WGC wants India to put idle gold stock to use

The World Gold Council is bullish on India. Aiming to target a five-fold increase in gold jewellery exports to $40 billion by 2020, from the current level of $8 billion, the Council has urged the Indian government to find ways of mobilising and monetising household savings imbedded in gold stocks.World Gold Council

Indian households have an estimated 22,000 tonnes to 25,000 tonnes of gold.

Asking the world’s second largest gold consumer to put its gold to use, the World Gold Council (WGC) has suggested that India should aim at becoming the “jeweller to the world”.

The WGC has noted that as the country attempts to put to use its gold lying idle with households and temples, it can reduce its dependence on imports in the next five years.

In its Vision 2020 document for the country, unveiled at the second edition of the India International Bullion Summit organised by the India Bullion and Jewellers Association, the WGC has noted: “Our vision for gold is that it should be put to work for the economy, creating jobs, developing skills, generating exports and revenues, an essential part of the financial, economic and social structure of the country.”

Stating that India’s love affair with gold is “timeless, spanning centuries and millennia. It is much more than just a precious metal. It is part of the fabric of Indian culture and an inseparable part of our belief system,” the Council has noted: “For most Indians, gold is sacred; an embodiment of divinity and a symbol of purity, prosperity and fortune that can adorn the body and celebrate life.”

World Gold Council

The WGC’s vision envisages the creation of five million new jobs across the gold value chain: manufacturing, retailing, assaying, recycling, etc.

“To achieve this, artisans need to be empowered further by training and skill development. Around 40% of the country’s gold demand must be satisfied through domestic stocks,” said WGC managing director (India) Somasundaram PR, addressing the Summit in Mumbai.

Asking the government to adopt a stable policy regime, Somasundaram said around 60% of the demand in the country could be met via imports and mining.

“There should be a big and meaningful thrust to enhancing gold deposit schemes, extending duty benefit and import entitlement for domestic gold deposits,” he told the gathering.

People’s penchant for gold in India and the consequent high gold imports for decades have made Indians the world’s largest hoarders of the precious metal. Since India barely produces any gold domestically, imports of gold worth billions of dollars every year affect its trade balance.

The country imported gold worth $53.80 billion in 2012-13, while its exports of gold items, both jewellery and investment products such as bars and coins, stood at just $18.28 billion.

In 2013-14, though gold imports crashed to just over $30 billion, exports of gold products stood at $11.04 billion, with the government saying its measures to contain bullion imports had yielded results.

Some 2,000 delegates from India and countries like Hong Kong, UAE, the UK and Turkey participated in the two-day Summit deliberations. WGC’s Somasundaram said the Indian government must monetise household stocks the Turkey way, to maintain trade balance, and contain the current account deficit.

India has also been asked to target 75% of the gold sold to be standardised and hallmarked in the next five years. It should also provide higher loan-to-value ratios for hallmarked jewellery, and ensure mandatory hallmarking for pieces above a designated selling price, the WGC said.


WGC has also suggested that the Indian government launch a “Karigar (artisan) welfare scheme” towards skill development and training of artisans and promotion of a “gold tourism” circuit, showcasing handcrafted Indian jewellery.

“This vision is to outline objectives for the industry that address the savings habit underpinning gold demand, support value addition, increase employment opportunities and benefit the industry in an organised way without curbing supply or impacting the current account deficit,” the WGC report noted.

It has added that this would allow the gold trade to operate in a free and transparent manner for the benefit of millions of households, and eventually lead to increased economic wealth for the nation.

The sky is falling! Should you buy gold and silver?

