The Moneychanger
Daily Commentary
Thursday, 23 March a.d. 2017 Browse the commentary archive

There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch. This is especially true in the gold market, subject to a worldwide price. You will NEVER buy gold below its melt value unless something is very wrong -- like it's not gold, or it's stolen.

Go visit http://bit.ly/2nt7e30 & read the story about the two teenage boys in Bend, Oregon who bought "artificial" (non-gold) gold bars online then sold the bars as authentic on Craigslist. One wonders what sort of "discount" they were offering.

Folks often ask me about prices of silver or gold on EBay, etc. If it's genuine, I've found its usually over-priced. But then, why would you not buy exclusively from a dealer you trust, rather than some jack-leg? Here's a cosmic rule you should never forget: If it sounds too good to be true, it is.

Y'all ought to know that in the last couple of years excellent tungsten counterfeits of gold one and ten ounce bars have been coming out of China, good enough to fool even an expert without an $800 electronic tester. Under no circumstances would I buy gold bullion bars from anyone but a reputable, established dealer. Besides, even genuine bullion bars don't offer enough price saving to make buying them a smart idea. I can sell you Austrian 100 coronas or Mexican 50 pesos cheaper.

US Dollar index stepped up 7 basis points to 99.54. looking at the five day chart, it might have bottomed the last three days. Price to watch is 99, since a break through that level takes the dollar index much lower, while a strong rally off that might be the forerunner of a larger rally. It's a nail-biter.

Like a sick & dying man trying to lift himself up out of bed, stocks tried to rise today but just couldn't stay up. Dow lost 4.77 (0.02%) to 20,656.58. S&P500 backed up 4.49 (0.11%) to 2,345.96. Here's the S&P500 chart, http://schrts.co/vtdPMb

Today looks poorly. Stocks tried to rally, but closed lower, below that top edge boundary. Indicators make me think stocks are swimming with concrete boots. Dow in Gold & Dow in silver have also definitively turned down.

Silver & gold are still stalled. Gold peeled off $2.40 (012%) to close Comex at $1,246.90. Silver added 1.8¢ to 1756.3.

This ain't progress, and stalled progress often transforms into regress. Gold acts like Superman facing Kryptonite as it nears $1,250 & the 200 DMA above about $1,264. Silver can't penetrated 1760¢. I can't point to anything on the chart that confirms my suspicions, but I can't find anything in this dithering that allays them, either. Maybe I'm fretting too much & just vexing myself pointlessly. I am really skilled at that.

Platinum & Palladium are rising. Palladium is on a tear, closed over $800 today.

On 23 March 1775 Patrick Henry delivered at St. John's Church in Richmond what has become the most famous speech in American history. Washington is to be revered, Jefferson admired for his cleverness, Franklin for his wiliness, but Oh! Patrick Henry! There was a man to love, called for many years the Father of his Country instead of Washington.

In 1775 Henry was trying to urge the Convention to raise a militia and put Virginia on a military footing for the conflict he saw approaching. His was not a popular view. I don't know about that Convention, but probably less than 20% of colonialists supported rebellion against their king. Henry struck clean to the heart: this is a matter of freedom or slavery. His address was closely reasoned and stirring, the logic unassailable, the emotional tide rising higher and higher. At last he summed it all up in his undying peroration:

"Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains & slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"

Argentum et aurum comparanda sunt —
Silver and gold must be bought.

