The International Monetary Fund has agreed to offload $13 billion dollars worth of gold from its reserves to sort out its own finances and provide loans to the poor.
Washington sources have said that the Fund’s board, which is dominated by US and West European countries, has approved the 403.3 metric tonne gold sale to lend to countries affected by the world economic downturn.
"I am delighted that the executive board has given its overwhelming backing to a strictly limited sale of fund gold to put the financing of the IMF on a sound long-term footing, and enable us to step up much-needed concessional lending to the poorest countries," IMF Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn said.
Investors may be relieved to note that the gold sales will be conducted in such a way as not to disrupt the bullion market, the metal being sold directly to central banks, and the market over a longer period of time.
At todays price of £1013.00 dollars an oz (up $3) the IMF still retains about £104 billion in gold reserves.
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- Written by Anthony Bounds
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