Recently by Egon von Greyerz: Matterhorn Asset Mgt: Three Realistic Gold Targets: $6,000 — $7,000 — $10,000
The Stealth Market in Gold
Gold has gone up for 12 straight years in a stealth market. In the last ten years gold has had a compound annual growth of 20.5%. This is an absolutely outstanding return but investors should not look at gold as an investment but as money. Gold reflects governments’ deceitful actions in totally destroying the value of paper money by printing unlimited amounts of it. With gold up 7 times since the bottom in 1999, is it too late to jump on the Goldwagon?
The answer to the above question is a categorical NO. Virtually no major investor group has participated in gold’s spectacular rise. In spite of a seven fold increase in the gold price, only circa 1% of world financial assets are invested in gold. Whenever I talk to major institutional investors, not only do they not own gold, but they don’t understand gold either. I was speaking at a conference for Family Offices recently where there were circa 250 family office managers present representing substantial funds. Not only did no one own gold, but they had no understanding of gold’s role as an investment class or the fact that measured in real money, i.e. in gold, their investments were declining precipitously. It must be unprecedented that an important asset class can go up for such a long period with so few investors participating. In my view this is the most bullish sign ever for gold. The mess the world is in will lead to unprecedented money printing in the US, EU, the UK and many more regions. And gold will continue to reflect the destruction of paper money. In addition, investors will increasingly mistrust paper gold and invest in physical gold only. Due to the very limited availability of physical gold, the increase in demand can only be satisfied at substantially higher prices.
Gold Price Projection
There are many ways to project how high the gold price can reach. Adjusting gold for real (not the published, manipulated) inflation the price would be circa $7,500. At the recent GATA conference, Adrian Douglas put forward a target of $53,000 an oz based on M3. He said that that out of every 33 oz of gold traded 32 oz are paper gold, which would lead to a price projection of $53,000 also, if all trading were backed by physical gold. The following chart shows where gold would be if the US gold reserves were at the same percentage (52%) of us debt as in 1913 when the Fed was founded. Gold would then be $27,000 today and going up to $33,000 in 2015 with a projected increase in debt of $ 6.5 trillion (6.5T).
All of the above projections are subjective and therefore somewhat arbitrary. However, whatever method is used, gold is undervalued on any measure. We are not just talking about a substantial undervaluation but more importantly that paper money is likely to be totally destroyed in the next few years with the gold price reflecting this obliteration. It is absolutely impossible to forecast how much money will be printed but the flood of paper could lead to many zeroes being added to the gold price just like in any hyperinflationary economy. For example, in 1923 in the Weimar Republic gold reached 100 trillion marks. Gold (and silver) is a critical asset to hold in order to preserve wealth against such a hyperinflationary destruction of paper money.
Physical versus Paper Gold
Circa 96% of all gold trading is paper. For anyone who demands delivery, there will be no gold to deliver. At the GATA conference in London Jim Rickards stated that currency wars will lead to the US government taking back (confiscating) whatever gold it has lent to bullion banks as well as gold it holds for other nations (most of Germany’s gold is said to be held in New York). He also mentioned a potential 90% windfall tax on gold. In a subsequent King World interview (click to listen), Eric King discussed with Rickards that the US government has keys to Via Mat’s US vaults.
It is of course not possible to predict what desperate governments will do, nor is it possible to protect yourself against every eventuality. What is very clear is that simple action can and will give investors a better chance of preserving wealth:
- Only buy physical allocated gold/silver bars or coins.
- Store the gold outside the country where you are resident.
- Store the gold in a country with a stable political system (like Switzerland).
- Store the gold outside the banking system in vaults with no US connection.
- Make sure you have personal access to your gold and/or silver
Gold Making New Highs
Gold has recently made new highs against most currencies. In addition, after longer consolidations, the Dow is breaking down against gold (down 85% in 12 years), and gold is breaking up against both Oil and the Swiss Francs.