We've Been DYING To Run These Gold Charts For You, And Now We Finally Can


Photo: FRED

A huge development happened in the world of economic chart-making today. FRED, the brilliant economics data and charts site that’s run by the St. Louis Federal reserve, has finally added gold prices to the database.Now at the tip of your fingers is gold priced in dollars and pounds going back to 1968, and gold priced in euros going back to 1999.

Not only is gold a fascinating commodity/quasi-money in its own right, there are so many myths about what gold is, and what its price represents, the inclusion of gold in this very easy-to-use database will prove to be incredibly useful.

To celebrate the introduction of the gold data, we’ve whipped up a handful of charts we’ve been wanting to make for a while.

Here's your house priced in gold. As you can see, it's cheaper than it's ever been.

This is the S&P 500 priced in gold. We're very close to multi-decade lows.

This is a barrel of West Texas oil priced in gold. Again, it's cheap, though it's been cheaper in the past

Here's the CPI apparel index (clothes) when priced against gold. Not even close.

The most depressing chart? Your average hourly earnings priced in gold AKA: what fraction of an ounce of gold you can get for working one hour.

Here's a fun one. It's gold vs gasoline (red line) vs. the VIX (volatility index). It shows that as volatility spikes, gold spikes relative to industrial commodities.

Gold vs. the CPI. As you can see, gold has done extremely well, even though inflation has been moderating for a long time.

Gold vs. the Swiss Franc. This is beautiful. The Franc is seen as the gold standard of currencies, and the relationship between gold and The Franc is solid.

A close up look at the Swiss Franc in gold shows a stable relationship even now.

Gold vs. the dollar index. Not surprisingly, gold generally does better when the dollar is getting weaker, but the relationship is not that tight..

Gold vs. inverse of the yield on inflation-protected Treasuries. Basically, it shows that as real interest rates collapse (blue line going up), gold rallies.

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