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Dovish Speech Given by Jerome Powell
The catalyst for the rise in gold and the decline in the dollar, I believe, was the dovish speech given by Jerome Powell today in Jackson Hole. Whether or not the speech is perceived as dovishly as I believe it is, I think we’re going to have to see if we are going to get some follow through in the dollar and in the gold market next week. It is critical to see how the markets follow through to today’s actions. If I’m right, we could see a big move up in the price of gold next week and a big move down in the dollar.
Hedge Funds Are Net Short Gold
Remember we’ve got a lot of people who are short gold now for the first time since 2001, the hedge funds were net short gold and I think they could get caught in a losing trade and have to scramble to buy back the gold that they sold. Also, lots of people are now loaded up long the dollar, short the emerging market currencies. But the impetus for this trade, the momentum, had to do with the bullish posture of the Fed and the anticipation that the Fed will continue to raise interest rates and shrink its balance sheet.
But if what Jerome Powell said today causes traders to second guess those assumptions and maybe dial back their expectations for rate hikes – maybe not necessarily the 2 rate hikes that everybody believes are coming in the balance of 2018 – but potentially the idea that there may be no rate hikes at all coming in 2019, that 2018 may be the end of it. In fact, maybe, we won’t even get the December rate hike. I think to the extent the traders start to re-price the odds of future rate hikes this could be a big move in the dollar, a big move in gold and again, we have got to see what happens, because maybe this was a one day event… maybe traders are not going to read into Powells comments what I think he meant. But, given the reaction that we had today, I think there is a reasonable chance that that is exactly the way the markets are going to take it. We have so many people on the wrong side of this trade right now that it’s a perfect time for the market to swing the other way.