The Run On U.S. Gold Continues…

So where is China getting all of its gold?  One of the large sources turns out to be the United States.  The U.S. experienced another record year of net gold exports in 2013.  Not only were gold exports at record levels, imports into the U.S. fell nearly half compared to 2010.

If we look at the chart below, U.S. gold exports in 2010 were 383 metric tons (mt), however by 2013, they increased 81% to 692 mt.  In addition, U.S. gold imports fell 48% from 604 mt in 2010 to 313 mt in 2013.

U.S. Gold Imports vs Exports

According to the USGS Gold Mineral Industry Survey (published late), the U.S. exported the majority of its gold in the first half of the year.  By the end of June, the U.S. exported 406 mt, averaging 68 mt a month.  In the second half of the year, the U.S. only exported 286 mt, averaging 48 mt a month.

The months with the largest exports during 2013 were March at 89.1 mt and April at 76.6 mt. The total import-export figures based on three categories of gold:

1) ores & concentrates

2) Dore’ & precipitates

3) Refined bullion

The overwhelming majority of gold exported was in the form of Refined bullion (488 mt), followed by Dore’ bars & precipitates (197 mt) and ores & concentrates (7.6 mt).  If we just focus on refined gold bullion exports, the table below details which countries received gold from the U.S. in 2013:

Total U.S. Gold Bullion Exports Jan-Dec 2013

As we can see, Hong Kong received the most gold bullion from the U.S. at a total of 214 mt, followed by Switzerland at 150 mt and the U.K. at nearly 29 mt. Thus, the top three countries imported 393 mt (80%) of the total 488 mt exported in 2013.

Some interesting data points to look at were the 27 mt imported by Thailand and 11 mt China received in 2013.  If the majority of U.S. gold exported to Hong Kong and Switzerland made its way to China and other Eastern countries, we can assume that nearly 75% of total U.S. gold exports went to the East… with the majority going to the Chinese.

The huge wholesale buying of gold by the Chinese in 2013, put a big damper on U.S. gold imports.  Koos Jansen at InGoldWeTrust stated that total Chinese wholesale gold demand was 2197 mt in 2013.  According to Koos, this did not include Peoples Bank of China purchases which may have put the total at 2,500 mt.

As the U.S. struggles to maintain its domestic gold production, mine supply fell from 234 mt in 2012 to 231 mt in 2013.  This may not seem like much of a decline, but if we look at a longer dated chart…. the U.S. peaked in gold production in 1998 at 366 mt.

U.S. Gold Production

This chart published in my article, GOLD PRODUCTION WARS:  The East Slays The West, shows that U.S. gold production declined 36% since 1998.  The USGS estimated domestic production would remain flat in 2013 at 234 mt, however it fell slightly.  If you haven’t read the article linked above, I highly recommend it.

Since 1997, the year the top three Western gold producers peaked, total gold production from Australia, U.S. and Canada declined from 845 mt to an estimated 624 mt in 2013.  On the other hand, the two top Eastern producers (China & Russia) increased their produce in the same time period from 290 mt to a staggering 664 mt in 2013.

This is clearly seen in the table below:

East vs West Gold Production

Amazingly, China & Russia’s gold production now surpasses the total of the top three Western countries by an estimated 40 metric tons.  Things just don’t look good for the West.

As the West continues to print fiat currency and manufacture derivatives to keep their financial systems from imploding, the Chinese and Russians focus on increasing their domestic gold mine supply while the East absorbs whatever gold the West can deliver.

This becomes even more apparent when we look at the following chart.  Even though total U.S. gold exports in 2013 were nearly the same as they were in 2012, net gold exports increased due to a drop in imports and a decline mine supply.

U.S. Gold Exports & Net Annual Change

(figures above based 0n imports, exports and domestic mine supply)

Here we can see the United States had net gold imports of 452 mt in 2010 and 267 mt in 2011.  However, in the past two years net gold imports turned negative.  In 2012, the U.S. suffered a negative gold net import of 126 mt and increased this amount to a net loss of 148 mt in 2013.

