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Precious Metals: The Only Alternative

Articles & Blogs - Gold Commentary

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One of the reasons why I stay very active in discussions with readers on our forum is that it is a wonderful way of keeping in touch with what the ordinary investor is thinking. More specifically, such interaction is frequently the inspiration for my commentaries, and that is once again the case with this topic.

The scenario is a familiar one for veteran investors in this sector. Gold and silver have again become temporarily imprisoned in a trading range. Meanwhile the anti-gold and silver propaganda machine is busy sowing doubt and creating uncertainty. Their goal is simple: play upon the fears of newer investors to the sector, or wear them out via ordinary impatience.

This piece is especially aimed at those newer investors, because it delivers a simple yet irrefutable message: you have no choice other than to protect yourselves with precious metals. To illustrate how the bankers and their servant politicians have forced us into focusing our investments in precious metals requires visiting and understanding three concepts.

Turn Back The Clock:

Go back even 15 years in time, and the world of investing bears absolutely no resemblance to the Carnival of Fools which we see today. Back in that era, the vast majority of financial advisors preached a single mantra: “buy and hold”.

The premise is (was) simple: those people who place short-term bets in the market are not investors, they are gamblers – period. Investing by definition implies positioning one’s self in a particular sector/company, and then allowing the time for that investment opportunity to mature/ripen. The principle factor which separates investing from gambling is time.

Put another way, investors (as opposed to gamblers) provide themselves with the luxury of waiting for the optimal time to harvest their profits. They give their investment the necessary time for the fundamentals which support that investment to assert themselves. Conversely the gamblers who do nothing but make serial, short-term bets are merely momentum players. Time their bet perfectly (or nearly so) and they will make a profit. Fail to do so and they suffer inevitable losses.

How did the world of investing devolve from the sober, careful allocation of funds into frantically flitting from one (short-term) bet to another like a swarm of rabid butterflies? Simple. The vast majority of financial advisors finally became aware of their own gross incompetence. Not having the slightest clue about where our economies have been headed, these “experts” eventually acknowledged (after being surprised by one market crash after another) that when it came to investing they were much better at destroying fortunes than creating them.

At the same time, these highly-paid professionals(?) were not prepared to publicly acknowledge their own, massive deficiencies (and forgo the commissions which they parasitically rake-in). Thus instead of admitting that they were no longer capable of providing competent advice for investing, they absurdly announced that investing itself no longer existed. “Buy and hold is dead,” they (nearly) unanimously proclaimed.

Those members of the general public who had previously been investors suddenly discovered that their own financial advisors had given them all implicit ultimatums: change from investors into gamblers, or learn to invest on your own. Our website (and company) was formed for all those investors who don’t want to be gamblers, who do want to take control of their own financial futures, and who don’t like ultimatums (from individuals who are supposed to be working for them).

In fact, “buy and hold” is not dead when it comes to the precious metals sector. Returning to the era of investing, competent financial advisors would tell their clients that they need to provide (at least) three to five years in order to give a particular investment opportunity the time necessary to realize its potential. Pick any point in time throughout the 10+ year bull market for gold and silver, and one will see that anyone who gave that investment 3 – 5 years to “ripen” would have been well-rewarded for their time.

It would be difficult to find a single other sector which boasts such a track record. However, when we also look at the future prospects of precious metals, it then becomes impossible to find a single other sector anywhere in our economies which demonstrates not only a long track-record of success but unparallelled fundamentals for the future.

No Other Choices:

From a personal standpoint it was never my intention to become as heavily focused in the precious metals sector as I am presently (between 80% and 90%). As with many other precious metals bulls I am a big believer in the overall “commodities” story (from a long term perspective). This is based on the obvious big-picture fundamental that much of the global population (the so-called “emerging markets”) are still in the early stages of what will prove to be the longest/largest economic growth boom in the history of our species.

At the same time, the collection of corrupt buffoons presently running (ruining) Western economies have betrayed their own peoples and so grossly mismanaged their economies that they have maneuvered themselves into the worst economic catastrophe in the history of our species. And we can “thank” the Banker Oligarchs who have steered these stooges every step of the way along that road to economic suicide. “Zig” one way today and Western economies will be consumed in a hyperinflation conflagration which is literally beyond the comprehension of any of us. “Zag” the other way, and these debt-saturated economic Ponzi-schemes will implode into domino-like debt defaults.

