Certain varieties of Neanderthal consider the barbarous relic to be REAL MONEY. Well - remember the functions of money. It operates as -
A medium of exchange
A unit of account
A store of value
A standard of deferred payment
If you think we live in a Lepriconomy where gold functions as money, try to pay for your next trip to the grocery store with a chunk of bullion, or a shiny American Eagle.
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One might reasonably consider gold to be a store of value, but it is inadequate in fulfilling the other functions of money. It's more reasonable to think of gold as what it actually is - a physical asset with uses in industrial applications and as jewelry. Gold is a great thing to hold onto during inflation, and especially hyper-inflation. Other times it's usually as dead as any other rock. Right now, we're on the edge of deflation, and holding gold will make little sense.
What has happened in recent years is a series of rolling bubbles, effecting stocks, real estate, oil, and other commodities during the great reflation.
Wow, gold sure has had a great decade, and especially a great last couple of years. Let's look at gold compared to other commodity prices. Gold charts from kitco.com, commodities from Dow Jones.
Dow Jones Commodity Index
The axes don't quite line up, so you'll have to make a mental adjustment to the visual Not exactly lock-step, but generally pretty similar. Since mid-year, the commodity index actually has a greater percentage price increase.
Let's zero in on the present.
Gold has gone nowhere in the last month, and has done especially badly this week. Here is the worst day.
Meanwhile, what's happened to the dollar?
Not surprisingly, it moves pretty much counter to the commodity index.
In my humble opinion, gold is basically just one more commodity, despite its Aura, and is close to the end of a classic asset bubble. Whether the recent pull back is a pause before a new top or the beginning of the end is hard to say. There's really no telling how high a bubble might go. But after it bursts - and they always do - it's usually not too hard to guess the end point - back around where it started. For gold, that's somewhere on the short side of $400.
Remember - you heard it here first - unless you're an Elliott Waver.