Gold could be considered a new high-yield investment because government bond yields in some countries are in treacherous negative territory, according to Charlie Bilello, director of research at Pension Partners.
Of course, the yield on the yellow metal is actually zero since it is a commodity rather than a bond, but Bilello observed that is still better than the two-year government bond yields in at least nine countries in Europe, such as -0.68 percent in Switzerland, -0.47 percent in Denmark and -0.18 percent in Germany.
"If central banks continue to fight one another over who has the weakest currency, pushing yields further into negative territory, gold may become an increasingly attractive option," Bilello predicted on the Pension Partners blog
While it's true that gold has no real yield and its price is volatile, he noted the same is now true of such major currencies as the euro, the Japanese yen and the Swiss franc.
"As long as this is true, the question for investors is which asset is a better safeguard of their wealth: gold or negative yielding bonds in a rapidly depreciating currency," he wrote.
"Welcome to the new market paradigm, the era of negative yields and paying to lend money, where everything you thought was true of markets has been flipped on its head."
Bilello noted that prominent bond fund manager Jeffrey Gundlach of Doubleline Capital expressed similar sentiments in an appearance on CNBC
. "Amazingly, people are paying Switzerland to warehouse their money for 10 years. . . . That makes gold a high-yielder, because it yields zero," Gundlach said.
The financial blog EconMatters
said bond markets — including the U.S. market — have reached "tulip bubble" levels.
EconMatters observed that the U.S. two-year bond yield is 0.45 percent, which it said makes no sense as an investment even if the Federal Reserve's fund rate finishes the year at 50 basis points.
"Moreover, the overall annual inflation rate is well above 1 percent right now, and (if) you factor in that this bond is paying a two-year risk premium for tying up one's capital with all kinds of inflation risks over that two-year time frame, this has to be the stupidest investment of all time," the blog noted.
"Therein lies the problem for the Federal Reserve and Central Banks around the world; they have enticed investors to chase yield at negative real rate scenarios with huge leverage to make such a low-yield vehicle trade profitable and worth doing. This is going to cause massive instability to the financial system when this trade ends like we all know it will because the numbers involved are nonsensical to say the least."
© 2023 Newsmax Finance. All rights reserved.