Archive for May, 2016

A Brief History of the London Bullion Market

Posted on: May 31st, 2016 by c4c-admin-account No Comments

Many of us only dream to have access of such vast amounts of wealth, however, for those of us in the UK the trade of gold and silver tends to only be for those of who are members of the London Bullion Market Association.  The LBMA is an association that is loosely overseen by the Bank of England and only deals with bullion dealers or refiners and international banks and manages the ‘over the counter’ trade between bullion dealers.

How it all began

You can trace the London bullion market back to 1600’s with the partnership of Moses Mocatta and The East India Company. Moses Mocatta was the founder of ‘Mocatta and Goldsmid’ in 1961, which is one of the oldest bullion brokerage firms in the world today. During the 17th Century, whilst Isaac Newton was leading the Royal Mint, the gold in England became much more freely circulated than silver, which led to England producing many gold based coins whilst the rest of Europe were still dealing in silver until the late 19th Century.

The Gold Rush

In the 17th Century, The East India Company brought gold from Brazil to London and housed it in a London vault, which was set up by the Bank of England. This subsequently became a housing facility, which was used to serve the rest of Europe. The Bank of England’s involvement with setting up the purpose built vault became a key player in the distribution and management of the gold, especially after the influx of events such as the famous gold rush in California, Australia and Africa. At this time, approximately 60% of the world’s trade of gold passed through London.


In 1749, the Royal Mint John Lucas, who was an assayer, to oversee the quality of the gold coming into the London vault, which ultimately led to having a ‘Good Delivery’ list. This list of specific gold refineries ensured that the gold coming into London was that of a high standard from a trusted source. Samuel Plumb and Browne were the first gold refineries to be added to this list in 1754. By 1850, there were fiver refineries on the list that dealt with the trade and quality of gold coming in and out of London. These companies consisted of Mocatta and Goldsmid, N M Rothschild & Sons, Sharps Wilkins, Samuel Montagu & Co and Pixley & Abell.

The London Gold Market

The Good Delivery List that consists of these refineries has remained unchanged over the years, however the set up became slightly more different in the 20th Century. These refineries would eventually oversea the entire gold market coming into London, whilst also making sure that the companies responsible for maintenance and the assayers were appropriate and of a high standard.

The Gold Market Fixing Company

The Gold Fixing Market refers to the arrangement made between the Bank of England and N M Rothschild and Sons in the early 20th Century where it would be agreed upon for the formation of the free gold market where there would be an official set price on any one day. The original five refineries on the Good Delivery List would perform the first fix in 1919 and form the Gold Market Fixing Company between the five of them.

Inflow to the US

The Wall Street crash in 1929 saw the expansion of the Good Delivery List when large amounts of gold and silver were being melted down which all had to be sorted into ‘Good Delivery’ status. However, with a new fixed price set in America in 1934, the inflow increased. This prompted the even bigger expansion of the Good Delivery List, which eventually extended to 20 refineries and mints in 8 different countries.

London Bullion Market Association

Due to the vast increases and decreases of the fixed gold price and the constant maintenance of the Good Delivery List and other resulting lists, the Bank of England felt that this scale of business would need to be looked after by an independent body. In 1987 the London Bullion Market Association was formed, and their job is to, amongst many things, oversea the whole process of gold and silver trade and maintain the good delivery list and deal with traders. The Bank of England still remains loosely involved with the LBMA as the facilitator. To be considered for Good Delivery Status, it is now required by LBMA to assure Responsible Gold Guidance.

You may not be able to get your hands on those much desired gold and silver bars, but if you have any gold or silver coins (or notes for that matter!) that you need exchanging, or simply need a quote, then we would love to help. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our experienced team for advice.

A Brief History of The Gold Rush

Posted on: May 3rd, 2016 by c4c-admin-account No Comments

There’s Gold in them there Hills….

Picture yourself in 1830’s America living on the west coast. It is a peaceful time and way of life for Native Americans and Mexicans; until, that is, small nuggets of gold were found in Sacramento Valley in 1848. It would be these small nuggets of gold, which would completely transform the environment and demography in western American, forever. When the news spread about this discovery of vast amounts of gold waiting to be brought to the surface had emerged, many people travelled from all over the world to mine this treasure and become rich off the back of it.

Where did it all begin?

It all started with a lonely carpenter, James Wilson Marshall, originally from New Jersey. Marshall found fleck of gold when at Sutter’s Mill, where he was working at the time. Shortly after his discovery, the treaty that ended the Mexican-American war was signed and over with, leaving California to America, however, it still had a large population of Native Americans, and people of Spanish and Mexican descent. That is, until news of his discovery spread. By the end of 1849, the population on ‘non-Native Americans’ had risen from a mere 20,000 people to 100,000 and by the end of the 1860’s; the overall population had risen from 157,000 (a combination of Native Americans, Mexicans and Spaniards) to almost 400,000.

The Transformation

Not only was it foreign people overseas, even lot’s of men from around America uprooted their family or saved up money in order to settle in California in pursuit of the gold mining dream and the wealth that came with it. This completely transformed California from its rural and peaceful surroundings to accommodate the needs of the masses of people. This included towns springing up all over the place equipped with saloons, shops and brothels, which ultimately created communities and micro-cultures forming around those who were involved with the gold mining. The new job prospects and wealth for many people from across the world may sound very appealing, however, due to the nature of this heavily labored work, there were many poorer native folk who were subjected to slavery and being taken advantage of in order to create wealth for the settlers.

Pro’s and Con’s

There are many benefits and disadvantages that have plagued this state since the ‘Gold Rush’; due to the population increasing drastically within the space of a couple years, the bustling economy helped the state to become a very wealthy place. However, it came at the cost of many Native and ‘Californios’ (Americans of Spanish and Mexican descent) losing their homes and their freedom, along with the demolition of the countryside in the process. In just over two years, almost the entire surface gold had been already mined and there were many people still arriving to this state in pursuit of gold mining but had no luck. Due to this downfall of gold mining, many people turned to hydraulic mining, which helped to grow the industrialization of California vastly, although it came at a cost of extremely hard labour and completely destroying the landscape of a once very beautiful peace of land.

A brutal battleground

The effect that the Gold Rush had on the United States was substantial as there was no law regarding the ownership of this gold being mined until a state constitution was signed claiming the land was owned by America.  The greedy nature of humans and money had led to a crime increase and racial attacks that would seek to drive out the ‘foreigners’. The violence was returned on the internal migrants with roughly 1 in 12 perishing, which had resulted vigilantism. The need for the settlers to turn this into a ‘new state’ with a high influx of Europeans and Americans arriving caused the first governor of California, Peter Burnett, to declare that this was a battle between the native and new colonisation of people, and would result in the Native-Americans being ultimately enslaved, removed or killed in order to benefit the new settlement.

It didn’t stop there

Gold mining reached it’s peak of wealth in 1852 where around $80 million dollars worth of gold was pulled from the earth, but due to the decline it leveled off to just over $40 million per year by 1857. Although, the downfall of the industry didn’t have too much of a negative impact on the people who still wanted to settle for the appealing way of life in California. It was a bustling new state, filled with the idea of wealth, hopes and dreams, which is how it is often perceived as today, however, with its bleak and greedy past is often forgotten about.

If you have found yourself with your own golden nuggets or gold coins that you want to exchange then we can help Contact us today at Cash4Coins for any enquiries that you may have.