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Weekend reflections

April 21st, 2006

Weekend Reflections is on again. Please comment on any topic of interest (civilised discussion and no coarse language, please). Feel free to put in contributions more lengthy than for the Monday Message Board or standard comments.

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  1. Terje Petersen
    April 21st, 2006 at 20:09 | #1

    Every three minutes a new e-gold account is created. And sometime in the next 24 hours the 3 millionth account will be opened.

    http://www.e-gold.com/stats.html

    Just for fun people might see if they can time things so that they get the 3 millionth e-gold account. My guess is that it will be issued around 9pm on Saturday (Australian EST).

    E-gold is very much coming of age and turns ten this year. It may still be a few years before it reaches true critical mass and goes mainstream however it is already a significant force. Somewhere between US$2 – US$4 billion worth of sales are paid for using e-gold per annum. The amount of gold they have in storage rivals some small nations. In the last 24 hours over 75000 transactions were conducted using e-gold. The user base is growing at about 55% per annum.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E-gold

    Of course private currencies are nothing new. Prior to 1910 privately issued promisory notes were the norm in Australia. And in the 1800s they were common place in much of the world. Today such private paper currencies are prohibited by our government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Australian_Bank_Notes_Tax_Act_1910

    E-gold gets around the restriction by keeping a ledger.

  2. April 21st, 2006 at 20:19 | #2

    Terje: The concept of private currencies is easily grasped by blue collar people.

    Daily I am quoted rates for various jobs, goods, services, errands, materials, government supplies (off back of truck), labour, even certifications, all quoted and calcluated in litres of beer, with quick conversion to the parallel currency of rum, should I prefer to trade in that.

    Sometimes I wonder if there is not a quid (?) to be made by becoming a dealer in “currency” exchange between rum & beer.

  3. observa
    April 21st, 2006 at 23:18 | #3

    Free at last! I’m free at last! Well now that the Federal govt has got the only debt I collectively owed from around my neck. Question is have they really just printed money for us to spend privately overseas that gets lent back to us at low rates to spend again overseas to lend…. Well you get the picture. Perhaps the almost 10 billion of public debt retired per year over the last decade has been most beneficial in not crowding out all that more productive private investment. Hence all those lovely jobs and low inflation, etc.

    Of course it’s quite possible that a resort to the printing presses does not need to show up in general price inflation as classical theory predicts. The people may be more than happy to store all that extra purchasing power by inflating asset values like RE and shares, gold or paintings. Of course this doesn’t even have to be a majority of consumers, just those with lots of the excess printed dollars. As well they can be overseas consumers who are happy to sock away these surplus saved dollars in the same inflated assets also. Actually when you think about it, resort to the printing presses can make everyone feel richer and richer and so less fearful of economic downturns. That in itself can be very important for modern economies in avoiding the booms and busts of the past. By a combination of good management, luck and sound economic theory, we seem to have got the printing presses just right for the last decade.

  4. April 22nd, 2006 at 00:10 | #4

    Just out of curiousity, Terje, have you got an e-gold account?

  5. Terje Petersen
    April 22nd, 2006 at 00:29 | #5

    Alpaca,

    Yes. However given that it is free to open an account the decision was not onereous.

    Regards,
    Terje.

  6. crocodile
    April 22nd, 2006 at 00:45 | #6

    Yesterday I happened to read about what our treasurer describes as “Debt free day”. He was of course referring to the paying down of all current government debt. I have my own thoughts as to whether this is necessarily a good thing or not but I would be interested to hear the thoughts of other contributors.

    In particular could we consider the likely impact this may have on our bond markets and the ramifications it poses for financial institutions and fund managers.

    Should the bond market eventually close does this also affect the ability of the reserve bank to set monetary policy by removing one of the instuments used to control liquidity.

    Lastly, could the money have been put to better use rather than paying down a debt that can only be considered paltry by international and historical standards. By this I mean decent taxation reform and reduction, investment in programs that will produce income into the future, infrastructure etc.

  7. Terje Petersen
    April 22nd, 2006 at 00:50 | #7

    Daily I am quoted rates for various jobs, goods, services, errands, materials, government supplies (off back of truck), labour, even certifications, all quoted and calcluated in litres of beer, with quick conversion to the parallel currency of rum, should I prefer to trade in that.