Fear is stalking the global stock markets. Stock indices have been falling back sharply seeing a move to what might be seemed safer assets like bonds and gold. The falls have been precipitated by some poor economic data suggesting that most major economies are not out of the recessionary mire yet and, in the U.S. in particular, the realisation that the Fed is getting down to near eliminating its latest Quantitative Easing programme in total, although there may be some succour in that it tends to be putting back the day that it may allow interest rates to rise. And what happens in the U.S. markets tends to have a strong follow-through impact on markets in other parts of the world.GOLD 2

A number of pundits have been predicting a stock market crash for some time now. The investing public though, just as it has in the past ahead of previous stock price crashes, has ignored this, seeing the market as an ever-increasing money-making mechanism. Thus the world’s major stock indices have been on a tear moving higher and higher without there being anything serious in the way of increasing corporate profits to support this. Suddenly it could all come crashing down – that’s what has happened in the past. While the Dow, S&P, TSX, FTSE, DAX etc. are not yet in freefall they are beginning to look like they could be heading that way.

So, should one buy gold as the safe haven it has proven to be in the past. Inflation – which is generally assumed to be gold-positive – just has not happened despite the vast amounts of liquidity the U.S. Fed and other central banks have pumped into the markets. Indeed much of the talk now is about the increasing possibility of deflation. What most don’t realise is that gold performs just as well, if not better, in a deflationary environment vis-a-vis the stock markets than it does in an inflationary scenario.


But even if stock prices are about to dive there may well be a strong argument for not buying gold as a protector against market freefall – at least not yet. Go back six years to the last market crash, which as market crashes seem to do really came to a head in the month of October, in 2008. Not only did stocks and shares dive virtually across the board, but so did the gold price and that of metal and mineral commodities. Maybe that’s why there is currently so much nervousness in the silver market; in the 2008/9 market crash the silver price more than halved from over $20 an ounce to a little over $9 an ounce – but then made a spectacular recovery over the next two years to hit close to $50 an ounce – heady days for the silver investor.

So how did gold fare in 2008/9? For those with short memories it didn’t fare as badly as silver, or as the general stock market, but it did fall back pretty sharply (just under 30%) from a high of just over $1,000 an ounce in March 2008 down to around $720 by the end of October but then started picking up again. The Dow, however fared a lot worse than gold with a much more prolonged decline from over 12,000 in October 2007 bottoming at around 6,600 in March 2009 – getting on for a 50%% fall.


The reason for gold falling back alongside the stock markets was probably a matter of funds and institutions having to sell strong assets alongside weaker ones to stay liquid – and if we are indeed due for another crash of similar proportions (many are predicting an even deeper one) then gold is likely to react in much the same way. It will fall along with virtually all the markets – maybe not as steeply, nor for as long, but fall nonetheless. Jeffrey Currie of Goldman Sachs with his $1,050 gold at year end could thus be right – but for all the wrong reasons! – should there be a market collapse.

What this article might be taken as suggesting is that cash may be the best protector in the short term should markets go into freefall. Gold and silver would not be immune and will fall back too. But in the aftermath they will likely recover far faster and rise at a far quicker rate than most other investment options. Thus when to actually buy gold or silver is all a question of timing. As we have pointed out here before, in the long term precious metals should perform extremely well, but in the short term things are much more uncertain.


Ukrainian customs are heavily influenced by Christianity, which is the religion with the largest number of adherents in the country. Gender roles also tend to be distributed in the traditional manner, the grandparents playing an important role in the education of the children than in Western countries. The Ukrainian culture has been influenced by its neighbors to the west and east of the country, which is reflected in the fine arts, architecture and music.


The tradition of painting Easter eggs, known as Pisanka, dates back a long way in Ukraine. The eggs are drawn with wax to achieve forms, and then the paint is applied in order to color them, without covering the parts drawn with wax. After painting the egg, the wax is removed, remaining only the colorful shapes. This tradition is more than a thousand years old, before the rise of Christianity in Ukraine.

The Ukrainian traditional cuisine is based on chicken, pork, beef, fish and mushrooms.

Also, Ukrainians eat more potatoes, cereals and vegetables, both fresh and pickled. Among traditional Ukrainian dishes are vareniki (boiled dumplings with mushrooms, potatoes, cabbage, cheese or cherries), borscht and holubti (a kind of cabbage stuffed with rice, carrots and meat). Ukrainian specialties include Kiev chicken and Kiev cake. Ukrainian’s favorite drinks are stewed fruit, juices, yoghurt, mineral water, tea and coffee, beer, wine and horilka.


