As an investor, one must always understand the “why” and the “when” one should be a buyer of gold – and there are many reasons why people buy gold: as a trade; as an investment; and as “insurance” so, before you buy gold, you must understand which buyer you are so that you first understand the “why” of your gold purchases. Once you understand your own “why,” then you can begin to work on the “when.”[The original article was written by Avi Gilburt (elliottwavetrader.net) and is presented here by the editorial team of munKNEE.com (Your Key to Making Money!) and the FREE Market Intelligence Report newsletter (see sample here) in a slightly edited ([ ]) and/or abridged (…) format to provide a fast and easy read. You can also “Follow the munKNEE” via Twitter and/or Facebook.]
Let’s start with those that buy gold as insurance. Now, I am not opining as to whether it is right or wrong to use gold as insurance at any point in time but, I am simply recognizing there is a large group out there that “feel” they need to own gold as insurance and I am addressing that investor perspective.
Think about it. When you buy healthcare insurance or disability insurance or automobile insurance, do you try to time your purchases to when the price comes down? No. You simply buy it when you feel you need it or when your previous policy runs out. This is how many view their gold purchases and it is not an unreasonable perspective at all.
The main mistake made by these purchasers [however] is that there is a point where they have become over-insured, just like with any other insurance policy. If we are all honest with ourselves, we realize that there is a limited amount of insurance one requires, and we do not continue to buy more and more insurance as each month goes buy.
When an “insurance” buyer of gold reaches that point, they have now unwittingly moved into the classification of an “investor,” but refuse to acknowledge this perspective. Rather, they label themselves as “stackers,” while others label them as “gold-bugs.” They purport to be buying gold as insurance, but it is quite clear that they are way over-insured. If they were truly honest with themselves, they would recognize that they own too much to consider it as true “insurance,” and a portion – often a significant portion – of their holdings are really being held as investors, or even, dare I say, speculators. That is why so much emotion is spewed into this market by these buyers of gold, especially as gold has dropped in a manner in which they did not expect. Let’s be honest – do you really think insurance holders would be so publicly emotional and venomous?
Next, we look at the investor/trader group. The only real difference between these two camps is the time horizon for which they buy, with the investor group clearly maintaining the larger time horizon within which they seek to profit but, for both, entries and exits in their positions are of utmost importance. Their goal must be to buy at the lowest prices, and then sell at the highest prices within their respective time horizons…[As such,] they need an objective tool to be able to identify when they have achieved relatively low prices in the market, as well as relatively high prices in the market. They simply cannot “just do it.” They cannot “just buy gold.” They need a plan, or they will not maximize their profit potential.
Let’s go back to the premise with which we began this article. Many have suggested buying gold at various times over the last several years for a litany of reasons but, when it comes down to it, none of what has been presented in their “analysis” has helped any of the camps noted above. Insurance buyers will be buying at any price, so it really makes no difference what the market “reason” is for gold to go higher and it is quite clear that investors and traders who acted on these perspectives have done quite poorly. So, I ask again, who has benefited from any of these perspectives which have been paraded before the market week after week, as each fresh news story hits the wire?
I urge all market participants – other than the true insurance buyers –
- to identify for yourselves an objective methodology with which you enter and exit the market rather than blindly follow[ing] what has clearly not worked for years and
- to not try to fool yourself into thinking you are always buying for insurance purposes, as I can assure you that you are likely “over-insured” based upon that perspective. In fact, you have likely moved into the self-proclaimed “stacker” camp, which ultimately is just a bad investor seeking a seemingly better label.