An article currently appearing over at IRIS, an online industry newsletter for financial professionals, is asking its audience if they’re ready for inflation, particularly in light of the highly protectionist trade posture now assumed by the Trump administration.
They’ll know if they are, continues the piece, because they will have their clients in gold.
The article, titled “The Inflationary Tariffs Could Supercharge Gold,” specifically addresses the inflation that many now expect to result in the wake of a variety of tariff actions enacted by President Trump.
The author of the article, Frank Holmes, points out that for all of the president’s public expressions suggesting he’s backing away from his various and plentiful tariff threats, tariffs are presently moving forward, and costs are already rising.
Tariffs Are Real, and Prices Are Rising
For example, despite a declaration made by Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin that a threatened trade war between the U.S. and China was “on hold,” Trump has said he’s proceeding in the effort to apply 25 percent tariffs on up to $50 billion in imports from China…and China has just hit back with tariffs on $34 billion in imports from America.
You may have also heard that tariffs threatened back in March against neighbors Canada and Mexico, as well as on the European Union, were put on hold while trade representatives from all parties continued renegotiations of existing agreements. Well, they’re back on now, as said negotiations have apparently fallen apart all the way around.
And, sure enough, the price of steel is up from a year ago. Way up. Holmes points out that steel has soared a whopping 45 percent in the last year, and that it’s just a matter of time before that much-higher cost is reflected in the price of cars, for example. Holmes mentions that the U.S. has imported automobiles squarely in its tariff sights, and cites a report by German business magazine WirtschaftsWoche that suggests Uncle Sam may altogether ban the import of German luxury automobiles.
Holmes’ eventual punchline? That the already-inflationary climate expected to fully engulf the American economy is going to be sharply exacerbated by growing trade troubles. That’s going to be good news for those with the foresight to be positioned in gold, says Holmes, who cites a revealing piece of data from the World Gold Council (WGC) indicating annual gold returns have averaged 15 percent when inflation was 3 percent or higher.
Consumer Price Index is Now Soaring – Is Your Portfolio Ready?
Despite gold’s sudden 2% drop on Friday, June 16, the prospect of “regular” inflation combining with trade conflict-fueled inflation is a reason to remain particularly optimistic about gold’s prospects in the near term. According to a recently-released Labor Department report, the consumer price index jumped 2.8% in the past 12 months – the fastest rate at which it has climbed in six years.
While my firm belief is that every portfolio should contain at least a modest allocation to precious metals to act as a stabilizer, there will be times when an even heavier weighting makes sense. An inflationary climate that looks to get considerably worse is surely one of those times. To learn more about preparing your IRA or 401(k) to withstand these decidedly negative influences, call Augusta Precious Metals at 855-976-5436. Speak with of our experienced, knowledgeable professionals about the role physical gold and silver can play in keeping your retirement account productive during what, for most, will be an uncooperative inflationary climate.
It seems as though no sooner does President Trump announce a tariff, that he or a member of his administration quickly backtrack and publicly suggest tariffs won’t really be enacted. Except we can already see they are being enacted, and prices are already moving upward. As the country continues to move headlong toward an acutely inflationary climate, prices on a wide variety of goods may begin soaring shortly. Should that come to pass, those who will already be positioned in gold stand perhaps the best chance to capitalize.