Saturday, November 07, 2009

Chairman Zero's Nemesis

clipped from
The American public has no say in Federal Reserve policy.

But the gold market might.

The metal hit yet another record high on Friday, gaining $6.40 to $1,095.10 an ounce. It jumped $55 for the week and is up $211, or 24%, year to date.

This cannot be comforting to Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke. The classic view of gold is that it is the best inflation hedge. That's a faulty assumption, but still: Given the record sums the Fed has pumped into the financial system -- and the fear that that money mountain could eventually power a surge in inflation -- Bernanke doesn't need rising gold prices reinforcing investors' doubts.

Coincidentally, gold's latest rally occurred as Fed policymakers met this week to affirm that they expected to hold short-term interest rates near zero for an "extended period."