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The Destruction of a Safe Haven Asset?



Gold has been a store of value for centuries and a safe haven for investors in the past decades. However, the increased investment in gold for speculative or hedging purposes has changed the safe haven property. We demonstrate theoretically and empirically that investor behaviour has the potential to destroy the safe haven property of gold. The results suggest that an asset cannot be both an investment asset and an effective safe haven asset. This finding has important implications for financial stability since assets are more likely to exhibit excess comovement and volatility in the absence of a safe haven.

Suggested Citation

  • Dirk G Baur & Kristoffer Glover, 2012. "The Destruction of a Safe Haven Asset?," Working Paper Series 174, Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney.
  • Handle: RePEc:uts:wpaper:174

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Dirk G. Baur & Brian M. Lucey, 2010. "Is Gold a Hedge or a Safe Haven? An Analysis of Stocks, Bonds and Gold," The Financial Review, Eastern Finance Association, vol. 45(2), pages 217-229, May.
    2. Brian H. Boyer & Tomomi Kumagai & Kathy Yuan, 2006. "How Do Crises Spread? Evidence from Accessible and Inaccessible Stock Indices," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 61(2), pages 957-1003, April.
    3. Baur, Dirk G. & McDermott, Thomas K., 2010. "Is gold a safe haven? International evidence," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1886-1898, August.
    4. Peter C. B. Phillips & Jun Yu, 2011. "Dating the timeline of financial bubbles during the subprime crisis," Quantitative Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 2(3), pages 455-491, November.
    5. Merton, Robert C., 1971. "Optimum consumption and portfolio rules in a continuous-time model," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 373-413, December.
    6. Angelo Ranaldo & Paul Söderlind, 2010. "Safe Haven Currencies," Review of Finance, European Finance Association, vol. 14(3), pages 385-407.
    7. Ke Tang & Wei Xiong, 2010. "Index Investment and Financialization of Commodities," NBER Working Papers 16385, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Laura E. Kodres & Matthew Pritsker, 2002. "A Rational Expectations Model of Financial Contagion," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(2), pages 769-799, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Dirk G Baur & Kristoffer Glover, 2012. "A Gold Bubble?," Working Paper Series 175, Finance Discipline Group, UTS Business School, University of Technology, Sydney.
    2. Bouri, Elie & Hussain Shahzad, Syed Jawad & Roubaud, David, 2020. "Cryptocurrencies as hedges and safe-havens for US equity sectors," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 75(C), pages 294-307.
    3. Naveed Raza & Ahmad Ibn Ibrahimy & Azwadi Ali & Sajid Ali, 2016. "Gold and Islamic stocks: A hedge and safe haven comparison in time frequency domain for BRICS markets," Journal of Developing Areas, Tennessee State University, College of Business, vol. 50(6), pages 305-318, Special I.
    4. Nelson Areal & Benilde Oliveira & Raquel Sampaio, 2015. "When times get tough, gold is golden," The European Journal of Finance, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 21(6), pages 507-526, April.
    5. Huynh, Toan Luu Duc & Hille, Erik & Nasir, Muhammad Ali, 2020. "Diversification in the age of the 4th industrial revolution: The role of artificial intelligence, green bonds and cryptocurrencies," Technological Forecasting and Social Change, Elsevier, vol. 159(C).
    6. Hussain Shahzad, Syed Jawad & Bouri, Elie & Roubaud, David & Kristoufek, Ladislav, 2020. "Safe haven, hedge and diversification for G7 stock markets: Gold versus bitcoin," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 212-224.
    7. Bredin, Don & Conlon, Thomas & Potì, Valerio, 2015. "Does gold glitter in the long-run? Gold as a hedge and safe haven across time and investment horizon," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 320-328.
    8. Muhammad Abubakr Naeem & Mudassar Hasan & Muhammad Arif & Syed Jawad Hussain Shahzad, 2020. "Can Bitcoin Glitter More Than Gold for Investment Styles?," SAGE Open, , vol. 10(2), pages 21582440209, May.
    9. Joachim Klement, 2014. "Facts and Fantasies about Gold," Journal of Risk & Control, Risk Market Journals, vol. 1(1), pages 1-12.
    10. Nguyen, Cuong & Bhatti, M. Ishaq & Komorníková, Magda & Komorník, Jozef, 2016. "Gold price and stock markets nexus under mixed-copulas," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 283-292.
    11. Baur, Dirk G. & Glover, Kristoffer J., 2015. "Speculative trading in the gold market," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 39(C), pages 63-71.
    12. Bouri, Elie & Shahzad, Syed Jawad Hussain & Roubaud, David & Kristoufek, Ladislav & Lucey, Brian, 2020. "Bitcoin, gold, and commodities as safe havens for stocks: New insight through wavelet analysis," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 156-164.
    13. Rehman, Mobeen Ur, 2020. "Do bitcoin and precious metals do any good together? An extreme dependence and risk spillover analysis," Resources Policy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C).
    14. Junttila, Juha & Pesonen, Juho & Raatikainen, Juhani, 2018. "Commodity market based hedging against stock market risk in times of financial crisis: The case of crude oil and gold," Journal of International Financial Markets, Institutions and Money, Elsevier, vol. 56(C), pages 255-280.
    15. O'Connor, Fergal A. & Lucey, Brian M. & Batten, Jonathan A. & Baur, Dirk G., 2015. "The financial economics of gold — A survey," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 186-205.
    16. Klement, Joachim, 2015. "Facts and Fantasies about Gold," MPRA Paper 64590, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    17. Li, Sile & Lucey, Brian M., 2017. "Reassessing the role of precious metals as safe havens–What colour is your haven and why?," Journal of Commodity Markets, Elsevier, vol. 7(C), pages 1-14.
    18. Zhou, Siwen, 2018. "Exploring the Driving Forces of the Bitcoin Exchange Rate Dynamics: An EGARCH Approach," MPRA Paper 89445, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    19. Raza, Naveed & Ibrahimy, Ahmad & Ali, Azwadi, 2015. "Gold and Islamic Stocks: A Hedge and Safe Haven Comparison in Time - Grequency domain for BRICS," MPRA Paper 69366, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    20. Shahzad, Syed Jawad Hussain & Bouri, Elie & Roubaud, David & Kristoufek, Ladislav & Lucey, Brian, 2019. "Is Bitcoin a better safe-haven investment than gold and commodities?," International Review of Financial Analysis, Elsevier, vol. 63(C), pages 322-330.
    21. Baur, Dirk G. & Glover, Kristoffer J., 2014. "Heterogeneous expectations in the gold market: Specification and estimation," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 116-133.

    More about this item


    safe haven; gold; investor behaviour; funding constraints; contagion;

    JEL classification:

    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • G01 - Financial Economics - - General - - - Financial Crises
    • G11 - Financial Economics - - General Financial Markets - - - Portfolio Choice; Investment Decisions


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