In the past two years, the United States exported 275 metric tons of gold more than its total domestic mine supply and imports combined.  This is not a trend that can last very long or the U.S. will find its gold shelves empty at some point in the future.

I plan to publish an interesting article on the huge decline of U.S. Gold scrap exports.  There were some very interesting events that took place in the U.S. gold scrap import-export market in 2013.

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2014
Guest
2014

Every article hunting another boogeyman

Charles
Guest

If you are ever burglarized, mugged, assaulted or vandalized, please realize there are no boogeymen about. When financial crime transpires on a monumental scale simple minds cannot believe any collusive action causes it. Fortunately the entire country is not comatose.

Erik
Guest
Erik

First!!!! Had to do it. Won’t happen again.

d2thdr
Guest
d2thdr

What time scale do you claim when physical gold decouples from paper gold?

newbiegoldbug
Guest
newbiegoldbug

Why would China want to store any gold in Manhattan when it could be confiscated in future by
Amerikan govt/fed?

DoChenRollingBearing
Guest
DoChenRollingBearing

Another great article, I will have to look for and read each one.

Chris
Guest
Chris

Steve, it seems the Ponzi is going into overdrive…non-sense is rampant in “market” after market right now…as you show, thee gold market is being squeezed dry while the debt market is truly a farce…these seem very inter-related….as the US moves to monetize more of it’s debt as the gold outflows peak. with Fed tapering new purchases (assuming to zero), who will buy the min $500 B/yr in new issuance plus rollover the $12 T + public debt and at what rates in our ultra rate sensitive “economy”??? Only 3 categories ; Domestic, Fed, and Foreigners 1) Fed sez they are… Read more »

lastmanstanding
Guest
lastmanstanding

Chris, dude, this is about the 5th time that you posted bs like this. You want to post all that “nothing”, please do it on your own site. I’m sure you’ll be impressed.

Don’t go away mad, just gtfa.

c
Guest
c

done…c ya.

roguefaction
Guest
roguefaction

Suggest you hang in there bud – you have to realize that Americans are so assailed by ‘thought police’ of various kinds now that they start acting just like their oppressors… all sites show evidence of this sad Stockholm Syndrome-like intolerance. You might try using a comic book formula to drive the point home instead tho…something like 3% of the world’s population has been burning up more than 30% of the world’s natural resources and energy supplies – and since 1971 they have been using pieces paper of no intrinsic worth to do it! No matter what these paper notes… Read more »

lastmanstanding
Guest
lastmanstanding

rogue, thanks for making me man up.

lastmanstanding
Guest
lastmanstanding

Chris. I was out of line, I apologize.

My reply to Rojelio’s comment below will sum up my apology.

If you ever get to Montana, I’ll buy you a beer. We have great beer here.

Rojelio
Guest
Rojelio

can he come back if he makes a damn point in 50 words or less?

lastmanstanding
Guest
lastmanstanding

Or just something coming from his heart. Tell me what your personal opinion is…I want to hear what real people have to say. I really don’t even look at Steve’s graphs and charts and I think that his “stuff” blows everyone else out of the water. (Just like Chris Duane’s “Silver Bullet and the Silver Shield”) Steve’s article, “The forces that will drive silver to $100″…(sorry Steve) grabbed me a shook the hell out of me. Having run heavy equipment for over 35 years, I have seen more fossil fuel burned in my lifetime than all of the readers here… Read more »

roguefaction
Guest
roguefaction

Takes a man to man up…you got my respect for that bro. We have the makings of a very fine community here -thanks to Steve’s manner of handling things… if we hang together and appreciate each other’s diverse viewpoints… this will become THE go to place for goldenholders… there’s a LOT of good folks on some legacy sites I will not mention by name that are crying for the good ol days fore everybody interesting got the can! Bring em on over Dochen Bearing Boy and the rest of you refugees… Andale! Yeah – Steves’ graphs n charts are D… Read more »

Nitro Charged
Guest
Nitro Charged

Well isn’t that interesting… the two months last year gold was really monkey hammered coinciding with the largest exit amount of gold.

philipat
Guest
philipat

The amount of Gold taken out of Ukraine was 35 Metric Tonnes NOT 350 Metric Tonnes. Enough to supply China for a few weeks!

