There’s a lot to cover today, so let’s dive into this week’s questions.
First, Charles asks, “Simon, when you write about international diversification, I appreciate that you have so much personal experience. Multiple passports, overseas business, foreign bank accounts, storing gold abroad, etc., you’ve actually done it all yourself. For newbies, which of these do you think is the most important?”
I think everyone ought to consider opening a foreign bank account and moving a portion of their savings there. This is the most important step, for four key reasons:
First, most western banks are sitting on hundreds of billions of dollars in losses to their asset portfolios, not only from the sub-prime debacle, but also from sovereign default issues.
Since 2008, there has really been no positive change in asset quality… and rather than update their balance sheets to reflect this grim reality, governments have simply authorized funny accounting tricks to hide the truth.
To put it bluntly, the bank which holds your money in the US or Europe is probably insolvent. And your government, which theoretically guarantees the deposit, is insolvent too.