Gold’s rout is not yet done. Prices sank below $1 900/oz on Tuesday, extending the precious metal’s slump into a second day after the haven lost more than 5% in the week’s opening session.
After setting a record above $2 000/oz last week, gold’s rally has come to a juddering halt as US bond yields advanced, eroding the haven’s appeal. The swift drop followed modest outflows from gold-backed exchange-traded funds, and a 15-day run in overbought territory for the relative strength index.
Gold had been on a tear in 2020, and the reversal represents a challenge for the metal’s backers. The haven has been favored as the coronavirus pandemic pummeled the global economy, prompting central banks and governments to deploy massive stimulus. Still, on Monday, President Vladimir Putin said Russia cleared the world’s first Covid-19 vaccine for use, buoying appetite for risk.
“Once it got to $2 000 per ounce, in a lot of investors’ minds that could have been an opportunity to take profit off the table,” said Gavin Wendt, senior resource analyst at MineLife. “The real trigger the news last night about Russia’s Covid-19 vaccine, which was a cue for some investors to take profit from their gold positions and to leap back into equities. It’s a high-risk play, but if you’re sitting on profits, it’s quite a sound strategy.”
Spot gold sank as much as 2.1% to $1 872.61/oz and traded at $1 885.33 at 10:40 a.m. in Singapore, as gold futures tumbled on the Comex. Silver also dropped sharply, with futures losing more than 9% at one point to trade below $24 an ounce.
On Monday, DoubleLine Capital’s Jeffrey Gundlach said that he expects gold to keep trading higher despite the setback. Among banks that have forecast substantial gains in recent weeks, Bank of America has predicted that prices will advance to $3 000.
Benchmark Treasury yields have climbed more than 10 basis points so far this month, amid improving risk appetite and an imminent flood of debt issuance. The recent rebound reflects investor hope that the coronavirus will be contained amid Russia’s vaccine, according to Standard Chartered.