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Gold

Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession: Going Global

The last time the U.S. economy suffered through a double-dip recession, this country was struggling to overcome the fallout from an Arab oil embargo, Vietnam War-era deficits, and an inflationary spiral that just wouldn't let go.

That 1981-82 double-dip downturn - the result of an economic "shock treatment" aimed at curing those ills - consisted of two recessions that were separated by a single quarter of growth.

The current backdrop is very different from the one that was in place back then, but the threat of a double-dip recession is no less real.

The world's No. 1 economy lost 8.4 million jobs during the recession that got its start in December 2007, making it the worst national downturn since the Great Depression and the biggest loss of employment since the end of World War II.

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Three Ways to Brace for a Double-Dip Recession: Going for the Gold

The last time the U.S. economy suffered through a double-dip recession, this country was struggling to overcome the fallout from an Arab oil embargo, Vietnam War-era deficits, and an inflationary spiral that just wouldn't let go.

That 1981-82 double-dip downturn - the result of an economic "shock treatment" aimed at curing those ills - consisted of two recessions that were separated by a single quarter of growth.

The current backdrop is very different from the one that was in place back then, but the threat of a double-dip recession is no less real. Indeed, with each passing week, and with every new economic report that comes out, the possibility that the U.S. economy will backslide into a double-dip recession seems to become more of a probability - or even a likelihood.

"For me a 'double-dip' is another recession before we've healed from this recession [and] the probability of that kind of double-dip is more than 50%," Robert Shiller, professor of economics at Yale University and co-developer of Standard and Poor's S&P/Case-Shiller home price indexes, told Reuters. "I actually expect it."

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Special Report: Why Investors Must Buy Gold … Before it Runs Away in Price

As gold hovers near $1,200 an ounce and pundits speculate about a "gold bubble," it's important for investors to remember that a mere decade ago the picture was very different.

In the year 2000, gold sat at an unimpressive annual average of $279 an ounce - a two-decade low. At that time, most analysts thought gold was finished as a monetary metal. They said its price would never recover and only kooks with tin hats would invest in it. I was one of the very few financial commentators publicly saying that gold was not only viable, but entering a long-term uptrend.

With the benefit of hindsight, we can all see that the consensus was wrong. Gold has performed remarkably against the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the Nasdaq Composite Index and U.S. real estate. The reason I was able to confidently forecast this result is because I ignore the 'certainties' determined by Wall Street consensus, and instead study the fundamental trends.

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Gold Will Hit $5,000 an Ounce Long Term … But the Near-Term Profit Prospects Are Even Bigger

Longtime commodities guru Peter Krauth touched off a real media buzz earlier this year when he publicly predicted that gold would hit $5,000 an ounce in the next few years - a projection he stands behind.

But here's the irony.

While Krauth's prediction would represent a total return of about 320% over that multi-year span, he says the potential returns on some of the near-term profit plays he's looking at are even bigger.

"These near-term opportunities are significant because the companies that explore and/or produce gold are leveraged to the price of gold," Krauth said in an interview with Money Morning. "So a 10% to 20% rise in gold's price could cause the share prices of some of these firms to gain 20% to 60% - or more - in a matter of months."



To see why gold is set to soar, read on...

Special Report: How to Buy Gold

As an analyst and editor who specializes in the natural-resources sector, I spend a lot of time writing about gold, gold mining, and gold investing. Those are popular - and even emotional - topics with investors, which means that the columns, essays and advisories I write tend to generate a lot of comments and questions.

I think that's great. After all, an engaged investor tends to be a successful investor.

Not surprisingly, one question dominates. And that's the question we're addressing in this special report.

The question: "How do I buy gold?"

As a service to the Money Morning readers who have asked that question, or who've had that same thought, I've put together this overview - or primer - that addresses the basic ins and outs of buying gold. In this feature, I address some of the more-common and more-timely questions that I've been getting.



To find out how to buy gold, please read on...

When This Indicator Says to 'Buy Gold,' It's Never Wrong

When I recently predicted that the long-term trends were in place to send gold to $5,000 an ounce, I was stunned by all the attention that my forecast received.

Granted, a move of that magnitude represents a dizzying long-term profit opportunity. But that's just it - it's a long-term profit opportunity.

I've uncovered some profit plays that offer equally hefty gains - but in the short term.

One in particular stands out - a profit opportunity that relates to a signal that I refer to as the "Gold Spike Indicator," or GSI. Because of the nature of the indicator itself, this profit opportunity is available only four times a year.

And the next "window" of opportunity is just weeks away.

To find out all about this profit "window," please read on...

To find out all about this profit "window," please read on...

Think Gold Prices Have Peaked? Think Again

If you think gold prices have peaked, think again. Gold may have fallen from its June 18 record high of $1258.30 an ounce, but the yellow metal is in for the long haul.

In fact, Credit Suisse Group AG (NYSE ADR: CS) has increased its long-range forecast for gold, arguing in a new report that prices should remain near current levels for at least the next four years.

CS analysts' 2014 target is now $1,300 and ounce, compared to their previous forecast of $1,120. That may not seem like a very brave forecast since gold is already trading at nearly $1,200 an ounce. But it has profound implications for gold miners, because mining stocks are priced based on expectations of future earnings. Removing the expectation that gold futures prices could slide way back removes an impediment to shares going higher.

