Economics & Investing For Preppers

Here are the latest news items and commentary on current economics news, market trends, stocks, investing opportunities, and the precious metals markets. We also cover hedges, derivatives, and obscura. And it bears mention that most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, we look at investing in pre-1899 cartridge guns. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

Silver To Push To $22 An Ounce, Drive Gold Higher – Bloomberg Intelligence

JWR’s Comments: When the silver market starts to catch up to gold (normalizing the silver-to-gold ratio), I can see that things will get really exciting. I recommend that you hold on to all of your silver until the silver-to-gold ratio is under 75-to-1. In fact, if you have the chance, this is a good juncture to swap some of your gold for silver. Then, after the ratio reverts, swap back out.

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Gold Price’s Next Target Could Be $1,600 Says Peter Hug

Economy & Finance:

At Zero Hedge: Midwest Farm Loan Repayment Issues Hit Highest Level Since 1999

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Wolf Street reports: Freight Shipments Suffer Steepest Drops since Financial Crisis, Overcapacity Balloons

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At IWB: China is in worse shape than the US in this trade war, possibly cause or start of the next global meltdown

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The yield curve inversion panic, explained


Swaps data: Fed’s change of tack on rates fuels volume rise

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CME-LCH basis collapses amid rates downturn


Friday’s headline: Dow plummets more than 600 points after Trump orders US manufacturers to leave China

Tangibles Investing (Pre-1899 Guns):

I must reiterate the importance of the Senate re-convening on September 9th, 2019. The Republican Senators have caved in and are VERY likely to rapidly enact a so-called “Universal Background Check” law. This is essentially a ban on the intrastate sale of used guns between private parties. I can see that this will do several things:

1.) It will destroy local gun shows, as we now know them. They’ll all become like California gun shows, that is: A great place to buy targets, shooting glasses, and jerky. But not much else. Modern guns will all become  priced at or near brick and mortar gun store retail, and all sales of modern guns will go on 4473 forms. No more gun show privacy or bargains!

2.) In the short term–that is in the brief window between the passage of the law and its effective date–it will send the priced of used (private party) black rifles into the stratosphere. I believe that the price of just a typical AR will jump to $1,200 and top quality AR-15s and all AR-10s will be $2,000+ plus.  But this window of opportunity will probably be for only two or three months. After the private party transfer ban goes into effect, the prices of papered ARs will normalize.

3.) During that same short term window of opportunity, be ready to transfer most of your guns and stripped lower receivers to your kids, grand-kids, nieces, and nephews with dated, detailed “in-family” CYA transfer letters–not through a licensed dealer. Depending on the wording of the new law, this may be your only opportunity to legally do so, with no Form 4473 and background check requirement.  Your progeny need s to be able to prove that they became legal owners of those guns before the Universal Checks law was in effect.

3.)  It will drive the prices of FFL paperwork exempt pre-1899 cartridge guns permanently higher, with an initial jump of 20% and an eventual premium of nearly 100%. Thus, a typical Winchester Model 1894 made in 1899 or later will still sell for around $1,000. But an otherwise identical one made in 1898 will be closer to $2,000.  Most people will not catch on to this until after the new pricing reality is built in to the market.  Don’t be one of those folks who find themselves asking:  “What the heck happened?”  Be proactive: Buy your pre-1899 cartridge guns now, before the prices jump.

4.) It will greatly increase interest in 80% complete receivers. But eventually the congresscritters will call that a “loophole”, and ban them.

5.) It will create a huge “at home” black market in “Pre-Background Check” secondary-market and tertiary-market modern guns. Surely, there will be a lot of back-dated receipts created! And the folks who are willing to part with any of the un-papered modern guns in their collection without going through the FFL paperwork will surely charge a hefty premium. (Unless they are going to close friends or relatives.) And who would blame them for high premiums, given the risks?

6.) Congress will see the rapidly-emerging black market, and call that a failing or a loophole in the Federal Universal Background Check law. So then they’ll claim that they are “forced” to enact a European-style registration scheme for all modern guns. Count on it. Inevitably, Universal Background Checks require registration!


SurvivalBlog and its Editors are not paid investment counselors or advisers. Please see our Provisos page for our detailed disclaimers.

News Tips:

Please send your economics and investing news tips to JWR. (Either via e-mail of via our Contact form.) These are often especially relevant, because they come from folks who closely watch specific markets. If you spot any news that would be of interest to SurvivalBlog readers, then please send it in. News from local news outlets that is missed by the news wire services is especially appreciated. And it need not be just about commodities and precious metals. Thanks!


  1. re:
    “…Chinese Ruling Elites are in worse shape than American Ruling Elites…”

    Comparing one section of a global failed regime to another section of that failed global regime seems like ‘fake news’ aka propaganda with the intent to distract attention from the failed global regime.

    The Malignant Overlords™ (per SeaGypsyPhilosopher Ray Jason) are global citizens, shifting across those imaginary lines == known to the little people as ‘borders’ == with neither loyalty to nor compassion for the rubbish piles of cultures they leave in their wake.

    Their only concern is sucking all the energy from an area, then escaping to another area before they are caught.

    Believing otherwise is denying reality.

  2. JWR,

    Can you offer any guidance as to how the CYA in family transfer should be worded? Also, should it be notarized to avoid possible accusations of back dating? Since I live in the Redoubt, finding a patriotic notary is very easy.

  3. I do have a question/comment on 80% lowers.

    The subject is not commonly discussed here and I wondered why?

    They really are not that difficult to build, ARs anyway. I should put a caveat here in that I already had a mill with a little experience but anyone can easily do it with the jig system , maybe after a couple of couple of mess ups. Really for one with no experience i would buy 5 80% lowers and expect to finish 3 of them. The only thing on the complete lower which has fairly close tolerances are the trigger.hammer, and selector holes. One can get around a little out of tolerance by using the trigger packs and you have a really nice light trigger. I will say as of now one can buy a basic AR cheaper than you can build one.

    i really don’t think it a good idea to routinely depend on one for self protection in these times of law and order but it seems to me in a SHTF situation they would be the very thing. Also how would they be handled if transfers become mandatory since they have no IDing numbers. I assume you would have to apply to the ATF for a serial #?

  4. I just wonder what percentage of gun owners are going to give the upcoming gun laws a second thought. I wonder how many gun owners have given any gun laws in the past a second thought. If a law can’t be enforced is it worth worrying about?
    And what “I have a death wish” cop will be the first to give it a try.

  5. The internet is already awash in 3-D printed lowers , guns , etc and the underground is gearing up for the anticipated markets . The genie just flew out of the box . I got CNC plans for everything from 1911’s to AK’s . They may have started something that can’t be stopped . Uh-Oh !

  6. Whatever gold and silver do, what would you trade them for when the price rises? What else would hold its value, beyond dollars, after an “event”?

    Carry on

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