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In Low Key Move, Singapore’s Central Bank Adds 26 Tonnes To Its Gold Reserves

In Low Key Move, Singapore’s Central Bank Adds 26 Tonnes To Its Gold Reserves

Submitted by Ronan Manly, BullionStar.com

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This article was originally published by Zero Hedge

In Low Key Move, Singapore’s Central Bank Adds 26 Tonnes To Its Gold Reserves

Submitted by Ronan Manly, BullionStar.com

It has just come to light that Singapore’s central bank, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), added 26.35 tonnes of gold to its official monetary gold reserves over a 2 month period between May and June this year, in the process boosting its strategic gold holdings by 20% to a claimed 153.76 tonnes.

This addition to the monetary gold holdings of the Monetary Authority of Singapore was first pointed out by the World Gold Council’s Krishan Gopaul in a 25 November tweet, following an update to Singapore’s gold holdings appearing in the IMF’s International Financial Statistics (IFS) database, a source which World Gold Council uses to keep track of central bank and sovereign gold holdings.

May and June: 26.35 tonnes added

While it’s unclear why changes to Singapore’s monetary gold holdings from May and June only made it on to the IFS database in recent days, looking more closely, the Monetary Authority of Singapore did ‘reflect’ the May and June gold purchases at the end of July and August, respectively, via updates to the MAS’ monthly “International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity” report, but did not announce or mention the additions specifically.

Before looking at how this substantial gold purchase by Singapore went unnoticed, here are the raw numbers from the MAS site itself. Up until the end of April 2021, Singapore’s central bank (MAS) had been reporting total gold holdings of 4,096,439 fine troy ounces, or 127.42 tonnes, a figure which had not changed since at least 2002 (which is as far back as World Gold Council records go).

During May 2021, MAS reports that it added 527,201 ozs (16.4 tonnes) of gold, taking it’s gold holdings as of end of May to 4,623,640 ozs (143.81 tonnes).

During June 2021, MAS reports that it added a further 319,801 ozs (9.95 tonnes) of gold, which increased MAS’ gold holdings as of end of June to 4,943,441 ozs (153.76 tonnes).

This means that over the two months May and June 2021 inclusive, MAS purchased 847,002 fine troy ounces of gold (26.35 tonnes), and in doing so increased it’s gold holdings by 20.67%, and at the same time rising from 30th to 28th place in the world gold holding rankings.\

Quietly and Discreetly

Each month, the World Gold Council (WGC) updates it’s World Official Gold Holdings spreadsheet (xls) in which it ranks sovereign gold holders largest to smallest based on how many tonnes of monetary gold each country holds. Looking at the latest version of this report (November), it lists Singapore in 30th position with 127.4 tonnes ‘as of August 2021’, and this spreadsheet has not yet been updated (at time of writing) to reflect the 26 tonnes of gold purchased by Singapore in May and June.

The WGC ranking methodology states that: This table was updated in November 2021 and reports data available at that time. Data are taken from the International Monetary Fund’s International Financial Statistics (IFS), November 2021 edition, and other sources where applicable. IFS data are two months in arrears, so holdings are as of September 2021 for most countries, August 2021 or earlier for late reporters.

IMF IFS data will only get updated if and when an individual country informs the IMF of a change to that country’s gold holdings. It appears then that the World Gold Council’s data for Singapore’s gold holdings is based exclusively on the IMF IFS data, and that this IFS data has for some reason only in recent days been updated to reflect Singapore’s gold purchases, which means that for some reason Singapore has only very recently informed the IMF of it’s May-June gold buying.

For verification, I ran a data query in the IMF IFS database for search criteria Singapore, for each month of 2021, with the data indicator of “International Reserves and Liquidity, Reserves, Official Reserve Assets, Gold (Including Gold Deposits and, If Appropriate, Gold Swapped), Volume in Millions of Fine Troy Ounces, Fine Troy Ounces”.

