Gold Admirers are everywhere and so are the users. It doesn’t matter whether the prices of gold are high or low, people still loves to own Gold. the reason for this could be the status symbol of gold or it could be for the safe investment. Along with the people who owns gold, the places where Gold is mined is also very diverse. According to the World Gold Council the following countries have the maximum Gold Reserves. While in 2011 Mexico, Russia and South Korea were the least buyers but still there are a lot of countries like India that consider investing in Gold safe. Some nations want to earn recognition to be on the top of the list of top producers of Gold. By definition a Gold Reserve is the gold that is held by a central bank or nation and is intended as a store of value.
Here is the list of the top countries having maximum Gold Reserve:
India gets the 10th place in this list with the gold reserves of 557.7 tonnes. The percentage of foreign reserves in gold is 10.6%. The Reserve Bank of India is very popular to buy IMF ie International Monetary Fund gold. India has the demand of Gold of about 933.4 tonnes. No matter how much the price of gold increases in India, the consumers are not going to reduce. Even after the fluctuating and rising prices of gold prices but rupee weakening with respect to U.S dollar the demand is constant. India drastically expanded its gold reserves in the year 2009. It may overtake Netherlands soon and get the 9th position in this list most probably. It is giving a competition to Netherlands now.
Netherlands gets 9th place in this list. The country has a gold reserve of 612.5 tonnes. The percentage of foreign reserves in gold is 61.1%. Netherlands’ central bank, Dutch National Bank sold 1,100 tonnes of Gold since 1991. The bank considers gold as “The only reserve and anchor of trust in times of financial crisis”. That is why it holds gold for diversification purposes.
Japan has 8th position in this list. Japan has 765.2 tonnes of gold holdings. Japan has the percentage of foreign reserves in gold 3.4%.In 1950 Japan had just 6 tonnes of gold only. By this data, central bank tool it very seriously and thus registered a serious jump in 1959. Because of it, the purchases increased by 169 tonnes from the previous year. In 2011, the Bank of Japan sold gold so that it could pump ¥20 trillion into its economy so as to calm investors after tsunami and nuclear disaster. And now Japan holds a significant number of U.S dollars.
With the Gold Holdings of about 883.3% Russia gets 7th position in this list. Russia has the percentage of foreign reserves in gold 9.1%. Central Bank of Russia buys gold from the domestic market and also Russian bullion banks mostly. To rebuild its gold and Forex reserves the Central bank of Russia planned to purchase more than 100 tonnes of gold. Russia also bought 18.8 tonnes of Gold in march also. Since 2006 Russia has been building its gold reserves. It is done to build the ‘Ruble’ as an international reserve currency. The country has the mine production of 200 tonnes also. Russia has the second rank in explored reserves list. Siberia and Far East are the country’s most prolific gold regions. Russia bought 57.6 tonnes of gold in August also. Poor regulation has been blamed for hampering development of the nation.
1040.1 tonnes of gold lies in the reserves of Switzerland as its holdings. That gives the country 6th place in the list. The percentage of foreign reserves in gold is 11.7% for Switzerland. Gold reserves were no longer considered “necessary for monetary policy purposes”. So in 1997 proposals were announced to sell a portion of it. Under CBGA 1 and 2 the surplus gold was sold by the country, however under CBGA 3 , the country announced no plans to sell any more gold.
On 5th place of this list is China. It has the Gold Holdings of 1054.1 tonnes. The percentage of foreign reserves in gold for China is 1.8%. According to National Times, China is hoping to make its currency a reserve currency. So building up the gold reserves is crucial if its currency is to be internationalized. In 2011 China made a good purchase of Gold to diversify from its holdings of U.S. Treasuries. Even though China has the highest population in the world, but even then its reserves are just 1.8%. China mostly buys from its domestic market only.
Officially the Gold holdings of France are about 2,435.4 tonnes. . The percentage of foreign reserves in gold for France is 73.2%. Under CBGA2, France sold 572 tonnes of gold. About 17 tonnes of Gold was transferred to the Bank of International Settlements in 2002 also. It was however out of the agreement. Under CBGA 3, France announced no further plans to sell gold. France has also signed the Central Bank Gold Agreement. It limits the sales of gold by European countries. After the agreement France sold about 10 tonnes of gold in the first year of this new agreement.
The 3rd place in the list goes to Italy as it has the gold holdings of about 2,451.5 tonnes. The percent of foreign reserves in gold of Italy is about 73.2%. Under CBGA 1 and CBGA 2 Italy sold no gold. It has announced that no sales will be done under CBGA 3 also. But to strengthen their balance sheets in contrary to stress tests, Italian Banks were looking forward to buy gold in 2011. Italy is also in the very prestigious list “PIIGS” of Euro-zone countries
The official gold holdings of Germany are 3,395.5 tonnes and that places Germany on the 2nd place in this list. The percent of foreign reserves in gold of Germany is about 73.9%. Under CBGA 1 and under CBGA 2 Germany sold gold. It was for the purpose of minting commemorative gold coins as it was sold to the ministry of finance. The Bundesbank sold 4.7 tonnes of gold by September 2011 under Central Bank Gold Agreement. Germany has now refused to have its holdings to ageboost the EFSF. Germany is also the largest economy in the Euro Zone. Germany’s gold reserves are worth $203 billion after approximation.
1. United States:
United States comes at the top of the list. It has the gold holdings of about 8,133.5 tonnes. The percent of foreign reserves in gold is about 74.5 % for US. It has the highest gold reserves than any other country in the world. The gold reserves of United States are worth $487 billion approximately. There was also a rise in the mine production of gold to 237 tonnes in 2011. A vast part of the produced gold comes from Nevada in United States. Other mines that were restarted were in Montana also.
Among all the Gold holdings all over the world, 52% of them are jewellery while 18% is in Central Bank. Investments hold 16% of the gold holdings while for industrial purpose it is 12%.