Literally only one investment can protect investors from both of those nightmares: precious metals. While the virtues of gold and silver in shielding people from the ravages of high inflation are generally well understood, conversely very few investors (or commentators) understand that gold and silver are equally necessary/effective in protecting people from the opposite economic Hell.

Commentator after commentator fail miserably in their analysis of gold and silver in any “economic crash” scenario. The mistake they make is in comparing what will be a totally unprecedented event in human history with past economic episodes which bear no similarity to our present circumstances.

Never before in history has the majority of the global economy (according to GDP) all been simultaneously poised to default on its debts. Thus when commentators talk about recessionary conditions or even depressionary conditions (of the past) they are totally missing the boat. They are talking about (mere) “deflation” when what we are facing are (serial) debt-defaults. There is no comparison at all between the two scenarios.

The enormous difference between the two scenarios could not be simpler: in the debt-default Hell looming before us cash is trash” (implying the same thing for bonds). Our (unbacked) fiat currencies are nothing but the IOU’s of the government issuing them. What is the value of an IOU from a bankrupt debtor? Zero.

Similarly, the debt-default scenario looming before most Western economies implies bonds going to zero. How much are Greek bonds worth today? About 30% of what they were worth one week ago (and fading fast). And as I have reminded readers frequently, in fundamental terms the U.S. economy is obviously more insolvent than that of Greece.

Any economic crash scenario also implies a sickening plunge for the broader economy, meaning that most categories of equities can be expected to crash as well, along with most of the commodities – except where severe shortages exist. The question then becomes: as $trillions in various forms of banker-paper plunge to zero, where will the paper-refugees flee with what remains of their wealth? For nearly 5,000 years, the answer to that question has been gold and silver.

The KISS Principle:

Regular readers know that I am a long-time disciple of the doctrine known by the acronym KISS (“Keep It Simple, Stupid”). It’s a very basic (and time-tested) concept: we all stand a much better chance of being successful employing a good, simple plan rather than a good, complex plan. The logic here is irrefutable: complexity (by definition) implies the opportunity for more things to go wrong. Equally, it is much easier to both understand and implement a simple strategy rather than a complex one.

Gold and silver have perfectly preserved the wealth of their holders for thousands of years. The U.S. dollar has lost 98% of its value in less than one century (since the Federal Reserve was put in charge of “protecting it”). People can understand that.

The supply of gold and silver is increasing by only about 2% per year. Meanwhile, the supply of the bankers’ paper currencies are effectively being increased by somewhere in excess of 10% per year – more than five times as much new supply. In times of economic crisis, scarce assets retain their value much better than those which are overly abundant. People understand that.

Historically, precious metals have comprised between 5% and 10% of all financial assets. Today, gold and silver (and the miners) represent little more than 1% of financial assets. If this ratio merely returns to the historical average, this implies a surge in the value of precious metals assets by multiples which would dwarf all previous gains over the past 10 years. People can understand that.

There are also a plethora of more complicated reasons for favoring gold and silver (and the precious metals miners) above all other asset classes at the present time. It’s not necessary to discuss all of them here. Those people who also subscribe to the KISS principle know that you only need to be right for one or two (or three) reasons. Take your pick.

What expertise does one require to become an informed precious metals investor? You have to understand basic arithmetic. Moving one’s wealth to the time-tested security provided by precious metals allows us to take control of our financial future, allows us to once again be (long term) investors rather than (short term) gamblers, and it provides us with a sound, financial strategy which we can all understand.

Ignore all of the fear-mongering and deceptions of the mainstream charlatans. For 10+ years they have an unblemished record: they have always been wrong. Cash is trash. Western bonds are nothing but financial feces. However being able to sleep well at night is “golden”.

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Comments (8)Add Comment
Jeff Nielson
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written by Jeff Nielson, February 16, 2012
Hey Brian, maybe they could "unlock" the entire reservoir with a thermonuclear detonation? smilies/wink.gif

Fracking MIGHT make this oil (slightly) "economic" from the most superficial supply/demand analysis. But how much does it "cost" society to POISON much of its drinking water?

