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Showing posts with label Federal Reserve. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Federal Reserve. Show all posts

Monday, 14 August 2017

Fundamentals for Gold are strong

As we have noticed in the past months, it was mainly the dollar and Fed actions that were influencing gold prices. But last week geopolitical tensions were fueling gold prices.

Gold was on the move in the past week after a display of threat of the military force by the U.S. and North Korea pushed the safe-haven metal back onto investors' radar.

President Trump said on Tuesday that threats by the Hermit Kingdom would be met by "fire and fury," which was followed up a day later by a North Korea threat to bomb the U.S. territory of Guam.
The yellow metal climbed to $1,285/oz as tensions rose this week, the best level in about two months, driving year-to-date gains to around 11.5%.




Gold has always been considered as a safe haven asset in times of uncertainty. The current rally in gold prices is because of the rise in safe haven demand for gold.

President Donald Trump intensified up his orotundity toward North Korea and its leader on Thursday, warning Pyongyang against attacking Guam or U.S. allies after it disclosed plans to fire missiles over Japan to land near the U.S. Pacific territory.             

Gold prices rose early Wednesday amid rising tensions between the United States and North Korea after the North responded to warnings from U.S.

President Donald Trump with a threat to strike the U.S.territory of Guam.   

Though prices rose on Wednesday and Thursday, by the end of the week, prices more or less stabilized. 

Gold prices held steady after touching their highest in more than two months on Friday, as rising tensions between the United States and North Korea triggered safe-haven buying.

Geopolitical risks can boost demand for assets considered safe-haven investments, such as gold. Although more hostile magniloquence between the U.S. and North officials would temporarily boost gold prices, we see outright military action as unlikely and upward pressure on gold prices stemming from the confrontation as limited.

Meanwhile, a lower-than-expected rise in U.S. consumer prices in July suggesting benign inflation could persuade a cautious Federal Reserve to delay raising interest rates until December.                

Gold is seen being stable over easing out of the geopolitical tensions. But still, a minor escalation over the tensions can once again trigger gold prices. Hence the situation currently is quite unpredictable. 

On the other hand, The Fed expects "very weak" U.S. inflation to rebound thanks to a slide in the dollar and to a labour market that keeps getting hotter, one of the Fed's most influential officials said in comments that reinforce its gradual policy-tightening plan

Gold edged down from two-monthhighs on Monday, 14th August, , as the dollar inched up from last week's lowsand investors kept a close watch on any developments on tensionsover the Korean peninsula.

Summing it up we can say that though the threats from the Koreans have lowered, the fundamentals for gold still seem to be strong.

Monday, 24 July 2017

Chances of interest rate hike in near future fade

Initially gold began on a negative note. Gold witnessed a decline in prices till mid-week.
However by the end of the week gold prices picked momentum and closed on a positive note.
GOLD BULLION headed for a second weekly gain versus the falling Dollar Friday morning in London, trading at $1247 per ounce as the US currency held at its weakest in 14 months against the Euro.

The greenback faced a fresh barrage of assaults on the currency markets. June retail sales figures and inflation levels disappointed, and this led to a selloff of USD. Headline inflation plunged more than forecast, and retail sales reversed course.  Hence, sentiment towards the USD declined
Gold and the rest of the precious metals were up by an average of 0.3% during trading hours on Friday July 21, with spot gold prices at $1,246.44 per oz, a weaker dollar and continued choppy political waters in Washington providing support.



By Monday, 17 July, the greenback was trading near 10-month lows. Further, news reports of improved economic performance in China sent investors scampering away from the USD towards other assets. Safe-haven assets such as gold, silver, platinum, and the JPY and emerging market currencies gained favour as the USD retreated.

Gold’s rebound found new drive on the combination of the weaker dollar, which we think stems from the weak political scene in Washington and from the less hawkish US Federal Reserve stance.

A weakening dollar along with hawkish Fed comments strengthens gold prices as gold is generally preferred as a mode of investment in times of uncertainty and global turmoil.

It is clear that the US economy is not performing as expected. This naturally dampens expectations and results in weakness for the USD. When traders get antsy, they rush towards safe-haven assets such as gold bullion, and this is precisely what we are seeing now.”

The dollar index continued to fall, at 94.00 it has set a fresh low, these levels were last seen in June 2016. A negative impact on the USD is good for gold. Since bullion is a dollar-denominated asset, demand moves in the opposite direction to the strength of the USD. With weakening sentiment about the USD, foreign buyers of gold purchase more per unit of their currency. Plus, the perceived weakness of the USD drives traders to gold bullion.

