The September jobs report looms large. And if the September jobs number due out this Friday is another goose egg (or worse), one would expect another sharp market decline. But that might not be the case this time or, at least, it shouldn't.
A Fed fix
The market could rally on a lackluster jobs report. Why? Sustained high unemployment may embolden the Federal Reserve to provide an additional dose of market medicine on top of the recently announced "Operation Twist," which is simultaneously selling $400 billion of short-term Treasuries and buying $400 billion of longer-term Treasuries. The head of the Fed said as much.
In his most recent public statements, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke spoke of a "range of tools" that could be used to promote a stronger recovery. While Bernanke didn't reveal the contents of his toolbox, we all know his favorite tool because he's used it twice before.
A third round of quantitative easing will likely follow future poor economic data. And the stock market will likely rally as it has after the previous two rounds. But the precious metals could be the best way to capitalize on additional stimulus.
Stimulus is inflationary, and the precious metals are a popular inflation hedge. If the Fed continues pumping money into the economy, gold and silver will likely continue to rally despite the recent precious metal meltdown.
Look for the gold and silver miners to do well under this scenario. Some names to consider are Pan American Silver
The bottom line
Another poor jobs report could provide justification for the Fed to resume quantitative easing. This will likely boost the market and, in particular, precious metals. But be forewarned, nothing is a sure thing; predicting the actions of the Fed is similar to predicting the direction of a Phil Mickelson tee shot.
Fool contributor Adam J. Crawford does not own shares of any company mentioned in this article. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.