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Showing posts with label USD. Show all posts
Showing posts with label USD. Show all posts

Monday, 10 December 2018

Has the scenario changed for gold

Last week, gold prices had a chance to close at their highest since the middle of July. The fundamental backdrop was a combination of declines in the US Dollar and local front-end government bond yields. Since gold is priced in USD, a weaker greenback makes the precious metal relatively more expensive. As for the latter, when bond yields decline, the non-interest bearing asset looks comparatively more appealing.

Though markets have shown a drastic behavior in the past 10 days, things still good for gold. Though gold has been down almost 4 per cent for the year till date, last week was fairly positive for the yellow metal. No doubt equities have outperformed gold so far but any rally in gold prices and any further weakness in U.S equities will see a reverse behaviour thus gold outperforming stocks in the near future.



The Fed has already appeared to express doubts on the future pace of tightening, although the markets do not anticipate it holding off on the likely 25 basis point interest rate increase at the FOMC meeting in just over one week’s time.  Although a further sharp fall in U.S. equities in the coming week might, just, cause the Committee to change its mind.  It is likely to be under pressure from President Trump to keep interest rates, and thus the dollar, down given his tariff impositions seem to be having the effect of increasing the dollar index and, ultimately, putting up the cost of manufactured goods to the U.S. consumer.

The volatility in equities and dollar was influenced buy the ongoing trade war between China and U.S which appears to have backfired rapidly on the greenback.

The arrest in Vancouver of China’s Huawei Technology’s CFO and the company founder’s daughter in Canada has potentially inflamed the trade relations again.

In the bigger picture, The Fed is in a dilemma over a few factors that don’t fall under its control but will play an important role in the growth of the US economy which will further  influence any decision related to rate hike-

Immigration - President Donald Trump's crackdown on immigration, which translates into fewer workers, especially those willing to take lower-wage jobs, and therefore higher wages

Wage- state-level minimum wage boosts that amount to government-mandated wage inflation.
Truck driver shortage- the countrywide truck driver shortage, which has become "a major reason for all sorts of companies to raise prices  in order to make their customers eat higher shipping costs
Trade war- is the United States' trade dispute with China, further escalated this week by the arrest of the CFO of Huawei, one of China's most important companies. While Trump and China's president seemed to agree to a ceasefire over the weekend, the arrest makes the odds of a good trade deal most unlikely.

All four of these ongoing issues directly affect the Fed's policy, and that's what's putting this independent entity in a bind when it comes to planning for the year ahead and maneuvering other major, economy-altering changes like the rise of workplace automation.

The Fed is simply helpless and can’t do anything about the above mentioned trends. Just in case they won’t work in its favour then rate hike might be delayed which will surely push gold prices high.

Speculators are currently neutral for gold. They don’t believe it will dip neither they have faith in its upside potential. Though markets feel that chances if it going lower are high.
But if we see the long run, gold looks attractive.

Gold prices for the year have decline but look positive in the coming two years. A lower dollar, lower US Treasury yields, a recovery of the Chinese Yuan and higher jewellery demand will result in the upward trend.


Monday, 3 December 2018

Will gold witness an upward trend soon

Gold was following a wave like movement during the week as we saw it moving up till Thursday and then diving down by the end of the week.
Gold edged higher for the second consecutive session on Thursday and was placed at the top end of its weekly trading range, around the $1227-28 region during the trading hours.

Spot gold has stood strong against a weaker dollar, with the precious metal’s spot price hovering at around $1228 – one of the highest levels it has seen since 11 November where it hit $1230 per ounce.

The Fed Chair Jerome Powell's comments that rates are just below the neutral level now triggered a broad-based US Dollar weakness and prompted some short-covering trade around the dollar-denominated commodity. This weakness further strengthened the yellow metal and pushed prices higher.



The USD bearish pressure now seems to have abated, though expectations of a slowdown in interest rate hikes, reinforced by sliding US Treasury bond yields, kept pushing the non-yielding yellow metal higher through the mid-European session on Thursday.

Even the prevalent positive mood around European equity markets, which tends to undermine demand for traditional safe-haven assets, did little to prompt any fresh selling around the precious metal or stall the ongoing positive momentum.

