Fort Knox Isn’t The Largest US Gold Vault

“Remember the Golden Rule: Whoever has the gold, makes the rules!” —Brant Parker and Johnny Hart, The Wizard of Id

In A Nutshell

While Fort Knox definitely holds a lot of gold—about 147 million ounces—the largest gold stockpile in the US is far larger. It’s the Federal Reserve Bank Depository in Manhattan, storing 212 million ounces—about 6,700 tons of gold.

The Whole Bushel

Most people think of Fort Knox as holding the vast majority of US gold reserves. For good reason—there is a lot of gold in Fort Knox, currently 147.3 million ounces, worth about $130 billion. As staggering as that is, it’s not the only depository of its type—in fact, there’s one far larger located 25 meters (80 ft) beneath the streets of Manhattan.

It’s the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s gold depository, and it is a veritable fortress. The bank claims that it is the world’s largest gold bullion reserve, period. None of it belongs to the Reserve, mind you: It’s simply held there for other governments and banks. The only entry to the place is blocked by a 2.7-meter (nine-foot) high, 90-ton steel cylinder set into a 140-ton frame. The vault itself, of course, is totally surrounded by steel-reinforced concrete walls and protected by surveillance of just about every possible kind, including motion detectors, closed-circuit cameras, dozens of armed guards—the usual things that you see in action movies featuring vaults of this type (like Die Hard With a Vengeance, which actually featured this vault as a plot device).

The Federal Reserve Bank’s gold stash is almost 50 percent larger than that the one at Fort Knox—currently about 212 ounces of gold bars, valued at around $170 billion. That would be over half a million 27-pound gold bars weighing a combined total of almost 7,000 tons. Each bar itself is worth about $320,000. The vault is open to the public and there are regular tours.

Show Me The Proof

Federal Reserve Bank of New York: Information and Tours
How Much Gold is in Fort Knox?
Streets Aren’t Paved With Gold, but There’s Plenty Below

  • Apexpredator

    How can 212 ounces of gold can be valued at 170 billion??


      Dunno, probably a typo- forgot the million.

      • Apexpredator

        That makes more sense…

    • Edmund Charles

      International gold bullion ‘good quality’ bars comes in two sizes, 100 oz and 400 oz sizes. The article should have read 212 million ounces of gold, obviously the word ‘million’ was omitted in error.

  • The Deuce

    Should 212 million ounces, I assume.

  • Sewo

    I just came to pee. Sorry.

  • RS

    No shit. I learned this from Die Hard with a Vengeance.

  • gillybean

    Do they shake you by the ankles on the way out? I would !


  • ItsPeopleFault

    It’s the largest but full of DUST.

  • Edmund Charles

    While this article is correct in terms of gold metric tons, there is an omission in that the New York Federal Reserve Bank vault contains the gold deposits from foreign countries who prefer to store some or all of their gold reserves on US shores. The gold on depoist at Ft, Knox in contrast, is almost entirely that of the United States government property.

  • Edmund Charles

    The largest gold and plantium depository on the planet is the earth’s core, which due to the force of gravity, drew most of the originating planet’s gold into the earth’s core interior and it may be very radioactive due to its convergence with other radioactive elements that have yet to decay to a safe level. If we could ever get to this core gold, it would consists on many trillion of tons and immedately depreciate gold to just about nothing (sorry India). There is about four times as musch plantium too. Other future sources of precious metals are the astroids. Someday gold will not be so precious as it is today. The gold that we find on the earth’s crust today originated frrom astroids that bombared the planet over the eons after the core had solidified and thus its rareity on our planet’s surface.