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. Most of these items are from the “tangibles heavy” contrarian perspective of SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor, JWR. Today, we look at how telecommuting is opening up possibilities for living in rural regions.

Precious Metals:

A headline from Friday: Gold, silver and platinum take a beating. JWR Says: Buy on the dips!

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Inflation Is Back, Big-Time

Economy & Finance:

At Zero Hedge: Swedish Central Bank Governor Slams Expansion Of QE, Gives 6 Reasons Why

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Over at Credit Bubble Bulletin: Weekly Commentary: Monetary Disorder In Extremis

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At Wolf Street: Consumers Finally Getting Smart? Credit Card Balances in Steepest Drop Ever

Equities and Futures:

Tesla, Trading at $650, Gets $90 Price Target From JPMorganJWR’s Comment:  It is time sell Tesla and all of your other “Pie In The Sky” stocks. Slim your portfolio down to just recession-proof stocks, and plenty of tangibles. There are hard times ahead, so get back to basics, folks!

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Water futures set to join likes of gold and oil and trade on Wall Street for first time ever

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Lyn Alden’s top stock picks to survive 2021’s ‘bumpiness’; outlook on gold, economy

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And from the Perpetual Cheering Section at Yahoo Finance: Stock market 2021: Stocks expected to keep climbing as strategists look to a brighter 2021

The Telecommute-Transformed Economy:

At MSN Money: Vaccines Herald Return to Offices, But Workers Don’t Want to Go

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This was published back in June: Stanford research provides a snapshot of a new working-from-home economy.

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The ultimate in long-distance telecommuting: Perpetual travelers and second passports.

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Remote Work Could Open Homeownership to Nearly Two Million Renter Households.

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Will StarLink be the Next Disruption to the Telecommunication Industry?

Rental Real Estate:

Millions of Americans broke, unemployed, behind on rent

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Santa Monica Rents Drop Nearly 13 Percent, New Report Finds

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But meanwhile, in a “destination” location: Rents in Charlotte Increased Last Month – December 2020 Rental Report

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How Many Renters Face Eviction when the Eviction Bans End? How Much Worse is it, Compared to the Good Times?

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Occupancy Plunges to 70% at San Francisco Luxury Apartment Towers across from Twitter Headquarters: a Broad Phenomenon

Forex & Cryptos:

British Pound Outlook: No-Deal Brexit Fears to Undermine GBP/USDJWR’s Comment: The Brexit referendum was in 2016 but they’re still not quite out of Burger King. Once it finally and truly happens, I expect to see a bounce in the exchange value of the Pound.

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FOREX-Dollar weakens on vaccine, U.S. stimulus optimism

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France moves to ban anonymous crypto accounts to prevent money laundering

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JP Morgan Analysts Explain Why Bitcoin Price is Falling

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‘Low income’ Oyster Protocol founder allegedly has $10M yacht full of gold bars


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 items from local news outlets that are missed by the news wire services are especially appreciated. And it need not be only about commodities and precious metals. Thanks!


  1. Water – Our Oklahoma T. Boone Pickens was a forward thinker who was investing deeply into water and futures.
    My thoughts on it are:
    There are tangibles that there won’t be any more made of like land, tangibles that are limited like oil and tangibles that can be controlled like water.
    These folks know how to make money and not just today’s riches but future money so I watch what they do.

  2. Hmm, looking at the stories about credit card debt and how much people are paying for rent or purchases makes me so glad at the way my parents raised me. My parents were the product of the Depression. Every time we bought a house ( my wife and I ) we made extra payments on all of our loans house, car, whatever and paid most or all off in the shortest time possible. We used a credit card as little as possible and now that we are in good shape, we / I can do a lot of things that my wife and I talked about though the yrs, unfortunately with my wife gone this last 3,4 yrs, not much is enjoyable or fun anymore. so yes, I’ we are in relatively good shape. The funny thing is my son and others are telling me that I should switch to using a credit card because a lot safer that a debit card ( which I was talked into using from doing checks and paying cash ), nope I think I’ll still use cash when ever possible. everyone take care and stay well

    1. Debit cards are linked directly to your bank account whereas credit cards are not. If a hacker gets into a company’s system and gets your debit card info they have direct access to your bank account. It is for this reason I use a credit card for online purchases and some other times. It gets paid off every month. I use cash for most local purchases. This is just my opinion though.

