Is the Cartel prepared to lose its grip on silver in the very near future, or is the Cartel about to bear down on silver with one more shellacking?
(by Half Dollar) I like silver more than I like cars and trucks.
I’d rather not talk about my silver stack, however, because quite frankly, it’s super tiny and very humble, and now that I think about it, by golly, I can’t even remember what kind of silver is in my stack, much less can I remember where I hid it in the desert out West many years ago.
Or did I hide it on the coast back East?
Oh good grief!
As I have said there is no greater Silver Bug than I, I’d like to talk about cars and trucks for a second, which speaks to everything, including silver, because writing about cars and trucks importantly speaks to one of the major overall points that I want to make in a couple different ways: Inflation is running rampant.
I have lost count of all of the different cars and trucks I’ve owned over the years.
I have only owned two motorcycles, so there’s no need to go over them here, for they are an ersatz car or truck anyway, not unlike the paper silver ETFs.
But I digress.
What can I say?
I like driving!
Back when I was 16, a “license to drive” really was something, and it wasn’t at all like a license to drive at 16 today, which is some sort of stupid “graduated” driver’s license, for when I was a teenager, which wasn’t even really all that long ago (I’m 45 now), I was drawing lines on road maps that I loaded up on at the AAA before I let my free trial membership run out, I was jotting oversize, short hand notes of directions on folded over pieces of notebook paper paperclipped to the maps, and I was driving all over the country by myself, visiting family and friends, and this was mainly the East Coast, with my stomping grounds being from New York to Florida, in addition to the occasional trip out West.
Real drivers didn’t need no stinkin’ GPS!
All you really needed were good tires and brakes, and if you were ever lost, well, there used to be this thing called “common sense”, and if you went into a gas station to ask for directions, you would find a surplus of common sense, as well as insightful directions, for free!
Back on track.
Or on the road.
Now, since I was sixteen, I have owned several cars and trucks, and many of them were new, but most of them were used, but regardless, being a car and truck aficionado over the years has given me a unique perspective to talk about “inflation” using one product over time: Vehicles.
My very first vehicle, when I was 16, was a 1984 Nissan King Cab Pick-Up Truck, 4×2, 5 speed manual transmission.
I’ll go ahead and give the full details on that one because, well, it was my first vehicle, so why in the heck not give those details!
As far as the rest of them go, if my memory is serving me correctly, which it may not be, I’m going to list the other vehicles I’ve owned in less detail and get on to my main point of this article, which is that inflation has been, and already is, running rampant, and as such, the US dollar hyperinflation and ultimate currency collapse will happen much faster than people realize.
In chronological order of ownership (decade given when the specific year is forgotten):
- 1984 Nissan King Cab Pick-Up Truck 4×2
- 1980s Isuzu Trooper II 4×4
- 1980s Isuzu Impulse Turbo
- 1960s Plymouth Valiant
- 1960s Willies Overland
- 1995 Nissan Pick-Up Truck 4×2
- 2000s Toyota Corolla
- 1980s Oldsmobile Delta Royale
- 1995 Chevrolet S-10 4×2
- 2005 Honda Odyssey
- 2006 Jeep Liberty 4×4
- 2008 MazdaSpeed 3
- 2000s Dodge Ram 1500 4×4
- 2000s Kia Sportage 4×4
- 2000s Kia Rio
- 2010s Hyundai Accent
- 2000s Toyota 4-Runner 4×4
- 2016 Subaru WRX STI
- 2021 Honda Pilot AWD
- 2020 Toyota Tacoma 4×4
I think that is all of them, and now, I’d like to make two overall points about inflation.
First, back in the day, a “$500 car” was good enough to be a daily driver.
What is the cost of the most basic, dirt cheap beater today?
I really don’t know, because I haven’t bought one in a while, but If I had to guess, I’d imagine that in 2021, the entry level for the most basic, running used car would be $1,500.
I would not trust anything worth less than that to reliably get me around town for long without needing ongoing maintenance, and even a car priced at $1500 is going to likely need immediate maintenance, because people who sell dirt cheap cars and trucks are also, in my experience, generally selling cars or trucks that need, among other things, tires, a battery, and brakes, because in all likelihood, the previous owner decided not to put the money into tires, a battery and brakes because the cost of the maintenance is not worth it when compared to the overall value of the vehicle.
I mention this class of vehicle to make a point: The Fed claims used vehicles are actually less expensive in 2021 than they were over 20 years ago:
Amazing, isn’t it?
The Fed will claim, among other things, cars are so much better now with many more features and capabilities, but really, when buying the very most basic used car or used truck out there, none of the features really matter at all, but instead, what matters is, “will this get me from Point A to Point B and back again, reliably”?
I mean, even in Texas, if you’re broke and in need of an old beater for a dirt cheap daily driver, air conditioning is a luxury that will likely be skipped at this price point.
Shameless Plug Time: Keith Weiner and I discussed this very topic in a recent interview:
Thank you for your consideration!
Here’s the point: I would say the price of a basic used car is up at least 200%, in the last 20 years, from $500 to $1500, but amazingly, the Fed says prices for used cars and trucks are down over the last 20 years!
The Fed, and the Federal Government as well, have been understating inflation by way of official policy for many decades, and now, they’re not going to be able to hide behind their statisticians for much longer.
