Dollar falls, Gold rises

The Dollar weakened, with the Dollar Index testing support at 88.50. Respect of new resistance at 91 — the last primary support level — confirms the strong down-trend. Completion of another Trend Index peak below zero would further strengthen the signal.

Dollar Index

* Target calculation: 91 – (95 – 91) =87

The extent of the Dollar’s fall is best illustrated against major trading partner China’s Yuan: a 9.5% fall in just over two years. And that is despite rising US interest rates and a $120 billion increase in China’s foreign reserves over the last year.


Gold is again testing resistance at $1350. Breakout would signal another primary advance, with a target of $1450*. Follow-through above $1375 would confirm.

Spot Gold

* Target calculation: 1350 + (1350 – 1250) = 1450

The All Ordinaries Gold Index has been undermined by the strong Aussie Dollar. But recovery above 5000 would signal another advance.

All Ords Gold Index

Gold: The importance of $1200/ounce

Interest rates are rising, driving gold lower. Long-term Treasury yields are heading for a test of resistance at 2.0 percent but a lot depends on continued stability in financial markets.

10-Year Treasury Yields

The Chinese Yuan continues its devaluation against the Dollar. Any sharp movements would spur global instability and increase demand for gold. But at present Dollar appreciation proceeds at a measured pace.


Selling pressure on gold has increased, reflected by the steep fall of Twiggs Money Flow on the SPDR Gold [GLD] ETF. A larger (TMF) peak near zero would warn of a long-term sell-off.


Spot gold has paused in its descent, with a short candle on the weekly chart reflecting short-term support at $1250/ounce, but expect a test of primary support at $1200.

Spot Gold

A long-term monthly chart of gold reflects the importance of support at $1200. The high of 2009, the lows of 2013, and the recent lows in April and June, all reinforce strength at $1200. Breach of this level would signal a long-term down-trend.

Spot Gold

The ASX All Ordinaries Gold Index retraced to test resistance at 4500 after the recent breakout. Respect is likely and would signal decline to 4000.

All Ordinaries Gold Index

Gold approaches a watershed

Expectations of interest rate rises are growing, with 10-year Treasury yields advancing towards 2.0 percent after breaking out above 1.60.

10-Year Treasury Yields

The Chinese Yuan is easing against the US Dollar, in a managed process from the PBOC which will use up foreign reserves more slowly than a direct peg. It is also likely to minimize selling pressure on the Yuan, both from capital flight and from Chinese borrowers covering on Dollar-denominated loans.


Spot gold is easing, in a falling wedge formation, towards a test of medium-term support at $1300/ounce. This is a watershed moment. Breach of $1300 would warn of a test of primary support at $1200. But respect of support would suggest another test of the July high at $1375.

Spot Gold

* Target calculation: 1375 + ( 1375 – 1300 ) = 1450

Rising interest rates and low inflation increase downward pressure on gold but uncertainty over US elections, Europe/Brexit, and the path of the Chinese economy contribute to buying support. Gold stocks serve as a useful counter-balance to growth stocks in a portfolio. If there are positive outcomes and a return to economic stability, then growth stocks will do well and gold is likely to underperform. If things goes wrong and growth stocks do poorly, gold stocks are likely to outperform.

In Australia the All Ordinaries Gold Index ($XGD) continues to test support at 4500. Respect (recovery above 5000) would signal another test of the recent highs at 5600. A weakening Australian Dollar/US Dollar would tend to mitigate the impact of a fed rate hike. Breach of 4500 is less likely but would confirm a primary down-trend.

All Ordinaries Gold Index $XGD

* Target calculation: 4500 – ( 5000 – 4500 ) = 4000

Gold: Tall shadows suggest weakness

Tall shadows for the last three days on the spot gold chart suggest selling pressure. Penetration of the rising trendline indicates that the up-trend is slowing. Breach of short-term support at $1330/ounce would signal a test of medium-term support at $1300. Respect of support would confirm a healthy primary up-trend, while breach would indicate weakness.

Spot Gold

* Target calculation: 1300 + ( 1300 – 1050 ) = 1550

At present I don’t see much threat to support between $1300 and $1310. Safe-haven demand for gold is boosted by uncertainty in Europe, the US election dilemma (a choice between two equally undesirable alternatives), and the declining Yuan.


USDCNY retraced to test support at 6.60. Sell-off of USD currency reserves by the PBOC — to support the Yuan or at least slow its decline — helps to suppress US Dollar appreciation. This is a win-win for gold bulls. A weak dollar enhances the price of gold while a falling Yuan encourages capital flight and — you guessed it — demand for gold.

Gold strengthens as Dollar weakens

Long-term interest rates continue their decline, with 10-year Treasury yields testing support at 1.65 to 1.70 percent. Breach would signal a test of the all-time (July 2012) low of 1.40 percent.

10-year Treasury yields

Gold rallied in response, breaking initial resistance at $1250/ounce to signal a test of $1300.


