Posts filed under “Inflation”

Is Gold Cheap or Expensive? Look to China & India

Click to enlarge:

Source: Bloomberg
 

Is Gold cheap? Pricey? Somewhere in between?

I have a hard time answering that question because I have no frame of reference. With equities, I could look at earnings and/or dividends, sales, book value, etc. to determine relative valuation. With bonds, interest rate, credit rating (and whether its callable) give me some insight into the value.

I have none of that with gold. (Note valuation doesn’t tell me whether to buy it or not, only whether its cheap or dear).

Bloomberg’s David Wilson looks at another standard to value gold: The historical standards for the world’s two largest buyers, China and India. Today, the price of gold for immediate delivery has risen to records in the Chinese renminbi and Indian rupee after accounting for each country’s inflation. (The caveat is gold is priced in dollars).

Wilson references a recent study by Claude B. Erb and Campbell R. Harvey of Gold Prices and valuation:

“Gold objects have existed for thousands of years but gold has only been an actively traded object since 1975. Gold has often been described as an inflation hedge. If gold is an inflation hedge then on average its real return should be zero. Yet over 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 year investment horizons the variation in the nominal and real returns of gold has not been driven by realized inflation.

The real price of gold is currently high compared to history. In the past, when the real price of gold was above average, subsequent real gold returns have been below average. As a result investors in gold face a daunting dilemma: 1) seek inflation protection by paying a high real gold price that almost guarantees a decline in future purchasing power or 2) avoid gold and run the risk of a decline in future purchasing power if inflation surges.”

Fascinating stuff . . .


Sources:

Bloomberg
by David Wilson
September 20, 2012

The Golden Dilemma
Claude B. Erb, Campbell R. Harvey
Duke University Fuqua School of Business/National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) Revised August 3, 2012
http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2078535

Category: Gold & Precious Metals, Inflation, Valuation

Gold vs. Inflation

Click to enlarge: ˜˜˜ Source: Merrill Lynch   We have pointed this out before, but its worth repeating: As Merrill Lynch pointed out earlier this week, “the link between inflation and gold is very limited.” The correlation between Gold and Inflation is not what most people believe it to be. This variant belief could be…Read More

Category: Gold & Precious Metals, Inflation

1st of the July inflation #’s rolls in

The first of the July inflation reports over the next week was just released. Import prices fell .6% m/o/m and 3.2% y/o/y vs expectations of up .2% and down 2.5% respectively. Taking out the influence of food and fuels, prices were still down .4% m/o/m but still up .2% y/o/y. Import prices specifically from China…Read More

Category: Inflation, MacroNotes, Think Tank

Rents On The Rise

Click to enlarge: The Wall Street Journal – Rents Increase as Vacancies Dry Up Landlords boosted apartment rents to record levels in the second quarter as demand from tenants sitting out the home-buying market pushed vacancy rates to their lowest point in more than a decade, according to a report to be released Thursday. Despite…Read More

Category: Inflation, Real Estate, Think Tank

Inflation Ex-Deflation (this time, INCLUDING energy)

Here is a twist: We used to discuss how the Fed loved their core (ex food & energy) inflation measures. I termed that Inflation Ex-Inflation, and if you look around TBP, you will see lots of mentions of that measure.

Take a closer look at Energy, one of the biggest non-housing components. As noted this morning, Commodities have entered a Bear Market. Gas & Oil are not contributing much inflationary pressures. If anything, Energy costs now are acting as a drag on Inflation.

Call it Inflation Ex-Deflation (Do you want to guess what that means for the Fed’s love of the Core Inflation (ex food & energy)?

Consider the Federal Reserve inflation target of 2.0%. Jim Bianco notes that inflation is moderate at 1.73%. However, if you take a closer look at the chart below of core CPI — you will see a 2.3% on a year-over-year basis (blue line) and a heady 2.71% on a three-month annualized basis (red line).

Sum it up and it means inflation less energy is largely running above the Federal Reserve’s target.

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Energy Now A Drag On Inflation

Click to enlarge:

Source: Bianco Research

 

 

More charts after the jump

 

Read More

Category: Energy, Inflation

Emerging Markets, Not Inflation Drives Gold

Click to enlarge:     Kudos to Bloomberg’s Dave Wilson for spotting this study last week by Duke University Professor Campbell R. Harvey and his collaborator, Claude B. Erb. They discovered that “Gold’s prospects are less dependent on inflation than on demand from emerging markets.” As the chart above shows, “The relationship between gold and…Read More

Category: Gold & Precious Metals, Inflation

The Not So Golden Years, Revisited

Over the years, debate has waxed and waned over the effects of the minimum wage and/or immigration policy on employment, particularly teen/youth employment. When the issue flared up most recently, a couple of years ago, I posted a rebuttal to that argument here, my point being that it was – at least this time around…Read More

Category: Contrary Indicators, Cycles, Data Analysis, Economy, Employment, Inflation, Really, really bad calls

Will Soaring Rents Lead To Higher Core Inflation?

Chicago Real Estate Daily – Rents rise again in sizzling downtown apartment market Downtown apartment rents hit another high in the first quarter, and more hikes may be in the offing amid a red-hot rental market. The average effective rent at top-tier, or Class A, downtown apartment buildings rose to $2.50 a square foot in…Read More

Category: Inflation, Real Estate, Think Tank

MIA: Bond Vigilantes

Following up on a previous matter, Karl Denninger  posted what is supposed to pass for a rebuttal to my recent post on government spending. To my eyes, as Jay Bookman so aptly put it, it looks like “the octopus trick, squirting black ink to cloud your retreat.” True enough. Anyway, done with that discussion. Paul…Read More

Category: Contrary Indicators, Data Analysis, Economy, Inflation, Markets, Really, really bad calls

Wow! Bundesbank “accepts” higher inflation

Australia’s unemployment rate declined to a one year low of 4.9% in April, from 5.2% in March and as opposed to a rise to 5.3% forecast. However, the data reveals that the decline was caused by an increase in part time employment (+26k), with full time unemployment down (-10.5k). The A$ rose on the news….Read More

Category: Inflation, Think Tank