Array ( [0] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24133 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_content] => Following a strong summer, gold has suffered in recent months. Some say it's because bitcoin is the new gold. It isn't. Gold always has, and likely always will, thrive when real interest rates are falling. Bitcoin, on the other hand, responds to straight forward risk on conditions. Both are inflation-sensitive assets, so by holding both, you can have a more balanced inflation hedge. In this piece, I look at the moves in bond yields, and how long-term inflation expectations have so far failed to come through. I believe they will, but it will take time. There are some hugely bullish scenarios for gold, such as the implementation of yield curve control. Capping long-term rates while inflation rises, would be the perfect storm. I also discuss fund flows into gold, and how they tend to follow gold's fair value. That highlights how recent moves have been rational, and as soon as inflation expectations come through, the gold bull market will resume. Read the full report here. *Charlie Morris is a founder and the chief investment officer of ByteTree Asset Management and a specialist in digital assets. He developed a gold valuation model in 2013, which has been published by the World Gold Council and the London Bullion Metals Association (LBMA). Prior to his 23-year career in fund management, Charlie was an officer in the Grenadier Guards of the British Army. [post_title] => Atlas Pulse Gold Report 2021 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => atlas-pulse-gold-report-2021 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24133 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24108 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_content] => The conventional answer to this question is that gold is "a form of saving for a rainy day", a form of "financial insurance. You shouldn't trade your gold. You wouldn't trade an insurance policy, so don't trade your gold". On this outlook gold is static, inert, a kind of escape hatch for when everything goes pear-shaped. It's a mistaken view, or at best only half-true. The escape hatch scenario comes into focus when some dramatic geo-political event occurs and heightens uncertainty, such as the bombing of the Twin Towers on 9/11 2001 – the gold price spiked from $273 per ounce in the morning of 9/11 to $290 but by 24 November it had retreated to around $272. Uncertainty created nervousness which led people to buy into gold's escape hatch scenario. Those who bought gold on 10/11 2001 will have felt themselves to be mugs come November that year – unless they held onto the gold for much longer. Of course, gold is not the only, nor even the most commonly-used form of money – fiat money, paper currency defined and legitimised by a national government, is most commonly used today. In 2001 it was not easy to use gold as money. One of the defining characteristics of a paper banknote is that it is for a set value – a £20 note is 'worth' £20, and a $10 bill is 'worth' $10. On a £20 note is written over the signature of the chief cashier "I promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of twenty pounds". On the back of a $10 bill are the words "this note is receivable by all national and member banks and federal reserve banks and for all taxes, customs and other public dues. It is redeemable in gold on demand at the Treasury department of the United States in the city of Washington, District of Columbia or in gold or lawful money at any federal reserve bank". But don't trek to 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington D.C. to try to redeem your sawbuck for gold. It's an empty promise. But it is at least a tacit recognition that gold is money, or ought to be usable as money.   30 years of the gold price, inflation adjusted /source https://www.macrotrends.net/   A very different world in two decades The gold price ended 2020 around 25% (in US dollar and pound sterling terms) higher than at the start of that year and peaked at more than $2,000 (£1,559) an ounce in early August. It's lost some 11% since that price peak, which has disappointed some gold holders – no-one ever likes to see their assets lose value. But we need to remind ourselves why we bought gold in the first place. Is it something we acquired simply because we imagined the price would continue to rocket, or because we prefer to use gold as money? Do we buy it with a time-horizon of six weeks – or six years? Do we buy it simply in the hope that – as in the past – it has steadily increased in real (i.e. inflation-adjusted) terms? Or do we want to use it? The world in 2021 is unimaginably different from 20 years ago. The internet is a genuine social and economic revolution. It has brought solace this last year – we have been able to stay in touch, buy goods and food, exchange information and many of us have been able to keep working, all thanks to the digital age. And yet it has also fostered heightened anxiety, as we have impotently been able to watch the relentless creep of authoritarianism (in the US, Belarus, Myanmar, China, Russia to name only the obvious