Gold price indicator fades as ETPs lose $71 billion

New York (Aug 29)  Gold-backed funds that heralded record prices in 2011 and last year’s biggest sell-off in three decades are becoming less useful as market predictors.

After a decade of changing mostly in tandem, gold prices and holdings in exchange-traded products backed by bullion have the most-negative correlation since 2004. Investment in ETPs are headed for a fifth straight week of moving in the opposite direction of New York futures, data compiled by Bloomberg show. That would be the longest stretch since 2012, before investors began dumping gold.

Global ETPs that accumulated more bullion than France’s central bank in 2012 saw their influence wane as equities surged and the Federal Reserve took steps to ease economic stimulus, signaling higher interest rates that erode the appeal of gold as an alternative asset. As investors exited the funds, erasing about $71 billion of value, unrest from Ukraine to Gaza this year revived demand for the precious metal as a haven, boosting prices that Goldman Sachs Group Inc. says aren’t sustainable.

“There is a disconnect” because “a lot of money has left,” said Mark Luschini, the chief investment strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott LLC. in Pittsburgh that oversees $65 billion. “For gold, this year has been all about the Federal Reserve and political tension, and at the moment, the rate- increase worries are overshadowing the safe-haven buying.”

Source: Mineweb