The LBMA Good Delivery List is a set of standards for the production of gold and silver bars used in the wholesale market. LBMA is the London Bullion Market Association, the international trade association representing the wholesale over-the-counter market for gold and silver bullion. The LBMA Good Delivery List specifies the rules that gold and silver bars must meet to be accepted for delivery in settlements in the London bullion market.
The LBMA Good Delivery List is crucial for maintaining trust and integrity in the global gold and silver markets. Bars that adhere to these standards are recognized and accepted by participants in the major international bullion markets and vaults worldwide.
Refineries on the Good Delivery List
As of October 2023, there were 66 gold and 78 silver refiners on the list. The refiners on the list are located across the world including refineries in North America, Europe, China, and Australia. The LBMA website includes the most current information regarding the refineries including a downloadable audit report.
The refineries must pay an application fee to be considered to be included in the Good Delivery List. Refiners can also purchase testing kits to test their gold and silver before applying. The LBMA has created a Rulebook to help refiners understand the requirements to be included in the list. The Rulebook includes five principles. The principles listed on the LBMA website include integrity, skill, care, diligence, management and control, financial prudence, and market conduct.
To qualify for the Good Delivery List, refiners must satisfy rigorous evaluations concerning their:
- Market history
- Financial stability
- Capability to manufacture bars that conform to strict criteria
- Required production volumes
What is the LBMA Committee?
The committee consists of specialists from dominant sectors within the physical bullion industry. Its primary duty is to oversee, cultivate, and safeguard the Good Delivery List. Gathering roughly once a month, the committee emphasizes upholding standards, continuous enhancement, and ensuring market transparency.
Representatives from LBMA members also contribute to the Vault Managers Working Group, which is formed by the Bank of England, and representatives of the vaults used by members of the Loco London bullion market. The group meets periodically to discuss bar quality and vaulting protocols, ensuring uniformity across all London vaults. Vault Managers must record every instance of bar rejection, and pertinent details are to be relayed to the LBMA Executives.
LBMA Good Delivery List Standards
The LBMA Good Delivery List establishes rigorous standards for gold and silver bars in the wholesale market to ensure their quality, authenticity, and ethical sourcing.
Here are some key components of these standards:
Only gold and silver bars produced by refiners accredited by the LBMA can be accepted for delivery in the London bullion market. Refiners are periodically re-audited to ensure they maintain the required standards.
The list provides detailed specifications for gold and silver bars, such as dimensions, fineness, weight, appearance, markings, and other aspects. A Good Delivery gold bar should typically have a minimum fineness of .995 and weigh 400 troy ounces and 1000 troy ounces for silver.
Chain of Integrity
The bars should come from sources that adhere to the LBMA’s Responsible Gold Guidance, which aims to combat systemic or severe abuses of human rights, avoid contributing to conflict, comply with high standards of anti-money laundering, and combat terrorist financing practices.
The LBMA periodically checks bars from accredited refiners to ensure they meet the required standards. If there are any deviations, the refiner may be removed from the Good Delivery List.
Current and Former Lists
The LBMA maintains a current list of accredited refiners and a list of those who have been removed (the “Former List”). A bar produced by a refiner while on the current list but has since been moved to the Former List remains a Good Delivery bar.
Why the Good Delivery List Matters to Investors and Wholesale Buyers
The Good Delivery List is a benchmark of quality and trust in the bullion market. For investors, it assures that they are dealing with products of the highest standard in terms of quality, ethical sourcing, and overall market integrity.
- Trust and Assurance: Knowing that a gold or silver bar meets the LBMA’s Good Delivery standards provides investors with confidence in the authenticity, quality, and purity of their investment.
- Liquidity: Bars on the Good Delivery List are universally recognized in major global markets. This means they can be easily traded or sold without further assays or checks, making transactions smoother and more efficient.
- Consistency: The standards ensure that each bar, regardless of which refiner it comes from, meets a consistent level of quality and specification. This uniformity is critical when trading in global markets.
- Ethical Considerations: The LBMA’s standards, particularly around the chain of integrity, ensure that the gold or silver has been sourced responsibly. Investors increasingly value ethical considerations in their investment choices, and the Good Delivery List provides a level of assurance in this regard.
- Protection Against Counterfeits: The stringent requirements for refiners to get onto and stay on the Good Delivery List reduce the risk of counterfeit bars entering the market. This offers a layer of protection to investors against potential fraud.
- Market Integrity and Transparency: The continuous monitoring and oversight by the LBMA and its various committees ensure that there is a high degree of transparency and integrity in the market, further building investor confidence.
- Record Keeping: With the stipulation that any bar rejection must be documented, there is an added layer of accountability in the system. This can be crucial for investors who want to understand the broader landscape of bar quality and potential issues.
The Good Delivery List serves as a gold standard of trustworthiness and excellence in the bullion sector. For those investing, it guarantees that their transactions involve products that epitomize top-tier quality, responsible sourcing, and unwavering market credibility.