...Any such move will require agreement among the IMF's biggest shareholders, including large gold producers Canada, Australia and South Africa, and the United States, which looks likely to oppose the proposals.
...The United States holds the world's largest bullion stockpile and gold sales would need the consent of Congress, which together with gold producers opposed gold sales in 1999.
...Martin Murenbeeld, a Canadian-based gold analyst, said the IMF had the option to bypass the market, by selling to buyers such as central banks, which would not affect trading.
He said countries like Japan and China, with their large U.S. currency reserves, could swallow the IMF's gold stocks "without so much as a hiccup."
"It is not clear the IMF will choose to sell gold," he said. "We'd put the probability of it at less than 25 percent. If it did sell, I think it would do so under the auspices of the...second central bank agreement on gold."
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Source: Reuters By Lesley Wroughton