During the gold bull market of the 1970s, the Gold/Platinum Ratio was in a significant uptrend. It went from about 0.2 to 1.4 over a 12-year period. That is a seven-fold increase. At the start of the current gold bull market (2001), the Gold/Platinum Ratio was just a bit higher than 0.4. If the ratio was to emulate its performance during the last gold bull market, it could reach 2.8 (that is gold being 2.8 times the value of platinum).
Similar conditions to that of the ‘70s, which propelled gold and other commodities higher during the ‘70s, are present now. However, this time, due to the current higher debt levels relative to GDP, compared to that of the ‘70s, conditions are more in favor of gold than commodities like platinum (that are more reliant on economic activity).
In the chart below, you can see that debt levels relative to GDP were much lower during the Great Depression, as well as what it is currently.
US Debt to GDP Ratio
What this is telling me, is that we are going to have conditions that are more like the Great Depression, for the remaining part of this gold bull market. The economic decline, which will mainly come as a result of the debt bubble bursting, will negatively affect a commodity like platinum, when compared with gold.
Although commodities, like platinum, will outperform most asset classes over the next years, they will still depreciate significantly as compared to gold (and silver).
Gold/Platinum Ratio Suggests Much Higher Gold Prices are Coming
There is an interesting pattern developing on the Gold/Platinum Ratio. This pattern is similar to a pattern on the silver chart. Below, is a graphic which features the Gold/Platinum Ratio chart (top) as well as the silver chart (bottom) (charts courtesy of stockcharts.com):
The graphic is self-explanatory, and indicates that the Gold/Platinum Ratio is in a position similar to where silver was at the end of January 2011. If the ratio was to continue to follow the silver pattern, then we could have gold being 1.7 times the value of platinum in this year. This is consistent with my expectation of a significantly higher “real’ gold price (relative to stocks and most commodities).
Note, that it is more probable that an increase in the Gold/Platinum Ratio would mean higher nominal gold prices, instead of lower gold prices. This is due to the fact that the recent decline in the ratio corresponds more with the correction in the gold price since September of last year.
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