spots) in a world where the diet of 24/7 information is relentless. Back in 2001, this newsletter could not have been sent to you instantly. It's almost as if we are daily bombarded with mini-9/11s; we have experienced two major financial disasters, in 2008 and 2020, the repercussions of which are far more profound for everyone than 9/11. As we emerge into a post-Covid world, the uncertainties will not end. Glint stands for stability At Glint, we believe that gold is money – a means by which individuals and businesses can exchange goods and services – and is not a purely speculative asset. This is, for us, one of the greatest contrasts with cryptocurrencies, which cannot easily be used as money and which – although currently largely independent from government interference – are nevertheless a human creation and therefore open to manipulation. Gold no doubt still has its escape hatch qualities, particularly perhaps in an era when asset bubbles seem to be building everywhere – since March last year, world stocks have risen in value by $6.2 billion an hour, ten times faster than the growth seen after the 2008 financial crisis. Meanwhile, 10 million jobs that existed in the US at the start of 2020 have disappeared and the UK unemployment level has reached more than 5%, with younger people being the worst affected in both countries. Money ought to be something which is prized and held in esteem, a cornerstone of democratic stability. Yet under the weight of Covid-19 the fiat money aid packages now planned are likely to take the shine off that US dollar, thanks in part because they are inequitably distributed; President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion making its way through the US Congress will (if unaltered) dish out 61% of the aid to states that voted for him last November. One of the many benefits of the development of the internet was that it enabled a rash of innovative thinking and practice around money, banking and financial services. It enabled the creation of fintechs such as Glint. Glint's long-term mission is to restore gold to its ancient role as money. With Glint you can use the gold you buy as money, i.e. you can spend it in your daily life or save it. You don't have to indulge in celebrity-driven asset bubbles, or watch as your fiat money steadily loses value – today's dollar will buy you just 15.5% of what it did 50 years ago. With Glint gold is no longer just an asset – it’s also something you can use as money. [post_title] => Soapbox: Why hold gold? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => soapbox-hold-gold [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24108 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24105 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_content] => We're delighted to announce that we were named on TechRound's Fintech 50, which highlights the innovation and success of fintech companies across the world. Jason's blog for Elite Business discussed how the banking system punishes small businesses and how SMEs are looking at alternatives such as storing capital as gold and paying staff in gold through Glint It! GameStop was one of the biggest stories of the month and our commentary on why private investors are turning their backs on the financial system appeared in the Independent (scroll down to 14:50 as this is a live blog). This suggests that unrestricted access to information through channels such as Reddit could lead to the greater democratisation of money. In the UK, the Bank of England's latest monetary policy announcement kept interest rates at 0.1% but paved the way for the introduction of negative interest rates which could mean consumers have to pay banks to save. Glint's view in the Daily Mirror and Scottish Financial News argue that this is yet another blow to savers and will further impact their purchasing power. Tesla's purchase of Bitcoin was another major talking point this month. Commentary from Jason appeared in the Daily ExpressMSN and Wealth Briefing suggesting that this should act as a wakeup call to banks and highlights their need to rapidly adapt to meet consumer demand. We also saw a rise in the value of Dogecoin as a result of celebrity endorsements. This sets a worrying precedent and private investors tying their financial security to a celebrity's popular should concern us all. Our views can be seen in several articles in the Daily Express & MSN. In a blog for Scottish Financial News, we looked at the rise of alternative global currencies as well as how and why gold and cryptos are challenging the dominance of the dollar. Jason was also interviewed by one of the Personal Finance Editors at the Mail on Sunday, one of the UK's most well-read newspapers, discussing all things gold and money. [post_title] => Press Room: Glint in the news! