IronStats

Germany’s Angela Merkel Now Holding the Keys to the World’s Economy

The latest crisis across the pond has reared its ugly head, and it is not the Brexit. Italy’s large and shaky banking sector is about to require a massive bail out (or bail in alternatively) in order to prevent bank failures and bank runs across not only the Italian peninsula, but conceivably all of the European continent. The only person with the ability to stop such a crisis is ironically EU strongman German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Even now she is wrestling with questions about unfettered money printing and unlimited national asset buying that will determine the future of not only the EU economy, but that of the entire world, for years and potentially decades to come. Consider what is hinging on Merkel’s decision to allow or forbid large scale quantitative easing across the cultured continent now. What Happens if Merkel Refuses to Allow Large Scale National Money Printing? Saving Italian and struggling European banks and the failing economies of the periphery in Europe requires quantitative easing on a large scale and the end to German enforced austerity throughout the continent. Angela Merkel knows this all too well, but she is wrestling with her own personal German demon in the form of the ghost of Herr Haverstein. Rudolph Haverstein was the German Central Banker responsible for limitless German money printing almost a hundred years ago that led to hyperinflation and the ultimate collapse of the Weimar Republic and subsequent rise of Adolph Hitler. In the collective German memory, this is the worst possible route to go with potentially disastrous consequences not only for Germany but all of continental Europe. Should Premier...

Silver Investing Worth Another Serious Look These Days

Silver is all too easily and often forgotten standing in the shadow of its big brother gold as it does so much of the time. Analysts and investors stopped overlooking this other safe haven metal on Monday as the prices of silver smashed through a two year old high, reaching over $21 per ounce. Silver is now up an impressive almost 49% on a year to date comparison. Despite this fact, the little brother of gold likely still has more room to run than does the yellow metal at this point. We’ll look at the several key reasons here. China Massively Increasing Its Imports of Silver As with most good bull market rally stories over the last decade or more, it all starts with China. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that silver roared to a new two year long high this past Monday when Chinese buyers placed serious bets on both the silver futures market and by acquiring enormous quantities of the physical silver metal itself. On the Fourth of July holiday, the price of silver in spot markets rocketed nearly 7% as physical silver contracts and benchmark futures trading in Shanghai hit their limit. Silver futures for September went for $20.41 per ounce on the action, having reached over $21 an ounce in the prior 24 hours period. China has also continued to be one of the world’s largest silver importing countries because of the metal’s myriad of industrial uses. Thanks in no small part to China’s massive solar panel construction, they now consume a full 20% of worldwide silver demand. In the first ten months of 2015, Chinese silver imports...

Five Economic Reasons Gold Shines Brighter than Ever

It is amazing to many people how the economy of Britain which makes up less than four percent of global GDP can roil world markets and potentially even derail the world economy itself. The overwhelming majority of individuals on the planet do not care what the U.K.’s trade ties with the remainder of the EU will look like years after Brexit. Yet the British choice to leave behind the European Union is aggravating several interrelated forces that were already threatening the world financial stability and strengthening gold prices in the process. Lower Inflation a Threat Global commodity supply and tepid demand have led to a glut among commodities, especially oil. Labor is also overly available as demonstrated by the higher unemployment plaguing many regions of the earth. This all comes amidst inflation that is consistently lower than two percent level which central banks find desirable. Brexit has only made these forces worse. Oil plunged 7.5% between the closes of Thursday and Monday on potential declines in worldwide demand over growing uncertainty.  Inflation that is too low actually discourages businesses and people from investing and spending and makes sovereign debt burdens heavier. The U.S. bond market now predicts yearly inflation of only 1.37% through 2026. Germany and Japan’s inflation expectations similarly show drops of .13 of a point and .10 of a point since the Breit referendum. All of these development are positive for gold prices, as uncertainty and lower competing interest rates underpin the safe haven metal. More Negative Global Outlook The U.S. dollar index has risen over 20% in the last two years. It is not gaining on the progress of the U.S. economy, but...

Gold Price Shocks Encourage Acquiring the Yellow Metal

This week’s Brexit vote has once again reminded everyone that the ultimate safe haven gold always has a place in your retirement portfolio and general investment holdings. The closeness of the polls only a few days in advance of the vote has investors and markets on both sides of the Atlantic on edge. In fact there have been five other Brexit like events over the last forty years that have massively boosted gold’s appeal and prices. Brexit’s Potential Cascading Effect on the EU You have probably heard plenty of doom and gloom prognostications on what will happen to the British markets and economy if they vote to leave the EU on Thursday. Billionaire hedge fund manager George Soros has predicted that the British pound will immediately drop between 15-20%, UK stock markets will be roiled, and Britons will be significantly poorer starting in the following days. You may not have heard as much about the potential knock on effects for the European Union. If Britain votes to leave the world’s largest economic block and market, it will set a dangerous precedent for the rest of the group. Analysts are already warning about the possibilities for a disintegration of the EU as the countries that remain attempt to change their relationships with the super-state in Brussels. Others may hold their own exit referendums as well. Frank-Walter Steinmeier the German Foreign Minister suggested last week that the integration which took decades to accomplish could quickly unravel into disintegration. This could happen despite mutual pledges from the other EU countries to keep banding together. Whether the contagion spreads so badly as this or not,...