This data query output the following:

IMF IFS data extract showing Singapore’s gold holdings from January – August 2021

From the IFS data, you can see that Singapore’s (MAS) gold holdings remained unchanged at 4.1 million ozs until the end of April 2021, then increased to 4.62 mn ozs at the end of May, and then increased again to 4.94 mn ozs at the end of June, after which MAS gold reserves remained unchanged.

MAS Monthly International Reserves report

However, knowing now that MAS purchased gold during May and June, I went back and checked on the actual MAS monthly ‘International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity’ reports on the MA website.

The MAS ‘International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity ‘ report for April 2021, which was published on 30 June 2021, shows the Singaporean central bank reporting a total of 4,096,439 fine troy ounces (or 127.42 tonnes). See Item 4 “Gold (including gold deposits and, if appropriate, gold swapped)”.  

The same report for May 2021, which was published on 30 July 2021, then shows that the volume of gold held by MAS at the end of May was 4,623,640 fine troy ounces, which was 16.4 tonnes more than at the end of April.

The report for June 2021, published on 31 August 2021, shows that as of end of June MAS held  4,943,441 fine troy ounces of gold, a 9.95 tonne increase over May, and a combined May-June increase of 26.35 tonnes.

Just for completeness, the report for July 2021, published on 30 September, shows that gold holdings then remained constant at 4,943,441 ozs, i.e. there were no further gold purchases beyond June.

Singapore volume of gold held, as per MAS “International Reserves and Foreign Currency Liquidity’ report, end of June 2021. Source

Despite the two-month lag in reporting, these reports show that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) did report increases in gold holdings on 30 July and again on 31 August, but for whatever reason, no one noticed, or else those who noticed it did not publicise it. There is a slight chance that MAS has recently altered it’s “International Reserves” reports since May to retrospectively show these gold purchases, but it would seem quite absurd to do so, even in the secretive world of central bank gold reporting.

Besides, an Internet Archive of the preliminary MAS “International Reserves” report for end of August (published end of September) and archived on the Wayback Machine on 6 October, shows that even then (at the end of September) MAS was, on it’s website, reporting it’s latest gold holdings of 4,943,441 ozs.

The Secretive World of Central Bank Gold

So overall, it seems to be a case of no one noticing the updated gold holdings data in the MAS monthly “International Reserves” reports since the end of July, and at the same time, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) not highlighting it’s gold purchases to either the gold market or the financial press, i.e. there was no press release, no other form of announcement, nor even any comment on either the MAS website or from central bank officials. In contrast, central banks, such as Poland, have made many public statements about their gold buying, and even signal their gold buying in advance.

For a central bank which actively publishes reams of publications and reports on all sorts of topics related to Singapore’s financial sector and markets and it’s international financial position, this omission about Singapore’s sizeable gold purchases could be considered quite strange, but then again, given that we are dealing with the secretive world of gold and central banks, maybe it’s not so strange.

In addition, MAS is famous for it’s obsession with maintaining and controlling the exchange rate of the Singaporean dollar (versus a basket of currencies), so perhaps MAS prefers not to draw attention to the amount of gold in it’s international reserves as this might encourage FX markets to view the gold purchase as a move that strengthens Singapore’s reserve position and hence could put upward pressure on it’s exchange rate.

Showcase in the GIC (Sovereign Wealth Fund) Office in Singapore commemorating Singapore’s first gold purchase of 100 tonnes  in 1968 – “A Torn Dollar Bill And Gold For Singapore”. Source

From Washington to Switzerland 

In 1968, Singapore’s finance minister Dr Goh Keng Swee and senior adviser Ngiam Tong Dow were responsible for securing Singapore’s first gold reserves when they negotiated with South Africa’s finance minister Nicolaas Diederichts to purchase 100 tonnes of gold from the South Africans at $40 per ounce while attending a World Bank meeting in Washington D.C.

Realising that the Bretton Woods system would soon collapse, and on advice from Ngiam Tong Dow, Dr Goh decided “In that case, we had better go and buy gold from the South Africans.”  