Rojelio
Guest
Rojelio

So I’m confused. I’ve seen about 800 articles in the last 6 months that say all the gold is already gone. For example on Sgtreport right this minute, “Western vaults are empty”, says Alistair McLeod.

To me, empty means 0 tons, not the 500+ tons for at least the next couple of years as would be suggested by the charts above. Where are these guys getting their information that seems to be consistently wrong for years now.

roguefaction
Guest
roguefaction

That’s a fair question. I’m sure I’m not telling you anything new if I say that the sources you mention are prone to rhetorical overkill in trying to make their point. Of course, the vaults are not ’empty’ … in the physical sense; it’s rather a question of ownership. With formerly government owned gold leased/ hypothecated /collateralised several times over, the stock which sits in those vaults is property of entities who we can only speculated upon the identity of. As for the Germans and others whose gold is ‘entrusted’ to the Federal Reserve Bank…. the one thing we can… Read more »

Fenix
Guest
Fenix

Steve,
Thanks for another great article. You often renew this PM bug’s faith that the metals are •the best• place to park one’s assets. Kudos!

mark
Guest
mark

I was just sitting here, thinking where in the hell did sgs go? He is how I linked to and follow your site. I am simply just blown away how all the trolls, and the loudmouths that bought at high, now are so quiet. I swallowed bear kool aid, also, but also started buying in the mid eighties, Cause’ my father in law sat me down and gave me the quarter/ dime speech. Where ever you are, Canada (Ottawa) whatever. Come back out of hiding and know you were still right. we miss you pal, crappy bear vids that opened… Read more »

Jim
Guest
Jim

Strange, I don’t see GERMANY on that list.

glenn
Guest
glenn

Just thought you would like to know this little nugget of truth

I recently read that the ancient Babylonian stele containing the Hammurrabi Law Code stated that a days wages for hard labor was 6 “grains” of silver or about 17 days of labor for one US dime

Holy Poo Poo

Rojelio
Guest
Rojelio

Probably preaching to the choir, however for anyone interested here’s a clear explanation of the state of the shale oil industry with Chris Martenson & Richard Heinberg. Probable peak in 2015.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wWfQuuXQN14

Steve this might be a good venue for you if you haven’t already interviewed with Chris.

silvertri
Guest
silvertri

If there is a boogey man then you sure nailed it Steve another great article.

A poster on another forum (deadeye) has always said “we will wake up in the morning and gold will be up $100 …that will be the start…its coming and its close….a picture tells 1000 words!

Hebba Investments
Guest
Hebba Investments

Excellent Post! Looking forward to the scrap exports – keep up the good work

Toxxmaster
Guest
Toxxmaster

Srsrocco, I’m so happy to read posts like this. At least you are examining real data and facts unlike that bitcoin shill. Keep up the good work!

dhillman
Guest
dhillman

We have been considering purchasing gold and/or sliver EAGLES for a while but till now have not done so. I called a local dealer and he recommended not to buy gold but only silver. Recommended amount was 500 (1box) for 12,000 1oz silver eagles. Being new to this I wanted to ask the opinion of others and listen to their input. (I understand mint premiums, 1/10 oz versus full oz will cause price variance etc.) I’m not necessarily buying this for an investment so much as for being able to sustain my family in case of any financial collapse. Thanks… Read more »

dhillman
Guest
dhillman

correction $12,000 for 1 box of 500 1 troy oz silver eagles. that was when the silver price was 21.80 on the market.

Bruce
Guest

In a short time the banks will fail and a new Nesara system will begin, at that time all gold and silver prices will fall to normal levels of around 1960 prices. everyone holding gold and silver will loose a considerable amount of money. Obama is supposed to announce the new banking system shortly.