COMEX deliveries and registered gold (silver too)

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JPM is what I've read too. Don't know for sure.
so its ok for JPM to drain the COMEX and leave it with so little phys that any further drawdown will have to be cash settled ?

Is this rats turning on each other or something pre planned ?
On the ever shrinking GLD...
Jan 2.2014: we lost 3.6 tonnes of gold from the vaults at the GLD ...

Tonnes 794.62 - Ounces 25,547,852.70 - Value US$31,282 Billion

Weekly COMEX Gold Inventories: Slight Rise In Registered Gold But Claims Still Close To 80 Owners Per Ounce

Dec. 30, 2013 2:12 AM ET

Last week we saw COMEX registered gold inventories drop to their lowest level ever and the claims on each registered ounce rise to a stunning 92 owners-per-registered-ounce, ...

We know that 2013 has been a rough year for gold investors (ourselves included), but in terms of the situation at the COMEX warehouses, the historically low registered gold inventories, historically high claims on each registered ounce, and the large accumulation in the JP Morgan warehouses over the last few weeks are all things that seem bullish for gold.
After a brief pause in the decline of Comex Gold inventories, it looks like it has continued once again as there were several big withdrawals over the past few days. Not only was there a large removal of gold from the Comex today, the Registered (Dealer) inventories are now at a new record low.

Scotia Mocatta had 63,786 oz of gold withdrawn from its Registered category. This is quite significant as Scotia Mocatta’s total Registered gold inventories fell 41% in one day from 152,409 oz to 88,532 oz.

Furthermore, you will notice that the total Registered gold inventories are now down to record low 416,563 oz. The gold in the Eligible category is held by Customers at the Comex while the Registered inventories are the Dealer stocks.

A day prior to this update, there was 52,539 oz of gold withdrawn from JP Morgan’s Eligible category.

We can see just how much the Registered inventories have fallen since the take-down in the price of gold in April of 2013. The Comex held nearly 3 million oz of gold in its Registered category, but today it has fallen 86% to 416,563 oz.

The figures in this chart from do not reflect the drop of 63,976 oz from the Comex today. As you can see, the bottom left hand corner of the chart only goes down to 431,530 oz.

According to the 1 month Registered gold inventory chart, there has been a huge draw-down since Dec. 12th. From a peak of 780,000 oz on Dec. 12th, the Registered inventories have declined 363,437 oz (46%).

More (incl. charts):
Here an up to date chart with a little bit better resolution of recent activity:

comment on Turds site from Maximillion on January 16, 2014 -

I've always been intrigued by the frequency of 0230hrs (0830hrs UK) smackdowns, and unsure as to the reasons why the Chinese did not simply step in and scoop up cheap contracts. Only recently has it dawned on me as to the potential reason, being that the Chinese may well be the perpetrators of the smack downs.

The initial problem I had reconciling this idea was that if the Chinese are buying up all the available gold, whilst they no doubt would have the incentive to cap or lower the price, it would be illogical to achieve this by increasing paper shorts which they then would be liable to deliver at contract expiration. Either way they can use the 100:1 trading vs delivery to maximize the amount of physical they can get their hands on, without collapsing the $'s value.

The clues to the solution IMO lies in last years wording change at the CME (re no guarantee all stated holdings exist), combined with the 100:1 paper vs physical trading, and the convenient get out clause whereby in the event of a non delivery the value may be settled in cash.

The Chinese, as we definitely know, have a substantial surplus of $ fiat, which can only decrease in value (ie purchasing power), as the supply increases or if the $ loses its status. The most logical thing they can do therefore, is to utilize some of this surplus fiat, to cap the prices of PM's, accumulate the physical, and either continue to roll forward their built up paper shorts, or pay off the contract holders on delivery date /default with the paper $ they hold.

So why aren't the western powers doing anything? Because they can't! If they've already lost the gold through leasing (as per the Germans trying to repatriate theirs), through their historic attempts to protect the $ status, and with some western banks still holding naked shorts, the wests hands are tied even though they would probably like/need a higher price! This is also likely to be the reason why JPM, as the top dog with the highest western status, is net long and building their own stack as quickly as supplies will allow.

