Germany’s central bank completed Wednesday its plan to bring back home 54,000 gold bars it had in vaults located in New York and Paris to beneath its Frankfurt headquarters, three years ahead of schedule.

The Bundesbank, one of the world’s top bullion holders, secretly repatriated 674 tonnes from the vaults of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Banque de France, the French central bank, over the past four years in one of the biggest operations of its type.

Each of the 53,780 bars weighs 12.5kg and is worth about $520,000 (€440,000). In total, the haul is worth €23.7 billion ($28bn) and its arrival means that just over half of all Bundesbank gold is now stored in its own vaults in Frankfurt.

The lender said it “thoroughly and exhaustively” tested all of the bars after they arrived back in Frankfurt and “no irregularities came to light with regard to the authenticity, fineness or weight of the bars.”

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