The rationale for the change: Credit Suisse believes there is an 80% chance of a renewed quantitative easing - or money printing - due either to a full-blown sovereign debt crisis or a new recession. This enthusiastic and inflationary activity would rev up the safe haven buying that has pushed up gold prices over the past few years. The feeling is that companies and government officials may cheat and lie, but gold is as steady as a rock as an irrefutable, trusted source of value.

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Buy, Sell or Hold: Joy Global Inc. (NYSE: JOYG) Could Be a Gold Mine for Investors

Uncertainty and volatility have plagued the markets of late but there's reason enough to believe a short-term up-trend is in store.

For one thing, the speed of recovery has varied from country to country but emerging markets and commodity-producing nations continue to post strong growth. And while the global slowdown has brought about very high fiscal deficits, particularly in Europe, fears that the Eurozone economy is edging towards collapse are beginning to dissipate.

The European debt problem should be addressed at the end of this month, when the European Central Bank (ECB) publicizes the results of its stress tests.  I expect the results will bring renewed confidence in the system. It's likely that the largest financial institutions will most probably all be sound, while there will be some smaller institutions that need restructuring.  These smaller banks will either quickly recapitalize or be absorbed by larger institutions.

That means we could soon see a strong short-term bullish market trend.

Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) recent World Economic Report Update showed global growth estimates for the next year and a half that were much stronger than expected.

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Commodities Are Key as China Continues to Call the Shots

China ended up being the big story this month, as investors looked past Europe to the Far East for clues about what shape the global recovery - if you can even call it that - is taking.

Markets around the globe tanked yesterday (Tuesday) after the Conference Board revised its leading economic index for China to show the smallest gain in five months in April. The index rose just 0.3% in April, which was a significant reduction from the 1.7% gain the Board reported on June 19.

The news of the error contributed to the biggest sell-off in Chinese stocks in more than a month, and sent U.S. indices into a dizzying downward spiral. The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 268.22 points, or 2.65%, to close at 9,870.30 and the Standard & Poor's 500 Index tumbled 33.33 points, or 3.10%, to close at 1,041.24.

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GOP Takes Hardline on Federal Deficit By Killing Unemployment Benefits Extension

Drawing a line in the sand over the federal deficit, Senate Republicans on Thursday killed a spending bill that included an extension of unemployment benefits and increased taxes on bonuses paid to executives at private equity firms.

The collapse of the comprehensive legislation spells the end of assistance for a total of 1.3 million unemployed Americans who were scheduled to lose their benefits at the end of last week. It also will leave a number of states with large budget holes they had expected to fill with federal cash to help with Medicaid.

Even though lawmakers voted 57-41 in favor of the measure, Democrats failed to secure the 60 votes needed to end a GOP-led filibuster. The legislators split along party lines with the exception of Sen. Ben Nelson, D-NE, who voted with the Republicans. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-NV, said this third vote on the matter would be the last, and that the Senate needed to move on to legislation cutting taxes for small businesses.

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Is it Time to Bet Against the U.S. Dollar?

The U.S. dollar has been one of the world's strongest currencies in the first part of 2010. But, is the greenback really the bet choice for safety, quality and security? Read this report to find out why it's time to bet against the dollar...

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George Soros: "We Have Just Entered Act II" of the Global Financial Crisis

George Soros gained global recognition when he co-founded the Quantum Fund with Jim Rogers in 1970. That fund generated an average annual return of more than 30% while he was at the helm.

Soros hasn't quit making timely market calls since: From his $10 billion bet against the British pound sterling in 1992 to his April 2008 prediction that we had not "seen the full effect" of the recession and that the situation was "more serious than the authorities admit or recognize."

In February, Soros called the euro's viability into question, and the currency has plunged some 10% since that time.

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Taipan Daily: If They Don't Own Gold, Don't Trust Their Opinion on Gold

As an asset class, gold stirs the passions. Some folks love it, and others despise it. Be wary of those who will never own gold.

As I write this note to you on Friday, fingers flying over keys like the flickering quotes on my screens, Pink Floyd's "Learning to Fly" is playing on my speakers.

It's an appropriate tune, because gold is once again "learning to fly" now. After one or two scrapped take-off attempts, the yellow precious metal has broken out to fresh all-time highs. (Well... nominal highs at least. To break inflation-adjusted highs - which will happen sooner or later - gold will have to trade above $2,000 per ounce.)

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Question of the Week: Readers Respond to Money Morning's Afghanistan Mineral Wealth Query

The news that there is $1 trillion of Afghanistan mineral wealth hiding in the country's scarred and deserted landscape has global investors calculating how likely it would be for this incredibly poor country to transform itself into a natural-resources powerhouse.

It has also spawned debates about which nations should be given a piece of this vast apparent fortune.

The discovery - and its transformational potential - is mind-boggling: At $1 trillion, the estimated value of the mineral reserves is 100 times the size of Afghanistan's entire economy, estimated at $12 billion. And it's not just the dollar figures that could bring about change. Much of Afghanistan's economic activities involve drug-trafficking and terrorism. About 40% of the country's population lives below the poverty line, and 70% lives on $2 a day.

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Money Morning's Krauth Cited by Kitco.com For $5,000-An-Ounce Gold Prediction

When top commodities Website Kitco.com set out to chronicle the Top 10 experts who were projecting that gold could reach $5,000 to $10,000 an ounce, one of those 10 gurus was Money Morning's Peter Krauth. The Kitco story – "GoldWatch: Why Many Respected Analysts See Gold Going Up to $10,000" – was published on Thursday, […]

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