The price of gold shot up on Thursday, following Bank of England statement (on 28th November), in which the BoE forecast the UK economy’s performance in the face of the various Brexit outcomes and warned of serious economic contraction with any ‘No Deal’ Brexit.

But post the U.S. data released on Friday, the dollar which was lying flat, gained momentum. Reports released were above expectations and this strengthened the dollar thus pushing gold prices down.

Further, Gold prices fell in the domestic markets too. Investors took this dip as an opportunity to buy. The appreciating (Indian) rupee has brought down prices. At this price level, jewellers and retail buyers are quite comfortable in making purchases.

Local gold prices were trading near their lowest in about three months as an appreciation in the rupee made overseas buying cheaper. Physical gold demand in the world’s second biggest bullion consumer India got a fillip this week from a slide in local rates due to gains in the rupee, while buying was steady in other top Asian hubs.

Though gold hasn’t shown an eye catching gain, it still holds importance in the portfolio of many. If we see closely, gold has been falling since the past seven years. It’s down by more than a third over that period. So clearly, the metal is cheap and makes itself more appealing as a safe haven asset.

The precious metal has been in free fall most of 2018, losing roughly 11% of its value since its January peak. And this year's performance is a continuation of the longer-term trend.

Gold has slowly been trending higher since August. The metal is up a little more than 3% since then. And prices appear to be hitting what analysts describe as "higher lows."

Gold prices have been falling for years. Investors recently hit their most extreme negative sentiment levels in nearly two decades. And now, the price is starting to move back up.

With investors now pricing in only one more rate hike in 2019, markets feel positive for gold and hence it has once again found acceptance in an investment portfolio. Will we see gold in an upward trend soon? Well the answer lies in 2019 as 2018 is about to end and which a holiday mood in the air markets are not expected to be much volatile in the coming days.


Thursday, 15 November 2018

Investors mantra - Stay Calm

Gold has lost around $30/oz. in less than one week as the US dollar charge continues. Last week’s FOMC meeting confirmed that US interest rates will continue to climb this year and next, while the Democrats’ victory in the House of Representatives is being taken as a USD positive so far, as it makes US President Trump more accountable for his actions. The precious metal was also unable to pick up a risk-off bid after US and Asian stock markets crumbled overnight on tech - mainly due to Apple - and worries that US-China trade wars may escalate.



Apart from the above mentioned acts, the way things are going- default concerns and inflation expectations are rather low by historical standards. As a result, financial markets could take a hard hit if investors ever wake up and demand a higher price for accepting credit and/or inflation risk. Such a scenario could make holding gold a particularly interesting option.

The recent weakness in gold is not over. In fact, we are worried about another leg down getting underway. While some believe that gold is moving to the bears there are some players in the market who still believe that gold prices will rally in the near future. Long term investors and speculation are making a shift from a bear to a bull market. Their belief is strongly supported by a few factors which these market players expected to occur soon-


  • First and foremost, the current gold price does not seem to be high and there is a lot of scope for recovery till it reaches its all time high
  • In a risk-on scenario, there is a good chance that the gold price will move up
  • Bargain hunting and weakness in equities, such as the sharp fall in U.S. stock market on are helping put a floor under gold during the metal’s recent slide. The fact that gold has not fallen further “is probably due to the correction on the stock markets, which has made gold attractive as an alternative investment
  • Oiling of gold reserves is a clear indicator that central banks do not want to be dollar dependent. A gold driven economy will definitely raise the demand for the yellow metal and furthermore its prices.
  • Gold is the only financial asset that’s not simultaneously somebody else’s liability. Hence the liking for this metal always remains high.
  • With uncertain world financial assets, there’s an excellent chance there’s going to be a volatile markets and hopefully a one that favors gold.


Currently we see investors acting very calm in the market. Maybe they await a strong and concrete signal from the global markets to get back into action mode.



Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Investors stockpile gold

Gold witnessed a series of events in the past week which ultimately proved fruitful for gold. Gold was highly influenced positively by a series of following key events:



  1. Globally, equities markets plunged down sharply.
  2. Uncertainties over the results of the U.S midterm, elections. At the moment there appears to be a strong chance of the Democrats gaining a majority in the House of Representatives, but the Republicans comfortably holding on to their Senate majority. Such a scenario would probably be gold-positive in that it would lead to political gridlock.
  3. Trade war between China and US which was initiated by the implementation of tariffs on Chinese goods by the US governments
  4. Uncertainty in Europe over the fallout from a possible no-deal scenario for Brexit, 
  5. Nervousness over the forthcoming Italian budget which threatens to challenge the Euro zone hierarchy 
  6. Geopolitical fallout from the Khasoggi murder which could upset Middle Eastern alliances.


Apart from the ones mentioned above, we still expect some geopolitical difficulties to occur, which may further strengthen gold and help it in breaking its comfort zone.

Gold has been back above $1,200 an ounce for the last two weeks, helped by safe-haven buying due to weakness in global equities and geopolitical tensions. Last week, Gold rose to test monthly highs near $1,240/oz but lost strength and pulled back. The retreat from the top, continued after the ECB meeting and during the American session, amid a stronger US dollar against majors and despite an improvement in risk appetite.

When the yellow metal crossed $1200 mark, it saw many investors retuning to the market with a great interest in gold. Retail buyers have started making their purchased as they expect a further price rise. Further, the investors’ class is also taking some stock profits as Wall Street volatility increased and they’re moving some of those profits to safer or more opportune areas, including gold and silver.

It’s not only the small investor class but also major central banks that are adopting gold. Russia and China have also been trying to win support from global governments to create a new gold-backed currency, thereby removing the US dollar as the world’s reserve currency.

Gold’s impressive performance of late, coming amid USD [U.S. dollar] strength, suggests that gold finally is behaving like a safe-haven asset.  There has been a pickup in gold purchases by central banks, including Hungary, Poland, India, Turkey and Mongolia, in addition to regular gold buyers Russia and Kazakhstan. And if this continues we will soon see gold at record highs.

Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Time To Add Gold In Your Portfolio

Gold has fallen more than 8% this year as concern about trade disputes; currency weakness in emerging markets and rising US interest rates has strengthened the dollar, making bullion more expensive for buyers with other currencies.


TRADE DISPUTE - Gold is trading back above $1,200/oz ahead of the expected announcement from the White House that China is about to get hit by additional tariffs on goods valued at up to $200 billion. The latest US trade balance for July showed the US in the red by $50.1 billion while the trade deficit with China rose to a fresh record of $36.8 billion.

Investors have been waiting for a fresh round to be fired in the Sino-U.S. trade war after a public comment period for proposed U.S. tariffs on a list of $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, which includes some consumer products, ended late last week.

With his domestic agenda being challenged by the upcoming midterm elections, less-than-flattering comments from White House insiders, and the ongoing Mueller investigation, President Trump is unlikely to step back from his fight with the Chinese.

The prospect of an escalated trade war continues to make matters worse for emerging market bonds, stocks and currencies.

The trade war and its effect on the USD/CNY exchange rate remains the primary determinant of Gold prices in dollar terms. Until either the trade war ends or the dollar falls, either of its own accord or due to a Fed reversal in policy, USD/CNY is likely to go higher and gold lower.

The escalating trade war crisis continued to spill its effect on gold in the past week too. Gold prices rose on Friday due to a lower dollar and jitters about an escalation in the U.S.-China trade dispute after fresh threats by President Donald Trump, although bullion is still heading for its fifth straight monthly decline.

Spot gold was up 0.6 percent at $1,206.19 an ounce during Fridays trading hours- a gain of 4 percent from the 19-month low of $1,159.96 hit on Aug. 16.



CURRENCY WEAKNESS - Lately positive U.S. economic numbers have been showing signs of a strengthening U.S economy. This has further strengthened the dollar against major basket of currencies. In India too rupee was at a record low of 72.17, sliding by 44 paise against the US dollar on rising demand from US dollars by bankers and importers.

Like the trade war, the dollar prices continued to show its effect on gold this week too.
The dollar traded higher against a basket of currencies on Monday amid fears of a potentially major escalation in the China-U.S. trade conflict, while Sweden's crown rose following the previous day's election.

