Investment in Gold as a Hedge Against Inflation in Selected Countries
Gold is a precious metal that plays an important role in asset management. The purpose of the article is to assess investments in gold as an asset that hedges investors against inflation in selected five countries (USA, Great Britain, Switzerland, Japan and Canada) and the Eurozone. Analyzed countries are leading investors on the gold market and its producers (US, Canada). To implement this objective, a graphic illustration was made showing the relationship between the nominal gold price and the price of gold hedging against inflation, as well as a regression model was constructed presenting the elasticity of gold returns relative to inflation (parameter β). Models for analyzed countries were verified with a use of R‑square, standard errors for residuals and Durbin‑Watson statistics (autocorrelation) and by applying Doornik‑Hansen Test of Normality, White’s test for heteroskedasticity and test for nonlinearity. The studies were conducted based on the data published at the end of month regarding gold prices and the Consumer Price Index, which expresses changes in the inflation level between 1990 and 2016. The studies have shown that, apart from very few cases, inflation had a small impact on the evolution of gold prices expressed in national currencies. Except for Japan, the price of gold which hedged against inflation showed a rising trend despite diverse fluctuations of nominal gold prices. Investors had a chance to achieve rates of return exceeding the inflation rate by purchasing gold when its nominal price went below fair value. Gold turned out to be an excellent hedge against inflation for investors from Canada, both during the whole analyzed period, as well as during the bull and bear market. This is also true in the case of US during the bear market. The beta parameter for those countries assumed positive values, exceeding unity. A partial hedge against inflation was achieved by investors from US (the whole analyzed period, bull market) and from Great Britain (bull market). However, in most cases beta parameter showed negative values which means that the price of gold did not keep up with inflation and investment in gold did not provide a hedge against inflation. Results were not always statistically significant at given levels of significance.
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