The Strange Case Of The Falling Dollar - And What It Means For Gold

Authored by Alt-Market's Brandon Smith via Birch Gold Group,

Trillions of dollars in uncontrolled central bank stimulus and years of artificially low interest rates have poisoned every aspect of our financial system. Nothing functions as it used to. In fact, many markets actually move in the exact opposite manner as they did before the debt crisis began in 2008. The most obvious example has been stocks, which have enjoyed the most historic bull market ever despite all fundamental data being contrary to a healthy economy.

With a so far endless supply of cheap fiat from the Federal Reserve (among other central banks), as well as near zero interest overnight loans, everyone in the economic world was wondering where all the cash was flowing to. It certainly wasn’t going into the pockets of the average citizen. Instead, we find that the real benefactors of central bank support has been the already mega-rich as the wealth gap widens beyond all reason.  Furthermore, it is clear that central bank stimulus is the primary culprit behind the magical equities rally that SEEMS to be invincible.

To illustrate this correlation, one can compare the rise of the Fed’s balance sheet to the rise of the S&P 500 and see they match up almost exactly. Coincidence? I think not…


Another strangely behaving market factor that has gone mostly unnoticed has been the Dollar index (DXY). Beginning after the global financial crisis in 2008, the dollar’s value in reference to other foreign currencies initially moved in a rather predictable manner; collapsing in the face of unprecedented bailout and stimulus programs by the Fed, which required unlimited fiat creation from thin air. Naturally, commodities responded to fill the void in wealth protection and exploded in price. Oil markets in particular, which are priced only in the US dollar (something that is quickly changing today), nearly quadrupled. Gold witnessed a historic run, edging toward $2,000.

In the past few years, central banks have initiated a coordinated tightening policy, first by tapering QE, then raising interest rates, and now by decreasing their balance sheets. I would note that while oil and many other commodities plummeted in relative value to the dollar after tightening measures, gold has actually maintained a strong market presence, and has remained one of the best performing investments in recent years.

Something rather odd, however, has been happening with the dollar…

Normally, Fed tightening policies should cause an ever-increasing boost to the dollar index. Instead, the dollar is facing a swift plunge not seen since 2003.

What is going on here? Well, there are a number of factors at play.

First, we have a growing international sentiment against US treasury bonds (debt), which may be affecting overall demand for the dollar, and in turn, dollar value.  For example, one can see a relatively steady decline in US treasury holdings by Japan and China over the course of 2016, with China being the most aggressive in its move away from US debt:

We also have a subtle, yet increasing, international appetite for an alternative world reserve currency. The dollar has enjoyed decades of protection from the effects of fiat printing as the world reserve, but numerous countries including Russia, China, and Saudi Arabia are moving to bilateral trade agreements which cut out the US dollar as a mechanism. This will eventually trigger an avalanche of dollars flooding into the US from overseas, as they are no longer needed to execute cross-border trade. And, in turn the dollar will continue to fall in relative value to other currencies.

There is also the issue of coordinated fiscal tightening by central banks around the world, with the ECB and even Japan moving to cut off stimulus measures and QE.  What this means is, other currencies will now be appreciating in terms of Forex market value against the dollar, and in turn, the dollar index will decline further.  Unless the Federal Reserve acts more aggressively in its interest rate hikes, the dollar's decline will be brutal.

Finally, we also have the issue of nearly a decade of Fed stimulus that has gone without audit (except for the limited TARP audit, which shows tens of trillions in money/debt creation). We truly have no idea how much fiat was actually created by the Fed – but we can guess that it was a massive sum according to the seemingly endless rise in equities from a point of near total breakdown, funded by quantitative easing and stock buybacks. You cannot conjure a market rebound merely with debt. Eventually, that currency creation and the consequences will have to set a foot down somewhere, and it is possible that we are witnessing the results first in the dollar, as well as the Treasury yield curve, which is now flattening faster than it did just before the stock market crash in 2008.

A flat yield curve is generally a portent of economic recession.

I believe that this is just the beginning of troubles for the dollar and for US bonds. Which raises the question, how will the Fed react to a dollar market that is so far completely ignoring their tightening policies?

