HOLMES: 5 Charts That Show Why Gold Belongs in Your Portfolio Now

By Frank Holmes – Ceo and Chief Investment Officer U.S. Global Investors

5 charts that show why gold belongs in your profile in gold we trust report 2018

The annual “In Gold We Trust” report by Liechtenstein-based investment firm Incrementum is a must-read account of the gold market, and its just-released chartbook for the 2018 edition is no exception.

The strengthening U.S. dollar has lately dented the price of gold, and rising interest rates are making some yield-bearing financial assets more attractive as a safe haven. But as Incrementum shows, there are many risks right now that favor owning gold in your portfolio.

Below I’ve selected five of the most compelling charts that highlight why I think you need gold in your portfolio now.

1. The End of Easy Money

To offset the effects of the global financial crisis a decade ago, central banks increased liquidity by slashing interest rates and buying trillions of dollars’ worth of government securities. Now, however, it looks as though banks are ready to start tightening, and no one is really quite sure what the consequences will be. The Federal Reserve was the first, in late 2015, to begin hiking rates, and it’s been steadily shrinking its balance sheet for about a year now. Other banks are set to follow suit. According to Incrementum, the tide will turn sometime next year, with global liquidity finally set to turn negative. In the past, recessions and bear markets were preceded by central bank tightening cycles, so it might be a good idea to consider adding gold and gold stocks, which have historically done well in times of economic and financial turmoil.

central banks to withdraw liquidity from financial markets for the first time since crisis
click to enlarge

2. Banks on a Gold-Buying Spree

While I’m on this subject, central banks have been net purchasers of gold since 2010, with China, Russia, Turkey and India responsible for much of the activity. Just this week, I shared with you the news that Poland added as much as nine metric tons to its reserves this past summer. If gold is such a “barbarous relic,” why are they doing this? As Incrementum writes, “The increase in gold reserves should be seen as strong evidence of growing distrust in the dominance of the U.S. dollar and the global monetary system associated with it.” Having a 10 percent weighting in gold and gold stocks could likewise help you diversify away from fiat currencies and monetary policy.

change in gold reserves held by emerging countries from 2007 to 2017
click to enlarge

3. Too Much Debt

Everywhere you look, debt is rising to historic highs, whether it’s emerging market debt, student loan debt or U.S. government debt. Meanwhile, higher rates are making it more expensive to service all this debt. As you can see below, interest payments will hit a record $500 billion this year. It’s forecast that the federal deficit will not only reach but exceed $1 trillion in 2019. How will this end? Earlier this year, I called this risk the “global ticking debt bomb,” and I still believe it’s one of the most compelling reasons to maintain some exposure to gold.

US government debt outstanding continues to rise rapidly
click to enlarge

4. An Exceptional Store of Value

In U.S. dollar-denominated terms, the price of gold is down right now. But in Turkey, Venezuela,Argentina and other countries whose currencies have weakened substantially in recent months, the precious metal is soaring. This alone should be reason enough to have part of your wealth stored in gold. Need further proof? According to a recent Bloomberg article, the cost of a black-market passport in Venezuela right now is around $2,000. That’s more than 125,000 bolivars, or 68 times the monthly minimum wage. A Venezuelan family that had the prudence to own gold would be in a much better position today to survive or escape President Nicolas Maduro’s corrupt regime. In extraordinary circumstances such as this, the yellow metal can literally help save your life.

gold does exactly what it is supposed to do protect purchasing power gold price increases in turkish lira and venezuelan bolivar
click to enlarge

5. A Sterling Time to Buy Gold?

Finally, a word about timing. According to Incrementum, some of the best gold buying opportunities have been when the gold/silver ratio crossed above 80—that is, when it took 80 or more ounces of silver to buy one ounce of gold. If you look at the chart below, you’ll see that such instances occurred in 2003, 2009 and late 2015/early 2016—all ideal times to accumulate. We see a similar buying opportunity today, with the gold/silver ratio at a high of 83 as of October 8. What’s more, gold stocks are the cheapest they’ve been in more than 20 years relative to the S&P 500 Index.

highs in the gold silver ratio were great buying opportunities for gold
click to enlarge

Latest In Gold We Trust Chartbook

Incrementum, which publishes the hugely comprehensive In Gold We Trust annual review of the global gold sector has just published a new chart-based analysis – almost equally comprehensive – packed with fascinating charts on various aspects of the global gold sector.  This is MUST reading for anyone interested in the world gold market.  It can be viewed here: https://bit.ly/2zUyVaL

$2300 gold in 3 years – Incrementum

In gold we still trust! – Incrementum’s 140 page positive gold analysis

Ronni Stoeferle and Mark Valek of Liechtenstein-based asset management company Incrementum AG’s hugely comprehensive annual treatise on gold and all the factors driving the gold market has just been released.  As always it is entitled “In Gold We Trust”.  This is always one of the best available sources of information and statistics for gold investors and particularly for those who follow the Austrian School of Economics.

The 2015 edition of the report contains a wealth of insights for all types of investors. It takes a look at the big picture in the financial system, from the point of view of the unusual monetary policies. This is the ninth edition of the report. Below is the executive summary from the report, as well as a link to the report itself to be downloaded or read online:

After the barely averted implosion of the financial system in autumn of 2008, we are now in the seventh year of world-wide central bank experimentation. We have all become guinea pigs of an unprecedented attempt at re-inflation, the outcome of which remains uncertain. Questionable monetary policy ventures like quantitative easing and negative interest rates are a direct consequence of a systemic addiction to inflation.

The global financial architecture remains in a fragile state. Disinflationary forces have dominated since 2011. The systemic instability between inflation and deflation – monetary tectonics – culminated in a “disinflationary earthquake” in the second half of 2014, as all industrial commodities and every paper currency lost enormous ground against the US dollar.

Widespread, chronic over-indebtedness is ratcheting up the pressure on monetary authorities to break the deflationary trend and finally generate rising price inflation rates. Gold has always been the best hedge against excessive inflationary efforts.

We are convinced that we are now close to a decisive fork in the road: the disinflationary trend will (have to) be broken. Rising price inflation rates are possible both in conjunction with a revival in economic activity and in a stagflationary environment. In both cases, inflation-sensitive investments including gold and gold mining stocks will benefit.

The majority of market participants have gradually abandoned all concerns over inflation in recent years. This is reflected in exceptionally low inflation expectations and the composition of investment portfolios. The exit from the current “low-flation” phase could prove to be the “pain-trade” for most investors.

From a technical perspective, the picture is not unequivocal. The downtrend hasn’t been broken yet. However, pronounced negative sentiment indicates resignation among gold bulls. We believe a final selloff is possible. During such a sell-off, the support at USD 1,140 could be tested. A reversal following such a test would be a reliable indication of a primary trend change in the gold market.

Based on the “big picture” analysis that is packed into this report, we see no reason for a change of course: In gold we (still) trust. We are firmly convinced that gold remains in a secular bull market that is close to making a comeback.

We expect to see a final trend acceleration at the end of the cycle. We thus decided to set a time horizon of three years – June 2018 – for our long-term price target of USD 2,300 to be reached.

To download of access the full report, click on In Gold We Trust 2015