Kiev is the largest cultural, scientific and industrial center of Ukraine and is also one of the most attractive tourist destinations. The romantic atmosphere of the Dnieper riverbank is maintained and appreciated by historians, as architectural monuments of the world treasures. An old city, yet so modern that combines contradictory influences in a surprising way, attracts every year millions of visitors who never fail to fully explore it.

Always effervescent, alternating leisure and trade center with tranquil oasis of parks and charming gardens, Kiev has much to offer.

What Are Casinos Dice Rules?

The most common dice game you’ll find at casinos is craps. It’s a game where you wager against other players or the house on the outcome of each roll of the dice. Depending on the type of bet you make, the payout could be as much as 30 to 1. To get that payout, you need to understand how the game is played.

 Casinos Dice Rules

Dice Handling

When handling dice in casino craps, you must hold and throw the dice with a single hand. When you throw the dice, they must hit the wall on the opposite side of the table. If the dice go off the table, the stickman will inspect them before putting them back into play.

How the Game Moves

Only other shooters (people throwing the dice) can bet on the current shooter. The progression of shooters moves in a clockwise direction around the table.

The Come Out Roll

The first roll of the dice is the come out roll, which begins a new game. A new game starts if the shooter makes his point. A come out roll also happens after the previous shooter fails to make his point or seven out and a new game begins with the new shooter.

Pass or Don’t Pass

As the shooter you will be required to make a pass line or don’t pass line bet on the come out roll. Pass wins with 7 or 11 and loses with 2, 3, or 12. Don’t Pass wins with 2 or 3, loses with 7 or 11 and ties with 12.

 Casinos Dice Rules

Making Points

If you throw a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10 on the come out roll, that’s your point. You continue to roll until you roll your point or a 7. You can bet that you’ll make the point before you roll a 7 or vice versa. If you make your point, you can continue as the shooter. If you roll 7 out, the dice goes to the next shooter.

Other Bets

There are many other types of bets you make in craps (come and don’t come, odds, place, field, proposition), but his is the basic flow and rules of the game. Understanding the best and their percentages against the house would require another article. However, with this you can throw dice and not look like a fool.

The Major Disconnect Between Brands And Consumers When It Comes To Social Media

A survey conducted by the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council and Lithium, a social media tech firm, revealed a huge divide between what marketers think consumers want vs. what consumers really want when it comes to social media.

Querying over 1,300 consumers and over 120 CMOs and titled the “Variance in the Social Brand Experience” study, “… the findings challenge marketers to better understand cognitive, behavioral, and attitudinal dynamics as they seek to integrate social media into their overall marketing mix.”About Snorkeling in Destin, Florida

Well based on the findings, brand marketers, product managers, chief marketing officers and on down the line have a long way to go to ” to better understand (the) cognitive, behavioral, and attitudinal dynamics” of their customers for consumers are speaking loud and clear as to what it is they want in exchange for connecting with a brand on social media.

This question was posed to consumers…

There is another chart which shows the responses to the question “Why do you like a brand on Facebook?” and 67% of the respondents said they do so to get exclusive offers.

People are connecting with brands on social media because they expect something in return.

Liz Miller, Vice President of Marketing Programs for the CMO Council…

“The social brand explosion has created a wave of loyalty among social consumers who are eager to show their support and share their experiences with others online, but this loyalty comes at a cost—from savings to games—that consumers see as their social currency. Social can garner significant influence and pull for marketers who can bridge this gap in expectation and execution.”

From the looks of things not many CMOs and marketers are putting enough weight to the idea of social currency…

As you can see nearly 60% of CMOs believe people like their brand or follow them on social media because they like the content they are sharing, while only 33 percent believe their fans are looking for incentives or rewards, and only 27 percent believe customers are seeking special savings or experiences exclusive for followers.