With softness in inflation figures, members of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) are reluctant to move forward with additional interest rate hikes. It is more likely that the Fed will opt for an unwinding of its $4.5 trillion balance sheet than more rate hikes this year.

If data continues to be negative and if the third-longest [economic growth] cycle in US history cannot produce a cyclical uplift in wages and prices then gold prices are expected to rise tremendously as any large disappointment in the [global economic] growth story will lead to an increase in gold prices.

The appeal of gold as an insurance asset is greater today than it was at the beginning of the year. It suggests to us that gold continues to be viewed as a [portfolio] diversifies and this should help keep the market supported overall.

The latest economic data releases once again bring the prospect of a Fed rate hike into question. According to the CME Group Fed Watch Tool, there is a 3.1% probability of an interest rate hike on Wednesday, July 26, 2017. For September 20, 2017, the probability of a rate hike is just 8.2%, and for November 1, 2017 the probability of a rate hike is just 11.6%. These economic forecasts are good for gold. Every time the Fed pushes back the prospect of a rate hike, currency traders take a bearish perspective on the greenback which further drives the demand for gold.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Dovish Fed Comments positive for Gold

It’s quite strange that 10 days back the key influential factor that pulled gold prices down was responsible for the rise in gold prices in the past 5 days. Yes rate hike!!!!.

The precious jobs reports brought mixed sentiments for gold traders as there wasn’t really anything in this number which was going to put the brakes or fasten an interest rate hike.

But what played positive for gold was the statement realized by Fed Chairman, Janet Yellen post the data released on Friday.



The surge in gold prices came after a Friday report on consumer prices showed that inflation in June came in flat, a sign that consumer prices had trouble sustaining its upward momentum. A weaker-than-expected reading for June’s retail sales, which fell 0.2%, also signal led weakness. Economists polled by Market Watch had forecast a 0.1% increase. Market participants said the lack of spending from U.S. shoppers made it difficult to envision inflation approaching the Fed’s 2% target.

Gold prices on Friday marked the highest finish of the month and their first weekly rise since early June, as data on retail sales and inflation stoked concerns that the pace of economic growth may not merit lifting U.S. interest rates again in 2017.

U.S. consumer prices were unchanged in June and retail sales fell for a second straight month, pointing to tame inflation and soft domestic demand that diminished prospects of a third interest rate increase from the Federal Reserve this year.

The U.S. data bolstered expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve would likely to move slowly to continue raising interest rates in the absence of inflation signs. Some had been expecting another rate hike in 2017, however Fed Chair Janet Yellen's comments to the U.S. Congress this week was more dovish than originally anticipated.

Activity was muted ahead of a speech by US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen later in the day which could give clues on the Fed's attitude towards inflation, and on when the US central bank will start reducing its $4.5-trillion balance sheet. That would likely push up bond yields, boosting the opportunity cost of holding bullion, and pushing gold lower.

But, in a testimony to the Congress, Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen had signal led a gradual approach to future rate hikes, which pushed down the dollar and boosted the appeal of the precious metal.

The disappointing U.S. retail sales and inflation data has now seen the odds of another rate hike fall below 50% this year which  has further boosted the appeal of low- and non interest-bearing assets on a relative basis, hence the  market witnessed  breakdown in [the U.S. dollar/Japanese yen] and breakout in gold.

The latest economic data may be viewed as providing insufficient support for the Fed to lift interest rates at least once more in 2017 and shrink its $4.5 trillion balance sheet—an act that can also serve to lift rates and tighten economic conditions.

The next big thing for traders is the upcoming ECB monetary policy  meeting to be held on July 20 in Frankfurt and that certainly has an ability to bring another episode of taper tantrum. 

Monday, 10 April 2017

Gold being pulled between uncertainities and rate hike

Gold is often used as a hedge against political and financial uncertainty and security risks. And that’s exactly what’s happening with gold currently.

Gold hit a five-month high on Friday after U.S. jobs data dampened expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates, but the metal gave up most gains as the dollar rose and safe haven demand ebbed.



Spot gold rose 1.2 percent to $1,265.95 an ounce by during trading hours on Friday, after touching its highest since Nov. 10 at $1,270.46,putting it on track for a fourth consecutive week of gains. U.S. gold futures climbed 1.1 percent to $1,267.60 an ounce. This is the most supportive environment we have seen for gold in some time given that there is geopolitical tension and disappointing U.S. payrolls number.

Data released showed that U.S. employers added the fewest number of workers in 10 months in March, boosting gold, which is most attractive to investors in a low interest rate environment.
Gold was also underpinned by investors looking for safety after the United States fired cruise missiles at a Syrian air base, escalating tensions with Russia and Iran.