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => press-room-glint-news [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24105 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24102 [post_author] => 14 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_content] => As governments around the world start to unlock their gates the penalties of mass incarceration are being felt – from schoolchildren to their parents, the disruption has been devastating. In England, it was only Monday that the government announced its plans for the unlocking of the country, in four drawn-out stages, the last "no earlier than 21 June", when all legal limits will be removed on mixing and the last sectors to remain closed, such as nightclubs, will be allowed to re-open. My nightclubbing days are past but I could do with some sun – which, given this is rainy and overcast England, probably means travelling overseas. My skill at table-tennis has vastly improved during my home incarceration but I still don't qualify as an "elite sportsperson", one of the categories permitted to travel according to government rules. Going overseas will not be allowed before 17 May, although the rules are a little confusing. We are promised that a government report on international travel rules will be published on 12 April. I can't wait. But despite the opacity about when we will be permitted to get some foreign sun, EasyJet's international holiday bookings surged by 600% (over the previous week) the day after the government signalled it was easing its restrictions. The patchwork of rules permitting what can and cannot be done is much more complicated in the US, but at least the majority of US states are open for business. And even though we might be freed to travel internationally by June, hurdles will still need to be jumped – booking a flight and hotel, grabbing your passport and stepping on a plane is clearly going to be a distant memory. The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the trade association of the world's airlines, is readying a digital travel passport. The promise of liberation through immunisation is receding by the day. So I am not hurrying to book myself an EasyJet flight, even though I crave the sun. And when we are finally allowed to take a flight, I will remember to take my Glint card – as important for my financial protection as my travel passport will be for the ability to get around. Until next week. Jason [post_title] => Around the campfire: Unlocking the gates - very slowly [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => around-campfire-unlocking-gates-slowly [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24102 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24070 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_content] => "We're all in this together" has become a familiar phrase during the Covid-19 pandemic, an alleged commitment to shared responsibility and collective endeavour. The singer-songwriter Madonna has told us that "Covid is the great equaliser", while sitting in a petal-filled bath. Few of us are in the Madonna wage-bracket; some are more equal than others. After all, when was the last time you took a dip in petal-strewn bathwater? The path back from Covid-19 and government lockdowns is likely to be long, stony and will leave scars. In the UK the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has just published its 'Financial Lives 2020' survey, which had more than 16,000 respondents and asked them are things "improving, worsening or staying the same"? This survey ended in February 2020 so largely pre-dated the pandemic. The FCA also ran a survey of more than 22,000 people in October 2020, taking into account the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. The last time the FCA did a 'Financial Lives' survey was in 2017. Over the last three years, there were some positive results – in 2017 51% of UK adults "showed one or more characteristics of vulnerability", which had dropped to 46% by February 2020. By February 2020 – shortly after the pandemic struck – more people had financial resilience, neither over-indebted and with a better "capacity to withstand financial shocks". By February 2020, according to the FCA, one in twenty had persistent credit card debt and a fifth of mortgage holders – up from 14% in 2017 – had mortgage debt at least four times their annual household income. Trust and confidence in the UK financial services industry marginally improved, from 38% in 2017 to 42% by February 2020. But over the course of 2020 the number of UK citizens with "low financial resilience" – able that is to survive shocks – grew from 10.7 million to 14.2 million; 11% of those surveyed said that were now "likely" to use a food bank and 16% said they expected to take on more debt in the next six months. The Resolution Foundation, a British think-tank which aims to improve the standard of living of low and middle-income families, says that as many as 450,000 out of an estimated 750,000 people in arrears in housing payments have fallen into debt as a direct result of the pandemic. We're really not 'all in this together'.   