Here is where things get interesting.

Throughout 2017, I warned that the Fed would continue to raise interest rates (despite many people arguing to the contrary) and would eventually find an excuse to increase rates much faster than previously stated in their dot plots. I based this prediction on the fact that the Fed is clearly moving to pop the enormous fiscal bubble it has engineered since 2008, and that they plan do this while Donald Trump is in office (whether or not Trump is aware of this plan is hard to say). Trump has already taken credit on several occasions for the epic stock rally, and thus, when the plug is pulled on equities life support, who do you think will get the blame? Definitely not the banking elites who inflated the bubble in the first place.

Even the mainstream financial media has admitted at times that Trump will “regret” his campaign demands that the Fed hike rates and stop pumping up stock markets, as he will be inheriting a fiscal punch in the gut.

The Fed, as well as the mainstream, have also planted the notion that the Fed “will be forced” to raise interest rates faster if the Trump Administration pursues its plans for Hoover-style infrastructure development.

But, on top of this, the “problem” of the falling dollar also introduces a whole new rationale for speedy interest rate hikes. I believe that soon after Janet Yellen leaves as Fed chair and Jerome Powell transitions in, the Fed will begin an exponential increase in rates and will speed up their balance sheet reductions. And, they will blame the unusual decline in the dollar index as well as falling Treasury demand as the cause for more extreme action.

Powell has already backed “gradual rate hikes” in 2018, and, a few members of the Fed expressed a need for “faster hikes” in the minutes of the last meeting in December. I predict this sentiment will expand under Powell.

A small number of Wall Street economists are also warning of more rate hikes in 2018, and that this could cause considerable shock to the virtual stock rally in play right now.

That might be the Fed’s plan. The central bankers need a scapegoat for the eventual bursting of the market bubble that they have produced. Why not simply allow that bubble to finally implode in the near term, blaming the Trump administration and, by extension, all the conservatives that supported him? To do this, the Fed needs an excuse to hike rates swiftly; and they now have that excuse with the dollar dropping like a stone (among other reasons).

But how will this affect gold?

So far, gold has actually spiked along with Fed rate increases, which might seem counter intuitive, but so is the dollar falling along with rate increases.

I do think that there will be an initial and marginal drop in gold prices if the Fed increases the frequency of rate hakes. That said, eventually reality will set into stock markets that the party is over, the punch bowl is being taken away, and Trump’s tax reform will not be enough to offset the loss of access to trillions in cheap fiat dollars from the central bank.

Once stocks begin to collapse in the wake of Fed hikes and balance sheet reductions (and they will), and uncertainty in the fate of the dollar swells, gold will bounce back stronger than ever. In the meantime, I would treat any drop in precious metals as a major buying opportunity. Gold is one of the few assets that always does well during times of crisis.


Moe-Monay Sat, 01/13/2018 - 22:01 Permalink

How you blow a gig as good as one having the reserve currency of the world I will never know.  One has to be a fuck-up of epic proportions.  

Fireman wee-weed up Sun, 01/14/2018 - 04:57 Permalink

"Gold is one of the few assets that always does well during times of crisis." Brandon da plumber here.


"And we are so dumb, they're linin' up at our door
Well, our toilet went crazy yesterday afternoon
The plumber he says, "Never flush a tampon"
This great information cost me half a weeks pay and the toilet blew up later on the next day"

Frank Zappa

In reply to by wee-weed up

Tarzan reepotomac Sun, 01/14/2018 - 08:32 Permalink

A cashless society is coming, and it will necessitate the union of world Governments, if it's to succeed.  Block Chain technology is the means to do so, a means for everyone to buy and sell with a unified currency. 

In my opinion, it's a trap! that no one could buy or sell unless he had the mark

It's also the means to destroy the Dollar, and fiat in general.  That would sound like a good thing, except that the power of this technology in the hands of an evil world government, bent on controlling what, why and how you buy, is a nightmare waiting to happen. 

Just think Obama care, and forced direct payments, then expand from there.....

It's a maniacal Tyrants wet dream, waiting to happen, and unbeknownst to Americans and the MSM, it's right on our door step, already begun.  America's days as the world's tyrant are numbered, worse is coming.....


