The January 16, 1909, Export Report
The January 16, 1909, Export Report

The January 16th Export Report

A key element in our discussion will be a determination as to the exact composition of the exports contained within the January 16th U. S. Customs export report. As we have discussed earlier, the "officially" transporting vessels of gold shipments were not always the ships actually carrying the gold, but that the Customs reports were generally accurate with respect to amount and composition of exports. However, there are differing reports both from the newspapers and other official U. S. Government agencies that conflict with the U. S. Customs House report, and with each other, over the exact bar/coin composition of exports contained within the January 16th export report, although all agree on the total amount of gold exported to France, combined gold bars and coin, at $5,420,000.

A knowledge of the sequence of gold engagements is important for a thorough understanding of the events; through our chart Engagements of Gold - January, 1909 (click for chart), we have correlated the engagements of gold with the export reports. The January 16th report is comprised of the January 8th, 11th and 12th engagements. The newspaper accounts discussed so far identify the January 12th engagement as consisting of $3,000,000 in American Gold Eagles and the January 11th engagement as consisting of $500,000 in gold bars. Additional newspaper support for the $500,000 gold bar engagement of January 11th follow:


The January 11th, 1909 Engagement.

The National City Bank to-day engaged $500,000 gold bars for shipment to Paris on Wednesday.

Brooklyn Times, January 11, 1909, 11:2

There was a violent advance in foreign exchange rates to-day, and more gold was engaged for export. ...
The National City Bank engaged $500,000 bars for export on Wednesday [January 13]. A good deal more gold probably will go out on that day.

New York Post, January 11, 09, 1:2


The National City Bank will ship Wednesday $500,000 gold bars to Paris, and probably some gold coin in addition.

Boston Evening Transcript, January 11, 1909, 6:4.

[Yesterday] The National City Bank has taken $500,000 of gold for shipment to Paris, and several other provisional gold engagements have been made. [Emphasis supplied.]

The (London) Times, January 12, 09, 12:1

[On January 11, 1909,] The National City Bank engaged $500,000 in gold bars for shipment to Paris on Wednesday. This makes $9,100,000 gold exports since December 3. France evidently is getting gold from every quarter to prepare for the big Russian loan, for it bought $3,750,000 South African gold in the London market to-day. There was talk that local bankers may get gold bars in Philadelphia if foreign exchange rates keep up to a point where exports continue profitable. There is a great scarcity of bars here.

New York Press, January 12, 1909, 9:4

Gold engaged for export [original bold] yesterday amounted to half a million dollars, to be shipped Wednesday to Paris. It is likely, according to bankers, that the outflow of gold from this country will continue owing to the requirements of French bankers for the Russian and home government loans, also because of the low reserve of the Bank of England. In some quarters it was expected yesterday that the discount rate of the Bank of England would be advanced Thursday.

New York American, January 12, 1909, 18:3

[Yesterday] The National City Bank has engaged $500,000 gold bars for shipment to Paris by to-morrow's steamer.

NY Times, Jan. 12, 09, 11:2

[Yesterday,] Only one engagement of gold for export was announced in business hours, the City Bank snapping up $500,000 in gold bars in the Assay Office for shipment to Pars to-day. At the Sub-Treasury there were many inquiries for coin, and it is expected that a large amount will be taken to-day. International bankers also figured on the shipment of gold bars from Philadelphia, the supply of bars in the Assay Office being again exhausted.

New York Sun, January 12, 1909, 9:1.

The January 8th, 1909 Engagement.

The only other engagement to discuss is the January 8th engagement. Newspaper accounts of that engagement are as follows:

A further sharp advance in sterling exchange rates to-day brought that market to the gold export level, and $500,000 in bars was secured at the Assay Office by the National City Bank for shipment to Paris to-morrow. The bank also took $500,000 in coin from the Sub-Treasury making altogether a $1,000,000 consignment. ...

