Gold News

Gold Higher Despite Surging Bond Yields

What drove gold's best October in 4 decades...?

The GOLD PRICE rallied an incredible 7.3% in October to close at $1983 an ounce, its strongest October since 1978, when it jumped 11.7%, writes Frank Holmes at US Global Investors.

The price of gold had its best October in nearly half a century, defying tough resistance from surging Treasury yields and a strong US Dollar. The yellow metal rallied an incredible 7.3% last month to close at $1983 an ounce, its strongest October since 1978, when it jumped 11.7%.

Gold, a non-interest-bearing asset, has historically floundered when bond yields were heading higher. An exception has been made this year, however, on a number of significant economic and geopolitical risks, including record-high national debt, rising credit card delinquencies, ongoing recession jitters (despite Jerome Powell's insistence that a recession is no longer in the Federal Reserve's forecasts) and two wars.

If you believe these conditions will continue to spur investment demand for gold, now may be a good time to consider getting exposure (or adding to your exposure) in anticipation of potentially higher prices.

A word of caution: The metal looks overbought right now based on the 14-day relative strength index (RSI), so we may see some profit-taking in the short term. I believe strong support is being established, and if stocks recede, it may be an adequate catalyst for a gold rally. But keep in mind that, for the 30-year period, November has been the best month for stocks, with the S&P500 increasing an average of 1.96%, based on Bloomberg data.

I recommend a gold weighting of no more than 10%, split evenly between physical bullion (bars, coins and jewelry) and high-quality gold mining stocks, mutual funds and ETFs. Remember to rebalance at least once a year, if not more frequently.

If you're still on the fence, take a look at what the official sector has been up to. Central banks bought a collective 337 tonnes of gold in the third quarter, marking the second-largest third quarter on record, according to the latest report by the World Gold Council (WGC). Year-to-date, banks have added a remarkable 800 tonnes, which is 14% more than they added during the same nine months last year.

The list of biggest buyers during the third quarter was dominated by emerging markets as countries continue to diversify away from the US Dollar. In the top spot was China, which added a massive 78 metric tonnes of gold, followed by Poland (over 56 tonnes) and Turkey (39 tonnes).

I often advise investors to pay attention to what central banks do rather than what they say, but they're occasionally on point and worth listening to.

During last month's press conference, for example, National Bank of Poland (NBP) president Adam Glapiński said that the Eastern European country would continue to buy gold, which "makes Poland a more credible country." The goal is for gold to be 20% of Poland's total foreign reserves. As of September, gold accounted for 11.2% of its holdings, according to WGC data.

Take a look also at Japan. The country hasn't traditionally been a big importer of gold, but Japanese investors and households in general have lately bid up the price of the yellow metal to a new all-time high of ¥300,000. That's a substantial difference from the 30-year average price of just under ¥100,000.

In the medium to near term, Japan's gold rush has been triggered primarily by the Yen's historic slide against the US Dollar, prompting investors to seek a hedge against inflation.

In an attempt to rein in rising consumer prices, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has introduced a ¥17 trillion ($113 billion) stimulus package that, among other things, makes temporary cuts to income and residential taxes, assistance to low-income households and gasoline and utility subsidies.

But as many of you are aware, money-printing by world governments, especially during the pandemic, is largely to blame for the current spate of inflation that has cut deeply into consumers' pocketbooks around the globe. A $113 billion spending plan at this time will act as fuel on a bonfire.

Japanese households appear to understand this, as their approval of Kishida's job as prime minister has slipped to an all-time low rating of 33%, according to recent polling by Nikkei and Tokyo TV. When asked about the potential tax cuts, a whopping 65% of participants said that they're an inappropriate response to high inflation.

A better strategy, I believe, is with gold and gold mining equities. As the WGC has shown multiple times, gold has typically fared well during periods of high inflation. Historically, when inflation rates have exceeded 3% – which is where we are today – the average price of gold rose 14%.

For the 12-month period as of Friday, gold in Dollar terms is up 22%, which beats the S&P500 (up 19% over the same period) and is well above inflation.

Frank Holmes is chief executive officer and chief investment officer of US Global Investors Inc., a registered investment adviser managing approximately $4.8 billion in 13 no-load mutual funds and for other advisory clients. A Toronto native, he bought a controlling interest in US Global Investors in 1989, after an accomplished career in Canada's capital markets. His specialized knowledge gives him expertise in resource-based industries and money management.

See the full archive of Frank Holmes.

Please Note: All articles published here are to inform your thinking, not lead it. Only you can decide the best place for your money, and any decision you make will put your money at risk. Information or data included here may have already been overtaken by events – and must be verified elsewhere – should you choose to act on it. Please review our Terms & Conditions for accessing Gold News.

Follow Us

Facebook Youtube Twitter LinkedIn



Market Fundamentals