Gold deal expires as sales by European central bank dwindle

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The European Central Bank says it and 21 national central banks in Europe are letting a formal agreement regulating gold sales expire, saying the deal that once sought to stabilize the market for the precious metal is no longer needed.

The ECB said Friday that the fourth Central Bank Gold Agreement would not be renewed when it expires Sept. 26.

The first such agreement was signed in 1999 amid concerns about the impact of uncoordinated sales by central banks from the gold reserves mostly concentrated in rich European and North American countries as a legacy of the days of the gold standard. Central banks agreed to coordinate transactions to prevent excessive price swings.

The ECB said that member banks have not sold significant amounts of gold for nearly a decade.

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