Pax Crypto: Russia Proposes First Multinational Cryptocurrency, Expert Blog



days before the end of 2017, the Central Bank of Russia, proposed to create the first joint multinational cryptocurrency for BRICS and EEU countries. By jointly adopting a new cryptocurrency, the Member States could increase their investments in Blockchain, smart contract technology pushing towards creating cashless societies....

....if adopted and implemented, the first multinational cryptocurrency could be used by more than 41 percent of the world’s population. It could potentially improve trade efficiency among the Member States by replacing other fiat currencies used in trade settlements. And it could create a technologically resourceful trade block that could reshape global trade via Blockchain and smart contract technology.

However, for this initiative to succeed, among other things, Member State transnational legislation concerning cryptocurrencies would need to be updated in a synchronized fashion. As currently there are substantial differences between Member State legislation concerning cryptocurrencies as summarized in the table below.




In reply to by reepotomac

BidnessMan wee-weed up Sun, 01/14/2018 - 07:30 Permalink

1,100+ cryptocurrencies and more being created and forked every day is no store of value.  Glad to have things that can't be created by a few keystrokes, and disappear just as quickly in the coming Big Reset.  

Tulip Bulb Futures rehypothecated 10 times over.

In reply to by wee-weed up

Troy Ounce BaBaBouy Sat, 01/13/2018 - 23:00 Permalink


If they can short gold with Billions of $, what is the problem with the naked shorting gold with Trillions of $?

Best case for a return to real value of gold imho is not Brandons thinking (have been reading stories about the loss of control by our financial overlords since 2007), but a nasty civil war in the US, the seccessions of all kind of states, hyperinflation and total mayhem on Wall street.

That is why I am all for or against Trump, Democrats or GOP, depending who has the "best" argument to sink the US into chaos.



In reply to by BaBaBouy

SDShack fattail Sun, 01/14/2018 - 14:22 Permalink

That's why the "crash" is being planned. It's all an elaborate game to redistribute the remaining wealth from the remaining middle class to the elites. The engineered "crash" is going to so panic the masses that they will be clamoring for the govt to "do something" and that something will be to willingly shear the sheeple. Just like the sheeple willingly gave up security and privacy to fight "the war on terrorism", the sheeple will gladly give up their real present and future financial assets for the "full faith and credit of financial security" in the future. A grand MyRA that rolls up 0zer0care, Medicare, Medicaid, IRA, Pensions, Social Security, and Reverse Mortgages. A perpetual serf class, that the sheeple will be paniced to demand. Welcome to the New Feudal World Order.

In reply to by fattail

Matteo S. BaBaBouy Sun, 01/14/2018 - 03:19 Permalink

Keynes has little to do with this situation.


The 1929 crash already was a debt/credit bubble crash.


The problem is giving too much credit to people who want to make capital gains on worthless assets such as tulips, dot coms crookeries, ridiculously overvalued Estates, bitcoins, ... etc, instead of providing it to useful investments or useful services.

In reply to by BaBaBouy

ProstoDoZiemi Northern Flicker Sun, 01/14/2018 - 15:50 Permalink

In my humble opinion and I may be wrong,

There's no company that has yet demonstrated success with block chain technology, hence why people are piling into these so called currencies. Yea Yea we have heard the rumors of  American Express, Chase, Microsoft, IBM, etc.

Once they do, I want to believe that there will be a monetary shift from those currencies to the companies.

In reply to by Northern Flicker

yogibear BaBaBouy Sun, 01/14/2018 - 10:09 Permalink

Just watch the bond market. Constant intervention. Amazing to see. Sometimes in the middle of the night or day. A large buyer constantly steps in when bonds are starting to roll over. So the Fed is watching this very closely and stepping in to keep things from tanking.  Fed has chosen to tank the value of the currency rather than stocks. To the Fed the stock market is the economy.

In reply to by BaBaBouy

Endgame Napoleon FIAT CON Sun, 01/14/2018 - 07:27 Permalink

Because, they are coming for money, including the $116 billion per year that our government gives the illegals for staying below the earned-income limit for welfare while having sex and reproducing. 


