House Mountain Partners


Secular Stagnation and the Imperative of Innovation in Energy Metals

Chris BerryComment

By Chris Berry (@cberry1)

For a PDF of this note, please click here.



The unprecedented response of Central Banks to stimulate growth in the wake of the Great Recession has been unlike any before it in history. Trillions of dollars worth of liquidity was pumped into the global financial system in hopes to stimulate aggregate demand and growth rates. In the United States alone, the balance sheet of the Federal Reserve has ballooned from $700 billion to well over $4 trillion and the debate rages around what we have to show for it. Clearly, the Swiss National Bank saw the writing on the wall and unpegged their currency from the Euro to avoid long-term damage to their domestic economy despite the overnight strengthening of the Swiss Franc and its potential to hurt Swiss exporters.

The uncertainty from central bank actions is starting to be felt around the world and the bond markets are a telling example. The Japanese sovereign yield curve shows the results of decades of interference to try and stimulate growth.

Negative yields out three years on the yield curve demonstrate a lack of growth potential and the Bank of Japan forcing yields into negative territory tells anyone that the Japanese economy, in its fourth recession since 2008, is going to struggle.

The Difference Between The Signal and The Noise in Commodities

Chris Berry1 Comment

By Chris Berry (@cberry1)


For a PDF of this note, please click here.


In 2012, Nate Silver, a well known statistician and writer, penned the book “The Signal and The Noise” which discusses using statistics and probabilities to determine real-world outcomes. With volatility in the financial markets on the rise led by a collapsing oil price and plunging emerging market currencies, determining and differentiating the signals from the noise has profound implications for navigating the metals and mining markets as we forge ahead into 2015.

With the price of a barrel of oil (WTI) currently at US $56.05 and widely believed to be headed lower and other commodities including iron ore, silver, copper, and corn under similar relentless pressure, these trends are clear signals and the “noise” they generate is the damage done to investor portfolios. 

The Grand Disconnect As The Geopolitical Great Game Starts Anew

Chris BerryComment

By Chris Berry (@cberry1)


For a PDF version of this note, please click here.


By the time you read this, I’ll be in London attending Mines and Money as a speaker and hosting a roundtable on Energy Metals. I think it’s fitting that I’ll be in the city which was at the heart of the last Great Game, the name for the geopolitical and strategic rivalry between the British and Russian empires in the 19th century. After last week’s events in the financial markets, it appears that a new Great Game has begun. The carnage last week made two issues abundantly clear.

First, OPEC has thrown down the gauntlet and is serious about asserting its dominance in the global oil markets.

Is This the Turn in the Metals Markets?

Chris Berry

By Chris Berry




  • Precious metals roared higher yesterday.
  • This was presumably due to a confluence of events including Iraq dissolving into civil war, more unrest in the Ukraine, and Fed Chair Yellen's dovish remarks regarding keeping rates low for an extended period.
  • Lest we get too excited, base metals were left in the dust and bond yields fell precipitously.
  • These two reliable indicators of growth (and inflationary expectations) lead us to believe that what happened yesterday was either short covering or a profit taking opportunity and nothing more.


Plus Ca Change…..

I'll admit to being surprised at the move in gold and silver yesterday. It's almost as if people were looking for an excuse to take metals prices higher.