A friend of mine who works at the Macraes gold mine was talking at a rehearsal of The Christmas Carol the other day. I came in on the conversation a little late but what I heard was that the entire stock of gold in the world would fit comfortably in the room we were standing in. And this wasn't a very large room: maybe 5 or 6 metres by 4. Height? Maybe 2.5 to 3 metres.
This seems incredible, but he seemed serious about it. Which presumably means that anyone who's a rare coin dealer (such as the firm, Monaco Rare Coin) doesn't have a lot of stock to play with, at least when it comes to gold. Monaco is one of the Monex group of firms, (I've written about them before in this blog on occasions), and they've been in business for forty years or so. I wonder how often the same bits of gold have passed through their hands in that time?
Of course, they don't just deal in gold, but in all sorts of rare coinage, and I guess there's plenty of that around the world. After all, most of us have seen large bags of coins in our lifetime (though perhaps less now than we used to) and it wouldn't take too many of those to fill a sizeable room. Though I guess if you're a rare coin collector, you wouldn't be needing too large a space to put your collection. And no doubt Monaco can point in you in the right direction when it comes to getting quality coins.
I'm really intrigued by this idea of the world's gold filling one not-so-spacious room. Why is Fort Knox so big, then? Is it because it's nearly all security and very little storage?
I'll have to get back to my friend and check it out properly obviously!