Gold futures settled lower on Friday to post a loss for the week, but prices tallied a fourth consecutive monthly gain, with investors snapping up the precious metal and other haven assets in August as trade-related tensions stoked worries over global growth.
“The precious metals remain in a bullish uptrend, though it would not surprise us to see [precious metals] prices pull-back/consolidate after such a strong month, regardless what happens with stocks and China trade deal status,” Adam Taggart, co-founder of PeakProsperity.com, told MarketWatch.
‘…any momentary flexibility China is showing on trade is just a smokescreen.’
“We think, given the unrest in Hong Kong, any momentary flexibility China is showing on trade is just a smokescreen—they don’t want a two-front war, and so they will continue to make happy trade noises for a month while they work on getting Hong Kong back in line,” he said.
“So if this ‘happy trade news’ causes a dip in [precious metals], we see that as a reason to buy, not sell,” said Taggart.
Gold for December delivery
on Comex lost $7.50, or 0.5%, to settle at $1,529.40 an ounce, leaving the most-active contract down 0.5% for the week, but 6.3% higher in August, according to FactSet data.
added 1.9 cents, or 0.1%, to $18.342 an ounce. Silver has stolen gold’s thunder in August, logging a nearly 11% rise.
Gold got a boost earlier in the week as the U.S. and China ramped up rhetoric and announced rounds of tariffs and retaliatory measures, sparking a run into haven assets. Demand for government bonds pushed down yields around the world, also buoying gold. Lower bond yields reduce the opportunity cost of holding nonyielding assets.
Gold’s rally cooled this week as Beijing and China made conciliatory noises around trade, though investors still appear nervous over the prospect for a further escalation of the battle.
The absence “of clear paths forward on trade and other issues will remain key to gold’s rise in our view — at least before the general election season picks up,” said Christopher Louney, analyst at RBC Capital Markets, in a note. “That said, we still think that some consolidation is likely before year-end, and such dips would represent attractive entry points in our view.”
In other metals trade, October platinum
rose 1.3% to $931.70 an ounce, to log a monthly rise of about 6%, while December palladium
rallied by 4.6% to $1,539.20 an ounce, with the contract up by a more modest 1% for the month.
lost 1% at $2.5515 a pound, with the contract down about 4.8% for the month.