price of gold this week- Money Morning - Only the News You Can Profit From.
In mid-April, a black swan crash-landed on the gold market.
Over just two trading days, gold futures prices shed 13%, falling from $1,575 to $1,375.
That $200 cliff dive was the largest two-day drop in 33 years.
Gold prices already had been in steady consolidation mode for 18 months. But the magnitude and swiftness of this dramatic move were rare...to the point of suspicion.
How did markets react? Unlike almost anyone expected.
What caused such a landslide, and who may be behind it? More importantly, what are the implications for the precious metals markets moving forward?
The conclusions will surprise you -- and help you invest more wisely.
Precious Metals1Why Gold Prices Are Up This Week
It's been a good few days for investors holding on to gold, and we've been getting lots of questions as to why gold prices are up this week.
Gold futures had their biggest one-day gain of the year Thursday, up nearly $40 an ounce, and ended the week up 4.2% at $1,453.60.
At one point this week, gold had retraced half the loss it incurred during its April nosedive. In a two-day period, the yellow metal fell $225 an ounce, hitting a two-year low on April 15.
It is natural for any financial asset to enjoy some sort of a rebound after such a steep plunge. But there are some sound fundamental reasons as to why gold is up.
Gold Buyers Get Physical As Coin and Jewelry Sales Surge
I was honored to be in St. Paul's Cathedral attending Margaret Thatcher's funeral last week. It was quite a special opportunity to pay tribute to Britain's longest-serving prime minister in person, and the ceremony provided a reflective occasion on her influential leadership and unwavering conviction.
As her country faced an economic crisis with high inflation, high tax rates and hundreds of mining strikes, the lady's iron courage helped her make the difficult decisions that steered the United Kingdom to a more sustainable path.
A steely resolve seems to be lacking in many of our world leaders today. Maggie led the U.K. down the path of privatization, encouraging entrepreneurship and free markets because her belief was that "Socialist governments traditionally do make a financial mess. They always run out of other people's money."
In his recent webcast, Global Portfolio Strategist Don Coxe points out the effectiveness of this privatization path, showing the rise in the U.K.'s real GDP from the time she was elected Leader of the Opposition in 1975 through today.
precious metals1Central Banks to Keep Investing in Gold – as Should You
Up until gold's recent plunge, there was a major story that had captured the attention of everyone investing in gold.
That story was the massive purchases over the past year or so of the precious metal by many of the world's central banks.
According to the World Gold Council, the world's central banks have been net purchasers of gold since the second quarter of 2009. Since the financial crisis central banks, particularly in emerging economies have sought to diversify away from the U.S. dollar to a safer long-term asset.
In 2012, central bank purchases hit a 48-year high. Central banks bought 534.6 metric tons of gold (about 15 million ounces) last year. This was 17% more than in 2011 and the most purchased since 1964. The biggest buyers were the BRIC countries of Russia and Brazil.
With the recent turmoil in the gold market, investors worried that these central banks would turn away from gold.
But according to Money Morning's Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald, central bank buying will continue.
In fact, he believes that the amount of gold bought by central banks this year will easily double, led by central banks from the developing world.
The answer is a key factor on why to keep investing in gold in 2013.
Precious Metals1Does Investing in Gold Top Your List of "Best Investments"?
Even though the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Standard & Poor's 500 Index have hit record highs this year, investing in gold remains the top investment pick in CNBC's latest All-America Economic Survey.
The March poll shows the yellow metal is the favored investment choice among 35% of respondents, beating real estate at 27% and stocks at 21%. This is the second year that investing in gold has topped the list of what those surveyed consider the "best investment" to make now.
While survey participants are more optimistic this year than last about the stock market, 21% are uncertain if now is a good time to dabble in stocks, up from 11% in December 2009.
Those who believe the current environment make it a good time to buy stocks jumped from 31% in November to 40%, the highest amount since December 2009.
Moreover, in spite of the improved outlook for stocks, the overall view of the current state of the economy remains bleak. Currently, 60% of those surveyed are pessimistic about the U.S. economy, up from 56% in November.
Precious MetalsCan Gold Miners Increase Profits Through Spin Offs?
After more than a decade of merger mania, gold miners are now looking to spin off some of their acquisitions.
By doing so, the gold miners hope for better results after abysmal performance recently, as gold prices have fallen. And, as always, gold miners' profits rise and fall much faster than the yellow metal's price.
