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

October 10, 2018

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 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. 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, which has historically done well in times of economic and financial turmoil.

Central Banks to Withdraw Liquidity From Financial Markets for First Time Since Crisis

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, 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? 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 could likewise help you diversify away from fiat currencies and monetary policy.

Change in Gold Reserves Held by Emerging Countries

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.

U.S. Government Debt Outstanding Continues to Rise Rapidly

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's Supposed to Do: Protect Purchasing Power

5. A Sterling Time to Buy Gold?

Finally, a word about timing. 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.

Highs in the Gold-Silver Ratio Were Great Buying Opportunities for Gold

 We see a similar buying opportunity today, with the gold/silver ratio at a high of 83 as of October 8.

To read this article in Forbes, click here

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