By having control of the physical market for gold, China can threaten to use it to destabilize the dollar, without destabilizing the yuan. As such, it is potentially devastating, and used carelessly could trigger an economic collapse in Western capital markets, wreaking financial and economic havoc in America and other advanced nations. China will never be wholly independent from trade with these nations, and severe financial and economic damage to the advanced economies will rebound upon her to some extent. For this reason, she has so far held off using gold as an economic and financial weapon, while she continues to insulate herself from periodic crises in Western economies. – Alasdair Macleod (Oil For Gold)
In response to questions about when China would finally cast aside the dollar and run the price of gold up, I’ve always replied that China would be shooting itself in the foot if it tried to replace the dollar too quickly. Don’t forget, China holds about $1.2 trillion in the form of Treasuries. Note: this ratio does not include the market value of its gold holdings, the actual amount of which is unknown outside of a small circle of Chinese officials.
When the idea of a gold-backed yuan-denominated oil futures contract surfaced, it became en vogue for those unable to analyze their way out of a paper bag to issue commentary refuting the idea. For some, if an event has not already occurred, they are unable to ‘see’ it.
This post was published at Investment Research Dynamics on October 29, 2017.