Gold Tug-of War: Mid-term Bullish vs Short-term Bearish

Gold has been zigzagging up and down for all of 2017. This erratic performance brings a measure of uncertainty, but – in a way – it also increases confidence in our long-term forecast.

Starting in November 2015, the Profit Radar Report expected a sizeable gold rally.

The November 30, 2015 Profit Radar Report published the chart below, which shows gold at quadruple support and record bullish smart money hedgers. An ideal setup for a rally (gold’s final low occurred on December 3, 2015 at 1,045).

The second chart shows the Elliott Wave Theory (EWT) labeling we’ve been following for the past years.

According to EWT, the first wave (comprised of five sub-waves) of the bear market ended in December 2015. The rally since is a counter trend move.

Barron’s rates iSPYETF as “trader with a good track record” and Investor’s Bussines Daily says “When Simon says, the market listens.”

Common Fibonacci target levels for this counter trend rally are 1,381, 1,485 and 1,588. Counter trends are generally more choppy and less predictable, which is true of the rally from December 2015 to September 2017 (this increases confidence in our forecast).

Since we were looking for a move above 1,382, the Profit Radar Report issued a buy signal for gold and gold ETFs like the SPDR Gold Shares (GLD) in November 2015 (gold at 1,088), and in August 2017 (gold at 1282).

On September 8, 2017 gold became overbought and touched the top of the black trend channel. Smart money hedgers (which were record bullish at the December 2015 low) turned significantly more bearish (see daily chart).

For those reasons, the Profit Radar Report issued a sell signal on September 5, 2017.

We don’t have a down side target for the current pullback (yet), but the lack of a bearish RSI-divergence at the September 8 high and failure to reach or exceed Fibonacci resistance at 1,381 suggests gold will take another stab at new recovery highs.

The daily chart insert illustrates gold seasonality for the remainder of 2017.

The Profit Radar Report will continue to monitor technicals, Elliott Wave patterns, sentiment, seasonality and cycles to confirm (or invalidate) our preferred forecast and spot low-risk buy or sell entries.

Simon Maierhofer is the founder of iSPYETF and the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. Barron’s rated iSPYETF as a “trader with a good track record” (click here for Barron’s profile of the Profit Radar Report). The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013, 17.59% in 2014, and 24.52% in 2015.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

 

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Risk/Reward for Gold and Silver is Getting More Attractive, But …

On May 5, I received the following e-mail:

“Hi Simon, With all this volatility, why don’t you want to initiate any trades? For example a low risk trade as shorting XLU and QQQ? Gold, Silver, Platinum, Natural Gas, Oil look to me as a great long candidates. I don’t understand why you are staying on sidelines at the best time you can trade.”

Here is my reply:

“True, purely based on technicals, there are trades out there, but we lack confirmation of our other indicators to confirm such a trade. I have learned that no trade is better than a bad trade, and that a bad trade is more likely when data is conflicting. We didn’t short QQQ, because of the open chart gap. Feel free to go long gold or silver, and we’ll revisit how that trade is going in a few weeks (please see recent PRRs for more details on why we are not buying silver and gold at these prices). Seasonality for XLU is pretty strong the next several weeks, so shorting it is not ideal.

I’m itching to recommend a trade … once the risk profile improves. Hope this helps a bit. Best, Simon”

I haven’t yet sent an e-mail to revisit the gold and silver trade (I don’t like to rub things in, so I won’t), but lets take a moment to revisit gold and silver.

The April 20 Profit Radar Report looked at technicals, gold sentiment and gold seasonality and concluded the following:

Gold Update

Out of the three driving forces we monitor for gold (technicals, sentiment, seasonality), technicals look the most bullish. Sentiment says risk is elevated. Immediate up side potential is limited based on seasonality.

Important chart support is around 1,200 and 1,160 – 1,130. We are looking to buy gold at a price tag of 1,200 or below. We will reassess our buy limit once (and if) we get closer to 1,200.”

Barron’s rates the iSPYETF as a “trader with a good track record.” Click here for Barron’s assessment of the Profit Radar Report.

The same analysis along with long-term gold and silver charts and sentiment data were also published here on May 5: Gold and Silver Bulls Risk Painful Whipsaw

On Monday, gold fell as low as 1,202, which makes buying much more attractive than it was near 1,300. It now becomes an exercise of patience and fine-tuning to peg the right buy limit.

We may see another up/down sequence before a more ideal low (see chart for potential support levels). The biggest knock against buying right now remains gold sentiment.