The Chinese appear to have resumed selling foreign reserves to support the Yuan, with USDCNY running into resistance at 6.60. PBOC sale of reserves would weaken the Dollar, boosting demand for Gold. Failure to support the Yuan is unlikely, but would increase safe haven demand for Gold from Chinese investors.


The Dollar Index, representing predominantly the Euro and Yen crosses, fell sharply. Breach of support at 93 would confirm the primary down-trend earlier signaled by 13-week Momentum below zero.

Dollar Index

The Australian All Ordinaries Gold Index broke through 4500 to signal another advance, with the weakening Australian Dollar adding further impetus. Gaps between trough lows (orange line) and preceding highs (brown line) indicate strong buying pressure.

All Ordinaries Gold Index

Disclosure: Our Australian managed portfolios are invested in gold stocks.

Gold tanked? Not yet!

Gold broke below its recent flag formation, warning of a test of support at $1200/ounce.


Selling is driven by expectations of a Fed interest rate hike in June …..and recent Chinese stimulus which postponed Yuan devaluation against the Dollar. But expectations of a rate hike are causing a sell-off of the Chinese Yuan, with the USDCNY strengthening over the last few weeks.


…Which in turn will cause the Chinese to sell foreign reserves to support the Dollar peg (…..else devalue which would panic investors and cause a downward spiral). Sale of Dollar reserves by China would drive the Dollar lower.

Dollar Index

…and Gold higher. I remain bullish as long as support at $1200/ounce holds.

Disclosure: Our Australian managed portfolios are invested in gold stocks.

Rising inflation, Dollar weakens

The consumer price index (CPI) ticked up 1.14% (year-on-year) for April 2016, on the back of higher oil prices. Core CPI (excluding energy and food) eased slightly to 2.15%.

CPI and Core CPI

Inflation is muted, but a sharp rise in hourly manufacturing (production and nonsupervisory employees) earnings growth (2.98% for 12 months to April 2016) points to further increases.

Manufacturing Hourly Earnings Growth

Despite this, long-term interest rates remain weak, with 10-year Treasury yields testing support at 1.65 percent. Breach would signal another test of the record low at 1.50% in 2012. The dovish Fed is a contributing factor, but so could safe-haven demand from investors wary of stocks….

10-year Treasury Yields

The Dollar

The US Dollar Index rallied off long-term support at 93 but this looks more a pause in the primary down-trend (signaled by decline of 13-week Momentum below zero) than a reversal.

US Dollar Index

Explanation for the Dollar rally is evident on the chart of China’s foreign reserves: a pause in the sharp decline of the last 2 years. China has embarked on another massive stimulus program in an attempt to shock their economy out of its present slump.

China: Foreign Reserves

But this hair of the dog remedy is unlikely to solve their problems, merely postpone the inevitable reckoning. The Yuan is once again weakening against the Dollar. Decline in China’s reserves — and the US Dollar as a consequence — is likely to continue.

USD: Chinese Yuan

A currency war has begun….

Spot Gold

The Federal Reserve, Bank of England, European Central Bank and Bank of Japan all expanded their balance sheets (commonly referred to as quantitative easing or QE for short) post-2008 to counteract a contracting money supply and prevent a deflationary spiral. These actions also have the beneficial effect of weakening the currency and improving international competitiveness.

China was considered immune because of its persistent current account surplus and $4 Trillion in foreign reserves. But the recent sharp contraction in Chinese exports to the EU suggest otherwise.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) responded by effectively devaluing the Yuan. So far the “one-off adjustment” has been repeated on three consecutive days.


The Euro appreciated considerably against the US dollar as CNY carry trades are unwound.


Gold broke out of its narrow rectangle between $1080 and $1100 per ounce as investors scuttled to the safety of bullion.

Spot Gold

* Target calculation: 1100 – ( 1200 – 1100 ) = 1000

The Yen displays little net gain or loss.


The Dollar Index does not include China’s Yuan and is falling primarily because of the Euro. The Broad Trade-Weighted Index which includes the Yuan is calculated weekly; so it will take a few days before we can assess the impact.

Dollar Index

Competing devaluations are likely to continue as each state (or trading block) attempts to maintain an export surplus. This is a zero sum game, so each action will inevitably elicit an equivalent response from major trading partners. Currency markets are awash with vast sums of liquid capital and an estimated $9 Trillion in carry trades (where hedge funds borrow in a low-interest-rate currency and invest in another at higher rates). Any beggar-thy-neighbor escalation is likely to destabilize financial markets and the precarious balance may prove difficult to restore.

During the 1997 Asian Financial Crisis George Soros called for international regulation of financial markets to prevent a reoccurrence.

It is time to recognize that financial markets are inherently unstable. Imposing market discipline means imposing instability, and how much instability can society take? …. To put it bluntly, the choice confronting us is whether we will regulate global financial markets internationally or leave it to each individual state to protect its interests as best it can. The latter course will surely lead to the breakdown of the gigantic circulatory system, which goes under the name of global capitalism.

~ George Soros: The Crisis of Global Capitalism (1998)


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