal if anyone in authority in government anywhere would attend a forum for addressing these questions and documents.

Yes, these questions and documents may be considered inflammatory, but only insofar as the world's financial system has become a cosmic fraud that deserves to go up in flames.

CHRIS POWELL, Secretary/Treasurer
Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee Inc.

* * *

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Or by purchasing DVDs of GATA's London conference in August 2011 or GATA's Dawson City conference in August 2006:

Or by purchasing a colorful GATA T-shirt:

Or a colorful poster of GATA's full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal on January 31, 2009:

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