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 JWR. (SurvivalBlog’s Founder and Senior Editor.) Today’s focus is on sources for antique radios. (See the Tangibles Investing section.

Precious Metals:

Precious metals, stocks, and cryptos were ALL down today.  Apparently the institutional investors are all running for the exit doors.  Cash is presently king.

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Trade War Concerns And Higher Interest Rates Dominate Market Sentiment


Stocks & Bonds:

Another ugly day on Wall Street! At today’s close, the DJIA was at 24,465.64 This down -551.80 points or 2.21% for the day.  Ouch! Meanwhile, the S&P 500 dropped 49 points, closing at 2,642. That was 1.8% loss for the day.  This is becoming a fear-driven market. Beware!

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Tech’s ‘FAANG’ stocks have lost more than $1 trillion and counting from highs amid tech rout


Forex & Cryptos:

Bitcoin got slammed again today, down to a USD equivalent value of $4,309.79.  That was a whopping 10.81% loss in one 24-hour period.  Mega ouch!

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Ray Dalio: Losing ‘Reserve Status’ Would Lead To 30% Drop In The Dollar


Tangibles Investing:

I’ve mentioned investing in vintage radios a few times in this column. This week I’d like to focus on where to find them.  Other than thrift stores, I mostly look at hamfests and local ham club swap meets. (The ARRL posts schedules.) It seems that most old hams own at least one or two regular broadcast (AM) band table radios.  Often, if that ham was good at tinkering, those radios have had their old electrolytic capacitors replaced, a new power cord installed, and they’ve been re-aligned. This greatly boosts both their practicality and their resale value.

It may sound morbidly opportunistic, but I also recommend watching for Silent Key (SK) obituary announcements in your area. Contact the heirs and ask if they will be selling any antique radios from the deceased ham’s estate. Often the heirs have no interest in radios, and they end of selling that gear for paltry sums.



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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 particularly watch individual markets. And due to their diligence and focus, we benefit from fresh “on target” investing news. We often get the scoop on economic and investing news that is probably ignored (or reported late) by mainstream American news outlets. Thanks!


  1. Quick historical background on this current sell off. Thanksgiving week is usually a slow trading week characterized by low volume. It’s a short week, a holiday week, spirits are usually high and the markets usually melt up leading into thanksgiving. Against that backdrop, this selling is even more pronounced because it could indicate a more serious shift in sentiment.

    A wise man said that the US maintains the world’s reserve currency simply because we have 12 carrier battle groups. The same conditions as with the English Empire in it’s day. But the Pound was backed by gold. I tend to think that, were the balance of the power to shift in a meaningful way, the dollar would be instant toilet paper.

  2. I’ve been collecting antique radios for about twenty five plus years and there are a few things to consider when buying a radio for investing. Most collectors will not pay much for a bakelite, catalin, urea or plastic radio if it has even a hairline crack in the cabinet, even if it’s insides are in good shape. If a radio has been repainted by it’s owner it will not be as desirable as a factory painted original which has good paint although I am seeing repainted radios becoming more acceptable by collectors if the repaint has been done professionally but original factory painted radios tend to bring the highest resale price. It is acceptable to refinish a wood radio providing the refinish is done correctly. Novelty radios from the thirties and forties and even early fifties bring good prices. Novelty radios would be those built by a radio manufacture of the day for companies such as Coca Cola, Pepsi, Disney radios, Hopalong Cassidy and other themes that were popular with the public in those days. Catalin radios tend to bring the highest prices but are hard to find. Watching radios get listed and sold on Ebay is a good way of learning about them. You may also be able to find a radio collectors club in your area and those folks are usually helpful. And most importantly remember that just because a radio is old doesn’t mean it is desirable and worth much. It must have THAT LOOK that collectors are after.

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