Mind the gap The European economic think-tank Bruegel reminds us that epidemics have always tended to raise income inequality - the gap between rich and poor widens as people lose their jobs or are put onto part-time work. The digitisation of the world has merely heightened the divide: "in the United States, in industries heavily exposed to the pandemic, employment fell by a staggering 42% for those who cannot telework, and by 22% for those who can, between February and April 2020...the COVID-19 pandemic has increased income inequality between the rich and the poor even in Europe, where governments put in place massive employment protection programmes". The pandemic has also exacerbated the difficulties facing young people. Bruegel reported last November that: "young active jobseekers are two or three times less likely than those aged over 55 to be able to find a job" and that "youth unemployment is significantly connected with poorer mental health".     This divide between rich and poor is not simply generational, it also exists between emerging and developed countries. The International Monetary Fund said last October that during 2002-19, "emerging markets and developing economies enjoyed welfare growth of almost 6% percent" but that the pandemic "could reduce welfare by 8 percent in emerging markets and developing countries", 'welfare' being defined as a combination of life expectancy, leisure time, consumption growth and consumption inequality. Yet the advance of distance working, or 'work from home' (WFH) is becoming entrenched. In January this year, the CEO of the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) giant Unilever said its 155,000 office workers will "never return to office work five days a week. Others are certain to follow suit". And the super-rich have got richer, powered in part by the extremely loose monetary policy led by the US Federal Reserve; in the second week of February, investors put a record $58 billion into US stocks, prompting fears from some that investors are extending into higher and higher risk. The spectacle of a gleeful pack pushing the previously moribund US stock GameStop way beyond conventional wisdom and the chasing of cryptocurrencies to fresh heights are symptoms of asset bubbles and disaffected younger people, enraged at the sight of the growing wealth and power of an older generation, armed with Covid-19 savings that have mushroomed. The world's 10 richest billionaires increased their wealth by $319 billion in 2020. According to the Financial Times, this was fuelled partly by the success of companies that have experienced a demand boost because of the pandemic, but also because central banks' efforts to cushion the unprecedented slowdown in activity by pumping massive waves of stimulus into the global economy helped drive up asset prices. "Inequality was bad and the Covid-19 pandemic is making it worse" was the view of a fellow at the US Brookings institution last November.     Stress-testing What will follow the end of this pandemic? Mass relief at a restoration of free movement, of course, and perhaps it will unleash a wave of spending, which is what governments want. But Covid-19 has stress-tested governments everywhere – and they are being tested when public distrust was already at a low level. In 2019, 60% of Europeans felt that mainstream parties and politicians did not care about people like them. The latest Edelman Trust Barometer, which surveyed more than 33,000 people in 28 markets worldwide between October 19 and November 18, 2020, claimed that people distrust the information they're being given from most sources in an "information bankruptcy". Voices questioning how much longer the US dollar can maintain its dominance are becoming louder, with the US economy now burdened with its biggest ever sovereign debt of $28 trillion and a federal budget deficit of more than $3 trillion. Under President Biden, fiscal spending on different 'must-have' programmes looks set to go into over-drive. Academics have studied the connections between pandemics and social unrest. While there is no conclusive evidence that mass pestilences (such as Covid-19) cause mass protests, there is a strong correlation between pandemics and civil disorder.     There is no point in being apocalyptic about this – but neither is it wise to sit idly by and do nothing. Conservation of what you have in terms of value will become increasingly important in the choppy waters ahead. Preservation of purchasing power against further erosions will become critical. Cryptocurrencies are not just an interesting extension of technology – they are a form of protest, an attempt to find a means of protection against the decline in the value of money. The trouble is, there are many obstacles to be overcome in the day-to-day use of private cryptocurrencies – and governments everywhere are planning to roll out their own central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), and could steamroller private cryptocurrencies into the ground. After all – what 'backs' a cryptocurrency except faith and despair? Glint was created to democratise the oldest form of money – gold – and through Glint, you can buy, spend, and save that oldest form of money, gold, which will last longer than a petal. [post_title] => Soapbox: All in this together? