RSBL Gold Silver Bars/Coins

Sunday, 31 August 2014


by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

Over the past few days gold has been playing touch and go with $1300 mark. It has enjoyed a recovery as it moved strongly higher off the $1275 level. In the past week, gold was seen falling sharply at the key level of $1275. In fact, before plunging, gold touched the resistance around $1313. 

The market is now divided into bull versus bear market. There are some who are positive about gold and believe that gold prices will move higher while some believe that it will further enter the bear market. 

Lets justify their views-


Uncertain global environment:
Escalating tensions in eastern Ukraine fuelled safe-haven demand for gold on Thursday, offsetting upbeat U.S. data that would have otherwise pushed the precious metal lower.
The tensions between Russia and Ukraine and militant activity in Iraq are keeping gold from falling back. Certainly people are concerned about the military situation in Ukraine, Syria, and Iraq. There were news that more than 100 Russian soldiers were killed in eastern Ukraine in a single battle this month while helping pro-Russian separatists fight Ukrainian troops.

Rising demand for physical gold:
Moreover, we have seen over the past years that September is one of the best months for gold in terms of physical demand. Over the last 20 years, the yellow metal has seen an average gain of 3% in September.
In India, August marks the onset of the festive season and people buy heavily as September sets in. August 29th has marked the beginning of the festive season with Ganesh Chaturthi and will go on till Diwali. Ahead of this expected demand Indian jewellers and dealers will be stocking up in the coming weeks, so it should affect prices

Along with this, we all see the wedding season setting in and no other metal can replace gold in the so called big fat Indian weddings. Be it jewellery, gifts or any other investment purpose, gold has always been India's first choice. 

Moreover demand from rural areas is also expected to rise as India witnessed a much better monsoon than expected. The majority of India's gold demand comes from rural areas, so the monsoon weighs heavily on purchases.


Strengthening Dollar:
Gold has been pulled the winding down of the US QE program and a probability of rates hike. Probability that the Fed may increase its Fed- Funds rate by mid 2015 will effectively reduce gold price in dollar terms.

US economic development:
This week, important data coming in from US has clearly shown signs of a gradually strengthening economy. The U.S. gross domestic product grew at a revised annualized rate of 4.2% in the second quarter of this year. 
The U.S. Department of Labor said the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending Aug. 22 declined by 1,000 to 298,000 from the previous week’s revised total of 299,000.
A separate report showed that U.S. pending home sales increased by 3.3% last month, beating expectations for a 0.5% rise. June’s figure was revised to a 1.3% drop from a previously estimated decline of 1.1%

As we all know, any positive data coming in from US has a negative effect in gold prices as gold is pressured by the idea that if the U.S. economy has sustained improvement then the Federal Reserve will start to raise rates, once it ends its quantitative easing program.
Geo-political tensions:
Further there were news that Geo-political tensions seem to have eased out and hence, we saw gold losing its safe haven status and gold prices slipped back below $1300.

Import restrictions:
The lack of any movement to change Indian import restrictions under the new government has also been a disappointment for the gold bulls.

As we see that the market has been divided into two segments: "the bulls and the bears" and as we go through this transition we can expect to see assets outperforming expectations. The market can’t help but exceed expectations since the investors' expectations are so low at this point.

We now see what the market has been awaiting for:

Data expected
1st September:
The August China NBS manufacturing PMI index and the Euro zone final manufacturing PMI
2nd September:
The U.S. August ISM manufacturing index
3rd September:
The preliminary Q2 GDP of the Euro zone
4th September:
The Bank of England and the ECB interest rates decisions and announcements on 4 September
5th September:
U.S. August non-farm payrolls and the unemployment rate

The market will be watching the outcomes of Thursday’s European Central Bank meeting and Friday’s U.S. August nonfarm payrolls report for gold direction. Economists are looking for ECB to take some sort of action, with a cut to interest rates likely.


$1273- $1307 an ounce
Rs. 27,500- Rs. 28,500 per 10 gram
$19.15- $19.85 an ounce
Rs. 41,500- Rs. 43,500 per kg

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 - "Uncertainty over Interest Rate Hike!!!"

Sunday, 24 August 2014


by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

From December 2008, to September 2011, Bullion futures more than doubled to a life time high of $1,923.70 an ounce. Gold prices sky rocketed as the Fed purchased debt and cut rates to an all-time low to spur economic growth. 

This year, gold bounced once again after its downfall in 2013. 

The metal rose 6.1 percent this year , partly as unrest in Ukraine and the Middle East increased haven demand.

This week investors eagerly waited for the minutes of the FOMC meeting that were to be released n Wednesday and the Jackson Hole Economic Symposium on Thursday and Friday that was expected to bring in some volatility in the market.  Apart from this many economic reports were slated to release-

  • CPI
  • Housing figures 
  • Philly fed index from the U.S
  • BOE rate decision and CPI from Great Britain
  • Japan’s trade balance
  • China's manufacturing PMI
  • Retail sales and CPI from Canada.

