QUESTION: I’m planning to buy some precious metals, but I’m wondering about the timing. Metals have been on a very good run this year, so maybe I should wait for a pullback.
ANSWER: It depends. In the short run, metal prices can go either way, and you might catch a dip by waiting.
Precious Metal Prices
However, where prices are going in the next day or two, or even the next month or two, is impossible to answer with certainty.
So we suggest asking a different question first: How much, if any, physical bullion do you already own? If you have a holding significant enough to serve the purpose for which you bought it – defending against inflation, crisis preparedness, diversification from paper assets, etc. – you can afford to speculate on lower prices. If prices go higher, you are still invested.
Those who do NOT own the metals they wanted are at great risk. We are wired with a propensity for gambling and, unfortunately, that tendency paired with human emotion wreaks havoc on our decision-making.
We forget the fundamental drivers for buying (or selling) and chase illusory bottoms (or tops) instead. We hold out for even lower prices when markets fall. When prices rise, we wait for a dip and then hold out some more for even lower prices.
It is easy for investors to forget their priority was not to buy metal at the exact bottom. It was simply to own a meaningful number of ounces and get prepared for what they see coming. We live in uncertain times, and the metals markets can move fast. If you don’t have an adequate holding, there are much bigger considerations than saving a few dollars in price.