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => soapbox-all-in-this-together [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24070 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) total posts1Array ( [0] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24133 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_content] => Following a strong summer, gold has suffered in recent months. Some say it's because bitcoin is the new gold. It isn't. Gold always has, and likely always will, thrive when real interest rates are falling. Bitcoin, on the other hand, responds to straight forward risk on conditions. Both are inflation-sensitive assets, so by holding both, you can have a more balanced inflation hedge. In this piece, I look at the moves in bond yields, and how long-term inflation expectations have so far failed to come through. I believe they will, but it will take time. There are some hugely bullish scenarios for gold, such as the implementation of yield curve control. Capping long-term rates while inflation rises, would be the perfect storm. I also discuss fund flows into gold, and how they tend to follow gold's fair value. That highlights how recent moves have been rational, and as soon as inflation expectations come through, the gold bull market will resume. Read the full report here. *Charlie Morris is a founder and the chief investment officer of ByteTree Asset Management and a specialist in digital assets. He developed a gold valuation model in 2013, which has been published by the World Gold Council and the London Bullion Metals Association (LBMA). Prior to his 23-year career in fund management, Charlie was an officer in the Grenadier Guards of the British Army. [post_title] => Atlas Pulse Gold Report 2021 [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => atlas-pulse-gold-report-2021 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-03-01 19:58:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24133 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24108 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_content] => The conventional answer to this question is that gold is "a form of saving for a rainy day", a form of "financial insurance. You shouldn't trade your gold. You wouldn't trade an insurance policy, so don't trade your gold". On this outlook gold is static, inert, a kind of escape hatch for when everything goes pear-shaped. It's a mistaken view, or at best only half-true. The escape hatch scenario comes into focus when some dramatic geo-political event occurs and heightens uncertainty, such as the bombing of the Twin Towers on 9/11 2001 – the gold price spiked from $273 per ounce in the morning of 9/11 to $290 but by 24 November it had retreated to around $272. Uncertainty created nervousness which led people to buy into gold's escape hatch scenario. Those who bought gold on 10/11 2001 will have felt themselves to be mugs come November that year – unless they held onto the gold for much longer. Of course, gold is not the only, nor even the most commonly-used form of money – fiat money, paper currency defined and legitimised by a national government, is most commonly used today. In 2001 it was not easy to use gold as money. One of the defining characteristics of a paper banknote is that it is for a set value – a £20 note is 'worth' £20, and a $10 bill is 'worth' $10. On a £20 note is written over the signature of the chief cashier "I promise to pay the bearer on demand the sum of twenty pounds". On the back of a $10 bill are the words "this note is receivable by all national and member banks and federal reserve banks and for all taxes, customs and other public dues. It is redeemable in gold on demand at the Treasury department of the United States in the city of Washington, District of Columbia or in gold or lawful money at any federal reserve bank". But don't trek to 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington D.C. to try to redeem your sawbuck for gold. It's an empty promise. But it is at least a tacit recognition that gold is money, or ought to be usable as money.   30 years of the gold price, inflation adjusted /source https://www.macrotrends.net/   A very different world in two decades The gold price ended 2020 around 25% (in US dollar and pound sterling terms) higher than at the start of that year and peaked at more than $2,000 (£1,559) an ounce in early August. It's lost some 11% since that price peak, which has disappointed some gold holders – no-one ever likes to see their assets lose value. But we need to remind ourselves why we bought gold in the first place. Is it something we acquired simply because we imagined the price would continue to rocket, or because we prefer to use gold as money? Do we buy it with a time-horizon of six weeks – or six years? Do we buy it simply in the hope that – as in the past – it has steadily increased in real (i.e. inflation-adjusted) terms? Or do we want to use it? The world in 2021 is unimaginably different from 20 years ago. The internet is a genuine social and economic revolution. It has brought solace this last year – we have been able to stay in touch, buy goods and food, exchange information and many of us have been able to keep working, all thanks to the digital age. And yet it has also fostered heightened anxiety, as we have impotently been able to watch the relentless creep of authoritarianism (in the US, Belarus, Myanmar, China, Russia to name only the obvious spots) in a world where the diet of 