Swiss Referendum Could Alter Gold Market

On November 30, the country of Switzerland will vote on a referendum that could have a major impact on the worldwide gold market. The main points of the referendum can be summed up into three points:

  • The Swiss National Bank (SNB) is barred from selling gold bullion ever again
  • At least 30% of Swiss-owned gold abroad must be repatriated to Switzerland
  • Gold must make up at least 20 percent of the SNB's assets by 2019 (gold currently makes up about 8%)

From about 2000-2008, the SNB sold off more than half of the country’s gold reserves. The “Swiss People’s Party” claim that the SNB was wrong to sell so much gold in the past years, and argues that the referendum will preserve national wealth and enhance the central bank’s ability to act. The SNB opposes the initiative as higher gold holdings could escalate costs for the central bank and lead to losses.

Support for the referendum is closely split with the minority in favor of the initiative. However, if the bill does pass, analysts are predicting a short-term rally for gold prices. In order to meet the requirements of the referendum, the SNB will more-or less always be looking to buy gold – increasing worldwide demand. There could also be a dynamic shift in the value comparison between the euro and Swiss franc. November could be a tense month for currency and bullion investors – so watch out for more news on this issue.

Famous Gold Food: Part 5

In this installment of famous gold food, we’re going to cover two record setting desserts – the world’s most expensive cupcake and donut. Of course, both are chock-full of gold and other rare and expensive ingredients. Have you ever tried edible gold? Tell us about your experience on our Facebook page.

Golden Phoenix Cupcake: Whenever a chef or artisan takes a whack at creating a famously expensive and elegant cupcake, the result is usually inedible because of the amount of diamonds and other gems. When Bloomsbury’s Boutique Café and Artisan Bakery held their grand opening in the Dubai Mall, the goal was to celebrate with a breathtaking cupcake that Dubai’s elite could actually eat. The result was the Golden Phoenix – a cupcake made using the finest Amadei Porcelana chocolate, Ugandan vanilla pods, and heavily coated with gold flake. The dish also comes with chocolate and gold dipped strawberries on the side.
Cost: $28,000 (includes 24kt gold Empire Cake Stand w/ Cloch by Villari); $1,007 (cupcake only)

Krispy Kreme Donut: Here’s another record-setting pastry, created by a more mainstream bakery. Krispy Kreme UK unveiled its creation at the upscale department store Selfridges to raise money for The Children's Trust – a charity that supports children with brain injuries. The famous Krispy Kreme recipe was unchanged with the exception of 24kt gold leaf, gold-dusted white chocolate flowers, edible diamonds, and jelly made with Dom Perignon 2002 champagne. The pastry also came served with a cocktail made with Dom Perignon 2002 champagne, Courvoisier Cognac, and raspberry and passion fruit syrup.
Cost: £1,000

Famous Gold Food: Part 4

It’s been a while since we last wrote about famous gold food, but creative (or crazy) chefs have been hard at work since then coming up with amazing dishes that use gold as an ingredient. Let’s see what they’ve been up to.

230 FIFTH Dog: Executive Chef Johnny Benedetti from New York’s 230 FIFTH Rooftop Bar & Penthouse Lounge created this dish to celebrate National Hot Dog day and benefit local food charity, City Harvest. The list of ingredients is awe inspiring:

  • marbled wagyu beef (dry aged for 60 days, laced with black truffles)
  • brioche bun toasted with white truffle butter
  • organic W Ketchup seasoned with saffron
  • Mustarde de Charroux (imported from France)
  • Vidalia onions (caramelized in Dom Perignon Champagne and Mussini Ill Grande Vecchio 100-year-old balsamic vinegar)
  • house-made organic sauerkraut braised in Louis Roederer Cristal
  • platinum oscetra caviar
  • house-made relish using "Gordy's Pickle Jar" sweet chips
  • gold leaf

Cost: $2,300

Billion Dollar Popcorn: Luckily, this popcorn doesn’t actually cost $1 billion. According to Berco’s Popcorn, the gold flake crumbles covering this caramel popcorn aren’t really what makes it special. It’s the salt, which comes from the Denmark isle of Læsø. The groundwater in Læsø can reach more than 15% salinity and becomes concentrated in flat salt meadows during the island’s hot, dry summers. When harvested, it’s considered the finest (and most expensive) salt in the world.
Cost: $250 for a 1-gallon tin, or $1,000 for a 6.5-gallon tin