Given that there was an embargo on South Africa, intriguing the gold deal was conducted in Dr Goh’s hotel room in Washington D.C. and they turned up the TV to full volume to counter possible listening devices. According to Ngiam Tong Dow, when Diederichts agreed, he said “OK, you send your man to Switzerland, we’ll deliver the gold to you in Switzerland, and you pay us in Switzerland.” Diederichts then took out a $1 bill, ripped in in two halves, kept one half, and gave the other half to Ngiam Tong Dow saying ‘You keep this. I will keep the other half, and my man will meet you in Switzerland.” And just like that, 100 tonnes of gold changed hands. It may sound like a James Bond storyline, but this story is actually factual.       

A few months later the deal was finalised when Ngiam Tong Dow and Singaporean banker Wee Cho Yaw flew into Switzerland and went to the offices of the Swiss Bank Corporation (SBC) where they met the Swiss banker representing the South Africans. Upon handing him the one half of the dollar bill, and seeing that the serial numbers matched, the Swiss banker said “OK, your identity has been established”. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Sometime subsequent to 1968 (but before 2002) Singapore added to its gold reserves to bring them up to the 127.4 tonnes level, and now yet again, Singapore has added another 26.35 tonnes during May and June 2021.

Extract from “A Mandarin and the Making of Public Policy” Reflections of Ngiam Tong Dow, Source

While the negotiation of this latest gold purchase may not have been as intriguing and James Bond-esque as Singapore’s 1968 gold purchase, in the world of central bank gold markets anything is possible, and we could well imagine MAS officials in exotic Swiss locations or Washington DC hotels.

But like their 1968 compatriots who were quiet and discreet in their negotiations, so yet again Singapore’s central bankers have added a sizeable tonnage to Singapore’s monetary gold reserves, so discreetly, that no one, until now, even noticed. And that’s the way the secretive central bankers like it.

Yet with this gold purchase, Singapore’s central bankers are now signaling that after years on the sidelines, they feel compelled at this time to come back to the gold market as buyers.  While yet not covered by mainstream financial media, this is a major move by one of the world’s most savvy and discreet central banks.

This article was originally published on the BullionStar website under the same title “In low key move, Singapore’s central bank adds 26 tonnes to its gold reserves“. 

Tyler Durden
Mon, 11/29/2021 – 21:40

Author: Tyler Durden

Precious Metals

Alamos Gold: Haywood Lowers Target To $12.75 Following 2022 Guidance

Last week, Alamos Gold Inc. (TSX: AGI) reported its fourth quarter and full-year production results, as well as their 2022
The post Alamos Gold: Haywood…

Last week, Alamos Gold Inc. (TSX: AGI) reported its fourth quarter and full-year production results, as well as their 2022 to 2024 production estimates.

For the fourth quarter, Alamos Gold produced 112,500 ounces of gold, bringing the full year 2021 production to 457,200 ounces, which was the lower range of guidance. Costs have not yet been finalized but the company says that it is expected to be consistent with their guidance.

The company also provided 2022 guidance, which included expected gold production of 440,000 to 480,000 ounces. Cash costs are expected to be between $875 to $925 per ounce and all-in sustaining costs are to be between $1,190 to $1,240 per ounce. Total capital expenditures will be between $305 and $345 million, while exploration is expected to cost $27 million for 2022.

For the longer run, the company expects these numbers to grow to 460,000 to 500,000 ounces of gold in 2024, with cash costs of $650 to $750 per ounce and $950 to $1,050 of all-in sustaining costs per ounce.

Currently Alamos Gold currently has 13 analysts covering the stock with an average 12-month price target of C$12.46, or a 36% upside to the current stock price. Out of the 13 analysts, 1 has a strong buy rating, 6 have buy ratings, 5 have holds and 1 analyst has a sell rating. The street high sits at C$17.50 or a 91% upside to the current stock. While the lowest price target sits at C$9.98.