    2. alfie, you might once again discuss the ‘debit card and credit card’ ~safety with your son and others.

      From Internet [investorpedia]

      A. Credit cards give you access to a line of debt issued by a bank. Debit cards deduct money directly from your bank account.

      B. Credit cards offer better consumer protection through warranties and fraud protection but are costlier.

      C. Debit cards offer less protection, but they have lower fees.

      D. Newer debit cards offer more credit-card-like protection, while many credit cards no longer charge annual fees.
      Your situation depends on 1. your State laws, 2. your bank, and 3. the features you have with your specific debit and credit cards.
      A women, where I use to work, had her ~debit card number stolen. … The thieves drained thousands of dollars from the debit card ~> Checking Account, without any recourse for her to get her money back, = from either the bank, store, or an insurance company. …. Her ~credit card had a theft limit of $50 for ~her liability. She complained about the differences to people at work. [I live out West in the Late Golden State.]

      [Obviously, she should have been using the credit card, and paid it off each month. It might have been cheaper. Ask your son and the others, about your bank rules and policies.]

      Here at my trailer park, a woman recently had her purse stolen [She didn’t realize it]. The thieves racked up hundreds of dollars worth of purchases at a local department store, while the old gal was in her trailer taking a nap.
      …….. The thieves took the stuff home, and then went back to the ~same department store a second time. They tried to use the debit card once again within a couple of hours. The thieves were turned down at the register.
      ……. The old gal was awoken from her afternoon nap, by a phone call from her bank, asking about her debit card being used.
      I haven’t heard the final outcome of the debit card theft yet. I just heard the trailer park gossip about the theft. = The old gals around here provide the local need to know news.
      [Around here, I hear the important news days later. I’m NOT in the henhouse plan for instant gossip.]

      A reminder: talk things over with your son, and understand the possible liability of each card; plus the total for any fees.
      It’s important to understand the State banking and credit laws, along with the bank agreement and policies for each type of card.
      My bank issued me a debit card with the automatic features, of being able to also drain money from my savings account too. The bank also set me up for a small automatic ~loan feature on my debit card ~ just in case I ever needed some extra cash.
      ……. This old hick is NOT as dumb as I look (I have an uncanny resemblance to a movie and television star; unfortunately, it’s Elmer Fudd).
      ……. I went down to the bank and put a kibosh on anything but the standard ability to remove cash at an ATM machine from ~only my checking account. I live close to my bank, and ONLY use the ATM machine at my bank. I use the credit card for all my purchases, when I don’t use cash.
      ……. {I’m old and don’t spend much money each month; I can pay the card off. …. When my washing machine breaks down, I’ll buy a used one, or else frequent the laundry room here at the trailer park.
      [I might then find out, ‘What’s going on around here inside the henhouse.’] …… Anywho, what’s the point of buying a new washing machine, that will last for years longer than me?

    3. My house is my only debt. Like another commenter, I also pay off all my credit cards each month. I have a couple credit cards that provide a small rebate based on my purchases, not how how much I borrow, month to month. The going rate is 1-1.5%. On one of my cards the bill is confusing and my credit limit very low. I actually pay that card ahead so that it actually carries a credit balance for most of the month. Credit cards will typically let you pay what you want including more than the total balance. I have one card I don’t use often that has sent me checks for credit balances that were sitting on the card. I use this card for travel and one periodic bill so its always available if other cards are stolen or if its stolen while traveling my other cards are safe and ready for use. There are options that still involve being a responsible spender besides using a debit card.


