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’s focus is on Monthly Precious Metals Purchases. (See the Tangibles Investing section.)

Precious Metals:

I’ll start today with a couple of vicariously fun video links from circulating silver coin hunters: Epic Half Dollar Roll Hunt: Walkers, Franklins, and Silver Kennedy Halves!


Silver Sunday! Coin Roll Hunting Half Dollars! Most Amazing Coin Roll Hunt Ever!

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From chartist Hub Moolman: This Will Confirm The Gold Bull Market


Economy & Finance:

Wolf Richter recently posted this: New Trucks are Hot, Prices Surge. But Cars Face Carmageddon. And Total Sales Fall

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“No Need To Be Pessimistic” – World’s Biggest Pension Fund Suffers Record Collapse In Q4

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Charles Hugh Smith opines about inflation: Brace for Impact

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World’s largest pension fund loses $136 billion

Here is a key passage:

“According to the World Economic Forum, pension funds around the world are short around $70 TRILLION. State, federal and local pensions in the US are $7 trillion short… and a recent report by Boston College estimates 25% of private US pensions will go broke in the next decade.

This is all happening because investment returns have been too low.

Pension funds need to earn about 8% per year to meet their obligations. And they traditionally do that with a conservative mix of bonds and stocks.

But with interest rates near the lowest levels ever, it’s impossible for pension funds to achieve that 8% with their usual tools (over the past year, they’ve only been earning around 5.5%).

So they’re getting desperate…”


At Zero Hedge: Moody’s Warns Illinois Governor: New Taxes Will Make More Residents Flee

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Over at The 16th Amendment: How the U.S. Federal Income Tax Became D.C.’s Favorite Political Weapon. Here is a quote:

“Could you imagine a time in the U.S. when roads were being paved, there was zero national debt, and the federal government was completely operational – all without income taxes? This may sound like a Libertarian fantasy, but it’s actually an image of the America of yesteryear. Before the advent of the income tax, the U.S. government relied exclusively on tariffs and user fees to finance operations.

Unsurprisingly, operations were much smaller compared with today’s extravagant government programs like welfare, social security, and subsidies…”



Venezuelan Oil Exports Plunge On ‘Harsher’ Sanctions

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Could This Material Kill Lithium-Ion Batteries?

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Bank Of America: Oil Demand Growth To Hit Zero Within A Decade


A Reader Letter on Monthly Precious Metals Purchases:

Reader A.Z. wrote to ask:

I would like to see an article on SurvivalBlog for those of us that don’t have a lot of
experience in gold and silver investing.  Specifically, I am wondering if there is a
way to set up a monthly investment plan for gold and silver purchasing from a
reputable firm by letting said firm charge a credit card every month, sort of like
investing in a retirement plan at work. Thanks.”

JWR Replies: There is a small precious metals firm in Missoula, Montana called Montana Rarities that does precisely that. For security reasons they operate by mail-order only. They stock and sell gold and silver bullion coins, 90% silver circulated coins, rare mint state coins, proof sets, and some mint sets. With their monthly plan option, you can schedule recurring automatic orders. This is something akin to the Dollar Cost Averaging monthly stock purchase plans that are offered by some stock brokerages. It is a sensible, prudent way to gradually hedge into precious metals.


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 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. Re: Venezuela It’s the same old game plan. It starts with economic sanctions. Starve the people. Create civil unrest. Accuse existing leader of human rights abuse. Choose a new unelected dictator/puppet of Washington. Delegitimize existing leader by recognizing new dictator. Fund and implement a covert coup to overthrow of the existing dictator. If that doesn’t work invade the country.

    BINGO! All resources, oil, gold, investment by former allied countries (Russia in this case) becomes property of Washington. Nation becomes a puppet and its people pawns of Washington. Who do we think we are?

    ‘Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.’ Proverbs 16:18

    1. Montana Guy, … Socialism always fails. = It’s a historical and worldwide characteristic of Socialism. Human nature causes the failure of Socialism; it’s NOT the fault of the USA.

      Socialism is a system that ‘punishes’ diligent work, and personal honesty. … Socialism requires ‘paying-off’ the crooked government employees.
      In the old Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, a bottle of Vodka guaranteed an appointment with a doctor (Socialized Medicine had a pay-off fee).
      Examples are replete, of the crooked government employee ‘pay-off’ fees; even here in the USA.

      God set-up a godly example of a God-Centered ‘free enterprise’ system in the Bible. The society had a 10% flat tax. There were rules about honesty, admonishments for diligent work and requirements for helping the poor. [The ‘gleaning rules’ required work by the able bodied poor.]

      The often used quote: “The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.” =
      There is a financial crisis in the USA; the problems are treated like the can-kicked down the road. = Look through the SurvivalBlog articles for good financial advice, and ~look at the advertisers for needed supplies to have on-hand.
      [The State of Montana is a place where ‘stored supplies’ could be needed, even in everyday emergencies.]

      The founders of America understood government had a limited purpose:
      “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
      “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, …”

      1. GGHD, yes socialism always fails. Look at the US bleeding out. The US is to blame for its own fall into socialism. Trump in his SOTU address called the kettle black. The Democrats’ Welfare State is no different than the Republicans’ Warfare State, Police State, Security State and Surveillance State. All are Big Government programs used to steal our liberties. All steal the wealth of producers and transfer it to non-producers. This is Socialism.

