“I found a secret way to make 400% with gov’t-issued bullion – Even if gold NEVER goes up another penny in value”

This story has been making the rounds for quite a while — and in different versions, I’ve written about essentially this same pitch before … but it’s been years since it really hit the Gumshoe radar, and folks keep asking, so I thought I’d check out this latest version of the ad for you.

The pitch is that a woman named Lee Mason, who signs the ad letter and is a researcher for Steve Sjuggerud’s True Wealth newsletter, had a wild trip to Zurich and learned all about this “secret” way to make huge returns from government issued gold.

The “secret” stuff and the Zurich trip, with the photos of Lee and of the grand hotels and skyline in Zurich, is balderdash — I have no doubt that she went there and met with some other investing folks, who probably spent a fair chunk of Porter Stansberry’s cash wining and dining each other, but that’s not where she and Sjuggerud learned about this particular investment.

And in fact, she doesn’t even tell us that there actually is a secret in Zurich, though it’s implied by the letter — she talks about the “information she extracted” during her visit, and there is a bit of a connection between this particular investment idea and Switzerland, but it ain’t exactly a new strategy. I’d guess that she was actually there for one of the many investment conferences or confabs by one of the gazillion Agora-related publishers, but that’s just a guess.

Still, there is an actual investment that she thinks you should buy — more than one, in fact, as we learn a bit later with a few “add on” teases … so what is it?

Well, she spins the Zurich-connected story of the Rothschilds first, to get us going — and that is enough to probably get anyone excited, since there are at least as many conspiracy theories (and actual conspiracies) surrounding the secretive Rothschild banking empire as there are about the Holy Grail. I’m sure you can read something online right now that tells you both that Rothschilds found and hid the Grail, and that they sunk Atlantis.

But the family did start with a particular kind of money that’s related to what Sjuggerud and Mason are teasing here — Mayer Rothschild got his start, in part, by trading rare gold coins. That was a long time before the Rothschilds got to Switzerland, but the connection between the Rothschilds, Switzerland, and gold has been strong for a long time. Coincidentally, they’ve backed away from the gold trading business these days, and probably did so at the worst possible time in the early 2000s (according to this article from the Independent), but none of us is investing in the Rothschilds … so why the heck should we care?

We’re also told, in case the Rothschild name doesn’t ring your bell quite loudly enough, that many other fortunes have been made using this “secret currency” as well — like those of the Onassis, Hunt, Adams and Hopkins families, and even JP Morgan.

And then we finally get into a bit more hinting about exactly what kind of investment this is …

“But the good news is, you don’t have to be wealthy or well connected to take advantage of this incredible gold currency.

“In fact, right now you can safely make 400% gains or more… even if you’ve never bought a currency, stock, or gold investment before.

“Plus, I’m going to show you exactly how to capitalize on this situation… even if the gold price doesn’t budge a penny…

“Keep in mind, the secret currency has NOTHING to do with owning bars of gold, Krugerrands, gold mining stocks, gold mutual funds, gold options or futures, or any other type of gold investment you’ve likely considered before.

“Instead, it’s a little-known investment vehicle, first offered to the American public by the Federal government in the early 1900s, under the direction of U.S. Treasury Secretary Charles Barber.”

So that tells me we’re probably still on track with this being the same kind of thing that Sjuggerud has been teasing for years … but let’s get some more of Mason’s letter to get us all riled up and provide some more hints:

“The way I look at it is, if you think you’ve missed out on the current gold bull market… you haven’t, not by a long shot.

“There are very few investments anywhere in the world that are this safe… and have a realistic chance to give you gains of 1,000% or more in the next few years.

“This is one of them… probably the only such investment in the world right now.

“Steve Sjuggerud recommends you take at least a small portion of your portfolio, and safely make great returns over the next few years, thanks to the U.S. gov’t issued gold currency.

“He has been helping people take advantage of this opportunity for the past 9 years….

“It might just be the best opportunity in American history for this type of investment…

“It’s not a stock. So you don’t have to worry about its value going to zero. And this ‘product’ will never be obsolete.”

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And we get a few more quotes from other sources about how successful this investment is relative to gold:

“… over a 30-year period, the average annual return on this investment is historically more than 300% greater than the return on gold, a study done for the House and Senate’s Joint Committee on Taxation showed.

“‘When gold goes up, [this investment] follows and eventually rises much more gold,’ says the Blanchard Economic Research Unit, a private firm of gold analysts….

“…the last time the Salomon Brothers brokerage firm included this vehicle in its annual investment survey…
This CURRENCY VEHICLE RANKED #1 OVER THE PRIOR 20 YEAR SPAN with an annual return of 17.3%.

“In other words, it was the single most profitable thing you could do with your money.

“It beat stocks, bonds, gold bullion, silver, artwork, diamonds, U.S. Treasury bills, real estate, and oil, according to an article in the Chicago Tribune.

“Remember, this investment has nothing to do with stocks. And nothing to do with bonds. Instead, it’