    Sometimes I wonder if there is not a quid (?) to be made by becoming a dealer in “currency� exchange between rum & beer.

    As I am sure you are aware the first currency used in the European colony in NSW was rum. I sence that some people characterise this as being a backward type of outcome. However given the alternatives available at the time it seems pretty logical.

    I am no expert but given it’s penal and military aspects it would seem that the NSW colony was intended to be a command economy and that money was a defiant creation thrown up by the market and necessity.

    Given the wide dispersal of certain ochre colours across indigeneous Australia it seems to me that ochre may have had some monetary properties in pre-European times. Certain ochres found only near Alice Springs were involved in ceremonial functions in parts of NSW indicating that if nothing else trade over large distances with multiple middle men was certainly in operation.

    Given the ability of modern ATMs and modern accounting systems to handle multiple currencies it is disappointing that we perpetuate the prohibition of private currencies in Australia. I can do business using the currency created by the governments of the USA or Japan but I am effectively barred from using an indigineous home grown alternative.

    Of course even if alternatives were more freely permited the tax system creates a near insurmountable pressure for most people to use the government decreed unit of account.

  8. Terje Petersen
    April 22nd, 2006 at 01:03 | #8

    Yesterday I happened to read about what our treasurer describes as “Debt free day�. He was of course referring to the paying down of all current government debt. I have my own thoughts as to whether this is necessarily a good thing or not but I would be interested to hear the thoughts of other contributors.

    I think it was politics. Predictable but not really significant.

    In particular could we consider the likely impact this may have on our bond markets and the ramifications it poses for financial institutions and fund managers.

    I thought the government had agreed to leave enough debt in bonds to keep the bond market liquid. In other words the bottom of the balance sheet would show them as being debt free even though they still had debt in the way or bonds on issue. The difference being made up in other financial assets.

    Given the bonds rates widespread use as a benchmark for risk I find it all together rather artificial.

    Should the bond market eventually close does this also affect the ability of the reserve bank to set monetary policy by removing one of the instuments used to control liquidity.

    It may complicate things a little bit but there are very viable alternatives that the RBA already buys, sells and holds. Instead of bonds they can still buy foreign currencies, foreign bonds, gold, state debt and private bonds.

    Lastly, could the money have been put to better use rather than paying down a debt that can only be considered paltry by international and historical standards. By this I mean decent taxation reform and reduction, investment in programs that will produce income into the future, infrastructure etc.

    It could have been used to broaden the tax base by cutting income tax rates. This would have been a very good investment in our future. And given that the tax base is arguable the governments biggest asset it would make strategic sence.

  9. conrad
    April 22nd, 2006 at 07:25 | #9

    Given that the people of the Solomon Islands appear to think that genocide of a minority ethnic group, whose main activity was to bring extra prosperity to them, is acceptable, I’d like to see Australian forces removed the country immediately, and the people Islanders left to deal with their own problems. Perhaps they need to learn the hard way.

    I also think the people having to flee should be compensated. Given that the government of the Solomon Islands is basically broke, perhaps fishing licenses to their waters could be given to them which could then be sold on.

  10. observa
    April 22nd, 2006 at 11:34 | #10

    Speaking of reliance on the printing presses generally, Gerard Jackson at Brookesnews states
    “Looking at New Zealand we find that from March 1996 to January 2006 it expanded M1 by 111 per cent. For Australia it was 114 per cent. These are massive increases. We also see that for New Zealand M1 has been contracting since last October while it has been comparatively flat in Australia since last June.”
    Presumably this sort of pattern is not restricted to these two countries and if so it would appear money doesn’t matter, well at least for a decade or so it doesn’t.

  11. Bosco
    April 22nd, 2006 at 11:38 | #11

    Terje
    There is a system called Local Energy Trading System (LETS)
    which is a currency used within and through communities.
    The blue mountains system has a huge turnover,other smaller systems scrape by.
    It is a great was to circumvent the banks and hold control of finances within the community.
    I can get a haircut for 10 LETS and offer gardening or tutoring for 10 LETS

  12. observa
    April 22nd, 2006 at 12:14 | #12

    Money is used as a store of wealth, unit of account and medium of exchange. The LETS system sounds fine and presumably is used predominantly as a medium of exchange, although storing up your LETS vouchers may make you feel rich in the Blue Mountains if nowhere else. The problem always is the integrity of the monetary system, which is why we have largely delegated that to elected govts. For example someone will have to oversee the LETS system of printing vouchers, lest printing becomes a free for all leading to hyperinflation and eventual collapse. Then it’s on to a higher integrity LETS2. This is exactly the same as our govts expanding M1 on our behalf. Some sort of fixed standard(eg gold) is an attractive proposition here to avoid the problem of corruption of the currency, but unfortunately there’s a snag. Gold itself is a scarce commodity, but its price varies with supply and demand too.

