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GOLD: RECOVERY INSIGHT

Despite increasingly strong supply/demand fundamentals, gold prices continue to tread water – more or less within a narrow $100 range – having hit overhead resistance a few weeks ago near $1175 and now testing support near $1075 an ounce. For the past year or two, financial-market expectations of U.S. Federal Reserve interest-rate policies – driven by the day-to-day flow of economic news and pronouncements by various Federal Reserve officials – have been the single-most important determinant of day-to-day fluctuations in the price of gold and the longer multi-year correction in the metal’s ...

Cold War Redux — Good for Gold

For the past year and longer, financial-market expectations of U.S. Federal Reserve interest-rate policies have been the single-most important determinant of day-to-day fluctuations in the price of gold. Indeed, the persistent widespread belief that the Fed would soon start weaning the markets off near-zero interest rates, however wrong, has weighed heavily on gold prices while fueling bubble-like conditions in many other asset markets – most notably equities, long-term bonds, the U.S. dollar, New York apartment prices, collectibles of all sorts, etc. All the while, gold has virtually ...

Interest Rates, Fed Policy, and the Price of Gold

Traders and investors around the world are placing bets on whether or not the U.S. Federal Reserve, America’s central bank, will soon raise short-term interest rates given the continuing ambiguity in U.S. and global economic indicators and continuing volatility in world financial markets. Some days there seems to be a consensus in the marketplace expecting the Fed will stand pat, leaving short-term interest rates unchanged for a while longer. Other days the consensus seems to expect the Fed will sooner or later nudge rates up a tad, possibly voting to do so as early as next week’s FOMC ...

Gold: Asia to the Rescue

I’m just back to my desk from a fact-finding mission to Shanghai and other Asian gold-trading centers where I met with gold importers, traders, jewelry manufacturers, retail outlets, and exchange officials. The key take-away: Just as weakness in Asian markets may have contributed to the latest gold-price slump, an imminent recovery of physical demand across the region could be the catalyst to higher prices later this year. While demand throughout the region has been soft for over a year now, most major players we met with expect at least a gradual recovery in gold demand – and, hence, ...

Gold: Watching the Fed

The U.S. economy has rebounded from its winter slump – but recent data continue to present mixed signals, leaving the Federal Reserve and most Fed-watchers alike uncertain about the timing of the much-anticipated first step-up in the Fed funds interest rate. One thing is for certain: The gold market and other financial markets already expect the coming hike in interest rates later this year – and anything else could prove to be a plus for gold. Regardless of the timing – September, December, or sometime next year – we do know for sure, barring a setback in economic growth, the Fed will ...

Waiting for the Start of Something Big

We've said it before, but its worth repeating:  A reassessment of U.S. economic prospects – and revised financial-market expectations of prospective Fed policy – sometime in the next few months could support a spring-summer recovery in the price of gold, lifting the yellow metal up and out of its recent trading range.   Until that happens, gold prices will likely remain “range-bound” in the short term, perhaps through midyear or longer, trading mostly between a floor price of $1,175 and a ceiling around $1,225. ...

Think Long-Term

Although I expect gold prices to rise sharply by the end of the year, possibly even testing its all-time high near $1924 an ounce, I’m the first to admit that short-term forecasts are highly uncertain. I’m much more confident about the long-term prospects for gold. Indeed, looking out towards the end of the decade and beyond, I believe the metal’s price will rise to a multiple of the currently prevailing price. ...

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The Dollar Reigns Supreme . . . But For How Long?

Having failed in its attempt earlier this month to move above $1,300 an ounce, gold is once again looking for sustainable support under the technically and psychologically important $1,200 level. How quickly things can change in world financial markets: Just a few weeks ago it looked like gold might break-out on the upside on the back of bullish geopolitical and global economic developments – and establish a new floor price around $1,300 an ounce. But, having failed in its attempt to move up, we now wonder (along with what must be a majority of gold-market analysts and participants) if gold ...

GOLD: Sound & Fury . . . But What’s It All Mean?

Gold-price volatility so far this year has been a reflection of short-term speculative activity by a relatively small group of hedge funds and other institutional traders taking relatively large positions in “paper” markets.   In paper markets, no physical gold actually changes hands.  Instead, trading of futures and forward contracts, as well as other IOUs between large dealers and traders, governs much of the short-term day-to-day (and even more so much of the intraday) price fluctuations. Meanwhile, “physical" demand continues to grow over time — with buying from the gold-friendly ...

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Gold: Pregnant with Possibility

This year, 2015, could be the year for gold to shine. Having recorded its all-time high above $1920 an ounce in September 2011, the metal has been in decline now for nearly three and a half years and, consequently, its allure as a reliable hedge asset and store of value has been tarnished. But while gold as been scorned by many Westerners – principally American and European institutional investors and short-term speculators – it has remained in favor most everywhere else. Long-term investors and savers across much of Asia – especially China and India, by far the largest and most ...

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