Review backs gold price: Demand 'is strong enough to support dollars 370-dollars 390 an ounce'

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The Independent Online
DEMAND for gold is strong enough to support prices in the dollars 370-dollars 390 an ounce range, according to the annual review of the market by Gold Fields Mineral Services.

This is in line with current prices for gold, which closed last night at dollars 380.40 an ounce.

The review also says a bullish factor for the price is that there is less likelihood of gold sales by central banks, whose attitude appears more positive than a year ago when there were substantial disposals.

The review says western investors might fight shy of gold after recent US interest rate rises, but this threat is offset by the strength of physical demand. Sales to the main Asian markets in recent months show they have adjusted to the new higher prices, and this resilience is seen as supporting the price. There is also unlikely to be a repeat of the weakening of Asian jewellery demand and hoarding seen in the market last year when an austerity programme in China had a big impact on sales.

Gold Fields believes mining companies have minimally reduced forward order books, contrary to the market view that they have shortened their books to take advantage of further price rises. The company says much will depend on how the producers react to the next big price movement.

Last year, the purchase of more than 350 tonnes of investment gold, the highest level for 10 years, brought an end to the five-year bear market in gold.

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