…Blanchard & Co. says:

Company Press Release

By Neal R. Ryan
Vice President and Director of Economic Research
Blanchard and Co. Inc., New Orleans
Wednesday, February 7, 2007

www.blanchardonline.com

According to recently updated IMF reserves statistics, some central banks have begun purchasing significant quantities of gold over the past few months, in stark contrast to the most recent figures available to the market, says Donald W. Doyle, Chairman and CEO of Blanchard and Co. Inc.

The central banks of Russia, Kazakhstan, Greece, and the Philippines all have added to gold held in reserve, according to figures updated February 5, 2007.

“The general trend of central bank activity regarding gold reserves has changed a great deal in the past year,” Doyle says. “For the first time in the seven years of the program, banks affiliated with the Central Bank Gold Agreement failed to reach sales quotas in 2006, and now, with updated IMF reserve data just published, it is apparent that gold sales have slowed. In addition, the much-anticipated and speculated-upon gold buying is finally emerging in the market.”

According to IMF statistics, Russia has added 7.45 tonnes to reserves, Kazakhstan has added 7.38 tonnes, Greece has added 3.56 tonnes, and the Philippines added 1.4 tonnes. While Russia stated publicly in 2006 that it would increase its gold reserves substantially over the coming years, the moves by other central banks were unexpected in the market, clearly a bullish signal, Doyle remarked.

Blanchard and Co. Inc. is the largest and most respected retailer of American rare coins and precious metals in the United States, serving more than 350,000 people with expert consultation and assistance in the acquisition of American numismatic rarities and gold, silver, and platinum bullion. The Blanchard Economic Research Unit is a key source of precious metals market analysis and continues to be an important resource for financial and consumer media throughout the United States. Blanchard and its predecessor companies have called the New Orleans area home for more than 30 years. For more information about the company, visit BlanchardGold.com or call the company toll free at 1-800-880-4653.

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