Two ETFs for precious-metals exposure

Article Excerpt

An investment mania usually begins as a mass attraction to a specific investment, or investment area. It often ends up including a range of investments that bear only a passing resemblance to the original investment area. The recent mania for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies—which we think will end badly for most investors—is grounded in several factors. However, one key driver is the fundamental distrust many investors have for governments and their currencies. Traditionally, that concern explains the investment appeal of precious metals. Gold and silver have gained over the last couple years, helped by fears that growing government deficits will lower the value of global currencies. However, an improving U.S. economy and low unemployment led the U.S. Federal Reserve to raise interest rates three times in 2017 and most recently in March 2018. That dampens the risk of a falling U.S. dollar and much-stronger inflation. Typically, both of those factors are needed to significantly boost demand for gold and silver. Still, if you want…

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