There’s a whole lotta talk about GOLD these days. “Save yourself from the eroding value of the dollar” and “combat inflation” are two common refrains. As much talk as there is of a total global economic meltdown, and gold being a protection against a massive loss of wealth, it’s almost enough to to make a regular person, who might normally not even think about investing in gold, wonder if gold is something they should consider. But before you run out and start buying gold ETF’s in your retirement portfolio or gold coins, you should think carefully about what is really going on.
A few things to consider:
Adjusted for inflation, the price of gold peaked around 1980, at about $2300 per ounce.
Even at $900+ multi-year highs over the last year or two, gold is still less than half of what it was worth in 1980, adjusted for inflation. As a long term investment, it is a money loser. I don’t know about you, but 1980 was a long time ago. Gold had a tremendous run between 1971 (when the US went off the gold standard) and 1980, but it hasn’t kept pace with inflation since then.
Gold will not be used as a means of trade should there be any type of financial or political collapse.
Do you really think that your neighborhood grocery store is capable of conducting transaction, should you have your hands on a few gold coins or a vial of gold dust? Do you think they would know how to value it or even tell if it was real?
If you are just trying to make a guess for the short term, good luck.
I mean, when is anyone really right? Can you or I predict the stock market or any other commodity price and where it is going to be in 6 months? Did anyone think, last summer, that a barrel of oil would plunge to the low to mid $30 range? I know I didn’t. Many talking heads were predicting $200 per barrel in the near future.
My point is, don’t take arguments for any investment, whether it be gold, the stock market, or other commodities at face value, especially due to fear or worry. If you think gold is going up, and invest in it, you are really betting that it will go up or stay the same (as a hedge against inflation). It’s entirely possible, but it may not be for the same reasons you might think now. I don’t think there is anything wrong with having a modest amount invested in gold or any other commodity, but I also don’t think investing in gold is going to save me from financial ruin, either.
- I Can’t Predict the Future
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