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Gold Recovers Early Dip After "Black Monday" Hits US Bonds; European Banks Fail to Sell Key Loans

Commodities / Gold & Silver Aug 21, 2007 - 09:37 AM GMT

By: Adrian_Ash


SPOT GOLD PRICES pulled back after rising into the London opening on Tuesday, recording a Morning Fix of $655.50 before recovering $3 per ounce as European stock markets gave back their own early gains.

"The rebound in equities [has] helped support gold," reckons Wallace Ng at Fortis Bank in Hong Kong . "We also saw a bit of physical demand coming in this morning."

Asian stock markets rose for the second day running after closing out their worst week in 17 years on Friday. But the credit crunch that began shaking world money markets in July continues, with short-term US Treasuries attracting "safe-haven" cash at the fastest rate since the stock-market crash of Oct. 1987.

In the European market for asset-backed commercial paper (ABCP) – which "started modestly as a way for banks to move assets off their balance sheet" as explains – companies failed to refinance a huge number of commercial paper maturing yesterday. A trader at Commerzbank puts the shortfall at $3.5 billion out of the $6 billion needed. Dealogic says the shortfall was nearer $5 billion.

"We've seen physical [gold] buying at the lower end, especially on Friday," said Ronald Leung of Lee Cheong Gold Dealers in Hong Kong to Reuters earlier today. He expects fresh buying from jewelers as well as investors to support to Gold Price short-term.

"We saw a lot of buying at below $650. I think we'll see a trading range of $645-$665 before the Fed meeting [on Sept. 18th]."

In the Tokyo gold market today, futures contracts for delivery in June '08 ended the session little changed and equal to $667.56 per ounce. The Nikkei in Tokyo gained 1%; the ASX in Sydney added 0.8% to the 4% gains made on Monday; South Korea 's Kospi 200 index – the world's busiest stock market for derivatives traders – gained more than 5% for the day.

"Whether market turbulence has dissipated for now or whether we're simply in the eye of the storm remains to be seen," says Investec Australia in a note today. "The only certainty is that everyone has a view and that everyone is happy to share it."

The global banking group's gold comment today puts support at $650, with resistance at $676 per ounce.

Looking at the weekly charts, "spot gold fell to a seven-week low but managed to climb back above the up-trend line," notes Christopher Langguth for Mitsui today. "A close below $640 would have completed a double top."

Phil Smith for Reuters Technical India also shows the Spot Gold Market ending last week right on the uptrend starting in July 2005. He pegs support at the 200-day moving average, currently sitting at $655 per ounce.

"The decline [last week] should have cleared out a lot of stale long positions," Langguth goes on, "but the close was neutral. A rally to $677 should have a lot of traders racing to reestablish their long positions."

In the crude oil market, meantime, prices slipped again this morning as forecasters said that Hurricane Dean – the "potentially catastrophic" storm now making landfall in the holiday resorts of Mexico 's Yucatan Peninsula – will miss US oil facilities in the northern US Gulf Coast.

WTI Nymex crude oil contracts for Sept. delivery fell nearly 50 cents to $70.66 per barrel in early London trade. It touched a record high of $78 at the start of this month.

Inflationary pressures may persist in food stuffs, however, even if energy prices – and interest rates – continue to decline. Soybean futures rose after the US government said Monday that only 54% of the current crop ratings are good or excellent, down from 56% a week ago. China 's domestic soybean output is also set to fall amid a prolonged drought, potentially losing 17% from last year and causing imports of 31.4 million tons in the 12 months beginning Oct.

By Adrian Ash

Gold price chart, no delay | Free Report: 5 Myths of the Gold Market
City correspondent for The Daily Reckoning in London and a regular contributor to MoneyWeek magazine, Adrian Ash is the editor of Gold News and head of research at , giving you direct access to investment gold, vaulted in Zurich , on $3 spreads and 0.8% dealing fees.

(c) BullionVault 2007

Please Note: This article is to inform your thinking, not lead it. Only you can decide the best place for your money, and any decision you make will put your money at risk. Information or data included here may have already been overtaken by events – and must be verified elsewhere – should you choose to act on it.

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