Submitted by Mark O’Byrne – GoldCore
– Gold up 2.5% in January on stock falls, Korea nuclear test, Middle East tensions
– Gold up an average of 4.4% in January over past decade
– January positive month for gold and silver
Gold prices hit a four-week high today over $1,088 per ounce, extending gains for the third day and leading to a 2.5% gain year to date. Deepening concerns over the indebted Chinese economy saw falls in stock markets again and tensions rose in Asia and the Middle East.
Stocks globally fell for a fifth day as China added to fears about its economy by allowing the yuan to weaken further in the ongoing currency war, and a nuclear test by North Korea added to a growing list of geopolitical worries.
Overnight, North Korea said it successfully tested a miniaturised hydrogen nuclear device on Wednesday, setting off alarm bells in Japan and South Korea. Relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran collapsed over the weekend after the Kingdom’s execution of nearly 50 people including a Shi’ite cleric, a prominent critic of Saudi policy, set off violent protests and condemnation from Tehran.
Bullion has has been one of the best months for gold in terms of monthly performance in the last 10 years. Bloomberg confirms that today:
Bullion has advanced 4.4 percent on average in January over the past 10 years, climbing in all but three cases. Its performance in the first month beats that in any other. January is a time when Chinese shoppers stock up on gold in anticipation of the Lunar New Year.
Seasonally, the months of November, December, January and February have historically been positive months for gold. October often sees declines in the gold price followed by strong gains in November, December, January and February (see table above and chart below).
Risk aversion has seen gold move closer to key chart levels, including the December high at $1,088.70. A push above $1,088 would indicate that gold may have bottomed out for now after twice rebounding from the $1,045 area in December, a technical analyst told Reuters.
Silver is up 0.3 percent at $14.11 an ounce, while platinum is up 0.1 percent at $893.75 an ounce and palladium was down 0.6 percent lower at $533.40 an ounce.