I might be wrong but it's the most logical reason I can think of that ties it all together.
At some point the Comex and GLD run out of physical stocks of metals, and that is the point where price discovery occurs.
Someones got em by the short n curlies .........

Give us our gold NOW or we will stand for delivery for all those paper contracts.

its got to be someone who is not so committed to the fiat system, so likely not ze Germans.

Russian, Middle East or Far East and not afraid of the odd air craft carrier ...........
I saw that! Wow......I wonder if the two are connected? I would like to chase the dots between those two guys and see if there is a link.

Russell Investments' Chief Economist (and former Fed economist) Mike Dueker was found dead at the side of a highway in Washington State. Police said the death appeared to be a suicide.

He may have jumped over a 4-foot (1.2-meter) fence before falling down a 40- to 50-foot embankment, Pierce County Detective Ed Troyer said yesterday

Hmm... As one poster on ZH wrote in the comments section

Who jumps down an "embankment" to commit suicide?
It's been a while since I checked on the GLD inventory. Harvey reports:

April 21.2014: tonnage: 792.14.

Looks like they have a bit more than they had back in January when I last checked. Surprising, but worth keeping an eye on now with the negative GOFO.
Harvey reports:

April 28.2014: tonnage 792.14

There has been no change at all over the last week (ie. no change was reported any day since the 21st). That seems a bit unusual.
This comment from 'Ponzi' at the end of an article by Bron Sucheki of the Perth Mint trying to explain what COMEX and LMBA actually are -

what do we reckon ?

Zerohedge has become The Muppet Show and although it is fairly quick on the draw with news stories, it cannot be trusted to tell The Truth, The Whole Truth and Nothing But The Truth. Ponzi.

A case in point was an article last week claiming that 2.7 tons of Gold transferred from Brinks' Eligible inventory was evidence of desperate Chinese demand ("scrambling for the safety of gold"), solely because these appear to have been Kilo bars. ( 10th para). Wasn't "China" supposed to have dumped twice this amount of Gold only last month? However, my understanding is that whilst COMEX, LBMA and Dubai accept 995-proof Kilo Bars , the Shanghai Gold Exchange insists on 999.9 , such that there was no possibility whatsoever that this could have represented a direct transfer from COMEX to China without being re-refined first. What it does suggest is that someone in the West hastily liquidated a large position, but of course that doesn't suit Zerohedge's dyed-in-the-wool penchant for goldbuggery, and so such niceties are conveniently overlooked. Ponzi.

As are these:

- COMEX leverage is currently not some nonsensical triple-digit number, but 29.17: anyone telling you otherwise does not know what "leverage" is, because with Gold currently at $1094/oz, for each 100oz contract you need to post $3,750 maintenance margin This is the case whether you wish to "print paper promises" or Un-print them by going Long - the Margin requirement is the same (with some SPAN offset for e.g. Calendar Spreads) Ponzi.

- The overwhelming bulk of deliveries (or "Settlements") of COMEX metals are by way of "Exchange For Physical", which is an entirely legitimate, normal and efficient mode of transferring ownership of physical metal from Eligible to Eligible inventory without a Warrant ever being attached Anyone who tries to tell you that "eligible gold is "gold" that can not be used to satisfy inbound delivery requests without it being converted back to registered gold first" (8th para) is either lying, stupid or probably both. Ponzi.

As long as the aggregate COMEX-authorised warehouse inventory exceeds the Open Interest in the front month contract, there is no immediate prospect of a delivery failure. At the present time OI in the August future is 3,838 contracts, or 383,800 oz whilst aggregate Warehouse Inventory amounts to 7,569,585 oz - A POSITIVE COVERAGE RATIO OF 20:1. Even this figure significantly overstates the risk of a settlement problem, because in a typical month only about 3,000 contracts actually go into physical delivery indicating that the real-world coverage ratio is more like 25:1 The notion that the Coverage Ratio is fractional and there are 100+ "paper promises" chasing after each ounce of physical Gold is complete and utter bullshit. Ponzi.

