Mene Jewelry: Turning Fiat Money into Real Money (Schiff Report Video)
For centuries, gold jewelry was not only something beautiful to wear, it was also a store of wealth and value. But the 14-karat gold jewelry found in your local store isn’t the best option for investment. Now there is an alternative for people who want to own beautiful jewelry that will also serve as a store of value.
Mene is an ancient word for money. A new company by that name prices its jewelry by weight and a transparent premium. Mene also allows customers to track the value of their jewelry like an investment portfolio and sell back or exchange pieces back to the company.
In this special episode of the Schiff Report, Peter Schiff interviews Mene founder and CEO Roy Sebag. They not only talk about the company and this unique way to invest, but they also talk about the fundamental reasons you want to own gold.
Peter said he believes Mene has the potential to completely disrupt the jewelry industry.
As Sebag explains, you find an objective gold standard going back to the earliest writings in the Hammurabi code in 1756 BC. But most scholars agree actual gold coinage didn’t appear until around 700 BC. So what were people using before?
The answer is they were using 24-karat jewelry. They were essentially taking what we call bullion — the pure metal the way it’s found in nature — and they were fashioning it into various things like this torque that I’m wearing, or rings, or bracelets or necklaces, and that’s why whenever we dig up these old caves, we see the skeletons there, everything else is gone, but the pure gold jewelry is still there shining just the way it was.”
That ancient gold standard is still alive today in the East. Ninety percent of the gold demand from mines goes into these eastern economies in countries like India, China and in Southeast Asia where people engage in this carry trade. They short their local currencies and they go long in gold in the form of jewelry.
Gold is far more highly valued in these eastern countries. Sebag said he met an Indian banker who told him he would only sell his 24-karat gold jewelry for property.
They have this decentralized gold jewelry standard. It’s very high integrity. Everywhere I went, whether I went to the richest places, the poorest places, the way they all buy the jewelry is the same. It’s the precious metal weight multiplied by the price of gold that day, and then there’s a transparently disclosed premium.”
As Peter put it, people are actually using their jewelry as a store of value, as a form of savings.
They’re not spending money on jewelry the way we do in America. They’re actually investing in the jewelry. Because whatever they buy today can be sold tomorrow, and depending on the price of gold, they may actually get more local currency when they sell than when they bought. So, they’re not actually sacrificing because they’re getting to wear their gold … It’s a fashion statement, but it’s also a wealth statement, and it’s a way to preserve your wealth in contrast to what Americans do.”
In essence, this is a decentralized banking system. And the beauty of it is that it’s not dependent on any government or financial institution.
Sebag offers an extraordinary statistic. Based his calculations, there is $2 trillion of 24-karat gold jewelry in the East. This represents around 30% of the gold stock.
The bottom line is jewelry is not just a fashion statement or an adornment. It is – or should be -an investment.
This revelation was the catalyst for the creation of Mene. Sebag wanted to bring this Eastern model West.
The Mene designs aren’t just functional. They are beautiful. Sebag partnered with Diana Picasso – the granddaughter of the famous artist – to design Mene’s pieces.
You’ll want to watch the rest of the video to see how the pricing system works. It’s pretty amazing how Mene prices it jewelry based on the price of gold in real-time. As Peter put it, “You’re actually turning fiat money into real money.”
- Mene went public on Tuesday, November 6, 2018, ticker symbol MENE on the Toronto stock exchange & ADRGF (Amador Gold) on the US exchanges.
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