In Haywood Capital Markets’ note, they reiterate their buy rating but lower their 12-month price target from C$15 to C$12.75, saying, “lower production and higher costs for 2022,” and that inflation is finally starting to impact the production costs.

For the fourth quarter and full-year production numbers, they came in line with Haywood’s estimates although they note that the full-year production numbers came in the lower half of guidance.

For the companies three-year guidance, Haywood expected 2022 production to be 485,000 ounces, below their high-end figure. While cash costs were expected to be $785 per ounce, lower than their guided number. This is the same for all-in sustaining costs as Haywood expected it to be $1,055 per ounce. Haywood says that this cost increase in 2022, “is due to industry-wide cost inflation as well as temporary higher costs at Mulatos.”

Below you can see Haywood’s estimates versus the company’s guidance.


Information for this briefing was found via Sedar and Refinitiv. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

The post Alamos Gold: Haywood Lowers Target To $12.75 Following 2022 Guidance appeared first on the deep dive.



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Author: Justin Young

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S&P Suffers Worst Start To A Year Since 1939 As Yield Curve Yells ‘Recession’

S&P Suffers Worst Start To A Year Since 1939 As Yield Curve Yells ‘Recession’

Before we start, let’s make this clear right from the start…

S&P Suffers Worst Start To A Year Since 1939 As Yield Curve Yells ‘Recession’

Before we start, let’s make this clear right from the start – despite today’s panic-buying, this is the worst start to a year for the S&P 500 since 1939 (and on course for its worst January ever)…

Nasdaq is down 5 straight weeks (16% from its highs) – the longest losing streak since 2012 – while Small Caps are down 22% from their highs (in a bear market)

Source: Bloomberg

Everything was going so well too… “smooth sailing” they said! “Fed Put” they said! “Transitory inflation” they said…

Today was just a little bit turbo as it seems ugly sentiment data (10 year lows) and plunging growth expectations (Q1 GDP forecasts collapsed), was the ‘bad news’ the dip-buyers needed to reassure themselves that uber-hawkish Powell wouldn’t execte on his plan to crush inflation into a recessionary environment. We have one word for them – stagflation, and it leave Powell in an ugly box.

Atlanta Fed GDP expectations crashed to zero for Q1…

Source: Bloomberg

And as that happened, rate-hike expectations shifted dovishly lower (modestly at the time)…

Source: Bloomberg

Which helped send stocks soaring (particularly hyper-growth, long duration stocks). But that all came to an abrupt end at 1400ET today (for no obvious reason)… which was immediately met with a wall of dip-buyers amid the total lack of liquidity. Then all the majors just went vertical into the last 10 minutes as a significant buy-imbalance appeared (all helped by AAPL’s explosive gains today). Nasdaq was up a shocking 3% today (from down 1% pre-open). The S&P was up 2.5% today (from down 1% pre-open). Russell 2000 closed up almost 2% today from down 2% pre-open…

As one veteran trader noted, “today was a shitshow, no liquidity, gamma-driven gappy jumps everywhere… it was all algos and no average joes.”

Well that idiotic rampage managed to get the Dow, S&P, and Nasdaq unchanged on the week (which appears to be all that mattered to the machines)…

Just look at the volatility (but Monday’s puke lows held… and so did Wednesday’s pre-Fed highs).

Growth stocks were flat on the week as Value was bid (mostly benefitting on Thursday)…

Source: Bloomberg

Both Defensive and Cyclical stocks were hammered equally this week (while obviously cyclicals were more volatile)…

Source: Bloomberg

Today’s bounce was not really triggered by a short-squeeze as the size of the swing higher is very modest and unsustained…

Source: Bloomberg

The energy sector is the only one up in January while Tech and Consumer Discretionary are down hard MTD…

Source: Bloomberg

Real yields continue to rise (to their highest since June 2020 – but still negative), and have recoupled with gold…

Source: Bloomberg

…but have completely decoupled from stocks (Nasdaq should be significantly lower relative to Russell 2000)…

Source: Bloomberg

Notably, if real yields keep rising, then valuations are going to come under significant pressure…

Credit markets saw very little of the chaotic chop in stocks this week as they just fell with HYG (HY Corporate Bond ETF) at its lowest since Nov 2020…

Source: Bloomberg

Treasury yields were extremely mixed on the week with the short-end exploding higher and long-end actually coming all the way back to unchanged…

Source: Bloomberg

This week saw 2Y yields jump most since Oct 2019 (up for the 6th week in a row to the highest since Feb 2020).