24/7 information is relentless. Back in 2001, this newsletter could not have been sent to you instantly. It's almost as if we are daily bombarded with mini-9/11s; we have experienced two major financial disasters, in 2008 and 2020, the repercussions of which are far more profound for everyone than 9/11. As we emerge into a post-Covid world, the uncertainties will not end. Glint stands for stability At Glint, we believe that gold is money – a means by which individuals and businesses can exchange goods and services – and is not a purely speculative asset. This is, for us, one of the greatest contrasts with cryptocurrencies, which cannot easily be used as money and which – although currently largely independent from government interference – are nevertheless a human creation and therefore open to manipulation. Gold no doubt still has its escape hatch qualities, particularly perhaps in an era when asset bubbles seem to be building everywhere – since March last year, world stocks have risen in value by $6.2 billion an hour, ten times faster than the growth seen after the 2008 financial crisis. Meanwhile, 10 million jobs that existed in the US at the start of 2020 have disappeared and the UK unemployment level has reached more than 5%, with younger people being the worst affected in both countries. Money ought to be something which is prized and held in esteem, a cornerstone of democratic stability. Yet under the weight of Covid-19 the fiat money aid packages now planned are likely to take the shine off that US dollar, thanks in part because they are inequitably distributed; President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion making its way through the US Congress will (if unaltered) dish out 61% of the aid to states that voted for him last November. One of the many benefits of the development of the internet was that it enabled a rash of innovative thinking and practice around money, banking and financial services. It enabled the creation of fintechs such as Glint. Glint's long-term mission is to restore gold to its ancient role as money. With Glint you can use the gold you buy as money, i.e. you can spend it in your daily life or save it. You don't have to indulge in celebrity-driven asset bubbles, or watch as your fiat money steadily loses value – today's dollar will buy you just 15.5% of what it did 50 years ago. With Glint gold is no longer just an asset – it’s also something you can use as money. [post_title] => Soapbox: Why hold gold? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => soapbox-hold-gold [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:25:49 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24108 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24105 [post_author] => 5 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_content] => We're delighted to announce that we were named on TechRound's Fintech 50, which highlights the innovation and success of fintech companies across the world. Jason's blog for Elite Business discussed how the banking system punishes small businesses and how SMEs are looking at alternatives such as storing capital as gold and paying staff in gold through Glint It! GameStop was one of the biggest stories of the month and our commentary on why private investors are turning their backs on the financial system appeared in the Independent (scroll down to 14:50 as this is a live blog). This suggests that unrestricted access to information through channels such as Reddit could lead to the greater democratisation of money. In the UK, the Bank of England's latest monetary policy announcement kept interest rates at 0.1% but paved the way for the introduction of negative interest rates which could mean consumers have to pay banks to save. Glint's view in the Daily Mirror and Scottish Financial News argue that this is yet another blow to savers and will further impact their purchasing power. Tesla's purchase of Bitcoin was another major talking point this month. Commentary from Jason appeared in the Daily ExpressMSN and Wealth Briefing suggesting that this should act as a wakeup call to banks and highlights their need to rapidly adapt to meet consumer demand. We also saw a rise in the value of Dogecoin as a result of celebrity endorsements. This sets a worrying precedent and private investors tying their financial security to a celebrity's popular should concern us all. Our views can be seen in several articles in the Daily Express & MSN. In a blog for Scottish Financial News, we looked at the rise of alternative global currencies as well as how and why gold and cryptos are challenging the dominance of the dollar. Jason was also interviewed by one of the Personal Finance Editors at the Mail on Sunday, one of the UK's most well-read newspapers, discussing all things gold and money. [post_title] => Press Room: Glint in the news! [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => press-room-glint-news [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:22:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24105 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24102 [post_author] => 14 [post_date] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_content] => As