Second, we don’t have to look at the price for a basic budget beater, but we can also look at the entry price point for a new car or truck so see that inflation is once again running rampant.
One of our kids is about to turn 16, and dang right ‘Ol Half Dollar’s totally looking forward to shopping for that “first car”.
And yes, a new car because that’s how my kids will roll.
Of course, I want the first car to be an entry level, reliable vehicle, which also won’t begin to fall apart within six months of ownership (looking at you Jeep/Chrysler/Dodge/Ram), which brings me to my point about new car pricing.
For the longest time, a “new car”, as in, a “basic, new, 4-door car”, was ten grand.
Think Chevrolet Cavalier.
And then, it seemed the “entry level” price for a “new car” was $15,000.
I recall writing a check for less than $16,000 for a brand new Hyundai sometime around 2014.
Today, the entry level price for a new car is rapidly rising and, in all likelihood, leaving the teens behind.
For example, if you want an entry level Honda, Subaru or Toyota, which I do want for my kid’s first car, you’re looking at spending at least $22,000 and more likely closer to $25,000+ to get a decent trim level (all wheel drive, Apple Car Play which takes the place of a tape deck, etc), and the vehicles that were priced in the teens are simply no longer available (here’s looking at you Honda Fit, which could be had decently equipped for well less than $18,000 less than one year ago, all day long).
Here’s the overall point to this entire article: Silver languished below $5 for a very, very long time, and over the last 15 years, silver has languished around $15, less the 2010-2011 run and the current run, of course, but in the 2021, like what we’ve seen with cars and trucks over the last twenty years, where all of the sudden people looking for basic, entry level used and new cars & trucks feel a little sticker shock, it seems that silver’s about to gap-up, so to say, and find its new pricing level perched somewhere around $45 to $60.
Of course, that new price level is without the curveball of hyperinflation, and also without the curveball of the so-called “reset”, and in either of those scenarios, nobody really knows what the next major price level will be when the dust settles.
Said differently, silver is rising because inflation is running rampant.
The question, however, is this: Will the Cartel let silver leave the $20s without one final smashing out of spite, a final smashing which could send silver on a spike-low into the teens one last time?
Follow-up question: Is there a reason the Cartel would give silver one final smashing?
Here we see the obvious signs of inflation:
And it does really come down to how the Fed and the Federal Government in general, and the Cartel specifically, want to play this.
Do they try to reign in inflation one last time as they cling to the same, crusty narrative, or do they finally embrace inflation?
I think they’ll cling for as long as possible because let’s face it, most people are afraid of change, and before all else, the Cartel is made up of (albeit evil) people.
It won’t take long to see their next move, however:
Inflation really is getting out of hand, to say the very least.
The sheeple are oblivious:
And the Cartel has made sure of this.
All the while the sheeple are enjoying their favorite grazing spot:
For those who may not be aware, my current call has been for a “crash” in the stock market, among other things.
Another of which is the dollar index making a move to 95 before falling again:
If these moves are going to happen, my timeline is sometime between now and the end of April.
Of course, this means the Cartel has the cover they need to drive interest rates back down:
Why would the Fed and the Federal Government not attempt these moves?
Platinum is on the move:
If you read my writing, however, this is no real surprise as I think platinum has been very undervalued lately, and as far as investments go, I think platinum is the second most undervalued investment there is, second only to silver.
Palladium continues to mark time:
All things considered, if my call is the correct call, palladium is exactly where it needs to be right now, at the resistance line of its sideways choppy channel.
The good news about my call is that it’s not ambiguous, and we won’t have to wait long to find out if I’m right or if I’m wrong.
The divergence between gold & silver continues to grow:
Is silver just totally going to ignore gold’s weakness?
OK, “Hey Half Dollar, you don’t get it man, because there’s a wholesale silver bar shortage worldwide!”.
Um, yeah, I get that, and I’m not saying there’s not.
I’m saying that’s not the Cartel’s problem, is it?
Think of it this way: The new Xbox came out last fall, and it is, to this very day, not available anywhere online at its “paper price”:
And other than missing out on “profits”, that’s not Microsoft’s problem, but rather, it’s the problem of the person who needs or wants an Xbox.
If a person needs or wants an Xbox, they can in fact be found:
But the price one pays in the real world is very different to the price one sees on the screen, not unlike silver.
In gold, the price on the screen is about $1820:
The Cartel has been able to paint gold with a bearish chart in the short-term, and I find it rather ironic that so many gold & silver “advocates” like to use charts when discussing the “Silver Squeeze”, and yet, at the same time, they totally ignore gold’s chart in that discussion.
The imminent, pressing problem for the Cartel is if silver becomes the next “hot market”:
If silver is the Achilles heel of the Cartel, or if silver is the Cartel’s Kryptonite, or if silver is anything close to either of those two things, and I think silver is both of those things and more, then why would the Cartel not be looking to unload on silver with everything the Cartel’s got?
I don’t want silver to crash, and I do want silver to skyrocket.
But I do not think the latter will be as simple as many people think it will be, even with the “shortages”, because silver is the real power of the people, and the Cartel is not really into sharing.
Thanks for reading,
Paul “Half Dollar” Eberhart