Good morning. We’re often reminded that the stock market isn’t the economy. That’s true. But the stock market does price in expectations about the economy.
Right now, it‘s working in some of the uncertainty from the coronavirus outbreak. There will be more days ahead with big rallies and big drops.
These are the kinds of moves that make for great trading opportunities. Stay cautious, but remember, no market selloff lasts forever. 😉
“People overestimate what can be done in one year, and underestimate what can be done in ten.”
February 27, 2019
What’s the most impenetrable place on Earth?
Look at this building. So innocent-looking, huh? Perhaps it’s home to maybe a few office or something.
Nope. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Have you ever heard the phrase “All the gold in Fort Knox”? Well, this place, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, has even more than Fort Knox; 250 billion dollars and 7000 tons of gold.
Little of the gold belongs to the U.S. Most of it belongs to foreign central banks and several international organizations.
With these kinds of people stashing one of the world’s most valuable substances here, this place has got to have some features to make those organizations trust them. It does.
To start with, the building is protected by armed guards and it, along with the outside perimeter, is monitored at all times by security cameras.
If you get past that, you’ll have to sneak 78 feet, or 24 meters, down to the vault where all the gold is stored. There is only one way in, a 3-meter steel cylinder that weighs 90 tons, surrounded by a 140-ton steel and concrete frame. This cylinder is usually rotated 90 degrees, with four holes for steel rods that can’t be taken out until next regular business hours.
When closed, the cylinder becomes an air- and water-tight seal that is so good a person in there would suffocate in three days.
If you manage to pass that, you’ll find out the inside of the vault is monitored just like the building, except there are motion sensors as well.
Congratulations! Now you can get the gold, which is stored in 122 compartments, each for a different account holder. On each compartment, there are two combination locks, a padlock, and an auditor seal. In order to unlock this compartment, you need three people, two from the New York Federal Gold Staff and one from the Internal Audit Staff; no individual knows all three combinations.
Well, you got the gold, each one of the 500,000+ bars weighing 27 pounds! Now it’s time to escape, which won’t be that easy. The only way out would be that same cylinder, which would likely be rotated, or through a bunch of New York City policemen, who would swarm you.
Oh, you’re thinking you can dig in? Well, good luck with that. The vault is enclosed in a steel and concrete frame, exactly like that cylinder, and security forces for the place are specifically looking for ground vibrations. Not to mention this is happening in the middle of downtown Manhattan, where such an act would be a bit too noticeable.
Not a single (physical) break-in has even been attempted on this building, which just goes to show how secure the place is. And the first will likely be simply an attempt.