governments around the world start to unlock their gates the penalties of mass incarceration are being felt – from schoolchildren to their parents, the disruption has been devastating. In England, it was only Monday that the government announced its plans for the unlocking of the country, in four drawn-out stages, the last "no earlier than 21 June", when all legal limits will be removed on mixing and the last sectors to remain closed, such as nightclubs, will be allowed to re-open. My nightclubbing days are past but I could do with some sun – which, given this is rainy and overcast England, probably means travelling overseas. My skill at table-tennis has vastly improved during my home incarceration but I still don't qualify as an "elite sportsperson", one of the categories permitted to travel according to government rules. Going overseas will not be allowed before 17 May, although the rules are a little confusing. We are promised that a government report on international travel rules will be published on 12 April. I can't wait. But despite the opacity about when we will be permitted to get some foreign sun, EasyJet's international holiday bookings surged by 600% (over the previous week) the day after the government signalled it was easing its restrictions. The patchwork of rules permitting what can and cannot be done is much more complicated in the US, but at least the majority of US states are open for business. And even though we might be freed to travel internationally by June, hurdles will still need to be jumped – booking a flight and hotel, grabbing your passport and stepping on a plane is clearly going to be a distant memory. The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the trade association of the world's airlines, is readying a digital travel passport. The promise of liberation through immunisation is receding by the day. So I am not hurrying to book myself an EasyJet flight, even though I crave the sun. And when we are finally allowed to take a flight, I will remember to take my Glint card – as important for my financial protection as my travel passport will be for the ability to get around. Until next week. Jason [post_title] => Around the campfire: Unlocking the gates - very slowly [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => around-campfire-unlocking-gates-slowly [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-02-25 18:16:41 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://glintpay.com/?p=24102 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 24070 [post_author] => 62 [post_date] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-02-18 18:59:12 [post_content] => "We're all in this together" has become a familiar phrase during the Covid-19 pandemic, an alleged commitment to shared responsibility and collective endeavour. The singer-songwriter Madonna has told us that "Covid is the great equaliser", while sitting in a petal-filled bath. Few of us are in the Madonna wage-bracket; some are more equal than others. After all, when was the last time you took a dip in petal-strewn bathwater? The path back from Covid-19 and government lockdowns is likely to be long, stony and will leave scars. In the UK the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has just published its 'Financial Lives 2020' survey, which had more than 16,000 respondents and asked them are things "improving, worsening or staying the same"? This survey ended in February 2020 so largely pre-dated the pandemic. The FCA also ran a survey of more than 22,000 people in October 2020, taking into account the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. The last time the FCA did a 'Financial Lives' survey was in 2017. Over the last three years, there were some positive results – in 2017 51% of UK adults "showed one or more characteristics of vulnerability", which had dropped to 46% by February 2020. By February 2020 – shortly after the pandemic struck – more people had financial resilience, neither over-indebted and with a better "capacity to withstand financial shocks". By February 2020, according to the FCA, one in twenty had persistent credit card debt and a fifth of mortgage holders – up from 14% in 2017 – had mortgage debt at least four times their annual household income. Trust and confidence in the UK financial services industry marginally improved, from 38% in 2017 to 42% by February 2020. But over the course of 2020 the number of UK citizens with "low financial resilience" – able that is to survive shocks – grew from 10.7 million to 14.2 million; 11% of those surveyed said that were now "likely" to use a food bank and 16% said they expected to take on more debt in the next six months. The Resolution Foundation, a British think-tank which aims to improve the standard of living of low and middle-income families, says that as many as 450,000 out of an estimated 750,000 people in arrears in housing payments have fallen into debt as a direct result of the pandemic. We're really not 'all in this together'.   