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2011-08-31 Four Reasons Gold Remains a Safe Haven

NEW YORK (TheStreet ) -- Gold is still a safe haven for investors, it's just taking on a new look that some may find uncomfortable -- volatility.

Gold prices have had a turbulent summer -- rallying more than $350 in 4 months to then fall 11% from their intraday high of $1,917 an ounce in two days. Many investors buy gold as a safety net, but with prices seeing daily double digit swings is gold still safe?

"Gold isn't the perfect safe haven but it's the best one you are going to get," says Adrian Ash, head of research for BullionVault. According to Ash, the Swiss Franc and Yen are other popular safe havens but their associated countries don't want them to be. Both central banks have been trying to make their currencies less attractive to investors to improve their exporting power, tipping safe-have status back in gold's favor. .

Ash also says that the fact that gold rallied as the stock market tanked during the summer is the start of a new phase for the shiny metal. "Gold is attracting flows when investors leave other assets," whereas in the past any mass selling in stocks triggered selling in gold as investors had to cover losses.

Although pullbacks have been fast and furious, Ash argues that a $100 move is, percentage wise, not a big deal.

Alec Young, equity strategist at Standard & Poor's, says that gold prices just moved too far too fast and that increased volatility is a normal result. "Markets will go up at a 45% angle ...when something goes up in a straight line it's never really sustainable ... gold is still a safe haven ... [but] it doesn't mean it goes up every day."

Despite pullbacks, many experts believe that gold's role as a safe haven is intact and that prices will eventually trend higher because of these four secular trends.