Thanks to global currency devaluations, investors have been turning to precious metals like gold and silver as a hedge against inflation. Precious metals are a trustworthy and realistic investment instrument that should be in every investor’s portfolio.
Since hitting a low of $253.70 in July 1999, gold prices have surged. While some economists think gold’s historic run will come to an end, others are not so sure. The overarching driver of the price of gold will continue to be the global financial crisis and ongoing tensions in the Middle East.
If you’re looking for a precious metal that historically outperforms gold…look to silver. Since trading as low as $4.00 per ounce in late 2001, silver reached highs of almost $50.00 an ounce in 2011. While silver prices have retraced a bit, the metal is still up more than 675 percent from its 2001 lows. When it comes to a precious metal bull market, silver consistently out performs gold.
Given our current economic situation, it’s not hard to see why investors turn to inflation-proof hard assets like precious metals.
Earlier in the year, gold bullion prices were going higher, and we heard the skeptics say, “They will decline. Don’t buy the precious metal; it’s useless.” They turned out to be very wrong. Now, gold bullion prices are seeing a minute pullback. With this, we are once again hearing the same thing: ditch gold and buy something else has become the mantra.
Sadly, those who say don’t buy the precious metal are too focused on the short-term fluctuations and are completely forgetting the long-term picture.
I am bullish on the yellow metal. My reasons are very simple. We see demand for gold bullion increasing—it will come from the central banks and individuals and it will eventually cause disruption in the supply.
Those who are saying gold bullion is useless so don’t buy it are the same cynics who said buyers will eventually run out. Instead, we continue to see an increasing number of buyers.
Consider this: Iraq’s central bank bought 36 metric tons of gold bullion in March. This was the biggest purchase by the country in three years. The gold bullion was worth $1.5 billion. (Source: Salman, R. and Harvey, J., “Iraq’s central bank bought 36 T of gold in March,” Reuters, March 25, 2014.)
Certainly, the purchase made by the central bank of Iraq isn’t huge, but it shows that the demand for gold bullion by central banks is still present. It is also very interesting to note that the reason the gold bullion was purchased was due to the bank’s attempt to stabilize the country’s currency, the dinar.
Going back a little further, in 2013, central banks … Read More
While the stock market has been struggling this year, under the radar, gold has been moving higher.
The tense stand-off in Crimea is clearly adding some support to gold, as an outbreak there could drive the precious metal much higher in the short term.
The geopolitical risk also includes the tensions between Israel and Iran in the Middle East.
On the fundamental side, we have China continuing to amass significant positions in physical gold, as the country looks to diversify its massive $3.0 trillion in reserves away from U.S. bonds. Buying in India has stalled, but the country continues to be the world’s largest market for the precious metal.
The one major supportive variable that’s missing is inflation, which is a proven driver of gold prices. The reality is that inflation is benign in the United States, along with much of Europe and Asia.
With gold currently holding just above $1,300 an ounce, the precious metal is at a crux. Stabilization in Crimea would remove some of the risk discounted into the price, but I doubt this will happen in the immediate future, as Russia has set the process to annex Crimea from Ukraine.
We know that the contested move by Russia doesn’t sit well with the United States or the United Nations, yet I really do not see Russia backing away for now. That is unless the economic sanctions put forth on Russia intensify and begin to send the Russian economy into a downward spiral.
But until we see a resolution in the stand-off, I expect gold prices will continue to incorporate some risk discounted into the price.
In … Read More
After 12 years, gold bullion’s glorious bull run ended with a thud in 2013, retracing 30% and locking in the biggest annual decline since 1981. Many speculate that gold bullion prices melted in 2013 as investors tried to figure out when the Federal Reserve was going to be cutting its generous $85.0-billion monthly bond purchases.
Investors lean toward gold bullion and other precious metals as a hedge against both a weak U.S. dollar and inflation. A tapering of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy suggests that the U.S. economy is getting stronger. While there was no real sign of sustained economic strength in 2013, just the idea that the Federal Reserve would have to start tapering at some point was enough to send gold bullion prices lower.
That coupled with a strong—but misguided—run on the S&P 500 also helped push gold bullion prices lower. I say “misguided” because quarter after quarter, more and more companies on the S&P 500 revised their earnings guidance lower. At the same time, companies masked their weak earnings and revenues with cost-cutting measures and near-record-high share repurchase programs.
That came to a crushing halt at the beginning of 2014, when the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported abysmal January payroll figures. Instead of adding the forecasted 196,000 jobs—the U.S. economy added just 74,000.
Weak January payroll data coupled with political tension in Ukraine helped send gold bullion prices higher. Between the beginning of January and the middle of March, gold bullion prices rebounded, climbing 15% year-to-date to around $1,390 per ounce.
The bullish run in gold bullion didn’t stop the bears from warning investors to avoid the … Read More
Since the beginning of the year, gold bullion has gained a significant amount of attention. The precious metal has increased about 14% in value and has become one of the best-performing asset classes. Key stock indices, on the other hand, are down.
With this rise in gold bullion prices, we see an increasing amount of pessimism. In 2013, we heard the metal was a slam-dunk sale. Now, the warnings are a little tamer, but we are told $1,200-an-ounce gold bullion is very possible. The mining companies that have increased in value will see a pullback.
Before going into further detail, please look at the chart of daily gold bullion prices below.
Chart courtesy of www.StockCharts.com
As I have written about in these pages before, I am bullish on gold mainly because of one fundamental reason: the demand for the yellow metal is much higher and constraints to its supply are increasing.
But this isn’t all. When I look at the charts, my bullish convictions for higher gold bullion prices become stronger.
Ask any technical analyst; they will tell you to treat the trend as your friend, follow it until it breaks. Since late 2012, gold bullion prices were trending in a downtrend (black line on the chart above). This changed. In June of 2013, we saw the precious metal’s prices decline below $1,200, and then in December, they tested those levels again. As this happened, there was one phenomenon no one talked about: there was no follow-through—meaning gold bullion prices never declined below their lows. Instead, there was a formation of the chart pattern called the “double bottom.” In February … Read More
When it comes to gold bullion prices, despite their mere 10% climb since the beginning of 2012, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see gold bullion prices increase even further. With this, companies producing or looking for the precious metal are still presenting a great buying opportunity.
Let me explain…
We see demand for gold bullion continues to increase, and at the same time, supply constraints are slowly starting to show. This is something I have been talking about for some time now and at the very core, it is the perfect recipe for higher gold bullion prices ahead.
In 2013, we learned that the Indian government and the central banks have been working together to curb the demand for gold bullion in that country. This was a concern to many because India was the biggest consumer of the precious metal at that time. As a result of this, emotions took over, and we saw massive selling. A little-known fact that never made the mainstream: though the official demand for gold bullion declined, smuggling the precious metal into the country became the next big thing.
According to the World Gold Council (WGC), smuggled gold bullion in the country amounted to 150–200 tonnes in 2013. The WGC also predicts that if the restrictions imposed by India’s government remain in place, then it wouldn’t be a surprise to see an increase in the amount of gold bullion smuggled into the country. (Source: “UPDATE 1-Gold smuggling in India likely to rise if curbs stay-WGC,” Reuters, February 18, 2014.)
But this is just the tip of the iceberg.
We see uncertainty in the … Read More
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