  13. April 22nd, 2006 at 12:47 | #13

    Conrad, “…main activity was to bring extra prosperity to them” is like correctly pointing out that Zionist immigrants brought wealth and prosperity to the Palestinian Mandate in the 1920s and ’30s and inferring that their main activity made Palestinians more prosperous. In point of fact, in each case the original local population became less prosperous at the time as a result and developed a well founded apprehension about the security of their position for the future. Although in the Solomon Islands there is unlikely to be the same outright displacement, there is likely to be the usual peaceful penetration of a century and more ago, aided and abetted by local compradores at other locals’ expense – unless things change.

  14. conrad
    April 22nd, 2006 at 14:54 | #14

    P. M. Lawrence :

    As far as I am aware, there has never been any displacement of the local population, since foreigners in the SIs are restricted to live in areas within the city. In addition, the people that moved there currently being victimized came freely and not as Collonial occupiers, say, unlike Zimbabwe now, where the situation with the white minority group is more complex. So, apart from jealousy (you’re richer than me), can you point to an outright unarguable example of how they negatively affected the people of the SIs ?

  15. The Lithophyte
    April 22nd, 2006 at 19:40 | #15

    Conrad,

    please be aware that populations in the Solomons were shifted between island in WWII and that this is still a significant source of intention. The Solomon Islands also had its economic growth reversed by a succession of tropical cyclones a couple of decades or so ago. Illegal logging has destroyed local subsistence economies in some regions while bestowing cash “gifts” (in exchange for natural endowments) on some people and not others in a capricious and unfair manner. The sources of vulnerability in a community are often difficult to diagnose. To offer a random solution that involves compensating the remainder of these national endowments (fishing rights), is insulting.

    Fearful and nervous populations do scary things. They will lash out and, unless treated in such a way that they can begin to see their own future, will continue to do so. Controls on the population may need to be strict in the short term, but the long term will require dialogue between groups, outside help when it is requested and something of an awareness of what contributed to this situation in the first place. The Solomons is a place where environmental security and governance is inextricably linked. Australia could learn something from our engagement there, and elsewhere in the Pacific.

  16. The Lithophyte
    April 22nd, 2006 at 19:42 | #16

    Sorry,

    intention (Line 2) should be contention. I’m for detention, now.

  17. April 23rd, 2006 at 00:00 | #17

    Conrad, I thought my post was pretty explicit about being about the fear for the future of the Solomon Islands, not the experience of the past, and that the most likely “if things go on like this” scenario – the well founded fear – should be of peaceful penetration gaining control of economic and political resources rather than of displacement.

    And, of course, the Zionist movement has always claimed – accurately but misleadingly – that their settlers went into the Palestinian Mandate “freely” rather than by force. That is how peaceful penetration works. It’s a colonial technique either way.

  18. conrad
    April 23rd, 2006 at 08:19 | #18

    Lithophyte: Well, whats your solution then? I should just be able to remove minority groups (which were invited in) from the map and not worry ?

    I might note that your comment could just as well be talking about Jews in 1937, white Zimbabweans now or Hutu’s in Rwanda. I’m sure the Germans did have problems with the rich Jews, the black Zimbabweans do have problems with the rich white children of colonialist farmers and the Hutu’s have been oppressed by the Tootsies in the past. That doesn’t mean that removing them from the map is acceptable.

  19. Derick Cullen
    April 23rd, 2006 at 11:28 | #19

    Are we (Australians) the good guys in the Solomons?

    Its hard to tell if we are ….

    (a) putting down tribal/gang lawlessness and restoring much needed stability and protection for peaceful minorities , or

    (b) supporting an essentially corrupt system where elected politicians’ allegiance is up for sale, irrespective of the wishes of the voters who put them there, and thus justifying a firm display of civil disobedience.