Why Events like Brexit Make Gold More Relevant for Your Portfolio than Ever

After months of the media talking about it, the much vaunted Brexit vote has finally arrived. One week from today on June 23rd the people of Britain will go to the polls to decide their collective future. With all of the latest polls showing that a leave vote leads the way, this financially destabilizing event could actually happen. Gold has already popped back up over $1,300 per ounce on the increasing possibility of this occurring. It is important for you to understand more about this possibility that could have ramifications for markets around the world and your portfolio. Geopolitical events such as this one are always out there. What is Brexit? Brexit refers to the historic decision that the British people have been given to vote on whether to stay in the European Union or whether to leave it. Prime Minister David Cameron promised that if he was reelected in the last election, he would give the citizens of the U.K. their say on their future. Cameron had suggested the referendum originally because the British harbored long term unhappiness with the direction of the European Union. Fears and worries about unchecked immigration have only made this worse in recent years and especially months. Cameron figured he could not ignore such strong sentiment. It had already threatened to split apart his own ruling conservative party. He decided his best opportunity to reduce the tensions was to renegotiate their deal with the European Union and then give the voters their chance to vote on the deal. Instead what has happened is that the deal he brought back from the much heralded renegotiations turned out...

Investors Holding Gold Like Central Banks Makes Sense

The financial crisis that began in  2008 taught central banks and investors some important lessons. One of these was that gold is more relevant today than ever before. Since those chaotic economic times, governments and regulators have shown great determination to stop those dark days from returning. Countless regulations and new rules have been created to shore up the balance sheets of banks. Financial policymakers have attempted to increase their nation’s economic growth. They have used unconventional policies like historically low interest rates and quantitative easing in an effort to do this. All of these have been good reasons to buy and hold gold. Now a major former central bank governor has thrown his weight behind central banks counting gold in their reserves. Long time Bank of England Governor Lord Mervyn King served as head of the British  central bank from 2003 to 2013. In an interview he recently gave to the World Gold Council’s Gold Investor publication, King discussed his concerns about the rising threats of more global instability. As part of these comments he made, he specifically mentioned that gold has an important role it can play in the official reserves of central banks. For a variety of reasons that range from diversification away from U.S. dollars, to concerns about runaway inflation, to fears of global instability, King talks up gold as a backstop for nations. What is good enough for the great central banks of world is also smart for you. Diversification Encourages Central Banks To Keep Gold With market conditions the way they are today, Lord King stated that he gets China’s motivation in keeping gold as a significant part of...

Paper Gold and Physical Gold Are Not the Same

As gold prices continue to pull back in the wake of higher interest rate talk from Janet Yellen and company at the Fed, you would expect some investors might use this as an excuse to cut their yellow metal positions and run.  The truth is that certain gold positions have been liquidated in recent weeks while other types have seen an increase in their totals. This is where it becomes important to understand the  different kinds of gold assets. Paper gold and gold backed holdings are two of the main categories. They have diverged sharply since the pullback started in May. What is Paper Gold? Paper gold is simply described as a position where a the investor owns a piece of paper. In this case we are not talking about a claim on gold, but a holding that merely trades with the price of gold. There is no gold backing up this asset. Another way to put it is that you do not own gold when you have paper gold. In fact you do not have even a promise to obtain physical gold. This makes you a creditor to the group that is providing paper gold accounts or certificates. As a creditor, you take on the various substantial risks of the company failing and filing for bankruptcy. You also become a victim of counter-party risks. Different types of investors have an interest in paper gold than those who buy products which at least are gold backed. Speculators on short term price movements tend to be most interested in paper gold. This would include hedge funds and other short term players. Physical...