When they get here, they mostly do not learn the language. They do not adopt the ideas of this country. They want to recreate the country they left here in the USA. They came for $$$$$.


When things get bad, we could use the $116 billion each year, given to illegals with US-born children to finance free food, free housing, free medical care, schooling and incarceration costs, not to mention the $4.2 billion every year in refundable child tax credits, with the check for maximum womb productivity being $6,444, for illegal alien parents to spend as they please, with no restrictions to buy food for children, etc. 


It is insane. 


The economic elites who support this system simply do not care what happens to the citizens of this country. They can afford to be breezy about it.


A large reason for this Gatsby-like carelessness is the arrogance fostered by our dual, high-earner-parent culture. These people have rock-solid-safe jobs—two of them per household—no matter what they do.


When you concentrate two of the few good-paying jobs under one roof, it cuts the middle class in half. And, especially in conjunction with automation in fake-feminist, parenting-centric workplaces, it enables an out-of-touch leisure class lifestyle of frequent and lengthy babyvacations abroad every couple of months, half-a-million-dollar homes, posh weddings, constant fine dining, every kid in a private school, etc. 


I am not talking about the rich; I mean the top 20%. 


These people simply cannot see what is right in front of their faces. Everything looks fine to them, although the vast majority of Americans are experiencing a far different economic reality, where rent consumes more than half of their income, assuming they do not have the layers of unearned income from monthly welfare and tax welfare, provided to “the poor” parents, including illegal aliens. 


Elites see illegal aliens as “grateful” servants, and this pumps up their egos, which should not need any priming, considering how much more they are paid than the rest of us, even when on one lengthy babyvacation after another from their often non technical and non-scientific jobs—jobs that do not involve any danger or major responsibilities beyond firing non babyvavationers and non-culture-fits. 


The frequently churned hard workers who come to work every day and meet the sales generation and account-retention numbers help to keep the highly paid in bonus money, while they retain a low wage staff of equally absentee parents with unearned income from spouses or government covering their major household bills.


This corrupt system has crushed much of America, but works for elites and for “poor” parents, including illegal aliens with welfare and tax welfare that makes it easier to accept low wages. But when the economic **** hits the fan, meaning no more pay-per-birth freebies, most of them will flee to their home countries.……………


In reply to by FIAT CON

besnook s2man Sat, 01/13/2018 - 23:52 Permalink

the melt up has already occurred coinciding with the euro problems of the past few years. the dollar was the currency of last resort but now there is an alternative to the dollar in the rmb and a lot of places in the emerging markets where investment is more attractive than the usa.

In reply to by s2man

JIMSJOE2 stizazz Sun, 01/14/2018 - 02:30 Permalink

This kid is clueless and doesn't understand what is going on. Currently there are two reasons for short term dollar weakness. One is the new tax plan. With trillions in capital setting in foreign currencies by US multinationals there is a coordinated effort by currency traders in London and New York and multinationals with trading desks to weaken the dollar so they can make additional profits when they convert back to dollars. They would also like to see US equities lower so some of the capital can be used to buy back shares. This kid simply doesn't understand international capital flows. They are currently successful in moving the EUR/USD to around 122, the GBP/USD to over 137 and the USD/JPY down to around 111. This has created the short term dollar weakness but will change. They have not been able to weaken US equities as capital is still moving from Europe as it collapses. It amazes me they are successful with current dollar weakness. Time is working against them and they know it.