Let's have a look at the data released from these reports

  • U.S. home resale's raced to a 10-month high in July 
  • Six straight months of payroll growth over 200,000 jobs per month — the first time that’s happened since before the Great Recession in 2007!  
  • There were signs of a strengthening economy as the  number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week
  • On Thursday, data released showed that the Business growth in China and across Europe slowed this month
  • But U.S. activity picked up speed, leaving a mixed picture of global economic growth.  

This week , gold was mainly hovering around the interest rate news. The entire investment market- be it stock, bond, currency or commodities, is presently pre occupied with the only one question- When will the first interest rate increase happen? 

A positive economic growth from the US economy and an expectation for an early rate hike is expected to pull prices down.

Many researchers are expecting that the forecasting the U.S. central bank to raise rates in mid-2015 but some economists believe that it may happen much earlier.
A slowing world economy on one hand and a strengthening US economy on the other, is giving mixed reactions from the market. Uncertainty prevails and investor anxiety is on the rise. This means there will be higher movement for gold and silver.
It all depends on whether each new piece of economic data is inflationary or deflationary in nature

Though the market has been linked to rising interest rates, some say that it won't have a less negative impact on gold moving forward.

In fact now all eyes are headed towards inflation - a major driver for gold prices.

There is still some uncertainty over inflation because of the unprecedented steps the Fed has taken. Inflation along with rising interest rates will have an impact on gold. 
There are various key influential factors that will provide good support to gold -

  • Rising interest rates could halt the free-flow of capital into the record-breaking equity markets and compel investors to take a more self-protective position. 
  • A decline in supply  from mining and recycling sector on one hand and rising demand on the other will  raise a spark in gold prices. Also supportive for the gold market is an expected decline in supply, both from mining and recycling.

On Thursday, gold posted its steepest decline in over a month as investors left the market ahead of Friday's speech by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen . Gold fell to a two month low this week after the minutes of the Feds last meeting were released and it showed signs that policy makers may raise interest rates earliest than expected.  But Fed Chairman Janet Yellen also stated in a conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming that “underutilization of labour resources still remains significant.

The debate now is about "when" to raise the interest rates. Any hike in these rates would diminish the sentiment to own gold. Gold produces no income and struggles to compete with interest-bearing investments such as Treasury bonds and bank deposits, whose yields will rise once market interest rates turn up. At the same time, signs that crisis in Ukraine and the Middle East are having a limited impact on global growth also have reduced demand for gold as a haven.

The Pentagon on Friday condemned the movement of a Russian convoy into eastern Ukraine, calling it a violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and demanding that it be withdrawn and failure of which would result in additional costs and isolation.

The world economy  is being pulled by the tug-of-war being held between the forces of inflation and deflation
In any case, all eyes are headed towards the FOMC meeting in September, which will also have a press conference and could be the one, in which FOMC chairman Yellen offers some more information regarding the next rate hike. The current estimates range mostly between the end of the first quarter of 2015 and the end of the second quarter.


$1264- $1297 an ounce
Rs. 27,800- Rs. 28,500 per 10 gram
$19.00- $19.75 an ounce
Rs. 41,500- Rs. 43,000 per kg

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 -
"The Sentiments Are Bearish For Gold"

Monday, 18 August 2014


by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

On the first day of last week, gold was down. But it changed direction by Wednesday and bounced back.

This week too there was a lot in store for gold- 

  • the GDP for leading economies including Japan, Germany, and Great Britain 
  • the U.S PPI, retail sales, industrial production JOLTS, jobless claims and consumer sentiment reports . 
  • Germany’s economic sentiment and GB’s inflation report.
  • Gold for the month of July was up by over 2 per cent mainly due to the escalating global tensions and the lower than expected US data
As the week began, gold was slightly down, retreating from a three-week high as tensions between Ukraine and Russia eased and investors turned to rising European shares and some withdrew from exchange-traded gold funds. The United States had criticized Russia's military exercises in Southern Russia as provocative step in The Ukraine Crisis. But last week, late on Friday, Russia's Defence Ministry said that it has ended these exercises. This was the main reason for pushing gold prices down. The premium that was built on gold since mid June is more vulnerable to fade as easing Geo-political tensions push gold prices down.

There is a lot of uncertainty in the market surrounding the FED's decision to raise interest rates, that now many market players aren't quite sure whether they should go back to gold particularly when other assets like equities look more attractive.

But how soon will that happen? Nobody knows... Till then Bullion investors will continue to monitor U.S. data releases as the strength of the world's largest economy dictates the pace at which the Federal Reserve tightens monetary policy.