U.S. President Donald Trump warned on Friday that he was ready to slap tariffs on virtually all Chinese imports into the United States, threatening duties on another $267 billion of goods in addition to the $200 billion already facing the risk of duties.

The index also found support after data showed U.S. jobs growth accelerated in August and wages notched their largest annual increase in more than nine years, boosting the prospect of faster interest rate rises by the Federal Reserve.

Non-Farm payrolls led to some modest downward pressure on gold. Furthermore, though the dollar will continue to weigh on gold, and as long as the dollar is strong, gold will remain constrained.

RISING INTEREST RATES - Gold prices held steady during Asian trade on Tuesday as investors remained on the sidelines amid expectations of a U.S. interest rate hike this month and on fears of an escalation in the Sino-U.S. trade war.

Strong U.S. payrolls data last week cemented expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will raise interest rates in September, in what would be its third hike this year, with expectations of one rise more in December.

Higher rates increase bond yields, making the non-yielding bullion less attractive and tend to boost the dollar.

Now what’s interesting to note is that though gold is being hammered lately, financial advisors in Asia, are suggesting their clients that this is the right time to include gold in their portfolio. They have been asking them to take advantage of dips and to stockpile to protect assets against pounding equity markets.

Gold has sold off over the past few months as USD interest rates have increased, so there is more opportunity to buy. For clients who do not have an allocation of gold in their portfolios, now is the time to add gold.

Thursday, 23 August 2018

Winds of change for Gold

Though gold has not performed as per expectations, we saw it glittering once again by the end of the previous week.

Friday saw the gold price pick up significantly to end at over $1,180 after spending much of the period in the low $1,170s, but the rise was almost all due to a turnaround in the U.S. dollar index which slipped back a little.

Dollar was going weak in the first quarter of 2018.This led to a rise in gold prices which reached above $1350 in April. There were positive sentiments for the yellow metal and traders expected it to cross $1400. 


But from mid April, with the rhetoric around the Trump trade tariff impositions taking centre stage, it all turned around. The dollar started to strengthen and the gold price, along with most other metal and mineral commodities priced in U.S. dollars, began to slip accordingly. As the tariff impositions moved from conjecture (many thought President Trump might be bluffing) to reality and counter measures were threatened and put in place by affected nations, the dollar started to rise and has not really looked back apart from the odd stutter since.

The same sentiment was witnessed in the past week. On 13 August 2018, the price of gold fell below 1.200 USD/oz, declining to a 1.5 year low. There are many factors that have triggered this down fall.
Even thought gold jumped up on Friday, the yellow metal is around $170 down on its peak earlier in the year. That’s over 9% down on the year to date and over 12% down from its peak.


Let’s have a look at the key influential factors-

Demand for US Dollar - Given recent market uncertainty – amongst other things due to the Turkish Lira crisis and other emerging market currencies being affected by the turmoil – investors have substantially increased their demand for the Greenback. It does not only serve as a "safe haven" currency, but it also offers a positive interest rate (e.g. 2-year US bills offering a yield of around 2.6 per cent). In the international context, this is a rather attractive combination from an investor's point of view. What follows is an appreciating US dollar and – as its flipside – a decline in the price of gold in US dollar terms.

Fed Rate Hike - the Fed's hiking cycle might be closer than the market expects. The reason lies in the growing international US dollar indebtedness. In the period of extreme low US interest rates, many foreign borrowers – in particular, those from emerging market economies – have taken on US dollar denominated debt. An appreciating US dollar causes them quite some trouble: It increases the costs of serving their debt. What is more, it makes rolling-over maturing US dollar debt more difficult: Lenders become hesitant to renew loans, and if they do, they can be expected to charge higher interest rates

Dependence on U.S Economy - Due to the high dependence of many economies around the globe on the US dollar, the Fed can no longer gear its monetary policy to the needs of the US economy alone. It can no longer ignore the consequences its monetary policy is most likely to have on other economies around the world. While the US economy may well need higher interest rates, many countries will have significant problems coping with US borrowing costs going up. As soon as the financial markets find out that the Fed cannot continue its US economy-centred monetary policy, there is a decent chance that the reserve currency status of the US dollar will be critically reviewed. So there is quite a possibility that the currently unshakable belief in the Greenback's safe-haven status will lose some of its shine.

