Is gold’s bull-run over after 12 years of gains?
Most banks still cling to forecasts for gold to hit record highs in 2013, but the factors they cite — ultra-low interest rates, fears of inflation — have so far failed to propel prices out of the past year's sideways trading channel.
A brief upwards price spike in November, in response to the latest monetary stimulus programme by the US central bank, was quickly met by selling.
As trading thins into year-end, the metal is down nearly 5% from four weeks ago in a further erosion of what looks like its smallest annual gain since 2008, of some 7%.
At around $1,666 an ounce on Wednesday, it remains 13% below last year’s record high of $1,920.30 and well away from the $2,000 level that beckoned to gold bulls at the time.
“The bears have basically said to the gold market, ‘we don't believe you’, and hit the price hard,” bullion broker Sharps Pixley’s chief executive Ross Norman said.
“The test of a market is how it behaves under adversity, and gold did not perform well.” This year's average gold price, while still a record high at $1,668 an ounce, has fallen well short of analysts forecasts at the
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