After a few lows, gold stabilized on Tuesday as signs emerged that the stand-off between Russia and Ukraine was hurting confidence in the euro zone economy and on fears a Russian aid convoy heading to Ukraine could further stoke tensions. Concerns over the Ukraine crisis and its financial impact hit economic sentiments in Germany.

Gold is always seen as an alternative investment medium over equities and other assets.
On Wednesday, Gold was above $1300 on Wednesday as downbeat data from China keep investors cautious about gold. This along with the Ukraine crisis and a slowly recovering US economy kept gold prices firm.

Bullion was also helped by data on Thursday that showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week. That helped push US yields lower.  Spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,315.20 an ounce by 1003 GMT, 
A weak dollar and sluggish US and European data provoked investors to switch to safer investments.

Gold prices were slightly lower on Friday, paring losses on safe-haven buying as equity markets slid after Ukraine said its forces had engaged a Russian armored column on Ukrainian soil in what appeared to be a major military escalation. It was like a roller coaster ride from a near high of $1310 to $1292 and then back to $1310 and a close above $1300.

Apart from the Data reports and the crisis, it was the sluggish physical demand for gold that played a influential role. Physical demand in top consuming region Asia has been sluggish after a record year in 2013, while investors have been cutting positions in SPDR Gold Trust, the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund. The fund reported a 5.36 tonne drop in its holdings last week, its largest outflow since early May.

For the time being the market seems to be bearish for gold (apart from the perceived geopolitical tensions) and I feel investors should sell on the upside.


(Gold/Silver price)

(Gold/Silver price)
$1281- $1320 an ounce
Rs. 27,800- Rs. 29,000 per 10 gram
$19.15- $20.20 an ounce
Rs. 42,500- Rs.44,500 per kg

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 -
"Appetite for gold rises"

Sunday, 10 August 2014


by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

When global risk escalates - financially and politically - gold is always considered as an insurance against it. The speculations that the Federal Reserve may raise interest rates has kept the yellow metal  in small trading ranges around $1,300.

In the previous week precious metals were down throughout the week until the payroll data was released on 1st August which showed that the jobs added were less than market expectations. These reports had raised speculation that the Fed could soon raise interest rates which would then increase the opportunity cost of holding gold. This sent gold to a six week low in the last week of July but was later pushed as the month ended over a report that showed that U.S. jobs growth slowed in July. This strengthened the belief that the Fed may keep interest rates lower for longer.

For the month of August, so far, gold has held within a narrow range of $30 over speculation that the U.S. interest rates may rise. This sentiment was offset by the escalating violence in Ukraine and the Middle East. Since mid- June there have been a lot of major influential factors that have been influencing gold prices-
  • Some weeks there were better U.S. data
  • The constant tensions presiding in Ukraine and Middle East.
  • The Euro zone economy
These and many other micro influential factors have been responsible for the pull and push in gold prices.

Let's have a look on the weekly movements of gold.

MONDAY - with a rise in banking stocks that lifted European shares and a speculation that the Fed may raise interest rates soon, gold edged low as the week began. Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,290.70 an ounce at 1433 GMT, after falling 1.1 percent last week for its first three-week decline since September.

TUESDAY - Gold edged up on Tuesday following disappointing Chinese economic data, but a firmer dollar and stronger European equity markets limited gains. Spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,290.63 an ounce during the trading hours. 

WEDNESDAY - Wednesday too gold was on the upper side as it rose 1.6 percent over the continuing conflict in Ukraine. These concerns had put global equities under sustained pressure, thus raising demand for a safe haven asset like gold. And in times of such crisis gold acts as an insurance against risk.

Russia has amassed around 20,000 troops on Ukraine's eastern border and could use the excuse of an humanitarian or peacekeeping mission to send them into Ukraine, NATO said in a statement on Wednesday. NATO issued warning to Russia to step back from Ukraine’s borders.

Iraq's largest dam was taken over by the militants. 

THURSDAY-  Spot gold climbed to $1,314.40 on Thursday - its highest since July 22, and is on track to snap a three-week losing streak. U.S. gold, also up over 1 percent for the week, is headed for its best week in seven.

A build-up of Russian troops on the border with Ukraine and tit-for-tat economic sanctions between the West and Moscow on Wednesday drove investors out of assets seen as higher risk including stocks and into the relative safety of bonds and gold. Moscow banned imports of most food from the West on Thursday in retaliation against sanctions against it over Ukraine, a stronger-than-expected response that isolates Russian consumers from world trade to a degree unseen since Soviet days

Growing fears that Conflict in Ukraine and the middle East could weaken economic growth also pushed bullion prices high. 

Fighting resumed in Gaza between Palestinian militants and Israel after a 72-hour ceasefire expired. 