    What are the prospects of achieving a western style democratic system in the Solomons (or indeed in most of our near neighbours)? If it is nil, what is our (Australian) exit strategy to be?

  20. Mike Hart
    April 23rd, 2006 at 11:42 | #20

    First, hmmm, Terje I always wondered how come you were so keen on a return to a gold standard.

    OBSERVA – good points, Terje’s e-gold proposition is simply the printing presses in full swing. I think you can trace the current benign money supply bonanza to the withdrawal of central banks from just about everything except tinkering with interest rates via credit cards and broad money supply. The banking multiplier and whopping asian surpluses has done the rest. Still you can only take on so much debt, the system is still to arrive a form of stasis but when it does, like the Japanese, it will take a decade and a half to get it our of the system and back into balance. Nature abhors a vacuum.

    Last point, how long before the current economic consensus realises that any theory that postulates infinite consumption with a finite planet is a no brainer (See the post autistic economics society for more information).

  21. Ernestine Gross
    April 23rd, 2006 at 12:54 | #21

    “Last point, how long before the current economic consensus realises that any theory that postulates infinite consumption with a finite planet is a no brainer”

    Exactly.

  22. April 23rd, 2006 at 13:16 | #22

    Just testing Opera mini on my mobile. It works nicely as a reader, but I will not be doing long comments.

  23. April 23rd, 2006 at 16:55 | #23

    Are Ozzis the goodies in the Solomon Islands?

    Massacre, murder, mayhem, rape, etc is/was rampant. This stops only when Australian soldiers are on the ground there.

    Rather answer the question.

    Will western style democracy ever be installed there? Not as we know it.

    What is our exit strategy? That will be something for our grandchildren to concern themselves with. We aren’t going to be able to leave anytime soon.

  24. Terje Petersen
    April 23rd, 2006 at 17:31 | #24

    Terje
    There is a system called Local Energy Trading System (LETS)
    which is a currency used within and through communities.
    The blue mountains system has a huge turnover,other smaller systems scrape by.
    It is a great was to circumvent the banks and hold control of finances within the community.
    I can get a haircut for 10 LETS and offer gardening or tutoring for 10 LETS

    Thanks Bosco. I have read about the LETS system. I seem to recall that there was an inquiry in New Zealand into such systems several years ago and that conclusions were quite positive. Such systems are typically a local affair which helps to fascilitate and ensure the trust and accountability needed. More details at the following site:-

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LETS

    From what I understand the LETS system gets around the prohibition on private currencies by not using bearer instruments and by relying on a ledger. As such it is really just a type of community banking.

    I am all for voluntary systems such as LETS. They are represent civil society at its best and demonstrate the un-necessary nature of state intrusion.

  25. Terje Petersen
    April 23rd, 2006 at 17:36 | #25

    This is exactly the same as our govts expanding M1 on our behalf. Some sort of fixed standard(eg gold) is an attractive proposition here to avoid the problem of corruption of the currency, but unfortunately there’s a snag. Gold itself is a scarce commodity, but its price varies with supply and demand too.

    Observa,

    You are of course right that gold (like any currency) is subject to the forces of supply and demand. However I suspect that you don’t appretiate the extent to which the production of monetary gold (ie mining new gold, importing gold and melting down jewellery) is self regulating under a gold standard. Inflation under such a system cuts its own throat.

    Regards,
    Terje.

  26. Terje Petersen
    April 23rd, 2006 at 17:43 | #26

    “Last point, how long before the current economic consensus realises that any theory that postulates infinite consumption with a finite planet is a no brainer�

    Exactly.

    If we increase the number of cars being produced then this increases our burden on the planet. However if we all buy a few extra “Midnight Oil” songs via the internet to play on our already existing iPods then it is hard to see any increased burden on the planet. The nature of our consumption is surely just as important as the quantity.

    It is true that economic growth often increases the burden on the planet. However it is not a tautology. Some forms of growth will in fact decrease the burden on the planet. For instance if we all choose to buy more land for conversion to wilderness then such consumption would probably be good for the earths natural systems.

  27. Mike Pepperday
    April 23rd, 2006 at 19:35 | #27

    Re Solomons
    It was a pogrom and envy is sufficient explanation. It seems to be the normal human condition. When one group holds itself aloof and appears to become rich, it is asking for trouble.

