Symposium, Managing Director, Kerry Stevenson talks about the importance of gold in a diversified portfolio, its successful performance over the past 12 months and all that’s on offer at this year’s event, 24-26 October, Sydney Sofitel Wentworth.
Katrina Bullock: Hello, I'm Katrina Bullock for the Finance News Network and joining me today from Symposium to discuss the 2019 Gold and Alternative Investment Conference is managing director Kerry Stevenson. Kerry, welcome back.
Kerry Stevenson: Thanks, Katrina, lovely to be here.
Katrina Bullock: Now, Kerry, first and foremost, why are you running the conference?
Kerry Stevenson: Well, this is our tenth year of running the Gold Conference. Why do I run it? I run it because I believe that people need to protect and grow their wealth and I believe that gold is one of the best ways to do that. But I also understand that a lot of people don't even understand why that should be part of their portfolio. So, why do I run the conference? Because I love educating people and I love making sure that people understand that gold should be part of a diversified portfolio. I'm not saying sell your house and your children. I'm just saying, get it. It's an educational event.
Katrina Bullock: It's been a fantastic year in 2019 for precious metals, particularly gold. Could you just remind us how was gold doing in terms of pricing last year and why has it done so well?
Kerry Stevenson: Well, I think that gold historically has, you know, in times of uncertainty and volatility gold has been a bit of a safe haven. So people tend to, I guess, look at it a bit more and I think we've had issues in the Middle East. Obviously we've had issues with Iran, we've had issues with the trade wars. So, I think people are just looking at it a bit more. But more importantly if you look at gold over the longer period of time, the average return over the last 20 years has been about 9 per cent but people don't even realise that. People don't realise that it's a way to invest and protect your wealth.
Katrina Bullock: Now, I've had a bit of a sneak peak at the program and there are some very exciting keynote speakers. Could you tell us a little bit about those?
Kerry Stevenson: Again as I say this is about educating people. So there is some really, really smart people in this world and I love having them come and explain their views on why you should own gold in your portfolio. I'm really blessed that the Perth Mint are once again on board as our major sponsor and Richard Hayes will be coming over. The Perth Mint have been very interesting in terms of innovation in the sector. It's no longer about having to go into the Perth Mint to buy your gold. You can actually use their gold pass. You can use many different ways of buying gold. So, we love the fact that they're supporting. We've got also Egon von Greyerz coming over from Switzerland. We have got Dr Keith Weiner coming over from the US so really smart people. We've also got a number of mining companies. We've got the World Gold Council, so from all over the world, people coming to Sydney to help everyday Australians understand about protecting the wealth.
Katrina Bullock: And the third day is going to be focused on alternative investment.
Kerry Stevenson: That's correct.
Katrina Bullock: What can we expect to see there?
Kerry Stevenson: So, what we're doing on the third day of the conference is we're going to focus on gold in a digital way. So I want to educate people. There's going to be scams. There's going to be ways that people can lose their money in a digital world, and really what the third day is about is not just for investors, but for the mining companies as well, if you don't understand that digital is here to stay, if you don't understand what the Blockchain is, this is your chance to really get educated about it. Again, I've got amazing speakers and that day is actually supported and sponsored by Finder, which is the comparison website, and HiveEx, which is their crypto exchange.
Katrina Bullock: Who should come to this conference and where can they buy tickets?
Kerry Stevenson: Anybody over the age of 18 should be coming to this conference because in my opinion you really need to understand that governments are printing money, the purchasing power of your dollar, your paper money, is going down and gold as a way to protect your wealth. So everybody should be coming. Where do they buy tickets? Really simple - goldevent.com.au.
Katrina Bullock: And last question Kerry, the dinner is always an absolute highlight at this event. Can you tell us what we can expect this year?
Kerry Stevenson: Well we're going to do the dinner on the first night so we're going to make sure that they don't all misbehave too much. But you know, conferences can be D for dull and B for boring and I love to make them interesting. So at the dinner we will be recognising some people that have made great contributions to the sector. We do the Gavin Thomas Mining Award, the Maggie Bullion Award and the Hall of Fame. Now, I cannot tell you who's won those because nominations are not quite finalized. They'll be finalized at the end of this month, but we also have some fun. So we have got a great entertainer, can't tell you who that is just yet and a couple of other surprises on the night but it's going to be fun.
Katrina Bullock: Kerry Stevenson, thanks for the update.
Kerry Stevenson: Thanks for having me, Katrina.