Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Gold Is Back in Vogue

Updated on
  • Trading volume almost double the 100-day average, data show
  • Traders roll futures contract from December to February

Bulls haven’t quite given up on gold yet.

As of 2:20 p.m. in New York, volume on the Comex was 52 percent above the 100-day average for this time of day, as traders and investors roll their positions into February futures from the December contract that’s expiring on Monday. Aggregate open interest is headed for a third straight quarterly gain, the longest stretch since 2009, while holdings in exchange-traded funds are near the highest in a year.

Prices have advanced this month, keeping the metal on course for the biggest annual gain since 2010 after two monthly declines. Gold has benefited from a weakening dollar, tepid inflation that’s spawned divisions among U.S. Federal Reserve officials over a policy path forward, and uncertainties over President Donald Trump’s plan to cut taxes. In Europe, wrangling over Brexit and Germany’s struggles to form a coalition government have underpinned demand for the metal as a haven.

“Gold is starting to attract attention of asset allocators,” George Gero, a New York-based managing director at RBC Wealth Management, said in an email. The bullion futures market is “quiet and steady as we wait for more headlines on taxes in the U.S. and a Fed hike in December,” he said.

Bullion futures for February delivery slipped 0.4 percent to settle at $1,291.80 an ounce on the Comex in New York. The contract’s open interest has surpassed December’s since Tuesday. The metal has advanced 1.7 percent this month and is up about 12 percent in 2017.

Aggregate open interest, a tally of outstanding futures contracts, rebounded on Wednesday after declining the previous two sessions.

A majority of gold traders and analysts surveyed in a weekly Bloomberg poll published Thursday saw gains ahead, as the dollar slumps.

In other precious metals:

  • Silver futures slipped on Comex
  • Platinum futures rose on New York Mercantile Exchange, as palladium futures slid
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