There's a scenario that could play out between May and September in which commodities (including my beloved silver) and the stock and bond markets could all sell off between 20% and 40%. The trigger will be the cessation of QE II and a multi-month pause before QE III.
This is a reversal in my thinking from the outright inflationary 'buy with both hands' bent that I have held for the past two years. Even though it's quite a speculative analysis at this early stage, it is a possibility that we must consider.
Important note: This is a short-term scenario that stems from my trading days, so if you are a long-term holder of a core position in gold and silver, as am I, nothing has changed in my extended outlook for these metals. The fiscal and monetary path we are on has a very high likelihood of failure over the coming decade, and I see nothing that shakes that view.
But over the next 3-6 months, I have a few specific concerns.
It's time to build on the idea I planted in the Insider article entitled Blame the Victim (February 28, 2011) where I speculated on the idea that the Fed might be forced to end its quantitative easing programs, almost certainly because of behind-the-scenes pressure.
Here's what I said:
How I read [the Fed's recent propaganda tour] is that the Fed is taking some heat for its inflationary policies, mainly behind closed doors, and it is trying to do what it can -- with words -- to soothe the situation. Perhaps China is making noises, or perhaps Brazil's finance minister is making the phone lines feeding the Eccles building smoke ominously, or perhaps it is internal pressure coming from politicians with restless voters. Or all three.
The big risk here is that the Fed will be forced by this rising pressure to discontinue the QE program in June at the normal ending of the QE II efforts.