A Trader’s Eye View of Gold’s Frightening Collapse

Are you sick of hearing about gold yet?

No? You want more? OK then.

I was chatting with a mate of mine on Tuesday who took the opportunity presented by the collapse in precious metals to buy some for himself.

He wandered down to his friendly local metals dealer and was confronted by a huge line going out the door.  He took the opportunity to ask those in the queue (apparently made up predominantly of Asians and Indians) whether they were there to sell or to buy and every single person said they were there to buy.

This was on a day when prices had had their biggest collapse in 30 years…

Shouldn’t there have been panic in the streets, with investors doing all in their power to get rid of their gold at all costs? No. Quite the opposite in fact.

Another contact at a large bank told me Asian central banks were on the bid (lining up to buy) all day on Tuesday. A collapse like the one we’ve seen will bring a lot of latent demand to the fore. In fact my expectations are that we’ll see a vicious bounce in the gold price, sooner rather than later.

I think it’s a bit like jumping on an inflated ball in the pool.  The further you push it down the quicker it will whip back in your face.

The rumours are swirling around the internet about the reasons for the take down. Ben Bernanke and his cohorts are at the top of the conspiracy list of course. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if that was the case.

It appears that the bulk of the selling is in the paper gold market. But the fact is that the failure of multi-year support around US$1,530 would have led to a cascade of stop losses that would have fed on each other.

Throw in the margin calls for leveraged positions and suddenly you had traders eyeing off the window ledge nearest their desk.

Any trader worth his salt would have known that a big fall was on the cards below those lows, so if the big boys did want to set off the avalanche all they had to do was give it a nudge at the top, then sit back and watch the mayhem ensue while covering their shorts on the way down.

Easy money.

The World of Gold in Charts

This weekly chart gives us a bird’s eye view of the bull market from 1999:

Gold Weekly Chart

Click to enlarge

The first thing to notice is that we’re currently more oversold on the weekly RSI than we have been for this whole bull market including the sell-off during the crash in 2008. The other thing to note is that we’ve pulled back to the 50% retracement of the rally from the lows in 2008.

Either this bull market really is biting the dust or we’re currently witnessing the best opportunity to buy gold that we’ve seen in many years. I have chosen the latter as closest to reality.

I’m sure you’ve seen the chart of the expansion in central bank balance sheets in relation to the gold price. The above chart shows you the rise in central bank balance sheets from 1995 through to 31 January 2013. A high correlation for nearly twenty years.

Now let’s have a look at a close up of the relationship over the past few years combined with a projection of the rise in central bank balance sheets over the next year or so:

Gold vs Central Bank Balance Sheets

I don’t know about you, but that chart above is enough for me to raid my piggy bank and rush down to my gold dealer for a few bargains.

Do you really believe the central bankers of the world are about to stop their orgy of money printing? No of course not. They’ll keep printing until they’re forced to stop. And anyone who reads Money Morning on a daily basis knows that money printing isn’t healing the real economy.

So there’s a lot more money printing to come and gold is going to reassert itself as the canary in the coal mine, whether they like it or not.

Gold Stock Levels Collapse

Apparently gold inventories have been collapsing at Comex since the Cyprus affair. Investors have decided they shouldn’t trust anyone with their stash of gold and have decided to pull it out and take it elsewhere. Is this development bullish or bearish for gold? I’ll let you answer that one yourself.

So can gold head lower than here? Well of course it can. It can go to $1 I suppose, but I doubt it. The lower they push it from here the better the opportunity.

It’s time to back your judgment, close your eyes, put a clothes peg over your nose and buy all the gold you can get your hands on, with a view of buying more the further it falls from here.

Yes the volatility will be huge and we’ll probably see a few more blood curdling dives to the downside, but I can’t help feeling that the smaller central banks know exactly what their big brothers are up to and will use this chance to stock up on gold.

Once the uptrend returns, all the nervous nellies who were sitting on the sidelines hoping that someone would come along with a rose scented letter telling them exactly when they should buy will be jolted into action. What looked like a catastrophic downtrend could turn into a ridiculously sharp rebound.

Whacking gold may have served the powers that be for the moment but they will end up regretting their arrogance. They may awaken the market to the size of the latent demand for gold, and that demand will overrun the paper gold shorters in the blink of an eye.

Got gold? You should.

Murray Dawes
Editor, Slipstream Trader

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Ed Note: It’s only April and already the mainstream is writing off gold as a losing bet this year. That’s premature. In today’s Money Morning Premium Kris looks at two simple ways investors can play the gold market when the gold price bolts higher…click here to upgrade now.

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Murray Dawes is the Editor of Pivot Trader and contributing Editor at Money Morning. He was one of five, from 5,000 applicants, chosen for a graduate position with the Swiss Banking Corporation — now part of banking giant UBS. The bosses quickly cottoned on to his potential and pushed him up the ranks as a futures broker on the floors of the Sydney Futures Exchange. Murray later broke out on his own and developed custom trading systems to trade leveraged financial instruments like futures. Due to his success, Murray became the ‘hired gun’ trader for Australia’s rich and famous. Today, Murray runs a trading service through Fat Tail Investment Research to help everyday Aussie investors use his advanced trading methods.

Money Morning Australia