Gold: Back in the News …
By Bob Bauman JD
Dear Sovereign Investor,
No, I don’t mean because gold hit an all time high price yesterday, as gold futures smashed through the US $1,400 per-troy-ounce mark.
I am referring to the fact that the president of the World Bank, Robert Zoellick, wrote yesterday in a Financial Times article that leading world economies should consider “employing gold as an international reference point of market expectations about inflation, deflation and future currency values.”
Zoellick’s argument was simple recognition of the current reality. No matter what the U.S. Federal Reserve or other fiat money issuers say, gold is being sought out as an alternative currency right now. Smart people have faith in gold and declining faith, if any at all, in the sinking U.S. dollar.
Gold is the “anti dollar” and that’s why it is wildly popular now as a result. As Zoellick put it, “Although textbooks may view gold as the old money, markets are using gold as an alternative monetary asset today.”
If any proof is needed of that statement, gold closed at records last Friday and Thursday but the precious metal has scored 17 record highs in less than five weeks in September and October. The latest string of records came after the Federal Reserve’s decision to start another round of U.S. bond buying, pumping out an inflationary additional $600 billion over eight months.
The Gold Standard
When I served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives I co-sponsored Rep. Phil Crane’s legislation that would have returned to the U.S. to at least a partial gold standard.
I have made my pro-gold views known in these pages on several occasions. You can go back and review my pro-gold thoughts if you wish.
Martin Wolf of the Financial Times correctly wrote a few days ago, before the new gold price high:
“It is not hard to understand the attractions of a gold standard. Money is a social convention. The advantage of a link to gold (or some other commodity) is that the value of money would apparently be free from manipulation by the government. The aim, then, would be to “de-politicize” money. The argument in favor of doing so is that in the long-run governments will always abuse the right to create money at will. Historical experience suggests that this is indeed the case.”
A Perfect Hedge
Think about it. Gold cannot be inflated by printing more. It cannot be devalued by government decree — as we have seen once again in the last few days, the free market dictates the price. And, unlike paper currency or investments in stocks and bonds, gold is an asset which doesn’t depend on anybody’s promise to repay.
Although gold has been mined for more than 6,000 years, only about 120,000 metric tons have been produced. Lump that together and it’s just enough for a cube measuring only 18 meters (about 55 feet) along each of its six sides. New gold mined each year totals less than 2,000 metric tons, about the size of the living room in a small modern house. Gold remains one of the scarcest, and most sought after metals on earth.
Time and again, gold has proven the successful hedge against devaluation of an investor’s national currency. It’s one of the few investments that survives, even thrives, during times of economic uncertainty.
Sovereign Society Favorite
For those who in recent years followed Sovereign Society repeated advice to buy gold, the investment has paid off handsomely.
With gold at record high prices and the world facing a prolonged period of economic turmoil, buying gold even now may be a good hedge against the future.
People who have known prolonged prosperity may not fully understand the historic implications of gold and its role when bad times arrive. Once those bad times arrive, (as they have now), gold again is being recognized as the one perennial investment that’s still “good as gold.”
Bob Bauman, JD
Legal Counsel, The Sovereign Society