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The Almighty Buck Idle

ATMs That Dispense Gold Bars Coming To America 482

Posted by samzenpus
from the leprechaun-industries dept.
tetrahedrassface writes "As the US economic woes continue unabated, a German company is bringing gold-bearing ATMs to Mainstreet America. The machines accept credit cards, and will dispense 1 gram, 5 gram, 10 gram and 1 ounce units, as well as various gold coins. The company hopes to install 35 bullion machines in the United States this year, and will hopefully have several hundred up and running by next year. The machines will be decorated like giant gold ingots and be over two meters tall. Physical gold has both pros and cons, but from a safety standpoint would it be fine to have a couple of ounces in your pocket while walking around the mall? The giant, gold-dispensing ATMs will monitor the market conditions for gold every 10 minutes in order to reflect spot price changes as they occur." We already covered similar machines installed in travel hubs across Germany.
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ATMs That Dispense Gold Bars Coming To America

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  • Arbitrage? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @09:53AM (#33721408)
    The giant gold dispensing ATM's will monitor the market conditions for gold every 10 minutes in order to reflect spot price changes as they occur.

    Isn't that an opportunity for arbitrage? Gold doesn't change price every ten minutes exactly, so if there's a spike in the right direction, buy before the ATM updates its prices...
  • by rlp (11898) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:00AM (#33721474)

    then sell it for $300 an ounce

    Uhhh, you haven't checked the price of gold in a while, have you?

  • Why? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DurendalMac (736637) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:00AM (#33721478)
    Seriously, why? If people want to invest in gold, they're generally going to buy it in larger lots than this. What's the point of selling gold in a vending machine when no one is going to take a gold coin as currency? This seems to be a solution in search of a problem. Not to mention I fully expect these to become big, fat targets for thieves...
  • Re:35 bullion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Abstrackt (609015) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:00AM (#33721484)

    You should learn what words mean before you correct people as it just makes you look like a total fool.

    You should learn what a joke looks like before you correct people as it just makes you look like a total fool.

  • by suso (153703) * on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:03AM (#33721512) Homepage Journal

    I think it was only illegal until the 70s or so, then the market was flooded with people who had been secret hoarding gold from earlier.

    By the way, if you'd be willing to sell me your gold for $300 an ounce, then I'd be willing to buy it from you. In large quantities. Seriously.

  • Current price (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:04AM (#33721536)

    $42/gram.

    I'm not sure what is scarier; that someone thinks this will be a successful business, or that it might be?

    All the talk-radio shows can agree on is that their advertisers would like to sell you gold.

  • Re:Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by OzPeter (195038) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:05AM (#33721554)

    What's the point of selling gold in a vending machine when no one is going to take a gold coin as currency?

    The idea is to make money .. for the people who make the gold dispensing ATMs. Its nothing more than a capitalistic response to a fear based environment.

  • by stevegee58 (1179505) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:18AM (#33721726) Journal
    Allocating some portion of your assets to physical gold and silver is simply prudent, not useless.
  • by sjs132 (631745) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:20AM (#33721772) Homepage Journal

    Government did it once to force dollars into the market, it can do it again. What it can't ban is gold coinage. That is why even modern gold coins have a value of the countries currency stamped in it. So if they outlawed gold again, the "value" is stamped on the coin. That is the value that you would get back from he government if you were forced to turn it in.

    Lets see, a 50$ gold eagle (1oz) sells for 1368.+/- Currnt value of 1oz of gold on market is 1297 as of now. US Mint sells them at bullion price, so you'll never buy one for the $50 strike value. That is just a matter of semantics in case they ever recall them. You just gave the government $1318 profit.

    The other reason to have coin instead of bar is for "numismatic" value, so that even if US dollar is nothing the collection value of the coin would be worth something more than just the gold. (At least one would hope.)

    I understand Beck's POV on gold, but it is NOT for everyone (and he says so), and an ATM for it it more of a marketing twist than anything.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:20AM (#33721782)

    I'm pretty sure the walking around won't be a safety issue -- that's 2500 USD or so -- many of us routinely carry that much in electronics, and unlike a laptop or SLR bag, it doesn't draw any attention to you.

    The only added risk is muggers staking out the ATM -- which they could do with any standard ATM as well. It's not like most of the transactions here will be for the big increments.

  • Re:35 bullion? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by grandseer (1653283) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:21AM (#33721790)
    Spelled is spelled spelled.
  • by ComaVN (325750) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:23AM (#33721828)

    How is it diffferent from a regular ATM, apart from the loot being less liquid?

  • by vlm (69642) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:26AM (#33721874)

    then sell it for $300 an ounce

    Uhhh, you haven't checked the price of gold in a while, have you?