— Franklin Sanders, The Moneychanger

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Market Snapshot See more charts and market data
23-Mar-17 Price Change % Change
Gold, $/oz 1,246.90 -2.40 -0.19%
Silver, $/oz 17.56 0.02 0.10%
Gold/Silver Ratio 70.996 -0.210 -0.29%
Silver/Gold Ratio 0.0141 0.0000 0.30%
Platinum 963.10 2.00 0.21%
Palladium 801.90 10.45 1.32%
S&P 500 2,345.96 -12.65 -0.54%
Dow 20,656.58 -4.72 -0.02%
Dow in GOLD $s 342.46 0.58 0.17%
Dow in GOLD oz 16.57 0.03 0.17%
Dow in SILVER oz 1,176.14 -1.48 -0.13%
US Dollar Index 99.47 -0.15 -0.15%
IMPORTANT NOTE: The following are wholesale, not retail, prices. To figure our retail selling price, multiply the "ask" price by 1.035. To figure our retail buying price, multiple the "bid" price by 0.97. Lower commissions apply to larger orders, higher commissions to very small orders.
SPOT GOLD: 1,245.80      
GOLD Fine Tr.Oz. BID ASK $/oz
American Eagle 1.00 1,271.96 1,286.29 1,286.29
1/2 AE 0.50 634.85 657.16 1,314.32
1/4 AE 0.25 320.54 334.19 1,336.74
1/10 AE 0.10 128.21 136.17 1,361.66
Aust. 100 corona 0.98 1,211.97 1,220.97 1,245.64
British sovereign 0.24 295.46 308.46 1,310.37
French 20 franc 0.19 232.59 238.59 1,277.94
Krugerrand 1.00 1,258.26 1,268.26 1,268.26
Maple Leaf 1.00 1,255.80 1,268.80 1,268.80
1/2 Maple Leaf 0.50 716.34 654.05 1,308.09
1/4 Maple Leaf 0.25 317.68 333.25 1,333.01
1/10 Maple Leaf 0.10 132.05 135.79 1,357.92
Mexican 50 peso 1.21 1,488.42 1,499.42 1,243.61
.9999 bar 1.00 1,245.80 1,257.80 1,257.80
SPOT SILVER: 17.58      
SILVER Fine Tr.Oz. BID ASK $/oz
VG+ Morgan $B4 1905 0.77 22.50 25.25 33.01
VG+ Peace dollar 0.77 15.50 18.00 23.53
90% silver coin bags 0.72 12,351.63 12,709.13 17.78
US 40% silver 1/2s 0.30 4,992.88 5,142.88 17.43
100 oz .999 bar 100.00 1,747.50 1,772.50 17.73
10 oz .999 bar 10.00 177.25 182.25 18.23
1 oz .999 round 1.00 17.83 18.13 18.13
Am Eagle, 200 oz Min 1.00 19.08 19.73 19.73
SPOT PLATINUM: 963.10      
PLATINUM Fine Tr.Oz. BID ASK $/oz
Plat. Platypus 1.00 958.10 1,003.10 1,003.10
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Warnings and Disclaimers

To avoid confusion, please remember that the comments above have a very short time horizon. Always invest with the primary trend. Gold's primary trend is up, targeting at least $3,130.00; silver's primary trend is up, targeting 16:1 gold/silver ratio or $195.66; stock's primary trend is down, targeting Dow under 2,900 and worth only one ounce of gold or 16 ounces of silver. US$ and US$-denominated assets, primary trend down; real estate bubble has burst, primary trend down.

Be advised and warned:

  • Do NOT use these commentaries to trade futures contracts. I don't intend them for that or write them with that short-term trading outlook. I write them for long-term investors in physical metals. Take them as entertainment, but not as a timing service for futures.
  • NOR do I recommend investing in gold or silver Exchange Trade Funds (ETFs). Those are NOT physical metal and I fear one day or another may go up in smoke. Unless you can breathe smoke, stay away. Call me paranoid, but the surviving rabbit is wary of traps.
  • NOR do I recommend trading futures options or other leveraged paper gold and silver products. These are not for the inexperienced.
  • NOR do I recommend buying gold and silver on margin or with debt.
  • What DO I recommend? Physical gold and silver coins and bars in your own hands. For additional information, please see our Ten Commandments for Buying Gold and Silver.
  • One final warning: NEVER insert a 747 Jumbo Jet up your nose.

Explanation of Terms

The US DOLLAR INDEX is the average exchange rate for the US dollar against the Euro, Yen, Pound sterling, Canadian Dollar, Swiss Franc, and Swedish Krona, weighted for each country's trade with the US. It gives a general measure of the US dollar's performance against all other currencies.

The DOW IN GOLD DOLLARS measures the Dow Jones Industrial Average in gold dollars (0.048375 troy oz. by law). The DiG$ depicts the Primary (20 year) Trend of stocks against gold. When the DiG$ is dropping, gold is gaining value against stocks in a trend that should last 15-20 years. The DiG$'s chart is identical to the Dow in ounces of gold, but gives us one unvarying measure all the way back to 1896. Because it shows the primary trend ("tide") of gold against stocks, for investors it is the single most important financial chart in the world today. Since its August 1999 high at G$925.42 (44.8 ounces), the DiG$ has trended down, targeting a G$80-G$20 (4-1 oz. of gold will buy the whole Dow).

The DOW IN SILVER OUNCES shows how many ounces of silver are needed to buy the entire Dow. The DiSoz is trending down with a target of under 36 ounces.

The GOLD/SILVER RATIO is the gold price divided by the silver price, and shows how many ounces of silver it takes to buy one ounce of gold. The Ratio shows us the Primary (20 year) Trend of gold's value against silver. When the Ratio's trend is dropping, silver is gaining value against gold. This trend targets a gold/silver ratio of 16 ounces of silver to one of gold within the next 5-10 years. That implies that silver will massively, vastly outperform gold before this bull market ends. When both metals are rallying, the ratio often (but not always) drops, confirming the rally.

Other Important Information

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