Developing RECKLESS techniques to make such oil MARGINALLY economical cannot be considered justification. USE 1 billion barrels of oil to PRODUCE 1.2 billion barrels of oil AND ravage the environment at the same time?

Call me a "big picture guy", but I don't call such oil "economical"...
Brian Boutilier
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written by Brian Boutilier, February 16, 2012
http://www.bakkenoil.org/
My impression based on some baseline DD, is that Fracking is making this (Bakken) an economic oil deposit. If so, then I reiterate the point that US miners should have stable energy cost in an enviroment of rising commodities. I would think that would be bullish to metals/miners. Respectfully, I didn't intend to redirect the conversation, just lend so depth to it.
Jeff Nielson
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written by Jeff Nielson, February 13, 2012
While we're getting off-topic here, I would suggest that any/all who want to be better educated about dynamics in the oil/energy sector go through Chris Martenson's "Crash Course" clips.

As things stand, ALL of that "shale oil" is essentially WORTHLESS, since it REQUIRES almost one full barrel of oil to PRODUCE one barrel of all. You get ALL of the environmental destruction of a Big Oil industry - with ZERO net benefit to society, because no ADDITIONAL energy is being produced.
Tucson JJ
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written by Tucson JJ, February 13, 2012
Brian, I am not the expert, but I think bringing the oil reserves online will take a good deal of time... and I still don't understand the reluctance of the US to utilize and transition to our large natgas reserves... that will take much time also to facilitate the infrastructure to use, but what a great make-sense jobs program! Autos could be designed, much more sense than the foolish electric cars... service station retro-fit, etc... I suppose Big Oil and scum like Goldman and JP Morgan are somehow buying enough politicians to queer any deal that would utilize any oil or natgas reserves...smilies/angry.gif

For general info, I found a very good article: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/...ng-default

regards all and thanks, Jeff for your articles.
Brian Boutilier
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written by Brian Boutilier, February 13, 2012
I was once fairly worried about the effect of hyperdilution of the US currency, and the skyrocketing cost of Gas/Oil. However, it is becoming more televised that US now sitting on an abudance of oil and Nat Gas in the Northern States, and off the gulf coast. That would seem to take the sting out of dependence on mid-east oil, and tansion from the Persian Gulf.

Looks like the scenario for metals and miners just got stonger. They may have the energy means to mine/mill, while keeping costs contained. Any thought along these lines folks?
Jeff Nielson
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written by Jeff Nielson, February 12, 2012
Yes Paxjds, I should have mentioned (at least once) that "gold and silver" meant holding the PHYSICAL metals - not the banksters' crooked bullion-ETF's.

TusconJJ, people have to separate SHORT-TERM panic scenarios from MEDIUM-TERM market responses. Thus what we saw in 2008 was gold and silver PLUNGING lower, before immediately reversing and moving HIGHER THAN EVER.

Those people who think they can (successfully) TRADE through such panic scenarios will most likely simply DESTROY THEMSELVES.

Buy and hold...and IF you have to endure a (temporary) dip in the value of your gold and silver, so what??
Tucson JJ
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written by Tucson JJ, February 12, 2012
Good stuff, Jeff! I am probably being a little goofy here... but in the event of a Greek default, will not the CDS crappola be triggered and cause, potentially, a big crash in the markets... taking down the PMs and associated stocks hard as well? I was thinking of waiting for that to pile back into gold... I do maintain a core gold position of around 20%... but...

Am I being too cute and risking a major kick in the pants?? It looks like they may come up with another "agreement" that will delay the default for another month or two... what a game... while the citizens try to burn down the country... obviously the leaders are not quite in tune with the people... sort of like here! best, JJ
paxjds
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written by paxjds, February 11, 2012
To take control and invest in precious metals, new investors need to be sure to buy Physical gold and/or silver that you have in your possession. I also have precious metal funds that have real gold and silver in them: CEF, PHYS, and PSLV in order to sell quicky if I need to. IMHO, one should never buy 'paper' gold and silver such as GLD or SLD; for if a dollar collapse should happen, it is very doubtful that you would ever see either money or any physical metal.
IN these worldwide fiat money printing Ponzi schemes, I see no other safe haven for savings but precious metals and perhaps other items such as oil and other precious resources.

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