The one exception to this is the gold hoard of the International Monetary Fund. However, apart from its one ultra-hyped sale of 400 tons of gold (half of which was gobbled up in a
), it has sold no gold and is not legally allowed to sell a single ounce without overall approval of the IMF membership. This is a process that, as we have recently seen, takes years to complete.
In short, there are no apparent visible stockpiles/inventories of gold anywhere in the world to meet the large, incremental demand of the world's central banks. Of interest: when these central banks announce their large purchases, they themselves never identify the source of all this "gold."
Putting aside the issue of legal title to such quantities of gold, the only entities that (plausibly) might be in possession of such quantities of gold are (surprise! surprise!) the very same bullion banks at the root of all
in the gold market.
We know these bullion banks are not owners of the near 500 tons of gold the central banks needed this year alone to satisfy their suddenly insatiable appetite for the world's premier financial asset. It would take years for the bullion banks to accumulate enough gold to meet demand for this year alone.
Also, as previously stated, gold generates no income -- meaning it would be absurd for the bullion banks to accumulate such vast quantities of gold hoping that a buyer might show up, and then selling that gold (apparently) at close to "spot" price.
Simply put, there are no visible owners anywhere on the planet for all the "gold" which the world's central banks now claim to be buying. The only places where such large quantities of gold might be possessed could not possibly be the owners of all that gold. This brings us back to "gold leasing" and (suddenly) a whole new purpose (i.e. scam) for this activity.
We have the West's central banks claiming to be the holders of vast quantities of gold but not sellers, and we have the East's central banks claiming to be large buyers of gold -- but with no visible supply of gold available anywhere on the planet to meet that annual demand.