Massive gold inflows despite hawkish Fed minutes and stronger US dollar
ETF Securities Weekly Flows Analysis – Massive gold inflows despite hawkish Fed minutes and stronger US dollar
- Many investors took advantage of the gold prices slide that followed the release of the Fed minutes.
- The rebound in oil prices did not ease profit-taking in energy ETPs.
- Coffee ETPs face outflows as Arabica yields suggest a generous harvest and the Brazilian real depreciates against the US dollar.
Gold ETFs attracted massive flows this week, totalling US$112mn, while gold prices dipped lower. Gold price ended the week lower by 2.6% as the US dollar strengthened after the release of the Federal Reserve minutes on Wednesday. The publication of the minutes of the 26-27 April FOMC meeting revealed that an interest rate hike in June was likely. Following the publication, the odds for a June rate hike (measured as probabilities extracted from the Fed Fund Futures) rose to 30% from 3% before the publication of the minutes. Obviously, FOMC members will have to strive to convince the market of an imminent move and restore confidence lost in March. Risk aversion remains elevated as many investors have taken advantage of the gold price slide to increase their exposure to gold.
Oil ETPs outflows continue on profit taking as prices recover. Oil prices rose 1.5% this week on the expectations for lower US crude inventory and additional oil production disruptions in Canada, Libya and Nigeria. However, the strengthening of the US dollar and the unexpected 1.3mn barrel increase in US crude inventory over the previous week, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), swayed the rally. The temporary supply outages were mostly offset by the increase of US crude inventory which resulted in the sixth consecutive week of profit taking in oil ETPs. Global oil markets remain over-supplied from low winter heating demand in the US and Europe resulting in high inventories, and data from Iran shows oil exports are increasing faster than expected.
Palladium ETPs recorded largest weekly inflows since July 2015. Last week saw US$5.1mn inflows into palladium ETPs as prices lost another 6.9% to US$565/oz. We believe palladium will likely be the outperformer this year. Like platinum, palladium has been in a supply deficit for the past four years and is forecast to remain in deficit for 2016 as demand from the automotive sector is expected to rise 4% this year. Other industrial precious metals also registered positive flows: US$5.7mn for silver and US$1.4mn for platinum.
Coffee ETPs registered outflows of US$10mn, as the price of coffee dropped by nearly 3.3% this week. While the coffee cropping season has just started, the US Department of Agriculture reported that Brazil (the world’s largest coffee producer) will crop 56mn of 60-kg bags this year, up 13% from last year. The prospect of higher supply as well as the depreciation of the Brazilian real against the US dollar explains most of the decline in coffee export prices.
Key events to watch this week. The release of the second estimate of US GDP in the first quarter might be the biggest market mover next week. Market participants expect an upward revision to 0.8%qoq annualised from 0.5% in the first estimate. If we do see this upward revision, the odds for a rate hike in June could rise sharply. The Flash estimates of May PMIs in the US, Europe and Japan, will also be highly followed by market participants. Finally, the first estimate of GDP growth in the first quarter in the UK could trigger market stress in the context of intense Brexit debates.
Morgane Delledonne, Fixed Income Strategist at ETF Securities provides an analysis of last week’s performance, flow and trading activity in commodity exchange traded products and a look at the week ahead.
For more information contact
ETF Securities Research team
ETF Securities (UK) Limited
T +44 (0) 207 448 4336
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