    Apparently it blew up every generation or so in Malaya. I suppose it takes a generation for the victims to recover from a pogrom. When they’ve done so, the wider population puts them in their place again.

    What’s to be done? Mahatir’s style of afffirmative action seems fairly effective. His general idea – favouring people not on merit but according to their proportion in the population – is probably necessary. In Switzerland they are very careful and ethnicity is a big factor in promotion for public offices.

    Got to keep everybody sweet. Otherwise…

  28. observa
    April 23rd, 2006 at 20:18 | #28

    Terje,
    It would appear that all e-gold(a company in Bermuda???) does is back their currency with gold at current market prices. Nice work if you can get it in a rising bullion market, but it could send you broke in a falling one. If so then you and the extremely well paid directors of e-gold up to that point, may be somewhat philosophical about the collapse of the company, but holders of e-gold currency would not. If ultimately the holders of e-gold are to wear any catastrophic downside, why not invest in real gold themselves and enjoy the upside?

  29. April 23rd, 2006 at 23:26 | #29

    Mike Pepperday: Pogrom is a normal human condition? Yes.

    Interesting how the Solomons urge to attack chinese people evaporated once Ozzi troops turned up & looked like they would “brass up” any rioters.

    I’ll warrant there is not a relapse of this inherent human condition to commit pogrom, at least, not while ozzi troops are around looking like they mean business.

    The Mahathir model (the NEP) is GOOD? It has cleared the country of tremendous amounts of capital, human talent, and has driven the races apart.

    Solomons is nowhere near as developed. Politics is barely understood there. Gosh, 80% of Australia doesn’t understand politics, how can a country where people live tribally, without TV & stuff, hope to have a clue?

  30. Terje
    April 24th, 2006 at 10:09 | #30

    It would appear that all e-gold(a company in Bermuda???) does is back their currency with gold at current market prices.

    I am not sure what your point is. An e-gold gold-gram is backed by at least one gram of gold in bullion storage. If a gram of gold drops in value then so does your e-gold. It is hardly a radical point. Lets say you put $10 dollars in the bank. Then if the dollar drops in value then low and behold so does the value of your deposit.

    What e-gold does is take a commodity (gold) that has a lots of sound monetary properties and enhance its liquidity by compensating for the worst of golds monetary properties. Lets review this point briefly.

    1. Gold can be used as a unit of account. (in fact thats exactly what e-gold does, it accounts for your deposit in gold weight). Over the long term many advocates (including myself) believe that gold has proven to be a stable unit of account. And during gold standard periods of history it has been stable over both the short and long term, only every allowing very slight inflations or deflations to persist.

    2. Gold can be a store of wealth. It has been used as such for eons. Most central banks in the world still own gold, as do many private banks and private individuals.

    3. Gold can be a medium of exchange. However it’s monetary properties in this regard are not terrible good. Pure gold coins are relatively soft and would wear out if widely circulated. Gold is also very heavy and carrying it around it quite inconvenient.

    In the past the fact that gold performs poorly as a medium of exchange was readily compensated for by using it in conjunction with bearer based promisory notes. However in 1910 in Australia (and also elsewhere in the world around the same period in time) the private creation of such financial instruments became prohibited (or effectively prohibited). Initially this was not such an issue because the public sector offered an alternate government issued product. However the public sector subsequently stopped providing gold linked promisory notes and moved to fiat currencies. As such there has been very limited capacity to monetise gold.

    E-gold overcomes the legal barriers to monetising gold. Of course law reform would be a much better way to achieve the same ends. In the mean time e-gold and the multitude of other gold backed digital currencies will continue to enjoy high growth rates. And no doubt they will continue to be very profitable enterprises, because they create a product (monetised gold) that is very clearly in demand.

  31. Derick Cullen
    April 24th, 2006 at 17:06 | #31

    Solomons again.

    Politics is about perception, not reality.

    The law is about legality, not justice.

    The arrest of three Solomons opposition politicians, no doubt on good legal grounds, has probably set back prospects for democracy emerging in that country.

    Listening to Downer on radio this morning suggests that we (Australia) are more comfortable with Rini inheriting the previous corrupt structure than seeing “justice” done.

    Will we have to wait until these opposition politicians emerge from gaol, Mandela-like, for the Solomons next shot at statehood?

    Surely there a circuit breaker can be deployed to avoid has having to prop up the current regime for the forseeable future?

