GOLD PRICES lost $16 dollars per ounce inside 7 hours on Friday morning in London to $1151.73 per ounce. Yet the precious metal gained almost 3.3% on the week so far, as world stock markets dropped on the Fed’s hesitation to hike its rates, new bearish data from China and the Greece crisis.
Asian stocks plunged yesterday as did European and American equities on Friday. Meantime the US crude oil contracts fell to a 6-year low, just shy of $41 per barrel in what an analyst called a “bloodbath.”
The yields of the US 10-year Treasuries fell to an almost 3-month low at 2.00%.
The Euro rose against the US Dollar to $1.12850, a level last reached end of June.
Although Fed officials agreed that the state of the US economy should warrant a lift-off of the interest rates, they believed that it was a risky move in the context of a lagging inflation and a weak world economy.
Markets and investors still digesting the FOMC's July meeting minutes released on Wednesday reacted as there was no indication of a hike of the Fed interest rates.
Traders saw a 32% likelihood of such a rise in September, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
As a result, more and more investors believed the move would happen in December.
After the Fed’s minutes release, the US currency eased and gold prices in dollar terms hiked to a 5-week high.
“What's supporting gold is that from unrelentingly bad news,” told analyst Matthew Turner from the Australian bank Macquarie to CNBC yesterday evening, pointing to the fact that “the news flow has been more bullish to gold after the Chinese central bank currency devaluation.”
The gold prices’ strength currently stems from a series of news and events in the world first largest economies, namely “the recent bearish data out of China including the recent currency devaluation, heightening concerns of greater economic issues, and more immediately the fading chances of a Fed lift-off for September,” said Societe Generale head of commodities research for Asia in Singapore, Mark Keenan, talking to Bloomberg.
The Chinese Caixin Manufacturing PMI from Markit fell in August and showed a bigger contraction of the services economy than forecast, while the Shanghai stock index lost 3,3% on the day.
Other Asian markets followed with the Japanese Nikkei dropping by 2.88%.
Gold premiums in Shanghai over the London international benchmark doubled over night to $5.2 per ounce.
Over in Europe, after the Greek Prime Minister’s resignation, Greeks prepare to go to the polls in September.
Despite its recent strength, at €1024.16 per ounce, gold in Euros was 2.87% higher on the year yet still 12.4% lower compared to its yearly peak of 23rd January.