Golden opportunity to sell silver

Metal prices are so high that the uncertainties of a US default make a further advance unlikely.

By Jim J. Jubak Jul 28, 2011 6:59PM

Jim JubakThe gold and silver markets Thursday didn't have any better idea than you or I about whether a deal on the debt ceiling or a U.S. default is more likely. But after the run-up in gold prices to a new nominal record, investors are getting edgy. Any rumor of progress is an indication to sell.

As of 1:06 pm ET, gold was flat for the day and silver was down about 1.9% on news reports that the House of Representatives will vote tonight on a Republican plan to raise the debt ceiling by $900 billion as part of a package with $917 billion in budget cuts over the next 10 years.

It looks like enough Republicans are falling in line behind House Speaker John Boehner to give the bill the 218 Republican votes it needs to pass. (It's unlikely that the bill will pick up more than a handful of Democratic votes.)

And then it's on to the Senate, where enough Democrats and Independents to kill Boehner's bill have sent the House a letter promising to do just that.

No one in the Republican majority in the House is talking about a plan that might be if the Senate defeats the House bill.

But strangely enough, as chaotic as this all seems, the gold and silver markets see this as progress toward a deal -- and I think they've got that right.

Until the House votes on the Boehner bill, nothing else can move forward. And even if the House passes the Boehner bill and the Senate defeats it, that would then create a chance for a compromise that split the difference between the two measures.

Of course, there's no guarantee that the House would pass such a deal. It would certainly take Democratic votes to make up for Republican defections.

But the markets see reason for optimism in this scenario. You can at least see the outline of a process that would result in something other than a US default in the first half of August.

(Any deal that emerged from this framework is unlikely to deliver the kind of serious long-term deficit-reduction plan that the ratings companies are looking for. In other words, it would avoid default but probably not a credit rating downgrade. But, hey that's a problem for another day.)

Now this degree of very limited optimism wouldn't be enough to move gold and silver prices except that those two metals have climbed so high as investors looked for hedges against a U.S. default. With prices so high, the uncertainties of default make a further advance unlikely, and the whiff of a compromise says, “Take profits.”

That's what owners of gold and silver have been doing today every time a rumor that seems to advance the cause of a solution crosses their Bloomberg. In my Jubak Picks portfolio, I've been looking to sell my position in Silver Wheaton (SLW) ever since I missed the last top in silver. I'm going to take the opportunity to sell today. (I'm selling with a 9.1% gain since I added it to the portfolio on Nov. 8, 2010.)

Take your profits in Silver Wheaton now. Wait for the dip in silver and gold that we should get when/if Congress raises the debt ceiling. And then buy into something else in the silver and gold sector in preparation for the credit-downgrade drama.

At the time of this writing, Jim Jubak didn't own shares of any companies mentioned in this post in personal portfolios. The mutual fund he manages, Jubak Global Equity Fund (JUBAX), may or may not own positions in any stock mentioned. The fund did own shares of Silver Wheaton as of the end of March. For a full list of the stocks in the fund as of the end of the most recent quarter, see the fund's portfolio here. 

Tags: gold
Silver should continue to be a good investment either way the economy goes. If the dollar tanks, it will go up. If the economy picks up, industrial demand should pick up. Either way, where else would you want to put money right now?
Jul 29, 2011 12:28AM

I got 5000 oz of Silver I bought in 1984 @ $6.30 per oz.

That would be in today's money, $13.69 per oz.

I think I will hang on a while longer as every time they say it is going down, it seems to go up, at least since 1984 anyway.

I am thinking long term here, but you do have to figure in inflation.

Jul 29, 2011 4:19AM
The article's title is laughable. Quite the opposite would seem to be the case. But then, Jubak's simply another paid, lackey mouthpiece. Everbody gotta eat, right?
Jul 28, 2011 8:23PM
I too sold some of my physical silver bullion today, I got $40 per ounce for 20 ounces of Silver Eagles that my average purchase price was maybe $15 per ounce on.  I have to wonder if I actually made any money or if that $800 that I got from the sale was actually only worth $300 in the average buying power figured for inflation?  It works out well for me, because my current retirement salary is only 55% of what my 2007 salary was, and about 70% of what my 2001 salary was too.  I have some choice and gem-graded rare stuff too, look for it on Ebay pretty soon too, just as soon as our Dollar tanks in a week or two!!!
Jul 29, 2011 9:10AM
Anyone who takes Jubak's idiotic advise will get what they deserve when the end of 2011 and beginning of 2012 arrives. This clown has an accuracy record of 0.01%. Always do the "opposite" of what he says or else you will be set up for failure. When the price of precious metals drops it is time to buy, not sell. There will be a drop in silver; anywhere between from 10%-20%, but do not sell because this will correct itself back up to 20% - 25%. Then the next article you will be reading from Jubak will be "Great Opportunity to "BUY" Silver" after the time period when you could have purchased these metals at a cheaper rate. This is just another nonsense, "double speak", misinforming article.
Jul 28, 2011 10:23PM
nothing bud another speculation from dishonest hebrew , God bless Christian America, buy gold and silver to protect stolen future
Please help us to maintain a healthy and vibrant community by reporting any illegal or inappropriate behavior. If you believe a message violates theCode of Conductplease use this form to notify the moderators. They will investigate your report and take appropriate action. If necessary, they report all illegal activity to the proper authorities.
100 character limit
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?


Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


StockScouter rates stocks from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, using a system of advanced mathematics to determine a stock's expected risk and return. Ratings are displayed on a bell curve, meaning there will be fewer ratings of 1 and 10 and far more of 4 through 7.

124 rated 1
266 rated 2
452 rated 3
702 rated 4
671 rated 5
604 rated 6
640 rated 7
495 rated 8
267 rated 9
158 rated 10

Top Picks

TAT&T Inc9



Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.

Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.

Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.