But we can surely say one thing - The wind of change is definitely in the air for gold prices
After the Labor Day holiday in the U.S. in the first week in September things could start to change though as perhaps some of the trade war rhetoric will cool, China will come back to the negotiating table and the dollar index may ease giving gold some welcome respite.

Physical demand is coming back, which is a great sign for prices in the second half of the year.  Lower gold prices are starting to stimulate better physical demand, particularly from India. This might lead to rally in gold prices in the near future.

Monday, 30 July 2018

Is it time to go back to gold


Markets have been more volatile than normal so far this year due to many factors, including geopolitical tensions with North Korea and the Middle East, Italian government upheaval, rampant speculation related to interest rates and the spectre of potential trade wars involving the United States, Canada, China, and European powers as a result of tariffs.

Recently the gold price has depended on the dollar’s cross-border flows. They in turn have been driven by market perceptions of increasing credit risks in emerging market currencies, and the Fed’s policy of normalising interest rates while other major central banks are still applying monetary stimulus. The result has been a stronger dollar on its trade-weighted basis and a weaker gold price.

Spot gold dropped 0.4 percent to $1,225.89 an ounce during Thursdays trading hours, after it rose 0.6 percent on Wednesday. Earlier in the session, the metal hit $1,235.16, its highest in more than a week but eased by the end of the week due to a strengthening dollar.


Gold prices are back under pressure, with the U.S. dollar gaining ground against its major counterparts, and the precious metal may continue to consolidate over the remainder of the week as market attention turns to the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) interest rate decision on August 1.

Even though the FOMC is widely expected to keep the benchmark interest rate on hold, Chairman Jerome Powell & Co. are likely to implement higher borrowing-costs over the coming months as officials warn ‘gradually returning interest rates to a more normal level as the economy strengthens is the best way the Fed can help sustain an environment in which American households and businesses can thrive.’

In turn, a batch of hawkish comments may sap the appeal of gold as the FOMC appears to be on track to further embark on its hiking-cycle, and growing expectations for four rate-hikes in 2018 may reinforce a bearish outlook for gold prices on the back of expectations for higher U.S. Treasury yields.

One more interesting thing witnessed during the past week was gold reserves. It seems that strong economies have increased their gold reserves which are a good sign for gold.

CHINA – Officially, China has kept its gold holdings unchanged at 59.24 million ounces since October 2016, or 1,843 metric tons, valuing them at $74.1 billion at end-June. Globally, central banks continue to increase gold reserves, albeit at a slower pace, adding 371.4 tons in 2017, according to the World Gold Council.

However in the past too, China has spent long periods before without revealing increases in gold holdings. When the central bank announced a 57 percent jump in reserves to 53.3 million ounces in July 2015, it was the first update in six years.

So it seems that mysteriously China has been adding to its gold reserves.

RUSSIA- Russia‘s U.S. dollar reserves have shrunk from $96.1 billion in March to just $14.9 billion in May, according to the Russian Central Bank. Its governor, Elvira Nabiullina, says the decision will help protect the Russian economy and diversify the bank’s reserves.

Notably, the Bank of Russia has been buying gold every month since March 2015, overtaking China as the fifth-biggest sovereign holder of gold.

Russia added 500,000 ounces of gold (15.55174 tons) to reserves in June and bought some 106 tons of gold since the start of the year, with total reserves now approaching the 2,000-metric-ton mark. Last year, Russia added a record 224 tons of gold to the reserves.

The Russian central bank hinted that it could invest the money from the USD sale not only into gold, but also into International Monetary Fund (IMF) bonds and Chinese bonds.

But why have these economies diversifying to gold? Well, in periods of global financial or political crises, gold is much more useful than securities or cash, although gold is also prone to price fluctuations.

Moving further, it must be noted here that the gold price is affected, of course, by more factors than simply the US dollar and US interest rates. Equity markets can and do affect the gold price, oil prices too, and there is a long list of non-quantifiable factors that can have a dramatic impact on the gold price. Heightened global political and economic tensions on account of a highly erratic US President may encourage more investment demand for gold, for example. And can anyone fully rule out an Italian exit from the Euro zone and the financial crisis that would follow?