    This is the same guy whom thought gold ownership was illegal... not exactly the most up to date...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:34AM (#33722026)

    Who in their right mind would buy gold right now? It recently passed the $1300 mark and may climb higher, but historical trends indicate that it is in a major spiking period. "What goes up must come down," doesn't only apply to gravity. Buying during a spike like the current one will likely result in your investment going nowhere but down (which is why the commercials want you to buy RIGHT now) in the short-middle term with a chance of breaking even, or even making a modest gain in the long term where other investments would have yielded more over the same time period. Smart investors bought gold 10 years ago while the economy was giddy with the .com bubble and all the money was flowing in to Internet business ventures causing gold to be valued at a substantial low. That was the time to buy gold. Gold is now going for a premium due to a decade that has basically been economically volatile, a very recent and lingering recession and the increased use of gold as an industrial metal (which increases gold's value, but also makes it more volatile by tying demand to an industry). The wolves are currently out to prey on the fears of the ignorant; cue goofy commercials saying, "Invest in gold right now!!!" and bullion ATMs. Don't be ignorant. Don't buy gold now.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:37AM (#33722060)

    I could be wrong, but most conservative stations I've tuned in are selling gold as if the end of humanity was just over the horizon.

    Most conservative radio shows I tune into advertise gold buying/selling on their stations because some gold buying/selling company paid them shit tons of money to advertise it.

  • by Eponymous Coward (6097) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:40AM (#33722110)

    You know, there are quite a few people carrying a massive debt load who would love to see some hyperinflation.

  • Re:Already here (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DefenseEngineer (1277030) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:48AM (#33722272)

    Meanwhile, Slashdot is bringing apostrophe abuse to America.

    Are you commenting on the lack of an apostrophe in ATMs? If so, then there is room for interpretation here. Depending on which writing style guide you read it is either appropriate on inappropriate to use an apostrophe to make an acronym plural. Basically, it is up to the writer. However, once the writer selects a style they should stick to it throughout the writing. This writer did exactly that and I can find no mistakes with apostrophes in the writing.

  • by Dishevel (1105119) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @10:51AM (#33722320)
    Of course there are. I never let my players run around with 900lbs of gold. The wonderful thing about pen and paper over all computer forms was that in pen and paper we could make use of common sense.
  • by ElectricTurtle (1171201) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:02AM (#33722516)
    And this is why ACs don't set monetary policy. Inflation doesn't hurt the wealthy, it hurts retirees and the disabled who are on fixed incomes. Suddenly their purchasing power drops and they're eating dog food dinners. Whereas people who are employed might see an inflation adjustment, and debtors may have an opportunity to settle debts for effectively pennies on the dollar.

    Who's the tool now, eh?
  • by the eric conspiracy (20178) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:02AM (#33722524)

    I thought pedantry was a crime. If it isn't it really should be.

  • Re:Arbitrage? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Wonko the Sane (25252) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:03AM (#33722532) Journal

    Chances are these guys stockpiled tons of gold while the price was closer to $400 an ounce than $1300 an ounce and now they're having a tough time getting rid of it all, so they're trying to dime-bag it out to the public.

    Exactly.

    Don't be dumb and buy anything when it is near historically-high levels. You'll only be the "greater fool" that allows those people who bought near the lows and rode the price up to cash out just before the price collapses.

  • Re:Arbitrage? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DrXym (126579) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:03AM (#33722542)
    Isn't that an opportunity for arbitrage? Gold doesn't change price every ten minutes exactly, so if there's a spike in the right direction, buy before the ATM updates its prices...

    Except that the dispenser most likely calculates the price as market price + obscene markup. You'd have to cause a huge spike in the market and then employ a gang to simultaneously buy up gold from all the ATMs at the cheaper price and somehow prolong the spike long enough to sell your bullion at the raised price in order to benefit.

    I think it would be easier to hire yourself a commodity trader to do all of the above and forget about the ATM entirely.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:35AM (#33723046)

    Probably the first time I've seen the words "Fox" and "integrity" used in the same sentence without it immediately eliciting raucous laughter. Sir, I salute you!

  • Re:Arbitrage? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by siride (974284) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:47AM (#33723234)
    You have an awesome UID.
  • Re:Arbitrage? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by russotto (537200) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @11:52AM (#33723324) Journal

    Don't be dumb and buy anything when it is near historically-high levels. You'll only be the "greater fool" that allows those people who bought near the lows and rode the price up to cash out just before the price collapses.

    Certainly that's common sense advice, but if you'd bought gold at the historically high level of $1000/oz last year, you'd be doing quite well now.

    Sometimes prices really aren't cyclical, and sometimes the cycles are quite long.

    That said, I'm not buying gold. And I certainly see no reason for gold prices not to be cyclical, aside from a possible impending total crash of the world's economies. In which case gold will go up a lot more shortly before euros and dollars become worthless -- but shortly thereafter, you'll be wishing you bought food and ammo instead, and if your gold was on paper rather than holding up your mattress, you won't have it anymore anyway.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Pojut (1027544) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:04PM (#33723496) Homepage

    I would have to say no, because Gore isn't on the payroll of any news organizations...he is, for all intents and purposes, "self" employed. He can say whatever fool thing he damn well pleases.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DragonWriter (970822) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:19PM (#33723740)

    Do you feel the same way regarding Gore's global warming investments and his warnings Re: such

    The question makes no sense. The statement I made was that "ethical news organizations ... don't allow employees who are also paid advocates for a product or cause to address that cause through the news organization without disclosing that interest."