        This will get you started. Polymer 80 sells a kit with an unfinished lower and parts to complete a pistol. Called a buy, build, shoot kit. All parts are legal to ship without background check. ATF claims they are selling a complete firearm without a background check, even though the 80% lower receiver must be finished first, then all parts assembled.

        More ATF overreach!

        1. That was indeed over-reach. My advice FWIW (I’m not attorney) is that if you’ve bought a “Buy, Build Shoot” kit, to immediately separate it among family or close friends not living under your roof. To wit: You keep the frame. The jig and bits go to a relative, and the baggie of completion parts go to a different relative. That way, if and when ATF shows up, you can say: “I ONLY have this 80% frame, and you’ve previously determined — as documented in numerous policy determination letters –that it is not classified as “firearm”. Have a nice day.”

  3. Do we really need a JPMorgan analysis to explain to us “despicables” why Bitcoin prices are falling.?

    Hmmm.Let’s see now.Could it be that all Ponzi Schemes fail because they have no utility or
    intrinsic value.?

    1. Sure is… TGP has reported big breaking news throughout the day! We started with the judge’s decision to lift the “gag order” on the forensic IT investigation findings. Next up was that Republicans were not allowed to enter a state building for the purposes of casting votes for an alternate slate of electors. This was courtesy of the Governor. Bill Barr is departing the Department of Justice. …and this evening we have news that Texas Rangers and US Marshals were raiding the SolarWinds headquarters in Austin. This wasn’t all, just a few highlights. What a Monday!

      Tomorrow should be very interesting, indeed.

      1. Hi, T of A, This is in reference to your comments from several days ago. I went onto Suspicious Observers and watched many videos, hoping to find the information you were alluding too. However, I did not find it.

        Can you help me out with where I can find the information you researched on altitude of land, and staying away from large bodies of water?

        Much appreciated, Krissy

        1. Hi Krissy!
          I hope I can help… Have you had the chance to view what Ben calls his “movies”? These are a great place to begin for the overview.

          A note about Ben’s movies. He has these numbered 1, 2 and 3. They actually were released in the reverse order. Plasma Cosmology is the toughest one to understand because of the complexity of the science. Cosmic Disaster goes into the details of what we’re discussing here. Our Future is Cold gives us ideas about what to expect based on historical evidence.

          Here’s a link:

          Another idea! If you have time to add Ben’s daily updates to your routine, these are out early — each is just a few minutes and gives a current report on conditions, interesting astronomy news, and commentary related to the pole shift, risk of the micronova, solar activity, the Grand Solar Minimum coming, and more.

          What to look for… Discussions about events associated with the 12,000 year cycle. …and related to these, discussions about earth impacts associated with micronova events.

          Is this settled science? The answer is no. Is it good and intriguing work? Absolutely yes. Do we have concerns about this as a survival risk? Absolutely yes. Are we incorporating this into our own plans? Absolutely yes.

          Back to Ben… You might also enjoy the new book he has coming out. Believe it will come out in January of 2021.

          The Next End of the World: The Rebirth of Catastrophism

          Based on the developing information available, we have gone to the study of everything from fault lines to topographic maps with land elevations. Unfortunately, there is no current one-click for hard-and-fast answers about how to identify safe zones.

          Here are the factors we’re considering…
          1. Geologic stability.
          2. Elevation.
          3. Distance from large bodies of water.
          4. Geographic features that might interrupt or disrupt both water and extreme wind.
          5. A location likely to survive those effects (#4) and one that will remain sustainable after the coming Ice Age. This is a tough one, and it’s going to be difficult no matter the location. Having said that, some locations will be effectively impossible. Don’t make plans for the Yukon Territory if this scenario is a concern.

          All planning should incorporate the ability to survive the inital impacts of water, wind, and super heating/fire — as well as the longer term implications of an Ice Age.