The underperformance of the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE: GDX) compared with that of the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE: GLD) bears this out. GDX is down 20.5% since the end of last year, while GLD is down 4.8%.
Investors are starting to get really impatient with the gold miners - so much so that billionaire hedge fund manager John Paulson is arguing some of the world's biggest gold mining companies, including AngloGold Ashanti Limited (NYSE: AU), spin off some of the mines that they have acquired through M&A over the past 10 years.
Paulson, the largest shareholder of GLD and AU, thinks the sum of the parts is greater than the value of the whole mining company. Paulson certainly can't be pleased with AU's 23.5% decline so far in 2013.
Precious Metals4These Gold Stocks Are Poised to Rebound in 2013
With gold prices - which closed at a nearly two-week high Tuesday to $1,591.70 - rising year after year for much of the past decade, you might think all gold stocks have increased, too.
But they have not - not by a long shot.
In fact, gold mining companies' stocks specifically have lagged the performance of the precious metal for six years.
This sad tale can be seen by looking at the gold miners ETFs. The biggest fund in the sector is the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE: GDX). It holds 31 of the world's top gold mining companies including the likes of Barrick Gold Corp. (NYSE: ABX), Newmont Mining Corp. (NYSE: NEM) and Goldcorp Inc. (NYSE: GG).
It is down more than 20% in the last three months alone. That puts it at its lowest valuation versus bullion prices in over three years. Over the past year, GDX has fallen nearly 32%, which is roughly triple the decline of the largest gold bullion ETF, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE: GLD).
It's even worse for the junior miners. The Market Vectors Junior Miners ETF (NYSE: GDXJ) is down roughly 42% of the past 12 months. This ETF focuses on smaller mining companies such as Argonaut Gold and B2Gold and contains 79 stocks.
So what's behind these declines? And when can investors bet on a reversal?
The Looming Gold Production Cliff That Will Drive Prices Higher
In recent years, global gold production has been at or near record levels. The plentiful supplies have led gold bears to argue that the yellow metal's decade-long bull run will end.
But gold bears are dead wrong.
In fact, the 'glory days' of gold production may be ending soon.
That's because some industry experts are beginning to point to a gold "production cliff' that is looming not far in the future.
And this coming decline in production can mean only one thing: higher gold prices.
Why Bill Gross Says You Should Be Investing in Gold
Renowned bond investor Bill Gross, the manager of PIMCO's Total Return Fund, the world's largest bond fund, just shared his top investment picks with Barron's. Leading the savvy investor's short and selective list was gold.
Why is a bond bull keen on investing in gold?
It's because Gross sees gold as a stellar inflationary hedge as global central banks attempt to reflate their economies.
Gross explained that while it looks like loose monetary policies and the deluge of dollars will continue for a while, at some point both will have to stop and "when all this money printing by central banks ends, it won't be pretty."
Gross sees trouble brewing in the artificially-priced U.S. Treasury market.
"The Fed is buying 80% of the Treasury market today. It is remarkable to think that when the Treasury issues debt in the trillion-dollar-plus category, the Fed ends up buying most of it. The Treasury sells it to banks and primary dealers, who sell it back to the Fed at a higher bid," Gross explained.
"This is very different from the free-market capitalism we've come to know. And it will continue until inflation exceeds the upper end of the central bank's target of 2.5% or, by some miracle, we get real economic growth," Gross continued.
The artificially priced bonds leave investors to question if investing in them is worth the slender reward, given the paltry yields from a bevy of bonds except high-risk junk bonds.
Two Ways to Go Big on Gold Stocks Right Now
There are plenty of reasons for you to have some gold stocks in your portfolio.
Governments are stockpiling record amounts of the shiny metal. Mints are pumping out new coins as fast as they can. And the Fed under "Helicopter" Ben Bernanke is wallpapering the world with greenbacks, pumping out $85 billion a month until...well, who knows when?
But there's more.
The Europeans have joined the party by bailing out their weak sisters with hundreds of billions of euros.
And the Bank of Japan just announced a $1.2 trillion bond purchase program for 2013 and $150 billion per month after that - almost twice the size of the Fed's folly.
Now the yahoos in Washington are threatening to spill more blood over the debt ceiling.
All this spells big upside for gold prices in 2013...and the companies that produce gold.