Of course, these figures are probably all "painted" and the warehouses are empty except for cobwebs and shattered dreams: many semi-literate rednecks still appear to believe that COMEX operates some kind of sweet shop, where naughty Shorts have to queue up to buy Gold to settle their Futures positions. I think we should encourage them to continue in this belief, and perhaps introduce the notion that not only have the devious Chinese been secretly shaving 0.1 gramme of Gold off of every Kilo bar, but that TPTB are thinking of shortening the shop opening hours, introducing a quota system and are no longer accepting fiat currency as payment. Ponzi.

Personally, I am slowly losing my Salmon-like instinct to swim against this raging torrent of vacuous bullshit, and upon reflection I am content to let the Muppets get on with the show. In which vein, "Keep Stackin', or the Frog gets it!" Ponzi.
It's been a long while since I paid attention to the Comex warehouse inventory.

... Warehouse Inventory amounts to 7,569,585 oz ...

Warehouse inventory was 25,385,022 oz back on Jan 15, 2014 (see post above). It's now less than 1/3 of what it was a year and a half ago. :popcorn:

Was trying to find a chart of inventory stocks and I'm not finding any that corroborate Harvey's Jan 2014 figures. I found this one:


and these:
Yeah, that's what I'm saying. I'm not sure where the charts or Harvey are pulling their data from.
I saw on ZH where JPM backstopped the Crimex with a ginormous pile of shiny at the end of the week to cover a bunch of orders, and it brought the ratio from somewhere north of 120 - 1 down to less than 80 - 1.
OK folks, COMEX registered gold has dropped to an all time low of 73,795 oz.

There is so much FUD surrounding the significance of COMEX inventory numbers. I wish I had a firm grasp on what it really means.
so a 25% drop in three days

When will demand for delivery actually trigger a run ?

I guess they could go negative with the amount held and just ask those seeking delivery to wait their turn.
It doesn't need to be a big drama ........
I've slowed my purchasing activities, so I'm not watching the premiums on physical as closely as I once did, but I suspect you will see stress start there.
I usually just gloss over reports related to COMEX these days, but this seems worth noting...
... January is an off-month for deliveries at COMEX. However, the number of gold futures contracts that stood for delivery this month resembles an active delivery month. That is interesting because COMEX has always been primarily a paper based exchange. Physical delivery is the exception rather than the rule. Delivery has always been theoretically possible, but it has been rarely done. In January 2016, for example, the holders of only 172 COMEX futures contracts demanded physical gold. In comparison, by January 27, 2017, the holders of 1,254 COMEX futures contracts held them to maturity and demanded their gold! That is a whopping 729% increase yoy!

We’ll see what happens in February. There are already an unusually large number of February contracts remaining open on Friday, a day before the first notice day. Monday is the first notice day for the February delivery month, which has always been a major one. This month is shaping up to be mildly historic in size. The overall delivery size looks like it will be at least as big as December, 2016, even though December is normally the largest delivery month by far. One thing is clear. As of Monday morning, holders of matured futures contracts are going to have to put up or shut up. They must either deposit sufficient cash to pay for the gold in full, or face involuntary liquidation.

No matter how massive the delivery demand, there is always the possibility that dealers will try to attack prices early in the month. They often do this. I believe that the reason revolves around the desire to buy physical gold bullion, from mining companies and others, at a rock-bottom price. They will do everything they can to create a fake price so long as it doesn’t cost them too much. The trouble for them is that, this month, it may cost them more to do it than they save from the results.
Avery has posted an update:
... As I reported last month, we saw a 729% increase in the demand for delivery of physical gold at COMEX during off-month of January 2017, year over year. This month (February) was a major delivery month, and there was another 230% increase in the delivery of physical gold bars. The huge increase in gross demand for actual physical gold bars is impressive. However, it is not the amount that was purchased but, rather, who was doing the buying that is the most important factor.

The biggest banks in the western world continued to be the biggest physical gold bar buyers during February. In many cases, their own customers are being called upon to deliver the bars to them. In total, about 18.66 metric tons worth of physical gold bars were delivered on COMEX in February. That compares to 7.99 tons delivered in February 2016. The net increase totals out to be 233% year over year, which is enormous.
Oddly, CME, Inc. was also a significant buyer. It has consistently been a significant gold bar purchaser throughout 2016. Like Goldman Sachs, HSBC, J.P. Morgan, Scotia and others, it has been stocking up. The exchange operator didn’t buy many gold bars as a “too-big-to-fail” megabank, but its purchases were enormous, and way out of line from a historical perspective. Remember, the futures exchange operator is not a bank, a hedge fund or an independent investor. It has no obvious reason to buy physical gold bars — except one which we will discuss in a moment.

