Simon - Just because you don't trade it doesn't mean nobody actually makes money off it. Gold has been good to me on the odd occasion, but I have no love affair with it. The talking heads in SA just love to say "I don't really understand it" - which is refreshing and irritating at the same time, because they seem to know everything else.
Gold is for contrarians - you cannot trade with the crowd and expect to make money. It follows that gold traders are going to have to try and pick bottoms and (to a lesser extent) tops. That being the case - they need to be able to stomach substantial deficits (reluctant to call them losses) on their trade accounts for extended periods while they wait for their positions to pay off. So - they need deep pockets. Really not for beginner traders; and yet, these are the first shares that they all try to trade.
You've never traded it, but you're very vocal about it (and it's never anything good). I don't care if I have to trade pork bellies for a living. As long as I can trade it and make profit off it, it's worth while. The same goes for gold. We're not talking long term investment here.
I understand nothing about your rant ?? so ya, I have a point of view ??
an what I see above in this thread is not trading, not by any stretch .. it is falling into all the traps of confirmation bias, expectation bias, averaging down, as much discipline as a gold fish etc ..
WELL - I would be happy to invest in this space now. So it follows that I am happy to trade here. Here's a cut-and-paster:" Gold is a "true money" ;and it had begun to tell its story already over the last 12 years: that there were unsustainable systemic inflationary forces developing. So while nobody "needed" it because there was no panic, it was still tracking prices higher due to cost-push factors primarily in the direct production of the product and political risk factors due to expanded (again unsustainable) social programmes in the countries that mined the gold. So - higher internal rate of return was sought by investors to compensate for the risk profile of the venture. This means that gold was "dragged" along as it were. If there is demand for gold due to crisis, we will see what can happen in a demand-pull inflation environment. With highly constrained sources of production and massive capital commitment (ie. top-end of the curve)required to expand production. Add to this the huge amount of time to put-down a new mine and exponentially more difficult (read expensive) ore bodies to exploit in ever more uncertain political envronments. Since gold rose in a cost-push environment it is obvious that the miners saw massive profit errosion If we switch to a demand-side scenario: you get huge profit expansion; escpecially in light of the fact that these miners have expanded volumes to reduce per unit cost and increased efficiency. They are also becoming more and more automated In short, any extra selling price goes directly to the bottom line.