Fluctuations in Gold Price Should Never Cause Panic Gold Selling

If you have been watching the fluctuations in gold prices the last few days and weeks, it may have discouraged you. After the best first quarter runup  in the yellow metal in over thirty years, it has begun to retrace a significant part of these gains. This can easily lead you to the conclusion that you should sell now while you still have these short term profits. It is easy to forget that the gold you acquire in your retirement account is supposed to be a long term holding, especially when gold undergoes a correction. The most important thing regarding your long term gold holdings is to not allow these volatile ups and downs to cause you to engage in panic gold selling. The fundamentals of gold are still solid. Canadian GDP Takes Significant Hit From Wildfires and Resulting Oil Production Slowdown Instability and troubling geopolitical events in the world are among the reasons that you put gold in your retirement accounts in the first place. These have not changed despite gold prices pulling back. The Bank of Canada just had its monetary policy meeting and brought up some of the reasons that it is not raising interest rates now. The devastating wildfires running through Northern Alberta have led to lasting economic weakness in the country. Because of the cessation of oil production in this key energy producing region of Alberta, Canada, an incredible one and one quarter percentage points have been cut from the second quarter real GDP growth. There has been much destruction from the fire that will take months or more to address. These tragic events not only...

Alternative Means of Holding Gold

It may come as a surprise to you that not everyone wants to store their gold at home. Some people prefer a way to invest in the yellow metal without having the headaches or hassles of keeping track of it. Other investors who purchase gold for their retirement accounts are not allowed to keep it in their house. Below are several alternative ways that you can own gold without physically having it in your possession. ETFs ETFs are exchange traded funds. They may be the easiest means of investing in gold. While they sound like an account that holds a variety of different investments, the name can be misleading. The only function a Gold ETF fulfills is to track gold prices. With a number of years of successful track records, these ETFs have worked almost perfectly. While the Gold ETFs are supposedly backed up by physical gold holdings, some investors have argued about whether or not these gold holdings are actually physically owned and held by the ETFs. They are extremely easy ways to obtain exposure to gold. The two most popular and widely held Gold ETFs are the GLD, which is the SPDR Gold Shares and the IAU which is the fund run by iShares as the COMEX Gold Trust. The costs of holding these funds are marginal at .4% annually with similar or lower commission fees. The pros to this type of holding gold are fairly obvious: • It is an easy way for traders who want to buy into and sell out of gold on short notices to participate. • There is not any simpler or more convenient way to...

Gold IRA Companies Review

ComparisonRegal AssetsAdvantage GoldAmerican BullionGoldBroker.comBirch GoldGoldlineLexi CapitalLear CapitalGoldSilverRosland Capital Editor Rating Annual Fees$250$175$1601.5% of Value ($150 Min.)$260$175 Flat, Scaling Fees above $195$160$300 Flat Rate, Scaling Fees for Higher Account Values$225 Type of StorageSegregatedSegregated or CommingledSegregated and AllocatedSegregatedCommingledCommingledSegregated and CommingledSegregated and CommingledSegregatedCommingled BBB RatingA+AA+NoneA+A+A+A+NoneA+ BCA RatingAAAAAAAAANoneAAACCCNoneAAAAAAAAA Trustlink Rating BuyBack Program Preferred CustodianNew Direction IRASelf Directed IRA Services, IncSelf-Directed IRA ServicesMatterhorn Asset ManagementSelf Directed IRA ServicesGoldStar TrustSelf Directed IRA ServicesSelf Directed IRA ServicesAmerican Estate & Trust, Goldstar Trust, and New Direction IRAEquity Institutional Preferred DepositoryBrinks Global ServicesBrink’s Global Services USA and Delaware DepositoryDelaware DepositoryMalca-AmitDelaware Deposit CompanyDelaware DepositoryDelaware DepositoryBrink's DepositoryBrinks and Delaware DepositoryDelaware Depository Read Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full ReviewRead Full Review Visit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit Website Comparison Editor RatingAnnual FeesType of StorageBBB RatingBCA RatingTrustlink RatingBuyBack ProgramPreferred CustodianPreferred DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteRegal Assets$250SegregatedA+AAANew Direction IRABrinks Global ServicesRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteAdvantage Gold$175Segregated or CommingledAAAASelf Directed IRA Services, IncBrink’s Global Services USA and Delaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteAmerican Bullion$160Segregated and AllocatedA+AAASelf-Directed IRA ServicesDelaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteGoldBroker.com1.5% of Value ($150 Min.)SegregatedNoneNoneMatterhorn Asset ManagementMalca-AmitRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteBirch Gold$260CommingledA+AAASelf Directed IRA ServicesDelaware Deposit CompanyRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteGoldline$175 Flat, Scaling Fees above CommingledA+CCCGoldStar TrustDelaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteLexi Capital$195Segregated and CommingledA+NoneSelf Directed IRA ServicesDelaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteLear Capital$160Segregated and CommingledA+AAASelf Directed IRA ServicesBrink's DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteGoldSilver$300 Flat Rate, Scaling Fees for Higher Account ValuesSegregatedNoneAAAAmerican Estate & Trust, Goldstar Trust, and New Direction IRABrinks and Delaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit WebsiteRosland Capital$225CommingledA+AAAEquity InstitutionalDelaware DepositoryRead Full ReviewVisit Website Regal Assets Regal Assets - byW. D. Crowder, April...