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. In this column, JWR also covers hedges, derivatives, and various obscura. This column emphasizes JWR’s “tangibles heavy” investing strategy and contrarian perspective. Today, we look at the prospects for the silver market in 2024 and 2025. (See the Precious Metals section.)

Precious Metals:

Silver Price Forecast: Top Trends That Will Affect Silver in 2024.

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At Seeking Alpha: Silver Production Shortage: Mexico’s Supply Has Dropped Off A Cliff.

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USGS: “Worldwide silver supplies will be depleted by 2025”.

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Silver Price Forecast for 2024 – XAG/USD Could Go to $28 Next Year.

Economy & Finance:

Bidenomics, in action: U.S. Manufacturing Contracts For 14th Straight Month.

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The US national debt surpassed $34 trillion on Tuesday, January 2nd. The long-term obligations are of course much larger. Re-paying that debt is now nigh-on impossible. And if interest rates spike, then just paying the interest on the debt will become impossible — leading to an inevitable default. This may sound a lot like the first chapter of my novel Patriots. I tried to warn people about this, back in the early 1990s…

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From The Sun: A stranger helped me tap my card at ATM when the card reader didn’t work – a day later only $5 was left in my account.

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Linked over at the news aggregation site: Apple lost $100 billion in market value in one day – more than combined worth of Ford and GM – and ‘lackluster’ sales of one gadget are to blame.


US Lithium Hydroxide Prices Plummet Amidst Weak Demand and Oversupply, Industry Braces for Continued Bearishness in 2024.

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Fitch: Global Mining Outlook 2024.  A quote from the report’s introduction:

“Fitch’s Sector Outlook: Neutral Fitch Ratings expects demand growth in base metals in 2024 to be underpinned by continued stimulus in China and an industrial recovery in developed markets, where manufacturing mostly undershot headline growth in 2023. These trends equally support steelmaking raw materials, commodities that are more affected by weakness in construction, so that demand for iron ore and metallurgical (met) coal should be broadly flat in 2024.”

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But over at the CNBC Perpetual Cheering Section: Copper could skyrocket over 75% to record highs by 2025 — brace for deficits, analysts say.

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From Mint: Outlook 2024: Oil to hover between $80-$90/barrel in 2024; OPEC+ to dictate trends, say experts.

Inflation/Deflation Watch:

A 12-minute video: Embarrassing Signs of Shrinkflation.

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At Liberty Nation News: Food Inflation for 2024.

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The Redneck Revolution: Taking Down Inflation, One Penny Washer at a Time. JWR’s Comments:  This was meant to be satirical, but there are actually some practical uses of pennies. But note that it is still illegal to melt them for scrap, or export them, for scrap.

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Reported in November: Americans believe high inflation is the new normal.

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Nomura: Europe 2024 Outlook – Will Inflation Get Back To Target?

Forex & Cryptos:

King dollar seen vulnerable in 2024 if Fed pivots.

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Goldman Sachs joins major players in talks for Bitcoin ETFs amid SEC anticipation.

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BlackRock Bitcoin ETF Update: What Comes Next? 

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Bitcoin passes $45,000 for first time since 2022.

Updates and Comments from JWR: As of Wednesday afternoon (January 3rd) BTC had dropped 4.67% to $42,816.22 USD. Whenever a new high is reached, some profit-taking can be expected.

As of January 5th, 1 BTC went well north of $44,000 USD, but by the evening it was down -1.35% to $43,837.81.

SEC approval of Bitcoin ETFs may not ever materialize. And I still expect to see a war on private cryptos by congressional legislation and in the courts, as the national CBDCs are rolled out. That means forced “transparency”, fees, taxes, and worse. – JWR

Tangibles Investing:

U.S. Home Price Insights – December 2023. Though commercial real estate prices in the U.S. are still crashing, residential real estate prices are holding up remarkably well. This seems to be due to the continuing low inventory. Many homeowners are reluctant to sell, and see their “extra” property as a hedge against inflation, especially as rents are starting to catch up to elevated house prices.  There also seems to be hope that the Federal Reserve will pivot on interest rates. Even as prices soften in 2024, I expect to see rural retreat real estate prices in western states to be resilient, regardless of interest rate changes. That is because most of those property buyers are cash buyers. – JWR


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 or 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. Thanks!