Source: Bloomberg

The yield curve was crushed this week, triggered by The Fed’s hawkish tilt…

Source: Bloomberg

…with 7s10s at almost record flats, 20s30s still inverted, and 2s30s at its flattest since March 2020… all screaming The Fed is about to make a big mistake and hinting strongly at recessionary risks rising fast…

Source: Bloomberg

Short-term markets are now fully pricing in 5 rate-hikes by year-end (and a 25% chance of 50bps hike in March)

Source: Bloomberg

Perhaps even more notably, the forward OIS market is pricing in rate-cuts between 2024 and 2025…

Source: Bloomberg

The dollar soared higher for the 5th straight week (best week since June 2021), closing at its highest since July 2020. NOTE, the dollar took out the December USD spike highs and faded…

Source: Bloomberg

Cryptos had a nasty drop on Monday, along with stocks, and another puke after The Fed, but bitcoin ended the week modestly higher, while Ether was down around 5%…

Source: Bloomberg

Commodities were very mixed this week with most lower by hawkish tilts (Silver slammed 8% on the week) while crude rallied on geopolitical tensions…

Source: Bloomberg

Silver dropped back below $23…

WTI came very close to $89 intraday during the week, its highest since Oct 2014 (up for the 6th straight week in a row)…

NatGas went supersonic this week amid chaotic settlement and a new cold front, breaking above the early Jan highs (and up 19%, its best week since Aug 2020)…

Finally, just in case you think the market can handle all this vol, think again – liquidity in the most-liquid global equity futures contract (ES) is at its lowest since the COVID crash in 2020…

Simply put, a moderate-sized order moves ES 10 ticks so how do you think it’s going to handle all the fintwit/tiktokkers “paper hands” puking out of their Robinhood accounts?

The good news is that US COVID cases are following the same trajectories at UK and South Africa and tumbling…

Source: Bloomberg

Nevertheless, as we noted above, GDP in Q1 could well print contractionary.

Tyler Durden
Fri, 01/28/2022 – 16:02









Author: Tyler Durden

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Precious Metals

Gold Continues Descent Following Powell’s Hawkish Stance

Gold prices continued their downward slide on Thursday, after plummeting by the most in over two months following the Fed’s
The post Gold Continues Descent…

Gold prices continued their downward slide on Thursday, after plummeting by the most in over two months following the Fed’s hawkish comments on taming inflation.

Spot gold fell below $1,800 per ounce at the time of writing, continuing its sharp descent from Wednesday’s FOMC meeting, which heeded an unexpectedly more aggressive stance on raising borrowing costs. A rebound in the US dollar was largely responsible for the market’s pressure on the bullion, after Fed Chair Jerome Powell announced the possibility of raising rates at each consecutive meeting starting in March.

The latest slump in gold prices wiped out all gains accumulated since the beginning of the year, many of which were initially driven by the market’s anticipation of price pressures surpassing bond yields, even amid a rate-tightening environment. However, Powell’s latest hawkish comments decimated such expectations, with the 10-year bond yield soaring to the highest in nearly 19 months on Wednesday.

This prompted Goldman Sachs to revisit its 12-month gold price forecasts, upgrading the bullion’s price from $2,000 to $2,150 per ounce following Powell’s speech.


Information for this briefing was found via Reuters. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

The post Gold Continues Descent Following Powell’s Hawkish Stance appeared first on the deep dive.





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