Russia, a staunch ally of Syria, said relations between Washington and Moscow had been seriously damaged by the strike, which was in retaliation for a deadly chemical attack on a rebel-held area of Syria.

The precious metal hit a 5-month high as investors sought safe-haven assets after the United States launched cruise missiles against a Syrian air base, potentially escalating tensions with Syrian allies Russia and Iran. U.S. President Donald Trump unleashed the military strikes in response to a deadly chemical attack on a rebel-held area, a U.S. official said on Thursday.

Later in the session, however, safe haven demand faded and the dollar index. DXY climbed to three-week highs which further rose questions that unless the geopolitical risk continues; will the sentiment remain positive for gold?

Investors were cautious ahead of the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, but Trump said on Friday he had made progress in talks and expected them to overcome many problems. Investors had already been on edge as Trump met Chinese leader Xi Jinping on Thursday for talks over flash points such as North Korea and China's huge trade surplus with the United States.      

Gold is often used as a hedge against political and financial uncertainty and security risks. It has benefited alongside other assets considered safe, such as the yen and U.S. Treasury bonds.
Though geo political uncertainties are creating room for gold to rise, we shouldn’t ignore the key influential factor for gold i.e. U.S. interest rate hike.

Increases in U.S. interest rates will prove too much of a headwind for gold prices. As such, we think that the price of gold is likely to fall from about $1,265 today to $1,050 by the end of the year if there is any news coming in from the Fed regarding hike in interest rates.

Clearly this raises the stakes and we expect to see gold prices continuing to push higher in the short-term, at least until there is some clarity around whether this is a one-off or develops into something more.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

The sentiments for Gold are bullish

Gold prices have fallen 5.3% from the end of February high and they have almost given back 50% of the December to February gains

Gold prices slipped towards week low on Thursday as investors awaited the employment report due on Friday, a factor that would unofficially strengthen the interest rate hike in the FOMC meet next week.


Gold’s latest pull down followed the release of better-than-expected US private jobs data midweek, boosting the dollar ahead of the release of official monthly payrolls figures on Friday.


  • Private employment, which excludes government agencies, rose by 227,000 after a 221,000 increase the prior month. It was the biggest gain since July. Construction jobs, which can fluctuate depending on the weather, rose by 58,000, the strongest in almost a decade, and followed a 40,000 increase in January. Manufacturing payrolls gained 28,000, matching the most since August 2013. Meanwhile, retail positions fell by 26,000, the most in four years.
  • The ECB held its benchmark refinancing rate at 0% and left the pace of its bond purchases unchanged on March 9th, as widely expected. Both the deposit rate and the lending rate were also left steady at 0.4% and 0.25%, respectively.
  • The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits went up by 20000 to 243000 in the week ended March 4th 2017, slightly above expectations of 235000.
  • 2008 Nonfarm business sector labor productivity in the United States increased at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.3 percent during the fourth quarter of 2016, following a downwardly revised 3.3 percent rise in the previous period and below market expectations of a 1.5 percent gain.


While unseasonably warm weather may have boosted the payrolls count, the data represent President Donald Trump’s first full month in office and overlap with a surge in economic buoyancy following his election victory. The figures also corroborate recent comments by Federal Reserve officials that flagged a likely interest-rate increase this month.

Bullion’s being pulled back down toward $1,200 an ounce in the worst losing run since October as positive US economic data underpinned expectations that interest rates could probably be raised several times this year, starting with a hike next week.

After raising rates just a single time in 2015 and also in 2016, the pace may quicken this year. The so-called dot plot from Fed policy makers shows an expectation for three increases this year, and last Friday, Yellen dropped hints the bank might end up having to hike them more than planned in 2017.

After Wednesday’s upbeat private payrolls data, markets were pointing towards more than 90 % chances of rate hike in March meeting; gold prices are likely to face the weakness amidst the strength in the dollar. Separately, the weaker CPI released from China is also likely to put pressure on gold, given the fact that gold is considered as a hedge against inflation.

Gold prices slipped on Friday, building on a loss for the week as better-than-expected U.S. employment data backs the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will decide to boost interest rates at its meeting next week.

Higher interest rates lift the appeal of holding dollars. That also means that a stronger dollar cuts the worth of holding non-yielding gold that’s priced in this denomination.

We see this sell-off as tied into the increased chance of a US rate rise next week. Looking further out, sentiments for the yellow metal are bullish.


