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Rich Checkan, ASI President & COOPerspective

By Rich Checkan

I expect you will hear this quite a bit in 2019…

The time is now.

As mentioned last month, when looking for direction in these markets, my focus is exactly as it was in 2018… squarely on debt and the U.S. dollar. And, that is why I believe the smart money is accumulating alternatives to the dollar while the dollar is still strong.

The U.S. dollar is still currently showing a stubborn resilience above the key U.S. Dollar Index level of 95. But, it has also lost a third of a percent thus far in 2019, and it is down 1.5% over the past three months.

I believe the dollar’s resilience is simply due to the fact that no other major currency is currently strong enough to challenge it. So, it appears to be the strongest of a whole pool of weak currencies.

That strength is waning amidst a number of headwinds…

  • The Federal Reserve appears to have done an about face on interest rate hikes and Quantitative Tightening at last week’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting.
  • Equities markets, although currently up for the year, have seen a level of volatility not seen in some time and expected to persist for some time.
  • The U.S. federal government is open for business – for now – after the longest shutdown in history. But, neither Republicans nor Democrats appear to have learned much through the exercise. We see entrenched partisanship and the lack of willingness to debate and compromise as an ideological showdown looms on the horizon.
  • Internationally, the situation is tentative. Trade wars continue. The military is being pulled back. The U.S. is pulling out of a nuclear arms pact in place since the Cold War.
  • The chasm between the haves and have-nots continues to grow. Invariably, social unrest cannot be far behind when this occurs.

What to Expect Going Forward
As the year trudges on, I believe you will see gold continue to make gains. Anticipate them to be slow and steady through the first quarter.

The second quarter will be telling. When first quarter earnings are reported, I believe there is a distinct possibility the U.S. dollar will gain downward momentum while gold gains upward momentum. I anticipate this because I suspect the corporate earnings reflect benefits from tax cuts but have very little organic growth to propel stocks higher.

If that is accurate, the second half of this year should be quite challenging for the U.S. dollar and will be equally beneficial for gold.

To hear more on why I think the above scenario is the most likely course for 2019, be sure to register for my quarterly On the Move webinar with Chris Blasi of Neptune Global. Then, be sure to join us on February 20th to hear our thoughts and to ask any questions you may have of Chris and me.

Actions to Take Now
Whether or not that scenario develops, I believe the prudent investor is taking action now to protect themselves against the uncertainty and subsequent volatility.

The simple, time-proven strategy to achieve that protection is by buying gold. Gold is your wealth insurance. Gold remains relatively cheap for now. Gold is critical to achieving the peace of mind that allows you to sleep at night.

The time is now to do everything you can to Keep What’s Yours.

We have the gold you need!

—Rich Checkan

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