A New Way to Hold Gold

What if you could carry and exchange gold in the exact same manner as you do with the dollar bills in your wallet?

I've recently been introduced to a technology that's making this possible.

In today's podcast, I speak with Adam Trexler, President of Valaurum, about this technology and the gold-infused notes it creates. Valaurum's mission is to democratize ownership of gold by converting it into a form affordable to anyone.

Democratizing Gold

In short, a fractional gram's worth of gold is affixed to layers of polyester, creating a note called an "Aurum" similar in dimension and thickness to a U.S. dollar bill. This gold (usually 1/10th or 1/20th of a gram) is commercially recoverable. So an Aurum offers similar potential as a coin or bar, in terms of providing a vehicle for storing and exchanging known, dependable increments of precious metals just in much smaller (and more affordable) amounts than commercially available to date.

The big idea here? In a world where a 1oz coin of gold costs over $1,200, an Aurum will let you hold a few dollars' worth of gold in a single note. If you've got pocket change, you can be a precious metals owner.

And you don't have to change your behavior. You can store and transport an Aurum in your billfold along with your dollars.

Understanding the Aurum

As the saying goes, a picture's worth a thousand words. Here's a picture of an Aurum designed for Peak Prosperity that the Valaurum team produced for us:


(click here to purchase)

You'll see that with even just 1/20th of a gram of gold involved, it's enough to make the Aurum appear to be "made of" gold. The characteristic luster, color, and shine of the 24-karat gold used is immediately apparent.

The Aurum is designed to be handled in the same manner as we do with our "paper" money. And, despite having a more 'plastic' feel to it (resulting from the polyester backing), it's as flexible, lightweight, and familiar-feeling as paper currency.

The big difference, of course, is that instead of being a claim on something else, it simply is what it is: a fractional gram of gold. It can be stored, traded, or melted down just like a coin or bar.

Here's a brief video that gives an overview of the production process:



Being able to hold gold in this form is significant for several reasons. 

First, it makes gold ownership available to all budgets. Many of the world's households have been priced out of gold to date. This changes that completely.

Second, it enables the potential for everyday transactions should we ever return to a precious metal-backed monetary standard. It answers the challenge: How will you pay for your groceries with gold? With an Aurum, it's now easy.

Whether Valaurum's product emerges as the winning horse or not, the world definitely needs this type of solution (i.e., convenient fractional physical metal) to go mainstream. 

I'm very excited by this new innovation in the bullion industry, and I explore the matter in depth in this podcast. If you're similarly intrigued, it's worth the listen.

And for those of you interested in owning an Aurum of your own, you can learn how to purchase the Peak Prosperity Aurum pictured above by clicking here.

Click the play button below to listen to my interview with Adam Trexler (36m:59s):

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://peakprosperity.com/a-new-way-to-hold-gold/

Add a few more zeros to the 1/20th of a gram note over a short enough period you have hyperinflation.

See how that works? "So simple," as John Kenneth Galbraith once said, "The mind recoils."

But too high tech for social collapse situation where assaying small amounts may be too difficult. Also too counterfitable I think.

This is what capitalism is all about. Kudos to Dr. Trexler.
I understand that Bernanke has found the technology to imbed recoverable debt into the new dollar bill. When the bills are burned or destroyed the debt will still be there.

How quickly can I get a few?  It would be a delightful surprise to send some out for Valentines day.
AK Granny

Shire Silver has been doing something similar for years now. Shire Silver cards are laminated credit card sized cards that have the silver or gold embedded in the plastic. You can easily recover the metal by burning the plastic and paper with a cigarette lighter.
We've had 1/20th gram gold cards for a couple years now, and sell them for $4 (discount for paying with bitcoin).

I also saw a presentation about 3 years ago where someone wanted to use gold leaf embedded in the plastic notes like more modern countries use.

https://shiresilver.com for those interested in the original wallet friendly bullion. We already have a couple other folks using our idea, milligold.org in India and bluffssilver.com in Iowa. A couple more are in the works, making variants that are local currency with global value.

For me, this intersects two of my worlds; thin-film technology and ideas at peak prosperity. I see a sputtering system (controlled with LabView), and a very expensive sputter target, servicing a need of sound money! I use a silver 1oz coin daily to calibrate my XRF equipment; my head is spinning on anti-counterfeiting measures, which does not seem to hard at all, film thickness measurements etc. I would happily volunteer my skills and resources to this cause, I will not disappoint. Just send me a message if you are interested in talking more. Sterling

I hope this catches on and have ordered some but just wonder what our overzealous regulators will have to say if it does.
Will be delighted to see them lose control of their manipulated prices.

The future slowly coming into focus.

Bought 20 to test the waters…Premium seems a little steep, but can't wait to touch and feel one.
Price break at 10.


"President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson of Iceland Presented with Commemorative Aurum 15 April, Washington DC

Today Dr. Trexler met with President Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, of Iceland, and presented him with two unique, commemorative Aurum. President Grímsson is the fifth President of Iceland, having served since 1996; he was unopposed in 2000, re-elected for a third term in 2004, re-elected unopposed for a fourth term in 2008 and re-elected for a record fifth term in 2012.

