Skip to comments.Light At The End Of The Tunnel For Gold
Posted on 01/02/2013 10:26:28 PM PST by blam
Light At The End Of The Tunnel For Gold
By Frank Holmes
Intuition was telling me something was going on these past few days (of 2012) in the gold market. Our investment team was watching gold and gold stocks take a tumble for no obvious reason. It wasnt only us who felt this way: many analysts were caught off-guard. One comment from Barclays Research indicated that the week was unusually brutal with quite a few confused participants with some seemingly positive aspects of the market not having an impact.
My hunch was realized only days later when Zero Hedge posted that Morgan Stanley Wealth Management recommended that its clients dump two of John Paulsons funds. As MS clients redeemed their shares, the hedge fund giant became a forced seller of gold and gold stocks.
What complicates the gold market is the fact that Paulson is such a big fan of the yellow metal that he offers a gold share class to investors, meaning shares are denominated in physical gold. The drawback is when an investor redeems shares, his firm has to convert from gold back to dollars, which forces him to sell his hedged position in the SPDR Gold Shares ETF (GLD). The unfortunate consequence of his actions is a short-term decline in the gold price as the market adjusts.
The chart below highlights how gold, the S&P 500 Index and the 10-Year Treasury yield were plodding along together, until December 12, when the metal dramatically dropped off. This is possibly the day Paulson may have gotten the redemption fax, says Zero Hedge.
Paulson is only one high-profile example of a stream of hedge fund managers who have suffered liquidations this year. Much to our chagrin, gold and the gold mining industry have been on the wrong side of these trades.
The metal also took a hit recently when a large investor, or a group of investors, made a negative bet on gold futures, with a speculative put position from January to February nearly doubling in size. Credit Suisse suggests it may be the action of a hedge fund.
Paulsons loss can be your gain. At U.S. Global Investors, we study probability and statistical models to help us improve our odds in the market. Its like counting cards in Vegastheres no guarantee youll hit the jackpot, but you usually improve your odds if you understand the math of probabilities and place your bets accordingly.
One of our favorite charts is the oscillator which shows the probability of gold returning to its mean after a dramatic rise or fall. We believe it helps investors put the current correction in context with historical moves and determines potential buying and selling opportunities.
Based on the last 10 years of data, gold seems to be approaching an oversold position after this latest correction. In standard deviation terms, the percentage change in year-over-year rolling returns, gold has made a downward move of 1.2 standard deviations. An event like this only happens about 10 percent of the time, with high odds favoring a reversion to the mean.
Life is about managing expectations. With gold and gold stocks, there will be short-term anomalies, such as hedge funds liquidation. Another historical difference for gold stocks relates to the presidential election year cycle.
As we have mentioned before, gold miners tend to perform poorly in the year of a U.S. presidential election. Regardless of which party is in the White House and which party wants to take it back, going back to 1984, the Philadelphia Stock Exchange Gold and Silver Index (XAU) has declined an average of 18.4 percent in the year Americans are busy thinking about voting for a leader.
Its not the end of the world for gold and gold stocks. Take a look at what happens the year following a U.S. presidential election: Going back to 1985, the XAU historically has increased substantially in post-election federal years, rising 23.4 percent, on average.
With governments lacking courage for fiscal discipline, I expect that interest rates will remain in negative territory for a long time. Central bankers will continue to keep the printing presses warm as policies arent expected to change. I believe this will keep the Fear Trade buying gold throughout 2013.
In addition, emerging market central banks have been diversifying into gold. Net official sector purchases of 425 tons (since Dec. 2012) is a drastic difference compared to only a few years ago when central banks were net sellers of the precious metal. Only recently, UBS reported that in November, Russia purchased nearly 3 tons of gold and Brazil bought almost 15 tons. Iraqa notable new buyerbought 25 tons from August through October. Given that this is the countrys first increase since the early 2000s, having a new buyer in the central bank space and especially from a new region is an important development, says UBS.
While the Love Trade has been subdued this year, we see light at the end of the tunnel, not a train. One recent development is the increase in mutual fund flows of $32 billion into emerging markets since the announcement of the third round of quantitative easing (QE) in the U.S.
This appears to be a powerful precursor for a stronger 2013, which would reignite the Love Trade in China and India.
That said, Id like to take this opportunity to thank our faithful readers for following, reading and sharing our thoughts on the markets. We appreciate your confidence and trust and look forward to a prosperous new year.
Goldbugs need cheering up. The price remains high, but expectations of a rise to two thousand did not come through in 2012.
are there any moves being made by the US govt that will strengthen the dollar?
no. not one.
conversely, are they doing anything that would undermine/ devalue the dollar?
numerous things daily.
from here, it’s not complicated to see which way gold, measured in dollars, is going
The road is long, the journey is interesting. While traveling, never sell gold or silver or the stocks.
There is one certainty on the journey for the next decade or so. The US $ the European and the Japanese ¥ will continue to be devalued. Hard assets will increase in relative value. Gold and gold stocks are hard assets
platinum 2, 8, 18, 32, 17, 1
gold 2, 8, 18, 32, 18, 1
mercury 2, 8, 18, 32, 18, 2
There was an interesting experiment some time ago that involved taking a very thin sheet of some element and bombarding it to knock off a proton thus transmuting it into a different element. They expected a few atoms in the entire sheet, and were surprised that far more were transmuted than they expected.
In 1919, Ernest Rutherford transmuted nitrogen gas into oxygen by bombarding it with alpha particles, adding a proton, for example.
Other transmutation can remove a proton with a high energy photon (photodisintegration).
Thus you can add or delete protons from atoms of an element to change it into a different element.
While this was done in a lab, theoretically at least it might be turned into an industrial process. Not necessarily to turn mercury into gold, but to turn gold into platinum, which is far rarer and more useful.
In practice, molten gold would be machined into a thin sheet, then bombarded with high speed photons, then remelted to extract the platinum atoms from the gold. Then the gold would be reused.
The process would run continually, and while it would be very expensive, it might be competitive with mining and processing platinum from very low grade ore.