Mind the gap The European economic think-tank Bruegel reminds us that epidemics have always tended to raise income inequality - the gap between rich and poor widens as people lose their jobs or are put onto part-time work. The digitisation of the world has merely heightened the divide: "in the United States, in industries heavily exposed to the pandemic, employment fell by a staggering 42% for those who cannot telework, and by 22% for those who can, between February and April 2020...the COVID-19 pandemic has increased income inequality between the rich and the poor even in Europe, where governments put in place massive employment protection programmes". The pandemic has also exacerbated the difficulties facing young people. Bruegel reported last November that: "young active jobseekers are two or three times less likely than those aged over 55 to be able to find a job" and that "youth unemployment is significantly connected with poorer mental health".     This divide between rich and poor is not simply generational, it also exists between emerging and developed countries. The International Monetary Fund said last October that during 2002-19, "emerging markets and developing economies enjoyed welfare growth of almost 6% percent" but that the pandemic "could reduce welfare by 8 percent in emerging markets and developing countries", 'welfare' being defined as a combination of life expectancy, leisure time, consumption growth and consumption inequality. Yet the advance of distance working, or 'work from home' (WFH) is becoming entrenched. In January this year, the CEO of the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) giant Unilever said its 155,000 office workers will "never return to office work five days a week. Others are certain to follow suit". And the super-rich have got richer, powered in part by the extremely loose monetary policy led by the US Federal Reserve; in the second week of February, investors put a record $58 billion into US stocks, prompting fears from some that investors are extending into higher and higher risk. The spectacle of a gleeful pack pushing the previously moribund US stock GameStop way beyond conventional wisdom and the chasing of cryptocurrencies to fresh heights are symptoms of asset bubbles and disaffected younger people, enraged at the sight of the growing wealth and power of an older generation, armed with Covid-19 savings that have mushroomed. The world's 10 richest billionaires increased their wealth by $319 billion in 2020. According to the Financial Times, this was fuelled partly by the success of companies that have experienced a demand boost because of the pandemic, but also because central banks' efforts to cushion the unprecedented slowdown in activity by pumping massive waves of stimulus into the global economy helped drive up asset prices. "Inequality was bad and the Covid-19 pandemic is making it worse" was the view of a fellow at the US Brookings institution last November.     Stress-testing What will follow the end of this pandemic? Mass relief at a restoration of free movement, of course, and perhaps it will unleash a wave of spending, which is what governments want. But Covid-19 has stress-tested governments everywhere – and they are being tested when public distrust was already at a low level. In 2019, 60% of Europeans felt that mainstream parties and politicians did not care about people like them. The latest Edelman Trust Barometer, which surveyed more than 33,000 people in 28 markets worldwide between October 19 and November 18, 2020, claimed that people distrust the information they're being given from most sources in an "information bankruptcy". Voices questioning how much longer the US dollar can maintain its dominance are becoming louder, with the US economy now burdened with its biggest ever sovereign debt of $28 trillion and a federal budget deficit of more than $3 trillion. Under President Biden, fiscal spending on different 'must-have' programmes looks set to go into over-drive. Academics have studied the connections between pandemics and social unrest. While there is no conclusive evidence that mass pestilences (such as Covid-19) cause mass protests, there is a strong correlation between pandemics and civil disorder.     There is no point in being apocalyptic about this – but neither is it wise to sit idly by and do nothing. Conservation of what you have in terms of value will become increasingly important in the choppy waters ahead. Preservation of purchasing power against further erosions will become critical. Cryptocurrencies are not just an interesting extension of technology – they are a form of protest, an attempt to find a means of protection against the decline in the value of money. The trouble is, there are many obstacles to be overcome in the day-to-day use of private cryptocurrencies – and governments everywhere are planning to roll out their own central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), and could steamroller private cryptocurrencies into the ground. After all – what 'backs' a cryptocurrency except faith and despair? Glint was created to democratise the oldest form of money – gold – and through Glint, you can buy, spend, and save that oldest form of money, gold, which will last longer than a petal. [post_title] => Soapbox: All in this together? 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