About Snorkeling in Destin, Florida

See the disconnect now?

From the findings…

“Social customers not only want but expect to be rewarded for connecting with brands online, and there are a variety of ways to go about satisfying them. Special offers and promotions bring new customers into the fold while the chance for increased status, privilege, or rank keeps them engaged and motivates them to contribute more.

A mere 7 percent of marketers report that they reward their most active online contributors, which creates an open playing field for those who gamify the social customer experience in 2012; marketers should give social customers something to work for and a reason to level up. Socially savvy brands will reward social customers with greater status and privileges not just for their likes, but for a full range of beneficial behaviors—from voting on product ideas to blogging about a technical solution.

About Snorkeling in Destin, Florida

Those who see the most social success in 2012 will have something for everyone, offering multiple paths to success. While some social customers are product experts, others are friendly and welcoming, and still
others are good at getting conversations started. Each is a valuable member of the complex ecosystem that is a brand community, each has something to offer, and each expects to be rewarded for their contribution.”

Here’s one more chart I want to share which speaks to the need for social currency… this one was posed to consumers:

See what this chart above is saying loud and clear? The key word is “new” as in “… new ways I’m using social media.” Consumers now have the expectation of being rewarded. They are coming to the social media party with the expectation to be rewarded and if a brand is not rewarding them, there are others in that “open playing field” mentioned above that will gladly take their place.

About Snorkeling in Destin, Florida

Ok Brand Managers and Product Managers and CMOs and anyone else in a marketing role…

What do you say to all of this?

What do take away from it?

How are you rewarding your customers currently?

How are you integrating social media into your overall marketing mix?

Michael Brown/Ferguson Riots Proof of the Failure of Identity Politics, Liberalism

The “no indictment” finding of the grand jury in the Michael Brown case has, predictably, ignited a firestorm among the black community. Officer Darren Wilson (white) shot Michael Brown (black) in August. Now there are riots in Ferguson, Missouri despite the fact that 93% of blacks were murdered by other blacks.

There are no “riots” over the fact that 93% of blacks are murdered by other blacks.

Michael Brown/Ferguson Riots Proof of the Failure of Identity Politics, Liberalism

Reminds me of this graphic:

There is no money to be made in blacks murdering blacks but get a white killing a black and there’s blood in the water.

Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani said as much:

  • “What about the poor black child that was killed by another black child?” Giuliani asked. “Why aren’t you protesting that?… Why don’t you cut it down so that so many white police officers don’t have to be in black areas?”
  • “When I become mayor, I’ll do that,” replied Dyson, exasperated.
  • “White police officers wouldn’t be there,” Giuliani said, “if you weren’t killing each other.”

The Liberals racists are an odd coalition however their goal is the same (which is why they are united): they want to see the dominant power structure (composed of whites) replaced by the “oppressed” class (Hispanics and blacks).

Michael Brown/Ferguson Riots Proof of the Failure of Identity Politics, Liberalism

Anything that damages the dominant power structure is something these “activists” favor.

Thus blacks killing blacks doesn’t further their agenda so they ignore it.

Things will continue to get more polarized as black “leaders” keep feeding their supporters a string of lies and excuses further sending them from reality.

Welcome to Ferguson… it’ll be in your backyard, eventually.

Girl’s Camp Hiking Ideas

Hiking plays a natural part in the activities planned at any girls’ camp. It provides exercise, opportunities for nature observation, time for relationships to develop and a chance to experience the beauty of the outdoors. While simply hitting the trail makes a perfectly acceptable camp activity, sometimes adding a twist to an old favorite can renew the experience. These easy activities will jazz up any hike and challenge girls to see the beauty around them through new eyes.

Nature Journals

Keeping nature journals gives girls an opportunity to take a moment and reflect on the surrounding environment. They make observations and record them in a journal, detailing what they’ve seen, heard, felt, smelled and possibly tasted.

