Real assets aren't there; bubbles go bust and boom, and the effect of Federal Reserve stimulus-retreat will leave everything open for manipulation – or even the big crash.
Under these circumstances, and other volatile economic factors, holding onto a certain investment in gold and silver seems only prudent, and perhaps one of the wisest investments an individual can make. Holding physical gold ensures control over the asset itself, and the slip and slide loss on investment in the markets means that these tangible commodities would only increase and appreciate in value during a major economic decline or monetary reset period (such as a transition away from the petrodollar into sort some of digital, global currency, etc.).
Though the state has often attempt to seize and control the trade of gold and silver and its store of wealth, reality dictates that possession of wealth is still an important factor, whether bartering, trading or hedging against a faltering and inept system. At least some of these precious materials should be considered by every serious prepper as one of the most favorable means of exchange during times both rough and relatively normal.