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Silver American Eagle (1 oz) coins
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Gold is the “Balancer” Most Portfolios Need

By Louis G. Navellier October 5, 2015

Through the first nine months of 2015, gold is down 7.1%, but nearly everything else is also in the red so far in 2015.  The Dow industrials are down 8.63% and the S&P 500 is down 6.75%.  Gold is in the same boat as stocks – taking a long rest after a strong rise – but the difference is that gold’s big rise (+650%) came from 2001 to 2011, while the stock market’s biggest gains (+220%) came from 2009 to last May.

Gold tends to “zig” while stocks “zag,” making gold an ideal portfolio balancer.  If you held a majority of your assets in stocks balanced by a 10% position in gold over the last 15 years, then gold’s rise from 2001 to 2011 helped offset your stock market losses from 2000 to 2009.  By the same token, stocks since 2009 have helped offset the decline in gold since the start of 2013, when gold traded at over $1690 per ounce.

If you take a long look, gold is still the clear winner among asset classes since the new Millennium began:



Most Commodities (except Gold) are Down Even More than Stocks

Most commodities are universally priced in U.S. dollars, so most commodity prices have come down since mid-2014, due to the dollar’s surge since then.  Oil, for instance, is down from over $100 per barrel in mid-2014 to $45 recently.  The 19-commodity CRB index is down from a peak of 313 in June 2014 to a low of 185 last month – down over 40%.  So, with oil down nearly 60% and the commodity index down about 40%, it’s a small miracle that gold is down just 15% (from $1315 to $1115) in the same time frame.

The third quarter of 2015 was particular brutal to commodities, with the CRB declining from 225 to 193 in third quarter, down 14%.  In the same quarter, gold was down less than 5%, making it the star of the commodity universe.  What’s more, gold is actually up so far in 2015 in terms of the euro and several other currencies.   Here’s a sample of gold’s performance in terms of 10 other currencies so far in 2015:



Other major asset classes have also declined so far in 2015. The MSCI All Country World Index of global stock markets is down 6.6% in the first three quarters, including dividends. The Shanghai Composite Index fell 28.6% in the third quarter, the most of any major global market.  The MSCI Emerging Market index is down 18.5% year-to-date and Japan’s Nikkei 225 is down 14.1%. In addition, the Bloomberg Commodity Index is down 16%.  Bonds haven’t offered much relief, as the Bank of America Corp.’s global debt index rose just 1% in the first nine months of 2015, which is less than the 2.5% rise in global consumer prices (as measured by the International Monetary Fund’s inflation index).  U.S. government bonds have returned just 1.4% so far this year, and the B of A Merrill Lynch Global Corporate & High Yield Index will likely suffer its first full-year decline since 2008, since “junk” yields are rising again.


Here are some typical declines in major stock market averages during the first nine months of 2015:


The U.S. stock market held up quite well until late August, when a “flash crash” brought stocks down 12% from their May peaks in the first 10% or greater correction since late 2011.  Also, the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index (known as the VIX) reached its highest level since 2011, while gold, despite its dismal recent performance, traded in a narrow range of $1080 to $1165 in the third quarter.


Wall Street Sentiment toward Gold is Still Negative – but Gradually Improving

Demand for physical gold and silver is rising, as revealed by statistics from the U.S. Mint and other global mints.  The U.S. Mint sold 397,000 ounces of Gold American Eagles in the third quarter, far more than the 273,000 they sold in the entire first half of 2015.  Silver Eagle demand is also rising, but the Mint has been rationing supplies.  According to its latest data, the Mint sold 14,268,500 ounces of its American Eagle silver coin in Q3, vs. 9,715,000 ounces sold in the second quarter of the year, but they put a lid of one-million ounces on sales in the first week of September, then just 819,500 oz. in the second week and 750,000 the third week.  Recently, the supplies were exhausted within two days, by Tuesday each week.

Despite these massive sales increases of physical metals, the leveraged markets (primarily gold futures and gold ETFs) have determined the direction of the gold market. A massive concerted dumping of gold ETFs in April 2013 pushed gold sharply down in price, while continued sales over the last 2-1/2 years has continued to put pressure on gold’s price.  ETF gold holdings are down 5.2% so far this year, and gold has fallen by a similar amount.  But according to Frank Holmes, CEO of U.S. Global Investors (a mutual fund family specializing in gold and natural resources), the rate of gold sales has slowed from a catastrophic 33% decline in 2013 and a moderate 9.33% drop in 2014 to a 5.2% decline so far this year.


A close examination of this chart shows that professional traders tend to get back into gold when the price starts rising: Check the gold price increases in early 2014 and early 2015 which caused a brief rise in gold ETF purchases.  What we’ve seen over the last 2-3 years is a massive movement of gold from the West (primarily the U.S.) to the East (primarily China).  As the volume of gold holdings in ETFs has declined from about 2650 metric tons to under 1500 metric tons, China has apparently bought much of that gold:

Coin Withdrawals as of August

Through the end of August, 2015 (the latest month with complete statistics), Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) demand has been 36% higher than the same eight months in 2014, and 13.5% higher than in 2013, which was a record year. Demand elsewhere in Asia is high too as the Indian festival season is beginning, followed by the wedding season (starting in November).   Also, central banks in the region are buying gold. Russia just added 32 metric tons of gold to its central bank vaults in August, the most in 11 months.

Owning physical gold is traditionally a long-term commitment, since investors take possession of the metal and then must find a safe place to store it.  Selling it involves just as much work – including shipping and insurance.  By contrast, gold ETFs have made gold trading as easy as a click of the mouse.

However, the buying and selling of physical gold is now only a few mouse clicks away with the Navellier Discount Bullion Platform, which allows investors to buy and sell precious metals with fast execution and very low fees. You own the real (physical) bars or gold coins – not paper gold, ETF shares, pool accounts, or other derivatives – and Navellier Gold takes care of storage, insurance, delivery and security. You can buy metals at a discount and store them in a high security vault in your chosen location, or take delivery.

While gold remains unpopular on Wall Street and the prices remain in a low trading range, this is the time to make sure you have an adequate cache of gold as a balance to the other asset classes in your portfolio.


Disclaimer: The information in this letter is not intended to be personalized recommendations to buy, hold or sell investments. This should not be considered as personalized trading or investment advice to subscribers. The information, statements, views and opinions included in this publication are based on sources (both internal and external sources) considered to be reliable, but no representation or warranty, express or implied, is made as to their accuracy, completeness or correctness. Such information, statements, views and opinions are expressed as of the date of publication, are subject to change without further notice and do not constitute a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any investment referenced in the publication. Subscribers should verify all claims and do their own research before investing in any investment referenced in this publication. Investing in securities and other investments, such as options and commodities, bullion and futures is speculative and carries a high degree of risk. Subscribers may lose money trading and investing in such instruments.