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"My hands are a little warm," Charles Oliver says as a barber snips off his straggly, long locks.Four years ago, the senior portfolio manager at Sprott Asset Management bet gold would hit $2,000 US an ounce by April 16. With bullion hovering in the $1,600 range (GC-FT), Oliver lost his bet.
"It got to $1,923 last September and I thought it was in the bag. I thought I had it. But unfortunately sometimes the markets trick you," he tells BNN.
Gold was at $920 an ounce when Oliver made the call during a meeting with unitholders. He said he had a strong conviction it would.
"It went up for a lot of reasons, the main reasons are that currencies around the world are being debased, and what you've seen over the last number of years is countries running large budget deficits beyond their means to pay for these things," he says.
He points to the two rounds of quantitative easing in the U.S. and the LTRO [long-term refinancing operations] plan in Europe, saying, "as countries continue to print and debase, the gold price has gone up."
But Oliver is still confident that gold will continue its run up -- "to the moon."
"I think there's a good chance it's going to hit $2,000 this year. Ultimately, I think it's going significantly higher."
As the barber stands over him with the electric razor buzzing, Oliver says, "Most people still think it's a good call. If I had just said 'It's going to double,' I would have won the bet."His locks now shorn, Oliver is raising money for charity as a result of the challenge. He's giving $100,000 to four charities - UNICEF, World Vision, Terry Fox and Care.
But he says that Eric Sprott answered his challenge with one of his own.
"He said, if gold does hit $2,000, then he will shave his head."