Central banks stockpile gold for a number of reasons, from keeping it as an insurance policy against economic volatility to maintaining the value of their currency during periods of high inflation.
Global central bank gold reserves have reached 35,500 metric tons, which makes up about one-fifth of all the gold ever mined. This is due to the fact that many central banks turned into net buyers of gold during the past decade.
The United States has the world’s largest gold reserves, with nearly 8,134 metric tons of the shiny metal. It is also the biggest holder of gold as a percentage of its foreign reserves, more than Germany and Italy combined.
Gold is a precious metal with unique physical and chemical properties that make it ideal for industry. It is malleable, ductile, electrically conductive and resistant to corrosion.
It is a critical material for computers, communications equipment, jet aircraft engines, and other products. It is also used to preserve and protect artwork and documents.
China is one of the world’s largest producers and consumers of gold. The metal is used in a wide variety of industrial applications, including electronics.
It is also considered a safe haven asset. This is because gold tends to rise in value during periods of economic stress, like an economic downturn.
While Chinese officials don’t release much information on their gold holdings, it is likely that they have a substantial stockpile of the precious metal.
It is possible that China is stockpiling gold to protect against the upcoming China-US trade war. This would be a good move for them as it could help them diversify away from the US dollar and keep their economy relatively stable in the event of an economic slowdown.
Germany has the second largest gold reserves in the world, behind only the United States. These holdings are managed by the Bundesbank, which distributes them between four storage locations.
The gold that Germany has in its possession is largely accumulated between the 1950s and 1970s, as it experienced rapid economic growth and a large current account surplus. The gold was then stored at central banks in various locations, including the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Bank of England.
Switzerland has the world’s 8th largest official hoard of gold. It is also a major global center for bullion vaults.
A conservative right-wing initiative called ‘Save Switzerland’s gold’ has been launched which would force the Swiss National Bank to hold 20% of its reserves in the yellow metal and bring any bullion held outside of Switzerland back into its vaults.
The country is renowned for its international private banking industry and one of the world’s most stable and conservative political environments. It is party to the Statute of the International Court of Justice and is a member of most UN specialized agencies and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
It has a highly literate population and its citizens support the government’s armed neutrality underlying its foreign and defense policies. Moreover, women participate robustly in political life.
Uzbekistan has some of the world’s largest gold reserves. It is also one of the world’s leading cotton producers and produces a large amount of silk.
It is a central Asian country that borders Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan. Its population is mostly rural and heavily dependent on agriculture for its livelihood.
Since independence in 1991, the economy has improved significantly. However, the country still faces some major problems with public health.
The government is focusing on increasing the production of gold and silver. It plans to increase its annual production by almost two times by 2021-2022.