Monday, 12 December 2016

Gold appeal Fading

Gold hitting newer and newer lows have been a current trend confirming a bearish view on the metal’s safe haven appeal. Reasons begin with:

  1. Death of uncertainties and acceptance of the same as a new norm.
  2. Central banks of the world getting their ticks right to push the economic growth via fiscal and monetary measures.
  3. Physical buying cushion; getting softer.
  4. Massive reduction in geopolitical tensions with UN forces keeping a check on the extremists.



The upcoming FED meeting will give a glimpse to the US economy getting strengthened. Almost a 100% prediction for a Rate cut in this meeting has put a downward pressure on Gold. Over the course of 2017, there is an expectation that interest rates would be raised by the US Federal Reserve.
Meanwhile, US Dollar has gained a lot of attention due to a rise in US treasury yields and US equity markets causing a downward spiral in Gold prices.

Furthermore, if the recent election outcomes and market reactions to them have taught us anything, it’s that nothing is certain in politics, the global economy and the markets. While I say this, I do understand that the investors have used recent Gold rallies to unwind existing long positions and this is treated unhealthy for an asset’s performance.

While domestic prices would be supported by the Rupee weakness, overall Gold in Dollar terms would trader in the range of US$ 1,080 to US$ 1,200, while Silver would trade in the range of US$ 14.70 to US$ 18.20. In Rupee terms a range of INR 28,200 to INR 29,700 is expected for Gold while INR 39,000 to INR 44,000 is expected for Silver.

Monday, 6 June 2016

Gold prices Rise: RSBL


                                                       - Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD RSBL

                           
 
Just when Gold was raising questions on its recent rally, last week’s labour report proved to be a saviour for the yellow metal. Gold prices traded sharply higher in Friday thus giving a technically bullish weekly high close to gold.

In May, the US non-farm workforce grew up only 38,000, missing the forecast of 160,000 and indicating that the US recovery may be starting to slow. Additionally, the March and April figures were revised 22,000 and 37,000 lower respectively while growth in average hourly earnings last month of 0.2 percent was below the predicted 0.3 percent. The Labour Department report released Friday showed employers added jobs in May at the slowest pace since 2010 as unemployment dropped to 4.7 percent, already reaching the level Fed officials expected to see by the end of 2016. Apart from disappointing headline NFP (nonfarm payrolls) number, there is a also a sharp jump in involuntary part time workers.

A much-weaker-than-expected U.S. jobs report prompted the yellow metal to surge higher, and those initial solid gains have been extended to show gold trading over $30 higher on the day. A sharp drop in the U.S. dollar index also helped push gold prices higher.

A broad slowdown is troubling for the Federal Reserve, which has grown increasingly hawkish in recent weeks following the April meeting minutes, giving their support to a rise in interest rates as early as this month if data warranted such a move. But a negative jobs report has once again left the markets perplexed per se the rate hike.

Considering the pliability of the US economy, has once again raised some questions about the momentum of growth and about the outlook. This in turn takes June off the table for a Fed hike.

Apart from the current news what needs to be watched this week for gold are:
  1. THE MAIN EVENT: Fed Chair Janet Yellen's speech today at 10.00 pm.  
  2. Central Bank (Rate Cut) Watch:
  • Reserve Bank of Australia (June 7) no change expected
  • Reserve Bank of India (June 7) no change expected
  • Reserve Bank of New Zealand (June 9) 0.25% rate cut expected

Sentiments for gold are bullish and the major turning pint for this sentiment is the US dollar. Gold could remain in rally mode through the coming week as traders reassess their U.S. dollar and Fed outlook.

Thank You!


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The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.

Previous blog –

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

RSBL: Why Gold is still cheap?

                                                                             By Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL


Before jumping onto the main topic, I would like to essay out some facts about Gold prices this year. (Assuming Silver prices have more or less followed Gold prices). I am sure; lot of people would be feeling that US$60 is a big decline for Gold prices in the recent weeks and few would even have increased their bearish bets against the precious metal. I must warn them by quoting that even after the recent decline; the precious metal is nearly 16% up from its lows.

Then why there is a decline?
1.  The U.S. central bank surprised markets last week by cutting its rate hike projections more than expected, down from four to two in 2016, citing the potential impact from weaker global growth and financial market turmoil on the U.S. economy. This led to a rally in the U.S. dollar index and in turn bearish for the metal.

2.  There was a brief safe haven status which Gold gained due to the attacks in Brussels.

3.  Throughout the last week various Fed members including Patrick Harker, the Philadelphia Fed president,  have come out in support of raising interest as soon as April – if the economic conditions were to move.

4.  One more reason is the Easter Holidays, where I would see the profit booking in the Gold prices is quite understandable.

