- Holdings in exchange-traded funds expand for 18th straight day
- Metal near 1-year high, set for first quarterly gain in seven
Gold investors are on the longest buying spree in five years.
Holdings of the metal in exchange-traded funds rose for an 18th straight trading day, the most since May 2010, jumping 1.3 metric tons to 1,725.1 tons, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That’s the highest in 18 months. Futures prices approached a one-year high on Tuesday, before closing little changed.
“Gold and gold ETFs have a very strong correlation,” Phil Streible, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago, said in a telephone interview. “The benefits are that it’s a very low barrier to entry, which appeals to a lot of people, but gold futures are the ultimate horse that drives the market.”
Gold futures for April delivery slipped 0.1 percent to settle at $1,262.90 an ounce at 1:45 p.m. on the Comex in New York, after touching $1,279. The metal climbed to a 13-month-high $1,280.70 on Friday.
Gold is up 19 percent this year, on course for its first quarterly gain since June 2014. Trading in Comex bullion futures was 30 percent higher than the 100-day average for this time, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
- The European Central Bank is widely expected to deliver a package of easing measures at a March 10 meeting to revive euro-area growth and inflation.
- Silver futures for May delivery slid 1.6 percent to $15.39 an ounce on the Comex.
- Platinum and palladium futures declined after entering bull markets Monday on the New York Mercantile Exchange.