Is the recent rebound in gold too good to be true? After falling hard in 2013 – posting a decline of 28% – the precious metal managed to claw its way upwards to revisit $1,300 an ounce. Many analysts began to believe that the yellow metal was about to rally. As such, funds like the iShares Gold Trust (NYSE Arca:IAU) once again saw inflows.
But some big-name strategists are saying that investors shouldn’t be buying into the bling just yet. There are more declines and better prices around the corner. And when they hit, investors should be buying all they can.
Down To $1,000 Per Ounce
First, according to technical analysts at Charlotte, N.C.-based Bank of America Corp. (NYSE:BAC), gold’s charts aren’t telling a great story. Analyst MacNeil Curry expects gold bullion to be range bound before moving downwards to $1,215 per ounce. That echoes similar predictions from investment bank UBS Inc. (NYSE:UBS). The reason for the dour forecasts has to do with the strengthening U.S. and European economies. Additionally, higher interest rates and a strong greenback continue to weigh heavily on the metal. According to one stagiest, if it wasn’t for the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, gold could fall to the $800 to $1,000 per ounce range.
Which is exactly where famed investor Jim Rogers says to begin buying.
Rogers, who has been a big supporter of gold and other commodities for years, believes that a big gold correction could come soon. The former hedge fund manager estimates that a 50% correction every three-to-five years is normal for any asset class, and gold is no exception. Gold peaked at just over $2,000 per ounce back in 2011. Rogers also says that dwindling demand from China will weigh heavily.
Rogers adds that many of the long term catalysts for higher gold prices are still in place. The various quantitative easing programs and money printing will end badly, resulting in the potential collapse of the euro and dollar as well as triggering higher commodity prices and inflationary pressures, he believes. Gold remains a good insurance policy any of that happens.
Getting Ready To Buy Gold
Investors with a longer term view or those who are worried about the return of inflation may soon be getting a gift in lower gold prices. They should be ready to pounce. The easiest way continues to be the SPDR Gold Shares ETF (NYSE Arca:GLD).
The $32 billion ETF is physically-backed and represents the share of gold bars stored in a vault on behalf of investors. The ETF features high liquidity and relatively low operating expenses at 0.40%. Likewise, the ETFS Physical Swiss Gold Shares (Nasdaq:SGOL) stores its bullion in neutral Switzerland, while the UBS E-TRACS CMCI Gold TR ETN (NYSE Arca:UBG) uses futures to get its gold exposure. Both SGOL and UBG are perfect substitutes for the GLD.
Another potential option for investors could be the various gold-backed closed-end funds or CEFs. Due to their structure and fixed number of shares, CEFs can trade at discounts to underlying values. That means investors can snag gold at even bigger discounts to market prices. The two most popular funds – the Central fund of Canada Limited (NYSE:CEF) and Sprott Physical Gold Trust (Nasdaq:PHYS) – can both be had for discounts of 4.92% and 0.50%, respectively.
Finally, for those investors not willing to just wait for lower gold prices, there is the option to short the metal before buying it. The ProShares UltraShort Gold (NYSE Arca:GLL) is designed to deliver twice the daily inverse return of gold bullion prices, while the PowerShares DB Gold Short ETN (NYSE Arca:DGZ) can also be used- minus the leverage effect. Investors can ride these two funds down, before selling them and switching over t one of the long funds.
The Bottom Line
According to several strategists, gold could fall further this year. Does that make it the best buying opportunity in years? If so, is now the time to short the shiny stuff?