  32. Ernestine Gross
    April 24th, 2006 at 23:35 | #32

    “The nature of our consumption is surely just as important as the quantity. ”

    Good point. The example of buying land to convert it to wilderness makes it forcefully. But, how long will it take to shift the focus from growth of GDP?

  33. Terje Petersen
    April 25th, 2006 at 07:30 | #33

    Ernestine,

    The alternative energy crowd tell us that the likes of Kyoto will be good for economic growth. I have little doubt that we will need to build a lot of new alternate assets if we are to change out our energy systems. The health crowd tell us that we need to spend more on research into diseases like AIDS and superbugs. I am sure that production of new medicines will be a lucrative new source of production. And if we are to provide clean water to the poorest people of the world we will need to produce more pumps and plumbing.

    There are so many worthy things to be done that all require new production that I am at a loss to see much point in calling for an end to growth.

    So long as we measure production in dollars (or yen or gold grams) it tells us next to nothing about the impact on the planet. To understand the impact we need to look at the nature and content of the production. In practice it is sometimes much simpler to just look at what we are consuming and work backward from there.

    Regards,
    Terje.

  34. Ernestine Gross
    April 25th, 2006 at 14:59 | #34

    Terje,

    As a first approximation, I tend to agree with you on the above. It seems to me the accounting framework (both national and business), useful as it was for a long time, is hopelessly overstretched by now because externalities and essentially non-marketable ‘commodities’ (I call them environmental commodities) can no longer be ignored. We need new conceptualisations in (analytical) Economics rather than more ideological debates which deals with socio-economic-political issues from centuries past. Some interesting work is done not only in Economics faculties but in Science faculties. I recall one empirical study where the production costs of yoghurt, produced and sold in the EC, was evaluated in monetary terms and in energy used. I don’t recall the exact numbers but I do recall enough to be confident in saying that if production efficiency is related to energy consumption then the market prices have provided totally misleading signals. In the abstract, this is not surprising, when considering that ‘markets are incomplete’. So, different efficiency measure might be helpful. But, this is all very nice to say or write. The distance between recognition of a problem and the development of solution concepts is big.

  35. April 28th, 2006 at 14:55 | #35

    Ernestine,

    But, this is all very nice to say or write. The distance between recognition of a problem and the development of solution concepts is big.

    I don’t think narrow criticisms of “economic growth” help much. As a measure of enviromental degradation the dollar value of goods changing hands in an economy would seem to lack a lot of validity.

    I recall one empirical study where the production costs of yoghurt, produced and sold in the EC, was evaluated in monetary terms and in energy used. I don’t recall the exact numbers but I do recall enough to be confident in saying that if production efficiency is related to energy consumption then the market prices have provided totally misleading signals.

    I am not sure I understand this example. Was the yoghurt selling below the cost of the energy inputs used to produce it?

    Regards,
    Terje.

  36. Ernestine Gross
    April 28th, 2006 at 16:17 | #36

    Terje,

    My compliments; you follow up all threads – it must be hard work.

    “As a measure of enviromental degradation the dollar value of goods changing hands in an economy would seem to lack a lot of validity.”

    Yes.

    “I am not sure I understand this example. Was the yoghurt selling below the cost of the energy inputs used to produce it?

    No, if ‘cost’ is measured by a cost accountant.

  37. April 28th, 2006 at 23:19 | #37

    I recently got accused on another forum of not following up on stuff. So I am being a little more diligent than usual.

    It seems clear that we agree on the main point.

    I still don’t understand the yoghurt example. You have at least confirmed that my best guess at what it might mean was wide of the mark. So now I know that I really, really, really don’t understand the yoghurt example. Now I just need to figure out if the yoghurt example matters very much in the great scheme of things. I suspect that it may not.
    :-)

  38. September 15th, 2006 at 16:09 | #38

    Five months ago I noted that:-

    Every three minutes a new e-gold account is created. And sometime in the next 24 hours the 3 millionth account will be opened.

    http://www.e-gold.com/stats.html

    Just for fun people might see if they can time things so that they get the 3 millionth e-gold account. My guess is that it will be issued around 9pm on Saturday (Australian EST).

    In the next couple of days e-gold should clock 3.5 million accounts. Thats a growth rate of 44% per annum. That reminds means the user base is doubling every 2 years. A bit like moores law. An interesting market phenomena.

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