Bond Villain Business Plan Reviews: Goldfinger

Business Plan Summary: Contaminate the US gold in the US Bullion Depository and profit from the ensuing rise in gold prices.

Founder/Leader: Auric Goldfinger. A smuggler and jewellery magnate. Greedy and a megalomaniac, strong organisational abilities and a creative problem solver.

Key Personnel: No other management or coordination personnel.

Support Staff: Oddjob. Chauffeur, bodyguard and caddy. Loyal, incredibly strong and capable.

Pussy Galore. Personal pilot and head of aviation. Strong willed, a superior pilot.

Technology:Industrial laser.Can cut through any metal.

Delta 9 nerve gas. A fairly quick and effective nerve agent, but it offers few advantages over other comparable products.

‘Atomic Device’ dirty bomb. A cobalt/iodine device that will create radioactive contamination for 58 years.

Review: This plan is fundamentally stupid and won’t work at all.

As of the time the plan is expected to be implemented Fort Knox holdings are estimated at around 12,000 metric tonnes – around a third of total world reserves. These reserves are held because the United States has a gold standard. This means that the gold is mainly needed as a store of value, with a small amount needed to transact with other countries who are also maintaining gold standards.

As a result, contaminating the reserves will have no effect at all. US mining would be sufficient to cover any transaction needs, and as a ‘store of value’ it doesn’t matter if the gold is contaminated, so long as the contamination will go away reasonably soon. And 58 years is soon enough for this purpose.

There’s a small risk that a very well resourced individual could use speculative pressure to increase transaction demand to the point where mining output wouldn’t be enough. In this case the US could simply suspend convertibility, which would be a moderate and manageable economic shock.

So, in the worst case, this plan would actually result in an improvement in US economic policy.

Recommendation: Do Not Invest.