          Among our concerns is that the solar activity as it relates to the earth is seeing an increased period of risk involving the interaction of our solar system with the plasma sheet combined with an impaired and diminishing magnetic shield which comes with the magnetic reversal. There is no way to know when this will come, but we do believe this disaster is on the way.

          Ben does a lot to discuss the science of the risks, although much less on survival strategies. The Survival Blog and JWR’s books are an excellent pairing for the survival side of life.

          Hoping this helps!

          1. T of A…Thanks for the links! Had been trying to find the information you have been speaking of lately.

            Without this community, i wouldn’t know where to start with what time I CAN spend searching online for pertinent materials to help us determine the truth. Knowing the most advantageous path to travel in our earthly sojourn…priceless!!! Thanks to ALL who help steady our feet on the way.

            Avalanche Lily…(you may delete this paragraph if you prefer 🙂 ) Not to presume or pressure you, but have you been able to move forward with your biblical/spiritual post mentioned a couple weeks back? SO looking forward to a timely, encouraging and guided word from your research! BUT… life happens-don’t know how you do everything you do! Blessings to you, the family home and away, and all who gather in this most amazing community!

          2. Telesilla of Argos, Thank you for taking the time to give me such a thorough reply. You have been a tremendous help. I will start on the new information tonight.

            Prayers for abundant blessings and safety for you and your family, Krissy

  4. Re: Rising Inflation. I work in a small rural grocery/gas/convenience store. Since February our grocery prices on everything have gone up 10 to 200 percent. Each week there are items we do not receive. Sometimes for weeks. The shortages are still going on. Our owner has been holding the line on staples such as bread, eggs and milk as much as possible but finally had to raise prices or lose money.

    Stock your groceries while you can. Shortages and price increases are not going away in the near future.

    Shadow stats is showing our actual inflation rate at 8 percent. 10 percent puts us in hyperinflation.

    1. Thank you for the first-hand report Mama Bear.

      I’m back in a Redoubt state for a visit with kids and grandkids.
      D works for the state in job placement. Good income jobs are disappearing, with ads for $13/ hour at Walmart and gas/marts meanwhile posted on their entry doors. So work income is available,but housing keeps inflating at a faster rate while availability stays low.

      Another sign of dollar devaluation here is that direct ground beef sale from a farm is going for $4/lb. Our SIL noted pork and chicken in stores here are nearly as high at this devalued dollar rate of lost purchasing power.

      Thank you again!

    2. Important insights, Mama Bear. Thank you for sharing these with us. We’re seeing the price increases and supply chain interruptions in our area too. It’s really hit-and-miss. A particular item will be available, and then suddenly gone from availability. We’re also seeing substantial increases in the prices of meat. Due to COVID and high risk medical situations among our family members, all our purchases are shipped in or very rarely via curbside pick-up. We don’t have “eyes on” the shelves, but we are seeing this same phenomenon in our alternative shopping venues.

  5. Do not be surprised at the unchecked implosion of the blue cities such as NY, LA, San Fran, etc..

    It is part of the master plan. The dominoes are scheduled to fall from the inside out.

  6. More BIG NEWS- President Trump has announced that Attorney General
    Wm.Barr will be leaving the administration shortly before Christmas to spend more time with his family. Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen will be acting Attorney General.

    1. RCB5472TN,

      The ‘old normal’ was a few First World countries such as Americans and Germans… compared to ‘undeveloped nations’ known as ‘The Third World’.

      In this version of ‘new normal’, anybody anyplace is First World as long as they can access TheWorldWideWeb.

      In the ‘old normal’, First Worlders were constantly told by TheMainStreamMedia — east Europeans are dim and backward and probably have lice.

      Can you imagine — despite all TheMainStreamMedia protests to the contrary, Serbs are as creative and intelligent as regular people?
      Can you imagine — the puppet-handlers operating the strings of TheMainStreamMedia might not ‘tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth’?

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