- ETF gold holdings increase for the longest streak since March
- Metal has rallied 20% in 2016 on declining U.S. rate-hike bets
Gold advanced as holdings in exchange-traded funds backed by the metal climbed for a 14th straight day, reaching the highest in more than two years.
ETF holdings rose 7.6 metric tons to 1,822.35 tons on Friday, the highest since December 2013, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The buying streak is the longest since March 7. Bullion futures extended gains after an index of manufacturing in the New York region unexpectedly contracted, boosting the metal’s appeal as a haven.
Gold has rallied 20 percent in 2016 as concerns over global growth spurred equity turmoil at the start of the year and helped reduce prospects for the Federal Reserve to raise U.S. interest rates. Low borrowing costs are beneficial to gold because it doesn’t offer yields or dividends. Reports on Saturday showed industrial output in China slowed more than forecast in April, while retail and investment readings also disappointed.
“The ETFs keep seeing inflows of funds from everywhere,” George Gero, a managing director at RBC Wealth Management in New York, said in a telephone interview. “You’re looking for a haven for part of this uncertain period to go by.”
Gold futures for June delivery rose 0.1 percent to settle at $1,274.20 an ounce at 1:43 p.m. on the Comex in New York, gaining for consecutive sessions for the first time in two weeks.
A drop in the dollar on Monday also boosted demand for bullion as an alternative asset. The greenback lost less than 0.1 percent against a basket of 10 currencies.
The rise in ETF assets “is an indication that perhaps the speculative end of the market is getting wind of another move in the gold price to the upside,” David Lennox, an analyst at Fat Prophets in Sydney, said by phone.
In other precious metals:
- Silver futures for July delivery advanced 0.1 percent on the Comex.
- On the New York Mercantile Exchange, platinum added 0.1 percent as miners and refiners of the metal gather at the industry’s annual meeting in London this week.