127.60 0.00 (0.00%)
After hours: 6:00PM EDT
|Bid||0.00 x 0|
|Ask||0.00 x 0|
|Day's Range||127.13 - 127.88|
|52 Week Range||114.80 - 129.51|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||N/A|
|Expense Ratio (net)||0.40%|
Commodities rallied furiously Thursday morning, but leveled off by the afternoon -- a lesson for any investor to be wary of any asset class that rises too much, too fast. Brent crude gained 0.41% to $73 per barrel, West Texas Intermediate was roughly flat ending the day at around $68. Earlier in the session, Brent and WTI had both been up more than 1%.
Precious metals had another up day as gold futures for April expiration rose 0.48% on Friday, April 13, closing at $1,344.80 per ounce. Silver rose 1.1%, ending the day at $16.60 per ounce.
Gold ETF investors bought 173.4 tons of gold in 2017, 9% higher year-over-year (or YoY). In 2018 year-to-date (or YTD), the inflows in gold-backed ETFs have been strong. As of April 13, ETF holdings totaled 2,186 tons, which is 5.2% higher YoY.
On April 13, US crude oil (USO) May futures settled at $67.39 per barrel—the highest closing level for US crude oil active futures in more than three years. Oil prices have been climbing lately due to geopolitical tensions, which have increased worries of disruptions to supply, especially in the Middle East. New sanctions on Russia could further lift oil prices.
Geopolitical tensions, trade war fears, rate hikes, and market volatility have left investors restless. Geopolitical issues started when President Trump imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. The issues increased due to a potential trade war between the United States and China. Next, President Trump targeted Russia. Sanctions have been imposed on several Russian entities, including aluminum giant RUSAL. Missile attacks on Syria further escalated geopolitical tensions.
Overall, gold has been rising in 2018, mainly due to the geopolitical tensions that keep increasing. First, we had fears of a US-China trade war, and now we have the Syrian chemical attack and subsequent air strikes. Another crucial element is the decline of the US dollar, which we’ll look at in the next part of this series.
Crude oil started this week on a weaker note by declining on Monday and breaking the five-day gaining streak. Crude oil started April 17 on a mixed note and traded near opening prices in the early hours.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics released US jobs data for March 2018 on April 6. The job growth was weaker than expected. The US added 103,000 jobs in March as compared to upwardly revised 326,000 jobs the previous month. The economists were expecting an addition of 185,000 jobs in March, as per Bloomberg. While a slowdown was expected in March due to February’s surge underpinned by hiring due to unseasonably warm weather, the decline was more than what the market expected. The unemployment rate has remained at 4.1% for six months. The Fed is forecasting a rate of 3.8% by the end of this year.
Crude oil regained strength last week and surged to three-year high price levels. However, crude oil opened lower on Monday and traded with weakness in the early hours.
SPDR Gold Shares (NYSE:GLD) is the vehicle under which most investors are able to hold gold. The GLD ETF represents fractional, undivided beneficial ownership interests in a trust whose sole assets are gold bullion on and, from time to time, cash. The truth is that precious metals don’t really make for a very good long-term investment.
Crude oil started this week on a stronger note and gained in the first three trading days. On Wednesday, crude oil rallied to three-year high price levels. Carrying forward the strength, crude oil opened higher on Thursday and traded with strength at elevated levels in the early hours.
In 1Q18, gold prices (GLD) rose by just 1%. While gold prices have repercussions on gold miners’ performance based on their leverage, most miners’ price movements in 1Q18 have been driven by company-specific factors such as the release of 2017 results, reserves, and 2018 guidance. Among senior gold miners, analysts are most bullish on Goldcorp (GG), assigning it 65% “buy” and 5% “sell” ratings.
Yamana Gold (AUY) and Agnico Eagle Mines (AEM) also underperformed the Gold Miners Index (GDX) and gold (GLD) in 1Q18, falling 16.1% and 10.0%, respectively. However, their losses were smaller than those seen by intermediate peers Eldorado Gold (EGO) and New Gold (NGD), which fell 41.7% and 24.3%, respectively, mainly due to issues at several of their mines.
Mark Cuban says he hates gold as an investment “with double extreme prejudice,” but if you want to see the financial utility of the yellow metal, look no further than the current troubles of Michael Cohen. If President Donald Trump’s attorney had simply paid $130,000 to porn star Stormy Daniels in the form of gold Krugerrands back in October 2016, he probably wouldn’t have any of his current mounting legal worries. Instead, he set up an LLC and used the conventional financial system, and now he has Robert Mueller sifting through his trash.
After declining for two consecutive trading weeks, crude oil started this week on a stronger note by rallying on Monday. Carrying forward the strength, crude oil opened higher on Tuesday and traded with strength at ten-day high price levels in the early hours.