At the beginning of the year, the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA), which governs the twice-daily London gold price fix, invites investment and institutional analysts to enter its long-running forecasting competition for gold prices.
The majority of the experts predicted gold would plunge below $1,000 during the year. Even the winner of last year’s competition, Bernard Dahdah of French investment bank Natixis, predicted average numbers in the triple digits for gold in 2016. You couldn’t find a bull in the bunch.
Instead of drooping under the $1,000 threshold, gold has rallied to above $1,300 and many analysts are now confidently predicting $1,400 or even $1,500 for gold before the year ends.
How wrong were these “experts”!
The year’s barely half gone, but inflows to precious metals-backed exchange traded products (especially gold) are headed for a banner year if the pace so far holds up, says international bank Barclay’s.
In just the first seven months of 2016, inflows to ETPs have already topped the previous record for the amount of money flowing into the precious metals funds. According to Barclays research, combined inflows for all ETPs from January through July reached $50.8 billion, with nearly $8 billion added in just the last two months. That’s the strongest tally since the January-July stretch in 2009 in the safe-haven rally from the financial crisis.
“Precious metals, and gold in particular, have been the most favored commodity sector, attracting heavy inflows via ETPs, and so far 2016 is shaping up to be the best year ever for inflows to this type of product,” the bank said.
“Precious metals were still the driving force behind ETPs inflows, bringing in $4 billion, $5.5 billion and $1.6 billion for May, June and July, respectively,” Barclays said. “Gold ETPs inflows picked up along with prices from May. Uncertainly from Brexit further spurred safe-haven demand in June and July.”
Assuming there are no surprise outflow events in the remaining months of the year, Barclays says this will be a new record year for precious metals ETPs.