World Bank’s a gold price bear
Gold dipped to a two-week low on Monday hurt by a stronger dollar and investors moving money into equities with major US stock markets continuing to trade at record levels.
Gold for delivery in February, the most active contract on the Comex market in New York, was exchanging hands at $1,187.20 in late afternoon dealings, trimming year-to-date gains for the metal to 3%.
The World Bank this week joined the chorus of gold bears forecasting a drop in the gold price to an average $1,150 an ounce in 2017 in its January Commodities Outlook. That compares to an average gold price of $1,247 an ounce last year, compared to 2015’s average of $1,160, but nowhere near 2012’s $1,689:
Precious metals prices are projected to fall 7 percent in 2017, mainly due to weak investment demand, prospects of a stronger dollar, and rising real interest rates.
Gold prices are expected to decline 8 percent on weak investment demand, while silver prices are expected to fall 4 percent. Platinum prices are projected to rise marginally on likely tightness in supply. Downside risks to the forecast are stronger economic growth and faster than expected increases in U.S. interest rates.
Upside risks include geopolitical tensions, stronger demand in China and India, delayed rates hikes, and mine supply shortfall.
In contrast, industrial metals producers can look forward to a bullish 2017 with prices projected to increase by 11% in 2017 “due to tightening markets for most metals, especially those facing imminent resource constraints”:
The largest gains are expected in zinc (27 percent) and lead (18 percent) due to mine supply constraints brought on by permanent and discretionary closures. Double-digit gains are also expected for copper, nickel, and tin.
Upside risks to prices include stronger global demand, slower ramp-up of new capacity, tighter environmental constraints, and policy action that limits supply. Downside risks include slower demand in China and higher-than-expected production, including the restarting of idled capacity.