Nature journals provide girls a medium to record their experiences while developing artistic and writing skills. A nature journal can be a one-time event or an ongoing camp project, resulting in a personal memento to take home. The time spent on a hike to work on the journal will provide less athletic girls a chance to catch their breath without drawing undue attention to them. All the girls can use the journaling techniques they learn even after camp ends.

Girl's Camp Hiking IdeasScavenger Hunt

A scavenger hunt using native flora and fauna as the items to be found creates an exciting way to educate girls about the wildlife around them. You can use a specific hiking trail, or scatter the scavenger items throughout the campground and encourage girls to hike during their free time. Use scavenger hunts either to encourage individual or team competition, or as a mixer activity encouraging all the girls to work together to complete the hunt.

Fairy Journals

The entries in a fairy journal assume that fairies may be real while recording natural observations. Fairy journals allow girls an opportunity to be creative while using similar techniques to those for nature journals. Younger girls and those who enjoy fairies will quickly get involved in the pretend aspects of keeping fairy journals.

Girl's Camp Hiking Ideas

Challenge older girls or those who consider fairies foolish to view this as a problem-solving activity. Considering what challenges you would face if your total height were only 3 inches actually provides a valuable mental exercise. Even adults find it challenging to see the world from someone else’s point of view.

Edible Plants Hike

The plausibility of this hike will depend on the camp’s resources. The instructor leading this hike must have training and experience in identifying edible plants. The season will also affect the appropriateness of this hike.

An edible plants hike gives girls another opportunity to learn about native flora and fauna. The ability to safely identify edible foods in the wild provides a sense of independence. During the hike, teach the girls which plants in the area are edible. Have the girls gather samples of the plants and bring them back to camp. Use the gathered plants to prepare a salad or other dish.

Girl's Camp Hiking Ideas

Orienteering Treasure Hunt

A treasure hunt makes an exciting way to practice the skills learned in orienteering class. Orienteering simply means the ability to use a map and compass to travel unfamiliar terrain. Using their map and compass, the girls must use orienteering skills to travel a trail and reach a hidden treasure. An orienteering course can be as short as a quarter of a mile, or 5 miles or longer for girls with experience.

You can start a treasure hunt from one point with teams following the same trail in timed intervals. Or teams with different sets of directions can start from one point and end at different places. As a third option, start the teams from a variety of different points and have them follow directions to the same destination. Regardless of how you set up the treasure hunt, each group of girls working together will need a compass and either a map or a set of directions to follow. The treasure may be anything from a simple “No KP duty” pass to a package of candy bars.

10 Healthy Foods Women Love

Here’s my top 10 Healthy Foods Women Love:

Pomegranate Juice – helps you keep the sniffles away. High levels of germ fighting antioxidants in pomegranates kill viruses in your mouth before they have a change to spread to your body. Drink 8oz of pomegranate juice a day to keep the germs away.

 10 Healthy Foods Women Love

Dark Chocolate – tasty way to take care of that pesky diarrhea. The Catechin found in dark chocolate helps stop fluid loss in the intestines. Break out that chocolate stash, ladies. Today, chocolate made it to the healthy foods section.

Pistachios – helps to keep your stress levels at bay. Just 11/2 oz of Pistachios a day will bring your blood pressure down during stressful situations .

Bananas – help your body to get rid of excess fluid caused by PMS bloating or if you over did it with the salt shaker . Bananas are healthy foods that are considered diuretic due to their high potassium content. Just one banana a day can take the puffed up feeling away.

 10 Healthy Foods Women Love

Popcorn – helps you to feel happier instantly. Munching on crunchy foods like popcorn helps the brain to release mood-boosting chemicals.

Citrus Fruit – another stress buster with high content of vitamin C. Just one glass of OJ or one grapefruit in the morning gives your body enough vitamin C to keep you stress to a minimum.

