The Myth of Gold Confiscation

If we experience a debt crisis, as many economists believe is inevitable, many people believe that their holdings of gold and silver bullion will be confiscated, just as in 1933. This article reviews the probability of confiscation and compares it to other more likely measures to generate government solvency. An appropriate starting point when addressing concerns about gold confiscation is to define the word ‘confiscation.’ Merriam Webster says ‘to seize or buy as if by authority’ and ‘to seize without compensation as forfeited to the public treasury.’ Almost without exception, it is expropriation that is the actual risk, not confiscation. Confiscation, as in forfeiture, is usually the result of theft, treason, insurrection, war or genocide. Expropriation is defined as ‘to take (property) of an individual in the exercise of state sovereignty’ (Merriam Webster). The key difference between confiscation and expropriation is the appropriate compensation of the individual for the transfer of his or her property.
The Market Oracle

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