Dr. Trexler and President Grímsson met in a private reception at the National Press Club. President Grímsson was in Washington, DC to announce the launch of a new global forum, Arctic Circle, to enable countries beyond the polar region to have a say in determining the future of the far north. The event received international media attention and can be viewed here. Dr. Trexler also attended this press conference.

In the next months, Valaurum, Inc. will explore the production of a commemorative Icelandic note using the technology of the Aurum."



This would be a nice speculation play if this company was traded publicly. A lot potential here if independent governments introduce this technology into their currency. Looking forward to following this company into the future. Thanks for sharing this with us.

I think this is a really good idea but the premium is a bit steep to really invest. Perhaps with mass adoption the premium will get more in line with coins. I can't see it taking off otherwise. Counterfeiting would be my other big concern. 

If merchants could quickly and cheaply verify the authenticity and weight of the gold content (like cashiers check US currency with a quick swipe of a special pen) this might take off. Otherwise it looks like a novelty.

They just need a light penetration meter (like a bar code gun) adjusted to the thickness of the aurum and you could verify its authenticity. I have no idea how cheaply they could be produced, but you just need one at each register. This could revolutionize trade or just be overpriced gold. It could go either way as you stated.

Will there be a  link on your web site to stay ,or is this a one time deal 

Thanks for all the interest in the Aurum everyone. I'm grateful to Peak Prosperity for letting me come on.True, counterfeiting has been a problem with almost all physical means of holding value. Coins and bars are very susceptible to this: the tools to cast a coin or bar aren't hard to get ahold of, and tungsten is a lot cheaper than gold. And I'm sure we all remember the scandals when color printers became commercially available, with dollars being xeroxed on mass scale. 
But the Aurum incorporates a number of anti-counterfeiting features that fiat notes and coins/bars don't have. Every Aurum has a reverse image that looks like an engraving. This comes from the process where gold is 'sprayed' on. It won't occur with gold leaf, and it takes very expensive machinery to get this effect. You're not going to get there with a color copier. Every Aurum has a serial number, as well. 1/20g Aurum can be looked through and you will see a unique turquoise color from gold (the heavier PP Aurum don't do this). Reproducing the luster of gold at this thickness with another material is also difficult. Microprinting adds another level of complexity for would-be counterfeiters. There's more detailed information regarding authentification on the valaurum.com website for those that are curious. 
We have some other exciting related features we're working on as well, and will share those here when publicly announced.

[quote=Oliveoilguy]Premium seems a little steep, but can't wait to touch and feel one.
This is a question we often get. There is a real difference between buying an Aurum and a kilo bar, or even an ounce coin. In larger increments of bullion, an investor should be looking to get as close to the spot price as possible. But as the increment decreases, there's a higher markup over the commodity price. Putting gold into this form isn't cheap. The machine costs are enormous. It's a proprietary process that has taken years and quite a bit of funding to perfect. But we think there's a real market need and that the Aurum is priced about right for this increment of gold.  
The economic forces here aren't special to precious metals: I can go to my supermarket and buy a 20 pound bag of rice for $20 or pay $5 for single serving bags. But it's also important to look past the commodity pricing.
The Aurum is convenient and precise. You can use it for many things where an ounce coin won't do. Also, many people can readily afford it who can't buy an ounce. Gold has a higher utility in this form, and it becomes less useful if you melt it and return it to a lump. And so less valuable as well. We think the trade in value for the Aurum will stay above the spot price for this reason. 
I'd never advocate someone holding all their precious metal in Aurum. But if you have multiple ounces of gold, you might think about having an ounce or two in quantities that are easier to use. And if you've been waiting for a way to own gold, this might be what you're looking for. 

So it occurs to me that it is possible, if these things get popular, the scarcity/collectible value of a limited run bill might be surprisingly high 20-30 years from now.  Paying 2x over spot might be…how shall I say it…like buying BTC at $5.I'm not usually one to promote hype or anything, but if the valaurum guys are exceptionally clever, they'll come up with a way to explicitly differentiate different runs of bills, like Magic the Gathering did with their print runs of cards, in addition to committing to limiting that print run to a particular size.  That way, you can tell the first run VA/PP bills (of which there were, maybe 2k issued) from the second run of VA/PP bills (of which there might be, perhaps, 100k issued).
Likewise, there is always the issue of seigniorage; "The net revenue a government receives from printing money; the difference between the face value of coins and notes and the cost of producing and distributing them…"
Think about how much a USD $10 bill is actually worth vs how much the government gets for one.  Now of course there is one small difference - universal acceptability.  "Legal for all debts public and private."  But if Armstrong is right, and there is a crisis of faith in public institutions coming down the pike, this thing might just be the leading edge of a wave of private money issuance.
Back in the day, a silver dime was often worth less than the melt value of the coin.  So was the copper penny.  Now of course, that's not the case.
Just some thoughts on a Monday morning.

  • Not affiliated with the company in any way.  I may sound like a shill for them - or for PP - but I'm not!  I'm just thinking out loud.  And wondering how many I should get - just for fun, of course.

The premium is a killer for me. I am gathering from the video the process is somewhat slow - does this scale up. For example, if you wanted to make 20 million notes (only 1 tonne of gold which is not much re worldwide demand for coins), how long would it take and would the premium come down to something more acceptable?