      Now the FED knows Europe is collapsing will totally fall in 2018.89. The FED knows this will accelerate the capital flight out and cause again massive dollar strength and move US equities higher hurting US exporters including commodities and money center banks which have lent trillions in dollar denominated loans to foreign entities and these are difficult to service with dollar strength. The FED for months has been using its minions to weaken the dollar and to stop the capital from Europe moving into dollars and US equities. First they has an analyst from BOA claim gold was ready to take off. They then marched out the head of the CME claiming gold should be at $5000. They then had Goldman claim gold is a currency and your best hedge with its head claiming all markets are overvalued. They then had Rickards popping up everywhere claiming the dollar is doomed, we are going to war and gold is going to $10,000 to $40,000. Never mind the fact even at the lower number gas at the pump is over $12 and everything shipped including food, medicine and the essentials would be unaffordable to most and collapse the economy along with governments as tax revenues fall off a cliff. They then planted the fake news about China in the Nikkei Review that profits in the yuan with the new crude futures contract and the yuan fully convertible to gold. All fake. They then marched out former FED Dudley claiming not only are markets overvalued but will collapse. Then Bloomberg said that China was going to stop buying treasuries also fake news. Where was their source? None other than the Nikkei Review. Then recently they have paraded out a slew of banks all claiming markets are all overvalued. Folks are we seeing a pattern here yet? This is a massive coordinated effort using the MSM and the alt media to weaken the dollar and again this kid is clueless. It is all about international capital flows.

      Now the largest consulting firm on the planet, Armstrong Economics, has computer models which track both domestic and international  capital flows. Back in 2009 the models forecast that the Dow would hit 22,000 then 23,000 and eventually to around 40,000 all due to the capital flight out of Europe. The first two targets have been hit. The 2018 forecast are 25,000 then to over 28,000. The first target has already been hit this year. The worst for the Dow is a normal correction at a maximum 8% before moving higher.

      Now people are revolting against governments in Europe including the EU. Most banks are in trouble and cut off from capital markets like most governments and corporations. Italy has announced they are working on a plan to abandon the euro, another bank there is in trouble, 50% of all German cities and provinces are broke from the migrants, mayors across France ask the government for help as they to are broke from the migrants, German industry wants tax cuts due to the US tax plan and the pension crisis has hit Spain and will run out in 2018. Europe is in panic mode and finally realizes the whole thing is coming down. Brussels now wants members to pay 25% more, place a tax on all financial transactions and tax directly all EU citizens and businesses. This will only accelerate the capital out and collapse Europe faster.

      A shit storm is heading for Europe and the EU, the euro, many banks, corporations and countries will not survive in it present form.

      There is an old saying, "Follow the money" and that is what these models do. The firm was recently in Europe doing emergency consultations with existing and new clients. China is so concerned that they flew in PBOC officials and met with them in London.They flew then to Brussels and met with EU officials as they finally realize what is coming. They also met with many central banks there and in addition with government officials in member EU countries as they are scared shitless what happens to them when the funds run out.

      Buckle up folks. We are going on a ride!



In reply to by stizazz

runningman18 JIMSJOE2 Sun, 01/14/2018 - 02:50 Permalink

Uh, the dollar is weakening despite fed interest rate hikes and dropping their balance sheet, and, the Fed printed trillions to support not just US banks but EU banks too, which means that hyperinflation and dollar devaluation is going to come home to roost someday, if it isn't starting already.  Plus you got the banksters engineering cryptos to replace the dollar as reserve currency, so, it looks like you are the only one that's clueless here, especially if you think the EU is going to crash but the US isn't. 

In reply to by JIMSJOE2

fiddy pence ha… JIMSJOE2 Sun, 01/14/2018 - 03:25 Permalink

I, for one, am very willing to believe that

Rickards is planting misleading info. For

somebody with his connections, he

should not print the mistakes that he 

does. That can only mean one thing.

What else? We've all seen the misleading

China- US treasuries stories. Some the

Fin media are idiots. Somebody started

the rumour, and BBG stenographers

just printed it because of who said it

(and they promised not to say who).

But, why the false rumours?

The Big Boys are trying to distract people.

In reply to by JIMSJOE2

Matteo S. JIMSJOE2 Sun, 01/14/2018 - 03:37 Permalink

Very nice example of wishful thinking and self-intoxicating.


Regarding economics, EU’s balance as a whole is confortable. The EU as a whole runs a current account excedent and has a sustainable budget deficit and, although high, a public debt lower than the US as a share of GDP.


The EU’s problem is internal divergence between 2 groups because of the euro : Germany (+ Austria) and Netherlands on the one hand, and all others on the other hand. The euro enables the first group to behave as stowaways and this is a big internal problem that will probably cause the euro to crash.


