More Public Debt Is Coming. Another Gold’s Rally Ahead?

Article by Decrypt Media

 

Democrats are not slowing down - the social spending bill follows the infrastructure package. Will gold benefit, or will it get into deep water?

Will the American spending spree ever end? On Monday last week (November 15, 2021), President Biden signed a $1 trillion infrastructure package, and just a few days later, Biden’s social spending bill worth another $1.75 trillion passed the US House of Representatives. Apparently, $1 trillion was not enough! Apparently, we don’t already have too much money chasing too few goods. No, the economy needs even more money!

Yes, I can almost hear the lament of American families: “we need more money, we already bought everything possible, we already own three cars and a lot of other useless crap, but we need more! Please, the almighty government, give us some bucks, let your funds revive our land”. Luckily, the gracious Uncle Sam listened to the prayers of its poor citizens.

Given the above, one could think that the US economy is not already heavily indebted. Well, it’s the exact opposite. As the chart below shows, the American public debt is more than $27 trillion and 125% of GDP, but who cares except for a few boring economists?

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Of course, neither infrastructure nor spending bill will increase the fiscal deficits and overall indebtedness to a similar extent as the pandemic spending packages. These funds will be spread over years. Additionally, the fiscal deficit should narrow in FY 2022 as pandemic relief spending phases out (this is already happening, as the chart below shows), while the economic recovery combined with inflation tax bracket creep increases tax revenues.

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However, both of Biden’s bills will increase indebtedness, lowering the financial resilience of the US economy. What’s more, the overall debt is much larger than the public debt I focused on here. Other categories of debt are also rising. For instance, total household debt has jumped 6.2% in the third quarter of 2021 year-over-year, to a new record of $15.2 trillion.

 

Implications for Gold

What does the fiscal offensive imply for the precious metal market? In the short run, not much. Fiscal hawks like me will complain, but gold is a tough metal that does not cry. Both of Biden’s pieces of legislation have been widely accepted, so their impact has already been incorporated into prices. Actually, the actual bills could be even seen as conservative – compared to Biden’s initial radical proposals.

In the long run, fiscal exuberance should be supportive of gold prices. The ever-rising public debt should zombify the economy and erode the confidence in the US dollar, which could benefit the yellow metal. However, the empire collapses slowly, and there is still a long way before people cease to choose the greenback as their most beloved currency (there is simply no alternative!).

So, it seems that, in the foreseeable future, gold’s path will still be dependent mainly on inflation worries and expectations of the Fed’s action. Most recently, gold prices have stabilized somewhat after the recent rally, as the chart below shows.

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Normal profit-taking took place, but gold found itself under pressure also because of the hawkish speech by Fed Governor Christopher Waller. He described inflation as a heavy snowfall that would stay on the ground for a while, rather than a one-inch dusting:

Consider a snowfall, which we know will eventually melt. Snow is a transitory shock. If the snowfall is one inch and is expected to melt away the next day, it may be optimal to do nothing and wait for it to melt. But if the snowfall is 6 to 12 inches and expected to be on the ground for a week, you may want to act sooner and shovel the sidewalks and plow the streets. To me, the inflation data are starting to look a lot more like a big snowfall that will stay on the ground for a while, and that development is affecting my expectations of the level of monetary accommodation that is needed going forward.

So, brace yourselves, a janitor is coming with a big shovel to clean the snow! Just imagine Powell with a long-eared cap, gloves, and galoshes giving a press conference! At least the central bankers would finally do something productive! Or… maybe shoveling is not coming! Although the Fed may turn a bit more hawkish if inflation stays with us for longer than expected previously, it should remain behind the curve, while the real interest rates should stay ultra-low. The December FOMC meeting will provide us with more clues, so stay tuned!

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Arkadiusz Sieron, PhD
Sunshine Profits: Effective Investment through Diligence & Care

Article by Decrypt Media

Arkadiusz Sieron

Hi, my name is Arkadiusz Sieroń. Call me a liar, but I am writing about the precious metals thanks to Arthur Laffer, Alan Greenspan, John Keynes and Fredrich Hayek. Really! Would you like to know how these economists, some of whom have been dead for a long time, triggered my adventure with gold? When I was in high school, I took part in the Entrepreneurship Olympic, one of the biggest thematic competitions for pupils from secondary schools. During my preparations, I studied an academic textbook, in which I came across a Laffer curve. Eureka! If the tax revenues are the same at low and high tax rates, the government should lower them! I did not win the competition, but I achieved much more. I decided to become an economist! And I loved the idea of small government and economic freedom since that very moment. After graduating from high school, I moved to the capital. I was very excited, as I started to study economics at the best economics university in the country. However, the professors disappointed me very quickly. Why? They all were statists, supporting extensive government intervention and fiat currencies. Gold? It is a barbarous relic! Have you not read Lord Keynes? I was very depressed. I even considered giving up my studies in economics and enrolling in the Philosophy Faculty! You can see now that I was really desperate. When I was contemplating nothingness and vanity of vanities, a few of my classmates lent me a handful of fascinating books, such as Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman. I also discovered the publications of the Austrian economists who supported the idea of the gold standard. It sounded crazy in the 21th century, but it was inspiring. I rediscovered the sense of studying economics. I continued my studies and one day I read these words: “Gold and economic freedom are inseparable”. Try guess who wrote them. Don’t give up, try once again. Don’t know? Alan Greenspan. Shocking, right? This is a quote from his “Gold and Economic Freedom”, an article published in 1966. Several years before he became the Fed Chair, and several more before the real estate bubble, that he helped to pump, up burst. Quite ironic, don’t you think? Both his essay and the Great Recession (and the accompanying bull market) motivated me to study investment portfolio management and the precious metals. I became a certified Investment Adviser very soon and I started to work for the biggest pension fund in the country. My corporate career seemed to be very promising. However, I quickly discovered that the company invested most of the participants’ funds into Treasuries or shares of the big state companies. And they didn’t even want to hear about investing in precious metals. I quit. I found a shelter at the university, as a Ph.D. candidate and – after a defense of my thesis about certain negative consequences of inflation (i.e. the Cantillon effect) – as an Assistant Professor. I was finally free to study economics, freedom, and gold. The more I read about gold, the more I was terrified. Most of the so-called experts who write about the precious metals, don’t have any idea about the subject they discuss. They treat gold as a mere commodity. Or they claim that gold is either worthless as it does not bring any yield or that its price should always rise. I was really let down by the state of understanding of the gold market among the analysts and investors. But I could not do too much. Until the sun shined down on me. I got a job offer at Sunshine Profits. I didn’t hesitate a second and accepted it, although many professors discouraged me: “You are a scholar, focus on science and do not write silly newsletters about bullion" -they advised me. But I did not listen to them, as they clearly didn’t understand the nature of gold. It is not a barbarous relic, it is the longest used money in history, and a clinking witness of human civilization. Gold is the asset, which used to serve as the safe- haven and portfolio diversifier for investors from the entire world for years. I wanted to study its properties and to share with my knowledge with people who do not have time for that. I wanted to help investors to better understand fundamentals of the gold market and improve their investment decisions. I’m happy that I can do that at Sunshine Profits. I’m really proud to be a member of our team and provide investors with high quality investment analyses about the gold market.