        Conservatives have so abandoned our principles that we actually believe Trump is on ‘our side’. And the Whopper of Deception: We still think we are free. What a joke.

        1. Montana Guy, … You are right, in most of what you say.

          FYI, I try to approach politics as a Christian, with a hope for results here on Earth, and results later in Heaven.
          Trump ‘so far,’ has obtained my vote, once again. … In politics, we don’t get perfection. We have to vote for the candidate mostly in agreement with what we want.
          [A vote can’t be tossed away, by sitting home, or voting for a 3rd party candidate with no chance of winning]

          Trump is the best pro-life President. … In the section from the Declaration of Independence, the unalienable right to Life is listed first. Without life, all the other rights are meaningless.

          The wealth transfer programs only work, if Americans have good jobs, to pay the taxes. The USA is slowly going broke; with its form of Socialism. … You are right, Montana Guy.
          Trump is trying to bring some of the good jobs back to America. The tax cuts are an attempt to increase the overall wealth in the USA. Prosperity allows the government programs to continue.
          I don’t want a collapse of the USA. … SurvivalBlog has some good ‘just in case’ ideas, though.

          As noted by many people: There is a Wall around Heaven, with a front gate, and a gate keeper. … [This is information contrary what is being said, by some Pastors]

          Let me post the ‘Final Entrance Exam Question’ to get into Heaven, along with the answer. [It’s from the Bible after the Crucifixion, when Jesus redeemed Peter, the gatekeeper.]

          Jesus: “Do you love me?”
          Peter: “Yes Lord, you know I do!”

          The hard part about the Final Exam: It’s impossible to deceive God with lies.

  2. “This is all happening because investment returns have been too low.”

    This statement is either a lie or a delusion. Pensions are a ponzi scheme. They require several new workers to fund each retired worker. The stock markets can’t make a 3 or 4 to 1 return, historically it’s only 10 to 12 percent. Unless the US stops having abortions and somehow becomes the worlds durable goods manufacturer again pensions are thing of the past based on a 60 or 70 year old ‘industrial’ model.

    This is a most excellent addition of Economics for Preppers if you’re into long term stock investing. Within these links are the future and where most of the returns will be found. You’ve got the oil, car, and inflation stories. These things are not happening in separate silos from each other. Simply, with inflation looming, a long stock investor may want to be in companies and technologies that cut across major industries by injecting efficiencies causing dis or de inflationary pressure. Gas cars out, plan accordingly, period, and your local bank branches are going away or will be seriously reduced in number by FinTech as just 2 examples. There are several other looming large scale technologies, some of which are industrial and not just soft, that will be the bulk of the worlds major stock returns over the next 35 to 50 year cycle.

    I’m not saying that any of this is good or bad, we can whine about the past or embrace reality.

    I like the gold chart in the shorter term if it holds support here, not sure about the long term thesis from Hub Moolman, at the link. Gold has always been a good long term store of value but how to realize that value remains the trick.

    1. Not true. Retirement systems are originally designed to be self funding. Each retiree contributes and typically the employer contributes a matching amount. They are not designed to require non-retirees to support retirees. What usually goes wrong is how thhe retirement program is managed. In the case of public retirements it is typically the legislature and special interests that screw it up.

  3. Just a quick mention about buying physical silver. I’ve been purchasing some older Morgan dollars and mostly new uncirculated silver dollars for almost 10 years now and have watched silver go from 49 all the way down to its lows of around 13… But I been buying a lot more in the last few years and sold most of my first stash at around 30 an ounce!
    I only purchase silver from EBay with a few buddies to get a good deal on larger quantities which is where most of my bird has come from. We only hunt for deals. It’s fun and something we all enjoy challenging each other on too with the whole “my deal is better than that one” thing.
    I think it’s only up from here. Also in ten years never been scammed through eBay or one of its sellers and I pray it stays that way.
    I also buy a coin or two at a time from my local pawn/gun shop when they have an ok deal. Then I can also pick out the cleanest old silver quarters and dimes from a pile too.
    BUY SILVER NOW everybody please.
    Thanks survival blog for helping me wake and get ready

  4. Money Metals Exchange (Eagle, ID) has been my go-to monthly silver and gold purchase program for the last several years ( easy to ramp it up from $100 a month to more (and back down) depending on my employment situation…always GREAT customer service!

  5. Mr. Rawles
    Could you please write an article on the pros and cons of 40% silver halves? Many bullion dealers often offer 40% on sale for just a few pennies over spot and providence metals just had a sale AT spot. 40% is the majority of finds when coin roll hunting halves these days. Could 40% be a viable base to stock for one on a tight budget? A 40% half contains slightly more silver than two 90% dimes, plus about 3-4 cents worth of copper. $3.50 face in 40% contains just a bit over 1troy oz silver, as does $1.40 face in 90%. A good rule of thumb I use. What do you think?

  6. pension funds ? ha !…… my wife and I have about 100k in savings, as so called cash rates are so low ( 2.75 % ) what do do with it is the dilema, don’t fancy playing the stock market, we are looking for a piece of dirt to call our own, but could not pay the mortgage back to the bank, any ideas ?

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