What is the possibility of the federal government confiscating people’s physical gold in the future? Although no one can say with certainty what the government is capable of legislating, I would not put the confiscation of personally held physical gold high on their list for the following reasons:
1. People have not forgotten the first gold confiscation by the government where they lost approximately 50% of their wealth overnight. Once gold was made illegal, the government raised its value and reduced the value of their government’s reimbursement (redistribution). People will hide their gold and take their chances rather than see their wealth redistributed again.
2. Most people do not know this fact but after gold was outlawed, the government inspected every safety deposit box in the country’s banks. If gold was found, it was confiscated. A large portion of people who own gold do not keep it in a bank’s safety deposit box today for this reason. If you have gold in a bank safety deposit box, get it out.
3. The government would confiscate your IRAs and 401Ks before trying to confiscate gold. This legislation has already been discussed and would net several trillion dollars immediately without any need to come knocking on your door. If they pass this legislation, the probability for gold confiscation will be increased.
4. The government will first institute regulations about future purchases of physical gold and their storage before confiscating existing gold. This is already being done in Europe where purchases of gold over 10 ounces has just been implemented.
5. Although people talk about buying gold, the cost is prohibitive for most people and a majority of people have invested in gold stocks, ETFs or precious metals mutual funds. A large percentage of people have bought gold but elected not to take physical possession and pay a storage fee. The government will confiscate these assets first since it is low hanging fruit.
The bottom line is that even if the government passed legislation to outlaw private ownership of gold again, the cost to confiscate privately held gold would make it difficult to implement. Molon Labe applies to guns and gold. However, if this legislation is passed, gold that is held at private storage facilities would be taken without a struggle as stated above. The Obama administration has implemented rules for gold traders so that they know who has bought gold. If you are able to buy gold without a recorded transaction, you should. Just make sure that you are buying gold in the weight and caret being advertised.
As with all personal preparedness measures, there is no need to tell other people what you have put away.