FRIDAY - Friday too, gold hit a three and a half week high after U.S. President Barack Obama authorised air strikes in Iraq. A Bloomberg heading stated that Obama authorized air strikes in Iraq sent equity markets lower, while Gold jumped 8 USD to 1318 and WTI Crude Oil gained 1 USD per barrel.

Spot gold hit its highest since July 14 at $1,322.60 an ounce earlier, and was up 0.1 percent at $1,314.90 during trading hours. The metal has gained 1.9 percent this week, its first increase in four weeks and the highest weekly gain in seven.

Gold has gained eight per cent so far this year. Bouts of international tension, worries about the business cycle in Euro zone, soft economic data released in Germany all this and much more has lifted demand for assets like government bonds and precious metals. These factors have been so influential that even a strong dollar couldn't offset it.


$1290- $1330 an ounce
Rs.27,500- Rs.29,500 per 10 gm
$19.50 - $21.20 an ounce
Rs.42,000- Rs.45,500 per kg

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 -
"Interesting Times to Come"

Saturday, 2 August 2014


by Mr. Prithviraj Kothari, MD, RSBL

Last year was catastrophic for gold as it performed terribly and ended the year at around $1200, almost 28 per cent down. However, in 2014 we saw a decent act from gold as it reached $1380 in March before falling back to $1240 and then, moving up to $1340. Since then gold has been hovering around $1295, approximately 8 percent up. This highlights a good progress for gold but if we compare it to its life time high of $1900 (In September 2011), it's still 32 per cent down from its peak.

Currently, gold looks weak.
  • The ongoing political tensions in Ukraine, Iraq, Israel and Syria have been weighed down 
  • No major economic reforms announced by the Government of India for Bullion industry
  • Chinese demand for gold has slowed down
  • sales out of the gold ETFs seem to have reversed to become net purchases (just) so far this year, 
  • The Fed has expressed a comfort in the economic growth and a positive recovery.
The market had been awaiting the end of the U.S. Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting on Wednesday to see if the central bank will raise interest rates faster than expected.These sentiments created nervousness in the market and gold fell on Tuesday. On Wednesday too, gold fell after the Federal Reserve announced a sixth $10 billion cut to its bond-purchases program amid signs that the U.S. economic recovery is gaining traction.
The monthly bond buying programme has been tapered to $25 billion, which if followed will put an end to the purchase program in October.

The Federal Reserve on Wednesday reaffirmed it was in no rush to raise interest rates, even as it upgraded its assessment of the U.S. economy and expressed some comfort that inflation was moving up toward its target. After a two-day meeting, Fed policymakers took note of both faster economic growth and a decline in the unemployment rate, but expressed concern about remaining slack in the labour market

Gross domestic product in the second quarter rose at a 4 percent annualized rate, compared with a revised 2.1 percent drop in the first quarter.

Though, amidst the Middle East and Ukraine tensions, gold has climbed up, but the positive growth reports released on Wednesday, subdued this rise in prices. Now any further disturbing news coming in would push gold prices high as once again the market would run behind this safe haven asset.

The dollar weakened versus major rivals in the wake of the data. Commodities priced in dollars are sensitive to movements in the currency. A stronger dollar can weigh on gold by making it more expensive to users of other currencies, while a weaker dollar can lift the commodity.

Till Thursday gold was down, but on Friday, gold prices spiked, recovering almost half of the weeks 1.8% loss and was seen trading at $1295 an ounce post the US  nonfarm payrolls jobs data release for July, was weaker than expected. This data dampened talks of an early interest rate rise by the Fed and this increased gold's appeal.

The Labor Department said nonfarm payrolls increased 209,000 last month, below economists' expectation of a 233,000 job gain. Unemployment rate also rose to 6.2 percent from 6.1 percent as more people entered the labour market. 

Portugal will spend 4.9 Billion Euros ($6.58 Billion) to rescue its largest listed bank, Banco Espirito Santo, testing the Euro's resilience to another banking crisis.

There isn't much US data this week except the US Non-Manufacturing ISM and the ECB rate decision that could keep the market alive.

Moreover there is a positive outlook for the month as demand from Asia particularly India will pick up as India witnesses the onset of its festive season beginning with Rakshabandhan.

The month of August will be an interesting one as it will give us an indication of which way this market is going. Should it fall significantly then we could be in for a re-test of the June 2013 lows of $1180/oz. 

The presence of tapering and the expectation of interest rate increases cast a dark shadow over the precious metals  making it difficult to predict  just where the momentum for higher prices will come from.


$1275- $1314 an ounce
Rs.27,500- Rs.28,500 per 10 gm
$20.15- $21.00 an ounce
Rs.42,000- Rs.45,500 per kg

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 -
"Escalating Tensions....Escalating Prices"