    Al Gore is not a news organization, or an employee of a news organization, so that statement has no applicability to him.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:19PM (#33723750)

    You don't invest in gold to make money. You invest for security. It's only a part of a diverse portfolio.

  • by jimrthy (893116) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:21PM (#33723782) Homepage Journal

    I had a long conversation with my brother once about what classical liberalism really means (small government, more freedom for everyone, no partnerships between government and business, be willing to try out new policies when it looks like they might make life better for everyone). And what it truly means to be conservative (small government, if it ain't broke, don't fix it).

    Neither point of view has any meaningful representation in modern government. "Both" parties have been hijacked by collectivists.

    It took me weeks to forgive him for convincing me that I truly am a classical liberal.

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:5, Insightful)

    by networkBoy (774728) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:23PM (#33723804) Homepage Journal

    If you are expecting collapse, then gold is not that good of an investment, as not much will be worth a whole ounce of gold and buying smaller pieces exposes you to way over spot prices.
    1, 5, and 10 ounce silver rounds/bars, ammo (for trade and protection), salt, durable foodstuffs, and toilet paper are the most valuable commodities. With those you will likely be able to trade for anything else you need.
    Depending on your morals, level of need, and the social situation at the time of need if you can not trade with any of the above, you have a realistic chance of *taking* what you need by way of the stored ammunition.
    -nB

  • Re:Already here (Score:2, Insightful)

    by jeremymiles (725644) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:29PM (#33723916) Homepage Journal
    Will you need my PIN number? Or my personal PIN number?
  • Re:Arbitrage? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Syberz (1170343) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:40PM (#33724090) Homepage

    Speaking on which, who even buys physical gold at market prices?

    If it's worth 1300$/ounce on the market, who will offer you that for each bar you have stockpiled?

    The jewelry store? Doubt it.
    Cash 4 Gold? Lolz
    Put it on Craigslist? Someone's getting robbed...

  • by Red Flayer (890720) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:45PM (#33724182) Journal

    therefore, if you really believe we're all going mad max to bartertown in a few years, become a farmer. everything else you can do is pointless, including hording bars of yellowish metal

    If we're going mad max, farming is not where the money is. Subsistence is important, but you can always *trade* for food. Which is where gold comes in, as a near-universal currency. If you have enough of it, you can manipulate local markets to your benefit.

    But anyway, the people who make out best in a mad max situation will be the merchants. Being able to supply many people with what *they* need is way more profitable than just being able to supply yourself (and family) with what *you* need for baseline subsistence.

    So I say, rather than hoard gold or learn to farm, hoard farming tools and steel knives. And guns and ammo. And fuel. But don't neglect the high-profit luxury items and their inputs... someone needs to supply (at a profit) the local warlords and their mistresses. Hoard silk. Hoard glassware. Hoard dyes. Oh, and don't forget to make sure you have the resources to employ heavies to keep those warlords from taking your stuff for free.

    And while you're at it, you might as well just become one of those warlords, and synergistically apply your brutal local enforcement methods to ensuring you are the *only* supplier of durable goods in your area. Then you can make sure to maximize your profits.

    Wait, sorry, did I get off track with a libertarian fantasy?

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:3, Insightful)

    by h4rr4r (612664) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @12:56PM (#33724388)

    You mean telling people to buy at the peak is good advice?

  • Re:Cue the crying (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @01:09PM (#33724640)

    It could go insanely high, if CDOs and CDSes aren't reined in a bit. Currently the GDP of the planet is around $50 trillion. However, outstanding CDO obligations, in the event of a crash in the "investments" they're issued against, is around $400 trillion. Put quite bluntly, the world is insolvent. A couple more good solid shocks to the world economy could start a massive run on those investments, causing world governments to be forced in to printing money like mad to cover the spread (because that's what they've already shown that they'll do). Should that happen, the estimates I've seen show that the ensuing inflation would put gold in the ludicrous range of ~$1 million per ounce.

    I'm not advocating buying in though; if that really did happen, you'd have much bigger concerns than the value of some yellow rocks. Bullets and (non-Monsanto) plant seeds would be a FAR better investment of cash at that point. Point though is that you might think gold is insanely overvalued right now, but you ain't seen nothin' yet .

  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Tuesday September 28, 2010 @01:11PM (#33724678)

    What I mean is they claim that the US dollar is going to become worthless, that only gold will hold any value... Yet they are willing to take your worthless US dollars in large amounts and sell you valuable gold for them. That tells you something, specifically that they are full of shit.

    If I honestly believed gold would be the only worthwhile currency I sure as hell wouldn't give you any for dollars.

    They are just playing in to a craze they know to be false and, as you said, this is an ultimate form of it. These things allow people to purchase with nothing more than a credit card, and do so at a massive price premium.

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