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Gold May Regain its Safe Haven Status

In January, precious metal prices peaked. Since then they have fallen substantially by 9% (gold prices).

In recent weeks, the sell-off has accelerated. There are several reasons for this price weakness.

Trade War - a looming trade war between the US and China has weighed on prices, especially cyclical precious metals such as platinum and palladium.

US Dollar - Rising U.S. Fed rates and rising real interest rates – up 20% from the start of the year as measured by 10-year bonds — are supporting the dollar. While the dollar remains strong, gold is being depressed.
To some effect, the metals markets are experiencing the same depressing impact on prices.
 The recovery of the US dollar is negative for all precious metal prices.

Euro - a downshift in expectations about the euro zone economy has been a negative for precious metals.


Global Markets - weakness in emerging markets has lowered all precious metal prices as well. More recently the substantial fall in the Yuan has accelerated the decline in precious metal prices. Yuan weakness reflects the heightened trade tensions between the US and China and nervousness about Chinese corporate bond defaults. China is a crucial consumer of precious metals. So fears of lower Chinese demand are negative for prices.

But this may not be the end as markets believe that this downfall may continue. The US dollar is expected to strengthen further due to strong economic data and ongoing Fed Hike.

Furthermore, markets look negative for gold as the 10y US Treasury yields is expected to rise.
Gold and other precious metals are highly sensitive to these issues and hence analysts believe the gold, in the near-term, is expected to fall.

In addition, trade tensions between the US and China will probably linger on and there may be more volatility in the Chinese Yuan in the near term. These are also negatives for precious metal prices.
Finally, it is likely that concerns about Italy will return if Italy’s fiscal balance will get into focus again later in the summer. This will weigh on the euro but also on platinum prices as the euro zone is an important market for platinum

In such an environment, holding gold is seen as a cost, not an opportunity. Although market turnover has been high, the bulls have not been in evidence and prices have remained depressed.
BUT HOPE STILL PERSISTS.

Though precious metals are expected to fall, hope still prevails over the factors that support gold prices.

U.S. - By the end of the year US dollar and 10y Treasury yields are expected to peak. Which further pours in the thought that it might pull down from its peak? Lower US growth could result in a downward adjustment in demand.

Moreover, we expect the fall in the Chinese Yuan to come to an end as Chinese authorities will probably intervene to calm sentiment. We find it hard to imagine the Chinese authorities letting the Yuan drop in an uncontrolled manner. However, in the near-term, Yuan weakness may yet continue. In addition, our base case scenario is that a significant escalation of the trade conflict is averted. This should support all precious metal prices.

We expect gold prices to bottom out between USD 1,200 and 1,250 per ounce and silver prices between USD 15.2 and 15.6 per ounce. We see these levels as an opportunity to position for higher gold and silver prices next year.

If sentiments were to change and, for example, growth was to slow in the U.S. in reaction to trade concerns, then gold could make headway. But while the dollar is king, gold will remain lackluster despite rising tensions.

In the near term, we expect weakness in gold to persist, before investors flock to gold’s safe haven status in light of the ongoing trade and geo-political tensions – and the attendant negative consequences that might ensue

Saturday, 27 January 2018

Concerning issue for Gold

The positive effects of a year end are seen hovering around the yellow metal at the beginning of 2018 too. Gold held a strong finishing in 2017, up by 13.5 percent according to World Gold Council.  Gold’s annual gain was the largest since 2010, outperforming all major asset classes other than stocks.



Contributing to this gain was a
Weaker U.S. dollar
Stock indices hitting new highs
And geopolitical instability

All of these combined created an atmosphere of geopolitical and economic uncertainty, thus benefiting gold.

The uncertainties haven’t seemed to calm down, and hence gold continues its rally in the first month of the year. Gold continued to gain some positive traction through the early European session and was seen hovering around 4-month tops touched last week.

The US Dollar sank to fresh three-year lows, below the 90.00 round figure mark and was seen benefiting dollar-denominated commodities - like gold.