But this has and will have no impact on the US economy’s fate. The US economy is doomed. It is artificially sustained by the dollar’s role as world reserve and exchange currency and this role will unavoidably end, whatever happens to Europe and the euro.


This the price to pay for almost half a century of economic disastrous choices that led to financialization, desindustrialization, massive foreign debt, turning many parts of the US into third world country, massive misspending, ... etc. And this is beyond fixing. 

In reply to by JIMSJOE2

nuerocaster Matteo S. Sun, 01/14/2018 - 12:09 Permalink

You make some good points but you're wrong.

Saudi Arabia? Venezuela? Libya? We aren't talking mere "cleanest dirty shirt in the hamper" capital flight. And it goes beyond the official story. It's shell cos., RE proxies, port 3 card monty.

I agree Europe collapse is unlikely. They've been playing these games a very very long time. But the Brexit move away from the continent and back to the anglo saxon club is telling.







In reply to by Matteo S.

BobEore JIMSJOE2 Sun, 01/14/2018 - 06:05 Permalink

Solid wood meets soft ball - and it's gone! Trip around the bases for yu squire!  Take yur time - wave to the crowd.

A hoot to see the died in the wool 'wishful thinkers' calling your precis 'wishful thinking' - if only they could see themselves.

Anyways - it's all arguing over the short term question of who is the best looking nag in the glue factory; Merika goes down... in accord with the kabbalist master plan, only difference is -

we git to watch the TOTAL ASSHOLES parading around preaching "death to amerika," versus the folks like yourself who wish it were all avoidable. Shitshow on the horizon, yes indeed.

Gold - wealth life preserver of choice for those who bought a ticket to the 'post-western' world

Gold - cement booties for those who 'hung tight' ... to 'be right' ... up shitz creek with brains what be addled!

In reply to by JIMSJOE2

scribe1 JIMSJOE2 Sun, 01/14/2018 - 13:50 Permalink

This is a reply to JimSJoe2 :  I keep an eye on Armstrong also, but his recent calls have not panned out. He wrote that a bond collapse would occur last October. Prior to that call he had other collapses, in both bonds and stocks, happening earlier in 2016. So while everything you wrote sounds right to me, I just have no idea how reliable those assessments are. My armchair civilian assessment of the dollar weakness was the tax bill, which threatens the very viability of US bonds because he strangles tax revenue - from its two best revenue sources - corporations and billionaires. Of course being a serf in this system, I am clueless. Could you reply as to what corroboration you have for your statement? thanks

In reply to by JIMSJOE2

el buitre stizazz Sun, 01/14/2018 - 09:26 Permalink

As the dollar walks down the cell block, whispers go out - "Dead Man Walking."

All the fiat currencies in the SDR are fucked with the possible exception of the yuan, because China probably has 40 MT of gold for the transition.  This makes the dollar Index irrelevant.  What would be relevant would be the price of gold if it were not held in an inverse bubble through massive naked shorting of the COMEX or real purchasing power statistics.

The "people's" gold in Fort Knox as well as the NY Fed foreign gold has all been stolen and sold to Asia.  Few people are aware that Germany only got back 20% of the gold it had stored at the NY Fed's Liberty Street vault, with its tunnel to JPM's vault under the street (now owned by the Chinese gubmint).  Both the MSM and the alternative media are incorrectly stating that it was 100%.

In January of 2016, the Bundesbank announced that three years after commencing the transfer of some of its offshore-held gold from vaults located at the Banque de France in Paris and the NY Fed in New York, it had repatriated a total of 366.3 tonnes, bringing the German central bank's gold reserves held in Frankfurt to 1,402 tonnes, or 41.5% of Germany's total gold of 3,381 tonnes, for the first time greater than the 1.347 thousand tonnes located at the New York Fed, which as of January 27, 2016 held 39.9% of Germany's official gold.

From a ZH article

My main complaint with Smith's article is that he seems to be unaware of the role of the biggest elephant in the living room - the ultra clandestine Exchange Stabilization Fund, now under direct control of Goldmanite scumbag, Munchkin.  They are buying up all the dumped treasury debt and rate derivatives and it will never appear on the Fed's balance sheet.  It won't appear on any balance sheet.

In reply to by stizazz