The massive sell-off in the price of gold bullion has certainly shaken up some investors. However, it seems there are others whose investment strategy has been to wait for a pullback in gold to continue accumulating the precious metal.
Recent data has shown that China imported gold bullion from Hong Kong at a record-high level in March. Net imports into China of gold from Hong Kong were 130,038 kg, compared to 60,947 kg of the yellow metal in February, according to Bloomberg. (Source: “China’s Gold Purchases From Hong Kong Expand to Record,” Bloomberg, May 7 2013, last accessed May 8, 2013.)
While these imports happened prior to the sell-off in the price of gold bullion in April, China has clearly been using an investment strategy to continually accumulate the precious metal whenever it can. With the price of gold in April dropping 14% in just two days—the biggest sell-off in 30 years—this led to an increase in demand for jewelry and coins in China.
Essentially, gold transactions have increased as many more participants use the metal for trading purposes as an investment strategy. Exports of gold from China into Hong Kong were 93,481 kg, a huge jump from February’s exports of the yellow metal of 36,159 kg. Profiting from the volatility, trading in gold continues to skyrocket globally.
The volume of gold bullion on the Shanghai exchange hit a record high on April 22 of 43,272 kg. As more traders use gold in their investment strategy, transactions continue to increase substantially. Following the sell-off in gold bullion prices on April 15 and 16, the China Gold Association reported that retail … Read More
An investment strategy can take many forms. For long-term investors, one investment strategy is to wait for significant pullbacks and enter positions when the price declines.
The recent sell-off in gold bullion has created a substantial increase in demand for the precious metal around the world. It appears that many long-term investors globally are using the investment strategy of buying on dips when it comes to gold.
Following the biggest sell-off in the price of gold bullion in 30 years, international investors are taking the pullback as an opportunity in their investment strategy to accumulate the metal. A sign of demand is the premium that gold buyers are willing to pay.
In many parts of the world, such as Dubai, physical gold bullion prices paid by wholesalers are trading at a premium of $6.00–$9.00 an ounce over the spot rate in London, versus a premium of only $0.50 prior to the sell-off, according to precious metals service provider MKS (Switzerland) SA. (Source: Sim, G., “Gold Rush From Dubai to Turkey Saps Supply as Premiums Jump,” Bloomberg, April 30, 2013, last accessed May 3, 2013.)
The gold bullion trade in Dubai was worth approximately $56.0 billion in 2011, up from only $6.0 billion in 2003. The premium for physical gold is even larger in Turkey. Gold traded as much as $25.00 per ounce higher on the Istanbul Gold Exchange versus London’s price for gold.
The increase in demand for physical gold bullion is a sign that many long-term holders have the investment strategy of buying when the price dips. Considering that the recent sell-off in gold was so significant, long-term bulls … Read More
As is quite evident from the past couple months, investing in gold can be rather volatile. Clearly, the huge sell-off in the price of gold bullion over the past couple of weeks has shocked some people; an interesting result has been the reaction from the retail public, as many are now buying gold bullion in record amounts.
Last week, the United States Mint actually ran out of the smallest American Eagle gold coin, and sales to India were 20% higher than the previous record, according to Standard Chartered PLC. Clearly, physical demand remains strong for gold bullion. (Source: Roy, D., et al., “Gold Rout for Central Banks Buying Most Since 1964: Commodities,” Bloomberg, April 25, 2013.)
Here is a key question for those who are considering investing in gold: what are your goals? Is a person investing in gold to diversify his or her assets or to trade and generate profits?
Having gold bullion as part of one’s portfolio can make sense as long as it’s understood that volatility will continue to be present. Since larger investors have added gold bullion as another asset to trade, determining the price of gold bullion has become increasingly difficult.
A chart for gold bullion is featured below:
Chart courtesy of www.StockCharts.com
The recent drop in gold bullion erased an estimated $560 billion in the value of central banks’ holdings, and it was one of the largest drops in 30 years. The huge spike in volume and the massive move indicate several large stops were triggered, causing the holders to liquidate their positions.
The question now: is the selling in gold bullion completed? Since … Read More
The recent pullback in gold bullion has certainly hurt gold mining stocks. While one can develop a sound investment strategy, if the price of the stock continues moving downward, it makes it extremely difficult to step in and buy.
Gold mining stocks have seen a serious sell-off over the last few months. So what about gold mining stocks as a long-term investment strategy?
To begin with, looking at the commodity from an investment strategy point of view, gold has pulled back and has bounced off a key support level. Obviously, whatever direction the price of gold moves, the majority of gold mining stocks will move in tandem.
No one can predict the price of a commodity for certain. However, we do know that there remains strong demand for physical gold and that central banks around the world continue to have easy monetary policies.
While that is a sound investment strategy, it does not guarantee that gold will see an increase. The market could continue declining, as more sellers of paper gold emerge.
Assuming that gold prices will increase, gold mining stocks are beginning to look attractive, because they’ve declined to such a level that many are trading at a discount to book value. This means that if the company were to be bought and sold in pieces, the sum of the parts is worth more than the current stock price.
This type of investment strategy, looking for value, is one approach that an investor can take when trying to determine which gold mining stocks might be suitable for their portfolio. Momentum is not bullish for gold mining stocks at the … Read More
Many investors in gold bullion have become increasingly worried due to the lack of price appreciation lately. Even though there has been an aggressive monetary policy initiative by the Federal Reserve, gold bullion and mining stocks in the sector have declined.
Obviously, no one can predict the future; it’s impossible to know for sure where gold bullion, or mining stocks in general, will be in the future.
However, there are several things that individual investors can do to enhance their probability of success when it comes to investing in gold bullion mining stocks.
