In his book Nobody Knows Anything, my friend Bob Moriarty wrote about the difference between signal and noise. Unfortunately, much of the information in the gold space or what passes for such is really noise. Conspiracy theories around manipulation, price suppression and China are all too popular while important factors like real interest rates, investment demand and gold’s relationship to equities are neglected. At present the Gold market has experienced a critical breakdown yet in some circles a new theory and explanation is gaining traction.
Last week more than a handful of subscribers alerted me to Jim Rickards’ belief that China has pegged the SDR (an IMF reserve currency) Gold price from 850-950 SDR/oz and this is what is impacting the Gold price. Rickards writes that the peg is too cheap given the scarce supply of Gold and that the IMF will print trillions of SDRs during the next global financial crisis. It’s a signal that China is betting on the SDR and Gold, he says. He also tweeted that at the Sprott Investment Conference he would present the evidence of the new gold standard at 900 SDR/oz.
First, the supply of Gold is not scarce. The supply of Gold actually grows in perpetuity because Gold is not consumed like other commodities.
Second, let’s look at the chart of the Gold price in SDRs, kindly provided to me by Dan Popescu. Sure, it has traded from 850 to 950 for the past 18 months but that does not imply a peg or some behind the scenes price management. Everyone following precious metals knows the market has been locked in a very tight range for many months.
However, technically speaking the Gold price in SDRs has broken down from a large, bearish consolidation and the implication is price will continue to trend lower. I expect it will test that low at 840 and ultimately trend towards its 2014-2016 lows before its next bottom.
It is an ominous looking chart (above) and so is this one (below).