Russian Bank Caught Using Fake Gold As Reserve Capital

Over the past several years, incidents involving fake gold (usually in the form of gold-plated tungsten) have emerged every so often, usually involving Manhattan’s jewerly district, some of Europe’s bigger gold foundries, or the occasional billion dealer. But never was fake gold actually discovered in the form monetary gold, held by a bank as reserve capital and designed to fool bank regulators of a bank’s true financial state. This changed on Friday when Russia’s “Admiralty” Bank, which had its banking license revoked last week by Russia’s central bank, was reportedly using gold-plated metal as part of its “gold reserves.Continue reading

China Prepares To Bailout Russia

Earlier this evening China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange’s (SAFE) Wang Yungui noted “the impact of the Russian Ruble depreciation was unclear yet, and, as Bloomberg reported, “SAFE is closely watching Ruble’s depreciation and encouraging companies to hedge Ruble risks.” His comments also echoed the ongoing FXFX reform agenda aimed at increasing Yuan flexibility which The South China Morning Post then hinted in a story entitled “Russia may seek China help to deal with crisis,” which which noted that Russia could fall back on its 150 billion yuan ($24 billion) currency swap agreement with China if the ruble continues to plunge, that was signed in October. Furthermore, two bankers close to the PBOC reportedly said the swap-line was meant to reduce the role of the US dollar if China and Russia need to help each other overcome a liquidity squeeze. Continue reading

Russia braces for crippling US sanctions as Ukraine turns deadly

A continued escalation could mean a further and more serious step towards debasing the petro-dollar, which would in turn break the backbone of the American economy.

Deadly clashes in eastern Ukraine and warnings of broader US sanctions against Russia have sent tremors through Moscow’s financial markets and forced the country to cancel a sovereign debt auction yet again.

Russia’s RTS equities index fell to a one-month low, with Gazprom and Sberbank both down 3.5pc in volatile trading. Russia’s treasury pulled a 20bn rouble (£330m) bond auction intended to test the waters, saying there were no buyers at an acceptable cost. Yields on 10-year Russian bonds have jumped to 9.17pc.

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