One metric that I watch is the debt level of a company. This doesn’t mean to avoid all mining stocks with high levels of debt; rather, one should only buy these companies at a discount, unless they are growing rapidly. Gold bullion mining stocks with high levels of debt are far more likely to be susceptible to negative shocks.
Because interest rates have been low for some time, gold bullion mining stocks with high debt have been able to get away with relatively low rates of financing. But over the next five years, we are certainly looking at a higher interest rate environment; this is one area of caution for investors.
One way to look at gold bullion mining stocks is in two general categories: low- or no-debt mining stocks and high-debt mining stocks. The companies with a high debt level should not trade at a premium when compared to gold bullion mining stocks with low levels of debt, unless their growth rate is above average.
Here are three stocks that are great examples.
One of the … Read More
When it comes to commodities such as gold bullion, there are several criteria that ultimately determine the price level. Many times, I have discussed the impact that easy monetary supply, commonly known as money printing or quantitative easing, has on the economy. Quantitative easing is a well-known phenomenon these days, and the current environment is interesting in that numerous central bankers around the world are engaging in the same monetary policy, trying to print money to solve short-term problems, irrespective of the long-term side effects.
In my article “Gold Bullion Forecast for 2013,” I stated that, when considering the level of monetary policy stimulus worldwide, it is highly likely that gold bullion will exceed $1,800 shortly, with a strong possibility for gold prices reaching $2,000 an ounce in 2013.
However, new information makes this prediction even more probable. The demand side of the equation for gold prices is extremely important. India has long been a huge consumer of gold bullion. Recently, however, because of the weak rupee, India’s currency, gold prices in that nation have been at all-time highs. This has led to lower levels of gold bullion buying and, earlier in the year, a strike by gold bullion dealers to protest an import tax imposed by the government on gold bullion.
In spite of lower than normal gold bullion demand by Indian buyers, gold prices have remained extremely strong. A new report by the World Gold Council’s India office stated that they believe Indian demand for gold bullion in 2012 will end up reaching approximately 800 metric tons, a substantial increase from earlier estimates of 650–750 tons. (Source: “India … Read More
Gold bullion has had a fairly volatile year in 2012. At the end of 2011, gold bullion sold off sharply, ending December at a weak point. A lot of this, I believe, was a result of hedge funds being forced to liquidate their positions. Investors in gold bullion should be aware of the flow of funds from institutional investors. Because of the huge amount of capital that institutions have, they can certainly have an outsized impact on any market, not just gold bullion.
Once a fund has liquidated its position, the selling ends and the underlying fundamentals take over. For 2012, we’ve seen further price appreciation for gold bullion beginning in August on anticipation for accelerated monetary policy stimulus (more money printing) from the Federal Reserve.
That is exactly what we got from the Federal Reserve, a very aggressive monetary policy initiative that has no end date. This type of monetary policy action is unprecedented for the Federal Reserve. As is so often the case, investors bought on the rumor and sold on the fact. Following the September announcement for the new monetary policy initiative, a third round of quantitative easing (QE3), gold bullion sold off with the rest of the market.
To be honest, this is to be expected, considering the large move in gold bullion. Nothing moves up in a straight line. Once the markets tested the $1,800 level, considering gold bullion moved up from approximately $1,550, some profit-taking was to be expected. The key question for me was: at what point would investors step back into the gold bullion market?
Chart courtesy of www.StockCharts.com
This one-year chart … Read More
With the rise of instability within the European Union (E.U.), gold bullion has become increasingly attractive as a backstop. Next to America, Germany has the second-largest holding of gold bullion, with approximately 3,600 metric tons. What is interesting at the current moment is that many voices within Germany are calling for the Bundesbank, its central bank, to check its international holdings, namely in the U.S., as not all of the gold bullion held by Germany is being stored on the country’s own soil.
A recent report by the German Federal Audit Office criticized the Bundesbank for its lack of a better international inventory system. While the German central bank has a strong handle on its domestic gold bullion inventory, its knowledge of its holdings in other countries, especially the U.S., is not as thorough as some would like. (Source: “Why Germany Wants to See its US Gold,” Der Spiegel, October 30, 2012.)
With gold prices at very high levels, there is a greater concern to ensure the accuracy of the level of gold bullion actually being held. With approximately half of Germany’s gold bullion being stored in America, the lack of proper auditing by German officials worries some within Germany.
Of Germany’s 3,600 metric tons of gold bullion in total, 1,536 are being held at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. (Source: Der Spiegel.) Some within the German community have been calling for a return of the gold bullion to help fund other proposed ventures, including a natural disaster relief fund or an education fund. With gold prices so high, many people believe this would be a more practical … Read More
There was quite the stir last year when Ronald Paul asked Ben Bernanke if gold bullion was money, to which the Federal Reserve Chairman replied that gold bullion wasn’t money.
Since then, the debate has raged as those for gold bullion being money claim that the Federal Reserve cannot erase 5,000 years of history throughout which gold bullion has been used as money. Those against have claimed that we need to move on, and that we have evolved to the point where gold bullion is not reflective of the monetary system but is a commodity that should be grouped with other commodities.
For the sake of full disclosure, I fall into the camp that believes gold bullion is money.
Despite the debate, it is assumed that the Federal Reserve falls on the side that gold bullion is not money, especially after Bernanke’s comments. However, in its latest report, The Key to the Gold Vault, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York describes the history of gold bullion and details the bank’s role as keeper of the gold bullion in its vaults for 36 foreign governments, central banks, and official international organizations.
In the section “The Gold Standard,” the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has this to say about gold bullion:
The gold bullion in the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s vault is part of the monetary reserves of foreign governments, central banks and official international organizations around the world. It is largely a relic of an era when the gold standard and gold exchange standard were used to establish the relative values of national currencies, and gold itself … Read More