CME, Inc. bought about 1/3rd of a metric ton in 2016. This past month, it purchased another 62 kilograms. In comparison, it bought only 5 gold bars in all of 2015. The exchange is contractually liable on any default in delivery by clearing members. There hasn’t been any default yet. However, the fact that the company is now buying so many gold bars implies that it is preparing for that to happen. It seems to be planning on weathering a major supply disruption.

Thanks bug for the article. Reading this sent me down a rabbit hole to stumble on the article below. In essence (see graphs in article link):

1) World mine production is trending down.

2) New mines are making only very small contributions to global gold production.

3) The number of years between new deposit discovery and production is growing (from about 5 years in 1985 to around 20 years now and 30 years predicted for discoveries in the next few years).

4) Major new gold discoveries are way down in the last 5 years despite heavy exploration spending.

5) Gold demand remains strong.

Folks, there is a supply crunch coming, and I think we are already seeing the beginning stages of it right now. It may take a few more years (or less?) for the biggest part of the crunch to hit, and I don't see how it can be avoided. The mining numbers just don't lie.
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Nice find. Yeah, that's a subject that SRSRocco has broached a few times. As I understand it, mining companies have "inventories" of minable earth in different grades. They shift their operations from low grade earth to high grade earth depending upon the profitability of the operation. So, back around 2008-2009 or so, when PMs were flying on rocket boosters, they had switched to mining their low grade inventory. When prices crashed back down, they had to start switching back to using their high grade inventory and that's a very limited commodity. Exploration isn't finding much (if any) high grade deposits any more. So, (eventually) while they may still have some inventory of low grade earth available, it might not even be profitable to process it.
Energy costs are a big factor in this calculation.

It might be that with oil at around $50 they can work lower grades at a profit and ensure the mine has a better chance of survival if energy costs spiral up or POG drops too far.

They seem to have learnt that a reasonable operating profit makes more sense than short term maximum profit.
A rather different approach than what we see in the oil extraction business .......

Im not setting myself up as any kind of expert here, just reading articles that turn up in Gold & Silver news and attempting to make sense of it all
Last week, I showed you how the CFTC’s “Commitments of Traders Report” corroborated the fact that the big bullion banks used the big sudden decline on July 3rd to massively reduce their long-standing legacy short positions. I predicted that the big decline on Friday, July 7th was going to be used to do more of the same. Now, we have the proof that this is exactly what happened.
The latest Commitment of Traders Report’s statistics were tabulated as of the close of trading July 11, 2017. As of that moment, the bullion banks had closed 2,823 platinum short contracts (141,150 troy ounces of platinum); 9,560 silver short contracts (47,800,000 troy ounces of silver) and 19,392 gold short contracts (1,939,200 troy ounces of gold.
... The numbers, with respect to all the precious metals, each represent a massive percentage of the total short position held by the banks. What makes it even more noteworthy is the fact that it comes on top of the massive percentage they closed last week!

The bottom line? The most knowledgeable people in the world must believe that precious metals prices are going to be rising fast and hard in the next few months. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be fleeing from short positions they’ve rolled over for years! ...

This email came from one of the global KWN readers (Kevin W.):
COT Gold Swappers are (now) a record long at 43,721 contracts. They increased their net long(s) into 7/11, from 7/3, by 22,000, whereas open interest increased by only 18,000!

Going back to Jan. 2006, Swappers have been net long only 25 weeks out of 600 weeks. Even with the set up in December 2015 for the big 2016 run last year, Swappers only made it to 31,693 contracts net long. Higher prices will make the squid faced Swappers a lot of money.