New York Post, January 8, 09, 10:3

... The engagement of $1,000,000 gold for shipment to Paris to-morrow attracted widespread attention from the fact that 75 per cent of the amount was in gold coin, this being the first shipment of coin to Europe for some years. Importance was lent to the movement because, while shipments were confined to bars, the outgo could be measured by the supply at the assay office, which was very small, but with exchange here and in Paris at figures that permit of the outgo of coin, there is only a general idea of where the movement may stop. Exporters can obtain all the coin they want at the subtreasury. At the moment everything favors a continuance of shipments, and it is expected that next week will witness an outgo of from $3,000,000 to $5,000,000. ...

N. Y. Evening Mail, January 8, 09, 12:2



Exports of gold coin to Paris are now to be made as the supply of gold bars at the assay office has been exhausted in the trade demands of jewelers. This is the first time that coin has been taken for shipment in several years. The National City bank is to export $2,000,000 to Paris to-morrow. It is expected that several millions more will be shipped next week. All but $500,000 of to-days engagement is of coin. ...

N. Y. Evening Mail, January 8, 09, 12:5


National City Bank Engages $2,000,-
000 for Paris.

There was a resumption yesterday of gold exports to Europe, the rate of exchange favoring such shipments. The National City Bank engaged $2,000,000 for shipment to Paris to-day, the consignment being in the form of $1,500,000 in coin and $500,000 in bars.
It was found necessary to ship such a large amount of gold coin because no more bars were available. It is said that in Europe particular efforts are being made to accumulate a supply of gold in anticipation of the Russian loan which is to be brought out in Paris.

New York Herald, Jan. 9, 09, 16:5

The National City Bank late yesterday afternoon increased its gold engagement to $2,000,000 for shipment to Paris to-day. All but $500,000 of this went in coin. ...

New York Post, January 9, 09, Fin. 7:5


$2,000,000 Engaged for Paris and $20,000,000 in All May Go.


The gold movement to Paris was resumed yesterday with the engagement of $2,000,000 by the National City Bank for export by to-day's steamer. Of the total shipment, $500,000 in gold bars was obtained at the Assay Office and the balance was taken in the shape of coin from the Sub-Treasury. In addition, $500,000 in coin was withdrawn to provide for the shipment to Argentina, arrangements for which were made on Thursday.
In the opinion of some well informed bankers, the present resumption of the gold export movement may last until perhaps $20,000,000 gold has been sent out. The total shipments during the first part of this movement, which was interrupted several weeks ago, amounted to $6,100,000. The approach of the flotation in Paris of the Russian Loan is regarded as one of the reasons for the present outflow of gold to Paris, but this market has long been close to the gold export point by reason of the general conditions governing the international exchanges.

New York Times, January 9, 09, 3:5

PARIS GETS $1,800,000 GOLD.

New York Banks This Week Gained Fully $13,000,000 Cash.


To-day $1,800,000 gold will leave New York for Paris, while $500,000 will be sent to Argentina. Of the former amount only $400,000 consists of bars, the remainder being in gold coin, since the supply of bars suitable for export has been exhausted. Notwithstanding these engagements, sterling closed at the highest of the day. ...

Journal of Commerce, January 9, 09, 12:3

... The international monetary situation this week was brought into greater prominence than heretofore through the resumption of gold exports from New York to Paris and Argentina. The recent steady hardening in sterling here and the fall in Paris indicated clearly that an outgo was inevitable in the month of January. But this is nothing usual, as gold exports have frequently occurred in this month in past years. The significance of the movement, however, was in the fact that exchange reached a point that permitted of [sic] shipment of gold coin, something very rare of late years. ...

N. Y. Evening Mail, January 9, 09, 15:1

The National City Bank announced yesterday the engagement of $2,000,000 gold for shipment to Paris to-day. Of this amount $1,500,000 will be in the form of gold coin, as the Assay Office was unable to furnish a sufficient amount of bars for the consignment. It was also announced that $500,000 gold would be shipped to South America to-day by the National Bank of Commerce.

New York World, January 9, 1909, 11:4.