Meanwhile in the U.S. some risk-aversion trade has eventually provided an additional boost to the precious metal's safe-haven appeal.

With the USD still struggling to gain any respite, the commodity seems all set to build on its bullish momentum and head back towards testing September 2017 highs

While we see gold touching monthly highs, we shouldn’t forget a concerning issues- What if markets collapse? Well, then  it  could suffer collateral damage as institutions and funds struggle for liquidity and have to sell good assets to stay afloat.

A similar situation had surfaced in 2008 when the stock market collapsed, but gold comparatively has recovered faster than equities and since then went to be its strongest bull market ever with prices rising to new heights of over $1900 an ounce

Now that god prices have reached $1350 an ounce, whether it stabilises there, rallies or gets pulled back--- depends on the U.S. dollar and Whether the U.S. market will allow it to stay there.

Monday, 4 December 2017

Some clear drivers for Gold

A lack of clear drivers has kept gold prices between $1,265 and $1,300 an ounce throughout November, its narrowest monthly range in 12 years. Despite the volatility overnight, it was another subdued session across the precious complex in Asia, with gold struggling above $1,285 an ounce consistently.

The dollar was firm after Wednesday’s uplift on third-quarter U.S. economic growth revised upwards to 3.3 percent, making dollar-priced gold costlier for non-U.S. investors.


Global equities were on course to finish November with a 13th consecutive monthly gain, though a dive in U.S. tech stocks left investors wondering whether the longest global equity bull run in living memory might be starting to splutter.

Also denting investor optimism and signalling underlying support for gold going forward, investors were growing wary about the staggered progress of U.S. tax reform legislation.

Gold drew a certain degree of support in early Asian-Pacific trading from the most recent North Korean missile test, even though the yellow metal did not charge ahead on the latest geopolitical threat, said MKS (Switzerland) S.A.

North Korea said it now has a missile capable of striking the U.S. Wednesday's Asian session adhered to the recent range-bound status quo, however, afternoon headlines out of North Korea did give price action a modest boost.

The latest advances in missile technology in North Korea should provide an underlying bid tone for bullion, with the threat of a potential strike on the U.S. mainland increasing (albeit largely theoretical).

In recent times, such geopolitical tensions have resulted in only short-term price buoyancy and without further headlines to drive interest; participants will turn focus to the upcoming U.S.

Gold prices were down on Wednesday over a statement released by US Federal Reserve chair woman Janet Yellen that economic growth was broad based. This seemed to have convinced investors that rates would go higher soon.

This sentiment was further backed by a strong US economic data which strengthened the dollar further. In response the dollar pushed to a one week high of 93.44 late on Wednesday which further weakened the demand for the yellow metal.  Indeed, spot gold prices fell to $1281.75 per ounce on Wednesday, the lowest since November 23.

How ever amidst geopolitical tension, gold once again regained its safe have status. Reports that North Korea had fired a missile last week, lent support to gold and it moved slightly up in early trading on Thursday. Gold prices have been up and down due to a battle between the positive outlook on a US interest rate and concerns over North Korea firing a missile again.

By Thursday, gold prices were strengthened over a weak US dollar. Moreover, Gold was seen spiking as stocks and the dollar sank after headline reports from ABC that Michael Flynn promised "full cooperation to the Mueller team" and is prepared to testify that as a candidate, Donald Trump "directed him to make contact with the Russians."

Gold and U.S. Treasury prices have rallied to their session highs in late-morning action Friday, with T-Bonds and T-Notes futures posting strong gains, on news reports that former Trump  Administration national security adviser Michael Flynn is set to cooperate with the special prosecutor overseeing the probe of Russian tampering with the U.S. presidential election.

Traders were extrapolating this news to potentially mean that President Trump may be in very serious trouble, if he did indeed collaborate with the Russians on the U.S. election tampering. The U.S. stock market quickly sold off on this news, which also helped to lift safe-haven gold.

A follow-through USD weakness, coupled with a notable slowdown in China's manufacturing activity, as reported by a private survey, was seen lending some additional support to the precious metal.

Despite the supporting factors, resilient US bond yields continued exerting some downward pressure and kept a lid on any meaningful up-move for the yellow metal





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.