Gold loses shine as investors get a shot of vaccine optimism

Gold loses shine as investors get a shot of vaccine optimism

Price slides but weak dollar and renewed Asian buying support bull case for 2021

TOKYO — The vaccines now offering the world potential exits from the yearlong coronavirus pandemic are having bearish effects on the gold market.

The New York benchmark price for the haven asset on Nov. 30 was at $1,790 per ounce, down 13% from Aug. 6, when it was at a record $2,069. On Dec. 10, the price sat near $1,838.

The pandemic lifted gold prices, which began the year trading at $1,528. The current benchmark price still represents a 17% gain this year.

“The upward trend of gold prices earlier this year was largely due to the inflow of funds to gold-backed exchange-traded funds,” said Masayo Kondo, president of Tokyo’s Commodity Intelligence.

According to the World Gold Council, Gold-backed ETFs through November this year added more than 900 tons to their portfolios, the most ever for a single year, surpassing the record 646 tons they added in all of 2009, during the Wall Street-triggered financial crisis. Globally, ETFs now hold 3,793 tons of the metal, also a record.