Time for the gold rally to pause?
Head of Commodity Strategy
Summary: Gold has rallied strongly in response to the US Fed pausing and even giving hints of reduced QT. Given the elevated expectations in the market, there is a short-term downside risk if the language on QT stop is not delivered.
Following a very strong December, and after pausing below $1,300/oz for a few weeks this month, the yellow metal broke higher last Friday when the market reacted enthusiastically to a Wall Street Journal article discussing the potential for a Fed turnaround on quantitative tightening.
On that basis the market may be most sensitive to any discussion of the Fed’s QT programme in Fed chair Jerome Powell’s press conference this evening. So be prepared for two peaks in the event risk reaction tonight – the issuance of the statement itself and any alterations it contains, and then how Powell responds to questions on the policy outlook in the press conference.
The market appears quite confident that it has tamed Powell’s prior hawkish tendencies after the market so viciously rebelled on the message delivered at the December Federal Open Market Committee meeting. So it looks like the market, especially gold, is positioned for a Fed thaw on QT even if it expects a two way message on rate guidance. In other words if looks as if the higher volatility scenario would be a more hawkish Fed than expected on the QT discussion.
Sport Gold (XAUUSD)
XAUUSD, Put strike $1,300/oz, Expiry February 6, Cost $2.5/oz, Reference price: $1,314/oz.
GCH9, Put strike $1,300/oz, Expiry February 25, Cost $5/oz, Reference price: $1,316/oz.
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