“Clearly, concerns toward the global economy have been fomented [Monday] by the first monthly decline in Chinese exports in over two years,” analysts at Zaner Precious Metals wrote in a daily note. “Adding into the economic uncertainty is soft European data and escalating fears of an exit wreck,” they said, referring to the U.K.’s withdrawal from the European Union.
February gold GCG9, +0.08% rose $3.20, or 0.3%, to $1,292.70 an ounce, after closing on Friday with a 0.3% weekly advance. Futures prices, which touched an intraday high of $1,296.60, are attempting to make a fresh assault on the psychologically significant level at $1,300, which could underscore upward bullish price momentum in bullion. The exchange-traded SPDR Gold Shares ETFGLD, +0.16% rose 0.5% on Monday.
Meanwhile, March silver SIH9, +0.03% added 1.4 cents, or 0.1%, to trade at $15.67 an ounce, following a 0.8% weekly loss last week.
The ICE U.S. Dollar index DXY, -0.15% was off by less than 0.1% at 95.61, after putting in a weekly loss of 0.6% on Friday. Weakness in the buck can help drive appetite in assets priced in dollars, like gold, among buyers using other currencies.
A downdraft in stock markets across the globe on Monday was partly behind gold gains to start the week, with China data showing an unexpected decline in imports and exports in December, which weighed on equities and commodities, fueling fears of a further slowdown in the Chinese economy that could hinder global growth–amplified by a protracted trade spat between Washington and Beijing.
That backdrop has enlivened expectations for higher prices among gold bulls, who believe that purchases of so-called haven commodities among investors will accelerate as riskier assets, including stocks, exhibit more volatility in 2019.
“The gold trade is continuing to become more fashionable as investors’ appetites grow. Indeed, the climb in geopolitical concerns are behind what is now developing to be a new bull run. We continue to look for higher prices and think a breakout above $1300 is around the corner,” wrote Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities.
“With Newmont Mining buying Gold Corp., that adds an additional element of investment interest to the long side argument of gold today,” said analysts at Zaner Precious Metals.
Palladium, however, looked to extend its streak of gains to a 10th consecutive session and seventh straight record settlement. March palladium PAH9, +0.48% added 0.8% to $1,288.80 an ounce, trading less than $5 below the per-ounce price of gold. The last time palladium settled higher than gold was in October 2002.
Gold-backed exchange-traded fund SPDR Gold Shares GLD, +0.16% followed gold prices higher, tacking on 0.3% in Monday dealings. The VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF added 0.1%.
The SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) was trading at $121.98 per share on Monday morning, up $0.18 (+0.15%). Year-to-date, GLD has declined -1.35%, versus a -3.00% rise in the benchmark S&P 500 index during the same period.
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