Gold prices have been on a tear off late. The yellow metal has risen by around 24% over the past one year. And gold bugs are lining up to predict that this is not the end of the bull-run in this commodity.
But standing aside of these gold bugs is one person who maintains his dislike for gold. We are talking about none other than Warren Buffett. Buffett reiterated his views in a recent interview with CNBC.
And like everything that he speaks, even his remarks on gold contained a tinge of humour. He's reported to have said, "...if you took all the gold in the world, we could have a cube that went down there 67 feet...and that would be the whole thing. Now for that same cube of gold it would be worth at today's market prices about $7 trillion. That's probably about a third of the value of all the stocks in the United States. So you could have a choice of owning a third of all the stocks in the United States or you could have a choice of owning that little block of gold, which can't do anything but kind of shine there and make you feel like Midas or Croesus or something of the sort."
He added, "Now, for $7 trillion...you could have all the farmland in the United States, you could have about seven ExxonMobils, and you could have $1 trillion of walking around money. Call me crazy but I'll take the farmland and the ExxonMobils."
But then, whatever Buffett says, gold investors are enjoying their day in the sun. Concerns in the Middle East have added to the yellow metal's shine, given that it is generally considered as insurance against crises.
But then, the current concern we have with gold is that there are too many people getting onto the metal now, and that too without knowing what they are doing. Call this short-termism, or speculation, buying gold without understanding the reason for buying it is like inviting trouble.