Now coming to the main topic: Why Gold is undervalued according to me?
1.       Reducing the number of rate hikes from 4 to 2, clearly states that FED isn’t sure how the world economy would fare in the longer run. Even when US economy has been showing some positive economic numbers, they are unable to take the most obvious step and when the inflation picks up faster than the central bank expects, they would have to increase the rates quickly.

2.       A dovish Federal Reserve, a weaker U.S. dollar and negative real interest rates will all be positive for gold this year. Over the recent years, the most dominant driver for gold prices has been the direction of the US dollar. As we are now expecting a lower dollar over the coming years we expect it to play a crucial role in the movement of gold prices. As for the Fed the analysts say that even if the Fed does raise interest rates later this year -- a scenario they see as unlikely -- they will be perceived as being behind the inflation curve high will once again be a pushing factor for gold prices as investors will likely buy gold because of lower US real yields and as some may see gold as a possible inflation hedge.

3.      There are lot of crucial political events this year:
a.   Current leadership crises in Brazil
b.  US presidential election in November
c.   U.K’s June vote over its membership in European Union.
All of them would leave a lasting effect if they go against the market.

4.      Terror threat across Europe, Syrian conflict and other Geopolitical tensions will always make Gold has the safest investment during the turmoil.

5.       Moody’s Investors Service highlighted China’s surging debt burden in lowering the nation’s credit-rating outlook to negative from stable earlier this month.

6.       We are in a tug of war between slow growth and high valuations on one side and central bank stimulus on the other.

Looking at the renewed turmoil in financial markets by highlighting the Fed’s policy divergence with the ultra-easy stances of the ECB and Bank of Japan, the near future seems bright for gold. 


Thank You!

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The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.

- Previous blog -

 "Brussels explosion and Gold's Safe haven appeal: RSBL"
http://riddisiddhibullionsltd.blogspot.in/2016/03/brussels-explosion-and-golds-safe-haven.html


Photo courtesy: Google search

Tuesday, 22 March 2016

Brussels explosion and Gold's Safe haven appeal: RSBL

                                                              By Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL



As I was about to publish this blog, Brussels was rocked by multiple explosions that left many dead and wounded. My heartfelt condolences to their families in these challenging times of despair! 


Gold is known for its safe haven appeal and the same has been proven once again. A quick rise of nearly US$20 proved that traders and investors would flock behind Gold to protect themselves from unknown strikes and calamities. 

Hourly price rise of Gold_220316 - RSBL SPOT terminal
Moreover since the Global downturn, the precious metal has risen by nearly 13-month high.

I did mention in my last blog that I do expect some corrections before the next up move and we all witnessed the same before the FED meeting. The FED meeting on Wednesday did conclude that the global risks pose a threat to the US economic recovery.


The U.S. central bank held interest rates steady on Wednesday and indicated it would tighten policy this year, but fresh projections offered by the Fed showed policymakers expect two quarter-point increases by year-end, half the number forecast in December. Expectations that the Fed would raise rates steadily this year had faded since the bank's initial hike in December, as concerns about global growth roiled financial markets.


It decided to scale back the number of planned rate rises this year to two from four, which initially spurred the precious metal to a one-week high while bond yields and the dollar fell and equities made up some lost ground.


Spot gold was down 0.31 percent at $1,253.99 an ounce during Fridays trading hours though the yellow metal closed on a positive side and was up around 0.4 percent on the week. Gold edged down on Friday, as the dollar steadied above a five-month low, but the metal remained on track for a weekly gain after the Federal Reserve scaled down rate hike expectations.


Inflation is a very important economic number that the FED is watching closely. Until it is below their target of 2%, there won’t be much room for FED with the rate hike policy. Unemployment, according to FED is back on track. 


Commitment of Traders report that was realized on Friday, showed Gold and Silver ETFs have seen continued interest and strong buying has been the trend. Gold holdings increased by 915’000 ounces in just two days, while Silver added 3 Mio. ounces as per the report.


With the Easter holiday around the corner, buying interest would mute from here on until further developments on the Brussels’ incidence. 


A support of $1230 and a resistance of $1270 do play strong price levels for Gold’s next move while Silver price levels would be supported by $15.20 and a key resistance of $16.70.


Thank You!

You may follow me on:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/prithviraj.kothari
Twitter: https://twitter.com/prithvirajrsbl
Website: http://www.rsbl.co.in/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/PrithvirajKothari
Google+ URL: http://www.google.com/+PrithvirajKothari


The primary purpose of this article by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari is to educate the masses of the current happenings in the Bullion world.

 - Previous blog -
"Renewed confidence in Gold and Silver: RSBL"
http://riddisiddhibullionsltd.blogspot.in/2016/03/renewed-confidence-in-gold-and-silver.html

Photo courtesy: Google search