Saturday, February 07, 2009

Will Gold Revaluation save Insolvent FED? GDX, AUY, SLW, HUI, XAU, RMK.v, TNR.v, SSt.v, OK.v, CNU.v

It will not happen for a while, but it could become the only positive outcome of recent US Dollar debasement policies in the future and provide new base for an honest monetary system based on Gold. Paul Volcker is the man according to Jim Sinclair, who will has the nerve to make it, but he will be allowed only when everything else will fail. US Dollar will test its destiny in trillions more to come in the months ahead.

"Since the crisis broke out, the Fed has continuously weakened the quality of the dollar by weakening its balance sheet. In fact, the assets the Federal Reserve holds have deteriorated tremendously. These assets back the liability side of the balance sheet, which mainly represents the monetary base of the dollar. The assets of the Fed, thereby, hold up the value of the dollar. At the end of the day, it is these assets that the Fed can use to defend the dollar's value externally and internally. Thus, for example, it could sell its foreign exchange reserves to buy back dollars, reducing the amount of dollars outstanding. From the point of view of the buyer of the foreign exchange reserves, this transaction is a de facto redemption..."

"...While this example might sound extreme, something similar happened during the first stage of the sub-prime crisis. The Fed weakened the composition of its balance sheet not in favor of the Zimbabwean economy but in favor of the US banking system. The Federal Reserve sold good assets in order to acquire bad assets. The good assets were not gold but mainly the still highly-liquid US treasury bonds in the category of "securities held outright." The bad assets were not Zimbabwean government bonds but loans given to troubled banks backed by problematic and illiquid assets. This weakened the dollar..."

"...In the second stage of the crisis, which started with the Lehman bankruptcy, it became clear that the policy of merely changing the balance-sheet structure was coming to an end. The Fed was running out of Treasury bonds. Moreover, this policy did not allow for the strong liquidity boosts that the Fed deemed appropriate in this situation. Hence, the Fed started to increase its balance sheet. It no longer "sterilized" the additional loans it granted with the sale of good assets. In fact, it would not have had enough good assets left to sell. In our imaginary example, the Fed would run out of gold. It would stop selling gold and keep on buying Zimbabwean government bonds. Of course, the Fed did not buy Zimbabwean government bonds but other assets of low quality, mainly loans to an insolvent banking system. As a consequence, the sum of the balance sheet has nearly tripled since June 2007..."

"...This figure implies an increase of the Fed's leverage from 22 to 50. As we have seen there are large new positions of dubious quality on the Federal Reserve balance sheet. More specifically, should only 2% of the Fed's assets go into default — or if there is a loss in value of 2% — the Fed becomes insolvent..."

"...Only two things can save the Fed at this point. One is a bailout by the federal government. This recapitalization could be financed by taxes or by monetizing government debt in another blow to the value of the currency.
The other possibility is concealed in the hidden reserves of the Fed's gold position, which is only valued at $42.44 per troy ounce on the balance sheet. A revaluation of the gold reserves would boost the equity ratio of the Fed to 12.35%.[1]
It is ironic that in troubled times a revaluation of the "barbarous relic" could save the Fed from insolvency. Yet, this would only be an accounting measure and would not change the fundamental problems of the paper dollar. While shooting its last bullets and weakening the dollar, the Fed is outmaneuvering itself. The end of the experiment is getting closer."

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