France to Issue Gold and Silver Coins as Legal Tender, and Without Dissuasive Taxation?
[Thanks to the Boutique.monnaiedeparis.fr for this image of another coin.]
I'd love to have further information from anyone who is familiar with this subject.
Here is the article at the Linternaute.com website.
A translation of the principal paragraphs follows:
"The big news is that the face value of these new silver coins (5, 10, 15, 25, 50 euros) and gold coins (100, 250 and 500 euros) will be equal to their market value. 'We will be able to use them for purchases or to save them as a precious souvenir.'
"The first issue, starting September, will be the 5 euro coins (2 million units), 15 euros (500,000) and 100 euros (50,000). In 2009 will appear 10, 25 and 250 euros. In 2010, 50 and 500 denominations will be put into circulation.
"The coins will be available for purchase in 1,000 of the 17,000 postal agencies. 'This is the greatest capillary distribution network that we could have dreamed of, so as to reach the greatest number of French people,' emphasized Christophe Beaux.
"He estimates that 'the introduction of about 20 million euros of purchasing media is infinitessimal compared to the one trillion in existence.' 'Furthermore, we believe that 90 percent of these coins will never circulate, because of their sentimental value,' he says."
I cannot believe what I am reading. Is France going to issue coinage in gold and silver that will be legal tender? Someone, please enlighten me. If so, this is a true bombshell. Either that, or the producers of these coins realize that they will be taken off the market as quick as they appear.
Economists, and coin producers whether public or private, are aware of Gresham's Law, whereby good money (like gold and silver) will immediately be withdrawn from circulation by a public leery of the bad money (paper euros and dollars).
Here are some more links to this story, in the original French:
Monnaiedeparis.fr website (State coinage facility)
From what I understand after perusing the Monnaie de Paris website, this national entity produces all of France's coins, but also much commemorative coinage, just like the Mint does in the US.
I'm still not clear as to whether these coins are legally to be considered as commemorative or as legal tender, nor whether these coins will be sold without TVA or sales tax or other capital gains treatment.
From what I understand about the US, our own Mint's gold coins may be legal tender, but there are laws on the books that prevent us from writing contracts based on anything other than what the Congress calls legal tender, and today that must include fiat paper currency, and may even exclude gold or other commodities of more intrinsic value than paper. (Someone, please enlighten me.)
I know that it is illegal to produce private coinage as legal tender, to wit what happened to Bernard von NotHaus. I think he's still fighting.
To be continued. Oh, and something else I noted on that Monnaie de Paris website: A lot of the gold coins for sale are "tirage epuise" -- out of stock.