There is little, if any, academic support for viewing gold as an effective primary investment strategy. Yet the idea persists in the public and has seen a revival in the years following the Great Recession. We perform a novel epirical comparison of gold with the S&P 500 from 1975 to 2016 in demonstrating how poor of a choice it is as a general strategy. A particularly striing finding is that gold outperforms S&P 500 (27% of the time) approximately as often as holding cash outperforms gold (28% of the time).
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