Top picks 2012: SPDR Gold Trust
Gold has chalked up gains every year over the past decade -- a claim few other investments can make.
Our top pick for 2012 is gold. It has been the best investment year after year, and it's still the best performer.
Gold has steadily risen 645% since 2001. During this past decade, the Dow Industrials has only gained 13%. So why fight this mega trend? Instead, go with it.
With the Western world in serious financial trouble, investors are keen to hold gold. The same is true of the world's central banks.
As millions of Chinese and Indians become more affluent, they’re also buying gold. Growth in these countries remains strong, which means this demand will likely continue. Meanwhile, in the troubled economies of the Western world, debt keeps growing and it's being fought with even more debt.
This explains why the markets have been so volatile and again, this will likely continue.
As this becomes more obvious to Western investors, they too will likely turn to gold, realizing that it's the ultimate safe haven. It has been for thousands of years, and it still is.
The SPDR Gold Trust (GLD), an exchange-traded fund (ETF) listed on the NYSE, moves with the price of gold. This isn’t quite as safe as owning the real thing (in our view, physical gold is still the best option) but at least you'll profit as gold moves higher.
Be prepared, however -- gold can be volatile. Nevertheless, it's chalked up gains every year over the past decade and there are few investments that can make that claim.
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The idea of US crude being a shelter from turmoil abroad may not be as far fetched as it seems.
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