Gold is Near Its Record High - In Most Currencies

May 28, 2019

We generally measure the price of gold in US$ per ounce. And we all know that, on that scale, gold is far below its highs in 2011, when it reached US$1,914. In US dollar terms, it is now building a bottom. However, what has gone unnoticed by most westerners is that in many other currencies, gold is moving to new, all-time highs.

 

In US dollars, the gold price has been suppressed for quite some time now. The following long-term chart depicts gold’s bull market from 2000 to 2012 and the subsequent drop. Since roughly 2016, the gold price has been on a roller coaster ride, with upticks and downswings largely limited in a sideways pattern.

 

Many commentators and experts, including Mr. Dimitri Speck, in his interview at the "The Future of Gold" Conference in March of this year, see the perfect storm brewing for gold, while many investors in the western hemisphere are disappointed with its price development.

Of course, it is all a matter of perspective: While gold is being shunned by many western investors, it is in very high demand elsewhere. In India, for instance, gold is hoarded at record levels, as investment grade bullion bars, but even more importantly in the form of jewelry and coins.

 

This has a lot to do with currencies. The US dollar has been in a strong phase of its cycle over the past few years. However, investors in countries with weakening currencies don’t think in dollars. They think in their home currencies.

 

The following charts show why they still love gold and have been protecting their wealth with it. In those currencies, gold has retained its value, while fiat money continuously loses value.

 

Price of gold, in Indian Rupee, since 2010

Source: Bloomberg Data Service

 

Price of gold, in Brazilian Real, since 2010

Source: Bloomberg Data Service

 

Price of gold, in Swedish Krona, since 2010

Source: Bloomberg Data Service

 

In the big scheme of things, the US dollar may be seen as an exception. The question is whether - or for how long - the US dollar will remain in its current strong phase. After all, over the long-term, the dollar has continually depreciated versus international hard currencies such as the Swiss franc, or against gold.

 

Many factors, most of all the rise of other international currencies, such as the Chinese Yuan, as well as the exorbitant and growing level of debt in America, point toward a cautionary view on the strength of the Greenback. In our view, the time may have come to think a bit more like an Indian.

 

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