Expect the Unexpected
Whether it be the opinions of stock analysts as to the future value of a stock, or a convincing argument as to the excessive debt of Japan, opinions are just that - opinions as to the future. When one attempts to foresee the future, it is inevitable that factors, or events, or changes in something somewhere, will skew the expected results.
Recently there was a popular book written about the Black Swan Event, which was a narrative about how unexpected dramatic negative events come upon us without warning or expectation, and these events are so dramatic that they change matters radically. The book brought fortune and fame to the author, yet it was simply a recitation of the obvious, being that unexpected events change history.
A New Report Turns the World on its Head
We all know that people are having fewer babies. It just seems as if Mom's are having babies later in life and having fewer babies. It seems part of modern society that women are more involved with society and less inclined to have children. Now there is an official survey. The Pew Research Center reports that the USA birth rate in 2011 was 63.2 per 1,000 women of childbearing age. That rate shows a decline of 8% since 2007.
During the "baby boom" in the late 1950s and early 1960s, the US birth rate was well over 100, peaking at 122.7 -- nearly double the 2011 rate -- in 1957.
The birth rate among native-born American women was even lower than the overall rate, at 58.9. Foreign-born mothers, who account for only 17% of the American women of childbearing age, produced 23% of the babies. Yet the birth rate among foreign-born women dropped in 2011 by 14%-- much faster than the rate for native-born American women.
If you take a moment to figure out what this means, it really is a seismic shift in the world. In fact, it turns common beliefs held during our lifetime, into total disarray.
Deciding Who Should be the US President
Start with the most recent US Presidential election. Single people, unmarried people, and people not in a historically defined 'family' voted in overwhelming numbers for the incumbent president Barak Obama, thereby re-electing the Democrats. The low birth rate determined the US election.
Consider illegal immigration
Because the number of native born citizens continues to drop as a percentage of population, there is an increasing demand for immigration to fill needed jobs. This is causing much anxiety among workers and disputes. The real cause of the illegal immigration disturbance, is a need for more workers.
Consider the number of foreign born workers sending monthly checks out of the USA to their respective home countries to support their families back home. A bit of a drain on the balance of accounts for the USA.
Consider manufacturing - Consider European Politics
A similar declining birthrate in Germany is causing industrial strains in Germany as factories are being located where workers are situated rather than allowing vast numbers of immigrants to enter Germany. The result is a massive flow of euros out of Germany to the countries where the workers are actually producing the goods.
Consider the Accumulating Debts of Japan
Because of a declining birthrate, too few babies are being born in Japan, leaving too few young people to support the masses of Japanese who are retiring. The result - government revenues are dropping while government expenditures are growing.
A surging population that brought unrest to the ruling leadership resulted in a "one child" policy. The results of that policy are now being felt, with fewer young people and fewer females, to take care of China's aging population, and all of the stresses and strains that is creating.
Overpopulating The Earth
Interesting how worldwide population projections until recently were based on historical birth rates, and those extrapolations indicated a population growth that in a few short decades would overwhelm the natural resources of the world. Now it seems that good mother nature is playing a kind of control game in the background that no-one would have considered possible but a few decades ago.
Could you believe, when you were worrying in the 1960's about the unstoppable population growth, that a few decades later, the problem would be a declining birth rate? Or a population that could not provide enough workers? Or an eroding tax base because of a falling birth rate? Expect the unexpected.
Expect the Unexpected
The essential point of all of this, is that those that say a rise in gold price is inevitable, just don't expect the unexpected. So it is with any and all pundits who seek to tell us what will be in the future. The future is interminable and will always be so. When investing, listen to your own instincts and ignore the experts. They have been proven to be wrong more often than right.
The views expressed in this blog are opinions only and are not investment advice. Persons investing should seek the advice of a licensed professional to guide them and should not rely on the opinions expressed herein. This blog is not a solicitation for investment and we do not accept unsolicited investment funds.