By Melissa Pistilli—Exclusive to Gold Investing News
Gold’s safe-haven appeal was amplified Monday as the euro weakened further against the dollar amidst rising fears the financial crisis in Europe is deepening and a double-dip global recession may soon be in the cards.
Gold gained nearly $13 Friday to close at $1220 an ounce in New York. In early trading Monday morning, those gains were nearly erased as the yellow metal dropped as low as $1209.80 an ounce. Traders took profits in gold in an effort to cover losses in other investments after the DOW dropped over 3 percent Friday on disappointing US unemployment data and markets around the world weakened on ongoing global economic concerns.
But a late morning $20 bounce put a smile on every gold bug’s face, and by mid-day the precious metal had shot above $1240 an ounce, hitting a high of $1246.20 late in the day. Prices backed off a bit to close at $1241.30 an ounce on the COMEX.
Gold’s biggest jump in four weeks came at Hungary’s expense. The European nation may be facing a similar debt crisis to Greece. This possibility is further stirring the pot of fear and apprehension threatening to boil over in the region, and in the world for that matter, as some top economic analysts are warning of more financial troubles ahead.
Investors are moving out of the euro and into alternatives like the dollar and gold. Gold priced in euros reached a record high of 1,035.27 as the euro dropped below $1.19, a level not seen since March 2006.
The ongoing sovereign debt crisis in the euro zone continues to provide support for gold prices despite a rising dollar. “There’s a big acceleration in gold prices because people see future deterioration in the euro-zone,” said Lind-Waldock senior market strategist, Adam Klopfenstein.
“Speculative traders such as investment funds or banks are buying back previously sold positions, betting that the metal will continue to reverse its recent dip that took it below $1,200 last week,” reported The Wall Street Journal.
For now, analysts advise gold market watchers to keep an eye on the euro. “If you start to see the euro stabilize, there’s no flight-to-quality need to own gold,” said Matt Zeman, LaSalle Futures Group metals trader.
And with a lot of debate over the problems but no talk about viable solutions, the financial issues in the euro zone aren’t expected to clear up anytime soon.
Gold’s safe haven appeal brought it up to a record high of $1251.40 an ounce in the middle of May. Yet, gold prices have remained range-bound between $1180 and $1240 an ounce for a month now and may continue in this pattern given the current price drivers.
Once gold prices fall below $1190 an ounce, investors spot a good buying opportunity, sending prices higher on discount buying. When the shiny metal breaches $1230 an ounce, large buy orders at European financial institutions are triggered, sending prices hurdling towards $1240 an ounce. Both these levels are now providing support with key resistance seen at the $1240 level at which point investors seek to sell gold to raise cash to buy stocks or cover losses, often sending prices back down near or below $1200 an ounce.
Many analysts expect this tight trading range to continue. Global financial fears will help keep prices supported around $1198 with a top level of about $1230 an ounce, concludes Scott Meyers, MF Global Pioneer Futures Division analyst.
Despite being range-bound for now, some analysts see this as a short-term phase in a long-term uptrend. “The market is on a longer-term and sustainable uptrend,” said Peter Hillyard, head of metal sales at ANZ Bank. “If you detach yourself from the minute by minute, this market is heading higher.”
Nadler vs. Holmes: Debate at World Resource Investment Conference in Vancouver
Billed as the Great Gold Debate of the year, the square-off between Kitco’s Jon Nadler and US Global Investors’ Frank Holmes was hardly the bloody death match some would have hoped.
While the two may respectively disagree on many facets of the gold market, one issue to which they both give an emphatic nod is the “essential requirement” of a “core position in gold” in an investor’s portfolio. While Holmes urged a minimum holding of 5 percent, Nadler recommends 10 percent.
Chinese Firm Buys into Venezuela Gold Project
The deposit holds an estimated 17 million ounces of the precious metal, however legal issues have held up mining on the site for over 20 years. It’s hoped that the political and financial support of the Chinese government can help move the project along for Crystallex (one-third ownership).
“The Chinese provide both engineering and financing. And most importantly they are likely to have the protocol connection with the Chavez government in order to bring this project, which has been a stalemate, into production,” said analyst John Ing of Maison Placement.
A Chinese partner is a good choice given that the Asian nation agreed to loan Venezuela $20 billion for development projects earlier this year.