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Insurance Giant Buys Gold for the First Time in 152 Years

Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co. Holds $400 Million in Gold

Written by Luke Burgess
Posted June 2, 2009

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Gold got a significant endorsement today from one of the world's largest insurance companies.

Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., the third-largest life insurer in the United States, has bought gold for the first time in the company's 152-year history to hedge against continued declines in other asset classes.

The insurance giant has accumulated about $400 million in gold over the past several months. Northwestern Mutual Chief Executive Officer Edward Zore was quoted in Bloomberg saying, "Gold just seems to make sense; it's a store of value... The downside risk is limited, but the upside is large. We have stocks in our portfolio that lost 95 percent." Gold "is not going down to $90."

The move may prompt other insurance companies to follow suit. It makes sense for insurance companies to hold gold since gold is always an asset and can never be considered a liability.

Gold prices are up slightly today to $980 an ounce.

- luke

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