Disclaimer: Let me begin by saying I am not a financial advisor or money manager or investment specialist. This article only represents the thoughts of the author.
Many of our readers will immediately conclude gold and or silver are the metals to buy and have on hand to weather rough economic times. In fact, I don’t disagree and recommend to our readers that they do diversify their investment portfolios to include a percentage of real gold and silver in both US and foreign coinage. However, one metal is now poised to become extremely valuable and could prove more valuable for a prepper than gold. That metal is lead and here is why I strongly urge my readers to hoard this metal.
Lead has been used for over 7,000 years. It is a staple for the production of ammunition and fishing weights. Lead is used in industry for a wide variety of items and applications from batteries and radiation shielding to electrodes in electrolysis and shielding for high voltage power lines. Lead is also used extensively as wheel weights, ballast in sailboats, and as an excellent material for long term roof repairs. However, the United Nations and Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are on a crusade to ban all lead. Even though the notion is ridiculous, extremists have been pursuing this goal for well over a decade and have made significant progress toward making a total lead ban a reality. They will incrementally succeed in their crusade to ban lead, which will begin to starve the market and increase prices. Further, although non-lead bullets are available and shoot well, lead is the only material that is easy enough to use and affordable for do-it-yourself reloaders, black powder shooters, and high volume competition shooters. This makes having lead an excellent barter material and a necessary raw material for hard times that will only increase in value if banned. Remember, since you can’t eat metals, they should at least be useful.
Specific to the political agenda, the ban on lead is being led by a motley mix of radical environmentalists and anti-gun extremists. The radicals’ overt motive is to reduce the legitimate health risks of lead to the public, which most of us can agree is a good thing. However, their true agenda has manifested as a deliberate asymmetric attack on gun ownership and sportsmen. Specifically, these extremists have sought to ban lead in ammunition so that the increased cost of buying lead free ammunition would in effect deny shooters bullets and thus, prevent them from operating any guns they may own. Further, radical environmentalists saw an avenue to attack hunting and fishing via regulations to prevent the use of lead in hunting or fishing. So far they have succeeded in getting lead ammunition banned in California, which did increase the cost of hunting and fishing and reduced the availability of ammunition. California is just the start.
Respective of production, the Doe Run primary lead smelter in Missouri was shut down in December 2013 as a result of EPA regulations that began under President Bush, but were doggedly pursued under Obama. Doe Run was the last primary smelter in the US that processed raw ore. This had a limited impact on manufacture of bullets because ammunition makers generally use recycled lead supplied from numerous secondary smelters still in operation. This much is true, but since the primary supply from ore is no longer available inside the US, it has driven up costs due to reduced supply. However, to think the EPA is only after primary smelters would be a myth. Their regulatory goals clearly show a bias toward a total ban of lead production in the US. As the EPA pursues this goal, it will become clear that this will have a direct effect on both the cost and availability of ammunition. As such, stockpiling lead now would be a good hedge against a draconian policy that will only intensify during the coming years.
There is good news. Unlike most issues that are only revealed after it is too late to easily remedy, one can still acquire bulk lead. In fact, it is a great time to purchase lead in bulk while prices are relatively cheap. As the global economy continues to falter, lead availability has increased pushing prices to yearly lows. Lead has also not garnered the media attention of metals such as gold and silver so its price has not increased due to speculation. Remember too that lead will store indefinitely and a little goes a long way. If you obtain lead now, while it is still widely available, you can safely put it away for decades and it doesn’t matter whether you store it outside or inside. In conclusion, at current prices, one can put away a significant amount of lead for pennies on the pound so why not diversify your store of raw materials and add a metal that is as useful for bullets as it is for barter.
By Guiles Hendrik
September 24, 2014
All rights reserved.