Coffee – not only it is loaded with caffeine that many of moms need to start the day with, but it also has enough fiber that keeps you regular. I love the fact that coffee is included in healthy foods category….time for another cup.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich – will help you fall asleep faster. Peanut butter contains sleep inducing Tryptophan and grape jelly is loaded with sleep regulating hormone called Melatonin. So snack on some PB&J few hours before you go to sleep.

 10 Healthy Foods Women LoveCarrots – just 4 raw carrot sticks a day can cut the risk of ovarian cancer by 54%. Carotenoids found in carrots helps to clean up ovary damaging chemicals.

Chamomile Tea – drinking 5 cups of this “magic” brew for two weeks will help to relieve your muscle spasm and help ease your cramps. It will also help to calm you down.

I am sure we all can incorporate most if not all of these powerful healthy foods into our daily diet. I know I love every one of them and knowing that they are good for me is just a delicious bonus.

Chipotle Shows How True Branding Is More Than A Tagline

A brand is more than just a logo and a tagline. When different pieces of the marketing mix can be brought together with cohesive planning and execution, an enduring and profitable brand platform is created. Chipotle’s first national commercial succeeded in strengthening their brand thanks not only to creative, but because its messaging linked back to the company’s core promise.

For the sake of full disclosure, let me start by saying that I love Chipotle. I enjoy their food, I use their iPhone app to order without waiting in line, and I appreciate their insistence on making “food with integrity.” That said, it may come as no surprise that I also very much enjoyed their new commercial.

Chipotle Shows How True Branding Is More Than A Tagline

Not only was this commercial more impressive and interesting to me than any of the commercials during the “big game” this year, it also managed to be touching and memorable without straying from Chipotle’s core message and brand promise.
From the simple-looking geometric animation, to the perfect song (which became all the more appropriate when warbled by the legendary Willie Nelson), to the wordless but crystal-clear storytelling…everything in this ad hit exactly the right note. Head over to their website and the brand message is there, loud and clear, “learn more about food with integrity.”

Chipotle Shows How True Branding Is More Than A Tagline

A brand is more than just a logo and a tagline, and when handled properly, its messaging permeates everything that is created and released, to the point that you can see a single piece of collateral and know immediately who it belongs to. At Star we believe that a company’s goals need to align messaging and design elements with market trends and customer insights. When these pieces come together, an enduring and profitable brand platform is created.

While Chipotle may not quite be up to the level of a McDonald’s or a Burger King, they offer a solid brand message to potential customers that is reinforced with all of their current collateral as well as in-store signage. With this ad, they solidify the brand promise that differentiates Chipotle from all of their competitors, which, in essence, is the true purpose of branding.

Chipotle Shows How True Branding Is More Than A Tagline

In a world nearly overrun with fast food joints and quick food choices, a differentiator like this could easily make someone walk a block further to get lunch. I heard more than one person mention that the commercial gave them chills or even brought them to tears, how many ads have you seen that could boast that claim?

When It Comes To Brands, Consumers Use Social Media For This More Than Anything Else

People use social media for a wide variety of reasons – catch up with old friends, make new connections and so on. But when it comes what they use social media for regarding a given brand or product or service, most people use social media to see what other people are saying about these very same brands, products or services.


Back in August I wrote a post called Why Marketers Need To Pay Attention To Online Reviews in which I revealed a survey finding that showed that 80% of online customers change their mind about making a purchase after reading negative online reviews. I also explained in that post why a negative review can have a positive impact. It really can. Trust me. Read the post and you’ll see what I mean.


New research by NM Incite, a Nielsen/McKinsey Company shows that the #1 thing consumers use social media for as it relates to their favorite brands is not to get coupons/discounts, or to get information about new products or even to provide feedback of their own, be it positive or negative.

The #1 reason consumers use social media as it relates to their favorite brands is to read. As in read what others are saying about their favorite brands or products or services. The chart below shows that people use social media on a personal level to connect with old friends, for entertainment purposes and so on. And on a career level to network. But look at the section labeled “Products/Services.”