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Gold Shines as China’s Economy Fuels Growth Concerns

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Precious metals extend rally while energy continues to slide Gold Shines as China's Economy Fuels Growth Concerns

ETFS Multi-Asset Weekly – Gold Shines as China’s Economy Fuels Growth Concerns

Highlights

•    Precious metals extend rally while energy continues to slide.
•    Equity market volatility spikes as more than 5 trillion is wiped out from global equity markets since China devalued its Yuan.
•    Euro, Yen and Swiss Franc remain strongest amidst risk averse backdrop.

Asian markets have opened the week sharply lower, exacerbating the global selloff in the aftermath of China’s currency reform. Despite attempts made by the Chinese government from lowering interest rates to the reserve requirement, suspending stock trading and finally devaluing its currency, sentiment is decisively negative. Equity market volatility along with Fed dovish Federal Reserve minutes has helped gold prices rally and any dovishness from this week’s meeting of central bankers at Jackson Hole could add to that momentum.

Commodities

Precious metals extend rally while energy continues to slide. Gold at US$ 1154/oz has staged a comeback attaining its highest level in 5 weeks. Concerns over China’s growth path and slightly more dovish set of Federal Reserve Policy minutes drove gold higher in US dollar terms. The 38% y-o-y increase in platinum imports by China in July has helped support this week’s advance of 5.4%. WTI and Brent crude oil fell to US$39 and US$45 per barrel respectively continuing their 8th week of declines, the longest losing streak since 1986. The lowest reading in 9 years 47.1 in Caixin’s China purchasing manager’s index (PMI) for August coupled with the surprise increase of 2.5mn barrels in crude oil stocks by the US Department of Energy raised fears of waning demand in an oversupplied market.

Equities

Equity market volatility spikes as more than 5 trillion is wiped out from global equity markets since China devalued its Yuan. Weaker Chinese PMI data outweighed the strengthening European PMI data, accelerating a selloff in global equity markets. France’s economy stagnated in the second quarter and despite factory data in Germany rising to a 4-year high, the DAX fell 7.8%. Commodity stocks that make up about fifth of the FTSE 100 Index weighting caused the Index’s biggest weekly decline since December. In particular, mining giant Glencore PLC was the latest to fall prey to the commodity rout as profits declined 56% in H1. Its plans to close Eland platinum mine in South Africa and divest its 23.9% holding in Lonmin Plc (the world’s third largest platinum producer) extended further pressure on platinum supply.

Currencies

Euro, Yen and Swiss Franc remain strongest amidst risk averse backdrop. With risk off the table, the unwinding of carry trades lent support to low yielding currencies namely Euro and Yen. Although the impending Greek elections following Syriza party’s split could pose a risk to the Euro. The lack of a clear signal from the Fed minutes and miss on the manufacturing PMI pushed the probability of a Fed rate hike in September from 50 to 28 percent, reversing the strengthening dollar. The continued weakness in oil prices weighed heavily on the Canadian currency. The positive CPI print early in the week lent support to Sterling as investors see encouraging signs of the UK moving nearer to a rate increase.

For more information contact:

ETF Securities Research team
ETF Securities (UK) Limited
T +44 (0) 207 448 4336
E  info@etfsecurities.com

Important Information

General

This communication has been issued and approved for the purpose of section 21 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 by ETF Securities (UK) Limited (”ETFS UK”) which is authorised and regulated by the United Kingdom Financial Conduct Authority (”FCA”).

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