Interesting, I did not know about this. Is it better than investing and safeguarding on your own?
I still don't have a full grasp of how the COMEX works or how to interpret COT reports. I usually just gloss over news related to it these days because there is too much FUD for me. But there seems to be something perhaps significant happening currently:
Additionally, Comex clearing members can use what is called "London gold" as performance bond collateral. The CME rulebook does not define "London gold." Presumably these are the standard 400-ounce London Bullion Market Association bars stored in a London vault.

But the term "London gold" remains unexplained and nebulous, and recently the CME tripled the amount of "London gold" that can be used by a clearing member as performance bond collateral, increasing it to $750 million from $250 million.

Why has the exchange tripled the amount of "London gold" that can be submitted as performance bond collateral and included Comex gold bar warrants as assets considered acceptable collateral?

As has been well documented, the open interest in Comex gold contracts has just reached a record high. The current open interest, more than 716,000 contracts, is 85 times greater than the "registered" gold stock on the exchange and almost nine times more than the total amount of gold in Comex vaults, including "pledged gold."

As a technical matter "pledged gold" should not be considered part of warehouse stock because it cannot be delivered. The financial risk assumed by the Comex CME clearing members escalates with each new contract of open interest, especially to the extent that the open interest is "uncovered," meaning the Comex lacks enough gold to bear the risk of a delivery default.

For this reason the size of the performance bond posted by each clearing member increases pro-ratably with the rising value of the gold contract open interest. (That is, clearing members that process an increased amount of contracts require higher margin deposits.)

This raises the question of the quality of "London gold" as collateral. The issue with "London gold" is whether the gold is verifiably sitting in a London vault or if the posting bank -- for example, HSBC -- even has legal title to the bar.

If I'm understanding that right, the current number of gold contracts is more than 14 times greater than it was roughly two years ago. The number of contracts is so great right now that clearing members (who supply the gold for the contracts) are having to put up more collateral. Only, instead of depositing physical, "registered" gold into COMEX warehouses, they are tripling "London gold" which isn't actually defined anywhere and there doesn't appear to be any checks in place to ensure the clearing members have clear/unencumbered title/ownership. What could go wrong?
The plot thickens I guess...
For those who have at times struggled to understand the difference between COMEX inventory categories ‘registered gold’ and ‘eligible gold’, now your head can spin even more, since the CME’s COMEX has just introduced a new category – ‘pledged gold’.

This pledged category was first noticed on the infamous COMEX warehouse
late last week by Nick Laird ..., with the pledged gold column intriguingly populated with an entry next to the New York vault of bullion bank, HSBC. What did this pledged column entry mean, we wondered, and where did it come from?

After some digging on the CME website, the answer was revealed. Pledged is a new gold inventory category representing COMEX gold warrants which have been deposited with CME Clearing as performance bond collateral, in other words margin collateral. ...
Now this is where it gets interesting as regards the new “Pledged gold” category. Starting on Monday 4 November, the CME began allowing its clearing members to deposit and use COMEX gold warrants as collateral in meeting performance bond requirements for its Base Guaranty Fund Products and Interest Rate Swaps (IRS).

To reflect this change, the CME therefore needed to amend Chapter 7 of its NYMEX/COMEX Rulebook which covers “Delivery Facilities and Procedures” to reflect the acceptance of COMEX gold warrants as collateral. It did so by adding a reference to “pledged” precious metal, while defining “pledged” metal as “registered metal for which the warrant that has been issued is on deposit with CME Clearing for performance bond.”

Furthermore, the amendment also added “the requirement for approved facilities to report pledged metal to the Exchange”, hence the appearance of the new pledged gold category on the COMEX daily warehouse report.

Critically, the amendment also clarified that “clearing members that have deposited gold warrants as performance bond with CME Clearing may not use these warrants to satisfy their delivery obligations.” Simply put, this will therefore mean that any registered gold whose warrants are used as collateral cannot be used to settle gold futures.


Quite frankly, I do not understand the implications of this. It seems to me to a measure meant to facilitate interest rate swaps, so maybe something to help out central banks and their primary dealers monkey around with monetary policy. 🤷

One thing is clear, COMEX/CME is currently making or undergoing some big changes while contract volume is at an all time high. The "London gold" issue looks to be a pressure relief for the contract volume. This "pledged gold" looks to me like something else.
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that would be a 'fail' on their part if we could understand what they are really up to ......
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