Aug 10, 2021 - Economy & Business

Gold fails as an inflation hedge

Data: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

As inflation reaches its highest levels since 2008, the price of gold has fallen more than 16% in a year.

Why it matters: Gold is often sold as a hedge against inflation. It isn't.

By the numbers: The price of gold has fallen by almost $350 over the past year — from $2,069 per ounce on Aug. 4, 2020, to $1,726 on Aug. 9, 2021.

  • That's a small drop compared to what happened between 2011 and 2015 when the price of gold fell by more than $800 per ounce.

Flashback: After gold broke the $2,000 per ounce barrier last year, Bank of America analysts forecast that it would hit $3,000 within 18 months.

  • The gold price isn't predictable, however. The foremost use case for the metal is simply sitting on it and doing nothing — or shilling it to viewers of right-wing television.
  • Bitcoin has become increasingly attractive to people convinced that the U.S. currency is going to collapse, making gold feel a bit outmoded.
Go deeper