TIPS and I-Bond input is probably the easiest to give. If you buy directly from the government and hold until maturity you pretty much know exactly how you will be doing. The only real variable is what inflation does. More inflation is bad, even for holders of TIPS and I-Bonds. However, it is worse for those without inflation protection though. Potentially much worse.
Fortunately, inflation hasn't been much of a problem since I turned bearish in 2004. Although I am not earning much interest, I'm also not paying much in the way of taxes. I consider that a net positive.
I'm still a hoarder though, but thankfully my hoard is not growing in dollar value much. For example, the free market has determined that Progresso soup should only cost 98 cents per can this week (at my local QFC). Unlike our zombie banks, I was forced to mentally write down the value of my canned soup hoard. The good news is that I added 30 cans on the price weakness, lol. Sigh.
In another sign of the times, my local US Bank branch called me at 7pm on a weekday and asked that I call them back. It freaked me out a bit. I called back and they wanted to make sure I was happy. They were also fishing to see if I needed to borrow any money and to think of them if I did. I didn't. I feel no great desire to borrow money to buy more stuff. Our country is overflowing with self storage units. I think we've got too much stuff already and perhaps that's at least partially why I still lean deflationary.
This Christmas should be interesting. The import traffic is coming in heavy. The outgoing traffic is not. What if stores have stocked up for a stellar Christmas and it does not appear? Then what?