Gold investing is one of the most popular facets of the commodity world, as this precious metal has had a long history with populations across the globe. Whether it was the California Gold Rush in the mid 1800′s or last year’s shocking new highs for the metal, gold has been at the forefront of investing for quite some time. But among gold investors are group of those who dedicate themselves to and swear by this metal. They’re most often referred to as gold bugs, as their obsession with the metal has overtaken their lives. Below, we outline ten tell-tale signs that you are a gold bug to help you self-diagnose this affliction [for more gold news and analysis subscribe to our free newsletter].
- You don’t trust the government: One of the most obvious and telling symptoms of a gold bug is someone who has a general distrust of the government. These are the people who don’t like using their credit cards because it tells the government what they’re doing, or those who are simultaneously terrified and livid at the idea of internet ads from their Amazon.com cookies. A lack of trust for the government is what often leads people to gold investing in the first place, as gold is a great hedge against a fiscally irresponsible administration.
- You can recite the details of the 1933 Gold Confiscation: You know it all too well, Executive Order 6102 signed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 5th, 1933. This legislation made it a crime to own physical bullion, forcing you to turn it into the government. The government act ties knots in your stomach at the simple thought that it could ever happen again, but don’t worry, they will never find where you buried your bullion. You also can’t believe that breaking that ridiculous law cost you $10,000 (of 1933 dollars mind you) or 5-10 years in jail [see also Three Reasons Why Gold Is Overvalued].
- You won’t even tell your spouse where your gold is buried: This one can be applied to any family member, but unless you are on your death bed, the location(s) of your gold bullion will be revealed to no one. You can trust only yourself with such sensitive information and you have already taken the proper precautions to properly package and bury the bullion in a safe, undisclosed location. One day, when markets crash and hyperinflation ravages the nation, you will be able to extract your gold and live well in midst of a crushing depression, or at least that’s how you picture it.
- You have gone gold prospecting: Whether you were that weird guy at the beach with the oversized hat and metal detector, or that lady that goes panning in the local river, any kind of gold prospecting or hunting is a sure sign of a bug. Maybe you spend hours on forums and blogs trying to find the most lucrative place to search, or perhaps you just get out there, determined to score the next big find. Either way, if you have physically gotten out of your computer chair and made the hunt for the precious commodity, you can surely chalk up your name under the gold bug umbrella [see also Why Warren Buffett Hates Gold].
- You keep a metal detector in your car: Of course if you have already come to terms with the fact that you enjoy prospecting, keeping a metal detector in your car is only added proof of your addiction. You probably already know that the standard metal detector only works up to about four feet, and you know all of the tricks to using the device. Just because it’s in your car does not necessarily mean that you will use it, but it is always there for when you need it.
- You discuss the gold standard at every Thanksgiving dinner: It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving if the family did not get in a heated debate about politics, causing Aunt Jane to leave early with her new boyfriend who wasn’t quite ready for such an onslaught. Even if you’re “that uncle”, you have no problem telling everyone why (insert President’s last name here) has no idea what he is doing in office and needs to immediately revert to a gold standard. And let’s not even get you started on Ben Bernanke, that’s a tangent that even you don’t like indulging [see also Why Peter Schiff Urges a Return To a Gold Standard].
- Your closet can’t fit your clothes because your gold safe takes up too much room: Sure your wardrobe may be a bit lacking, but there’s no way that you’ll settle for a dinky little safe that a few guys could carry out in a routine robbery. Your safe is bolted to the ground in your bedroom closet, leaving room for your suit, a few odds and ends, and that favorite shirt of your alma mater.
- You have printed and read the prospectus for GLD and still convinced its a scam: It would be a travesty to call yourself a gold bug if you didn’t hate the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD). You’ve found all of the striking evidence in the prospectus, like the line that reads “The ability of the Trustee and the Custodian to take legal action against subcustodians may be limited, which increases the possibility that the Trust may suffer a loss if a subcustodian does not use due care in the safekeeping of the Trust’s gold bars”. What’s up with that? [see also Why No Investor Should Own GLD].
- Your idea of a perfect weekend is reading Zerohedge: On your days off, you like to put your feet up and read the constant postings from Tyler Durden on everything that’s wrong with our global economy. Of course, you’re the first one to comment on a new article and you sometimes write a comment that is longer than the article itself, but word count is irrelevant to the point you have to make. Zerohedge keeps you up and the latest news about our global demise, which only means big things for your sizable bullion collection.
- You have converted a fellow colleague into a gold lover: What good is a gold bug if he or she is not willing (perhaps a little too willing) to share anything and everything they know about gold. You can cite inflation numbers and point out every blip in the stock market as yet another reason for your pal to buy some gold. While most people may brush you off, you have gotten through to at least one buddy who went out and purchased himself a few American Eagles to start off his collection.
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.