Silver

The April 13 Profit Radar Report stated that: “A move above 16.40 could result in a move towards 17.8.”

Silver peaked at 18.075, and the April 24 Profit Radar Report warned that: “Seasonality and sentiment suggest danger ahead. We eventually would like to own silver, but the risk/reward ratio doesn’t become attractive until price drops towards 16 and below.”

Silver fell as low as 15.84 and retraced 50% of the prior gains. There are some oversold readings and silver may bounce, but more bullish sentiment will likely have to be worked off before a more lasting low is reached (see chart for potential support levels).

The corresponding ETF charts for gold and silver – SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) and iShares Silver Trust (NYSEArca: SLV) – paint the same picture.

Continued gold and silver analysis is available via the Profit Radar Report.

Simon Maierhofer is the founder of iSPYETF and the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. Barron’s rated iSPYETF as a “trader with a good track record” (click here for Barron’s profile of the Profit Radar Report). The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013, 17.59% in 2014, and 24.52% in 2015.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

 

Gold Seasonality Projects Higher Gold Prices

As far as indicators go, gold seasonality has been on fire.

Gold seasonality projected a top in late January. The January 25 Profit Radar Report warned that: “Gold seasonality is starting to turn sour.”

From January 22 – July 24, gold prices tumbled 17.8%.

The July 19 Profit Radar Report pointed out that: “Seasonality will turn strongly bullish in early August.”

Gold and gold ETFs already soared 6.9% since the August 6 seasonal gold low.

The gold seasonality chart projects further gold gains until early October. This, by the way, does not mean that there won’t be any pullbacks.

Meticulously hand-crafted seasonality charts for all major asset classes are available to subscribers of the Profit Radar Report.

Gold seasonality is only one indicator, but it wasn’t the only indicator suggesting a gold rally. The July 21 article “Gold Looks so Bad, it Might Actually be Good” highlights 3 bullish gold development.

Technical analysis also suggested that a tradable bottom was formed on July 24.

The July 26 Profit Radar Report published the chart below (including the yellow projection) and stated the following: “The daily bar chart shows a bullish reversal candle at Friday’s low. Friday’s intraday reversal satisfies the basic requirements for a tradeable low. As long as Friday’s low (1,075.60) holds, odds favor higher prices with a target above 1,300. We will buy a small amount of gold on a move above 1,100. The equivalent level for SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEArca: GLD is around 105.50.”

Simon Maierhofer is the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013 and 17.59% in 2014.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

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Gold Looks So Bad, it Might Actually be Good

Gold is having another bad year, and most ‘pros’ are looking for even more losses:

  • “Gold teeters near five-year low after ‘bear raid’, more losses expected” – Reuters
  • “3 Trends that are burying gold prices” – CBC News
  • “Why gold is falling and won’t get up again” – MarketWatch
  • “The one chart that shows that gold may not be as safe as you think” – The Independent

Every gold bear should know that the market has a nasty habit: It likes to fool the crowded trade.

Based on the above headlines, short gold is the crowded trade.

Past experience has shown that using a combination of seasonality, sentiment and technical analysis to project (or at least try to project) gold prices is most effective.

Using this approach helped prepare for the September 2011 all-time high (August 24, 2011 Profit Radar Report: “Gold will melt down faster than its melting up. At some point investors will have to sell holdings to pay of debt or answer margin calls. The most profitable asset is sold first. Gold has been the best performing asset for a decade and a liquidity crunch could produce sellers en masse”).

The December 29, 2013 Profit Radar Report built a case for new lows around 1,000:

We would like to see a new low (below the June low at 1,178). There’s support at 1,162 – 1,155 and 1,028 – 992. Depending on the structure of any decline, we would evaluate if it makes sense to buy around 1,160 or if a drop to 1,000 +/- is more likely.”

Gold did bounce right around 1,162 – 1,155 last year, but is now coming back to test 1,028 – 992.

Here’s an updated look at seasonality, sentiment and technical analysis:

Seasonality

Gold seasonality projected a rough second half of July, but is turning significantly bullish in early August.

You may view the gold seasonality chart here: Gold Seasonality Chart

Sentiment

Most gold sentiment gauges are nearing extremes. Trend followers (the crowded trade) are bearish, but business insiders (smart money) are anticipating higher prices.

The chart above plots gold prices against the net futures positions of commercial hedgers (= people or entities in the business of mining, transporting or trading gold).

This is the latest available data, but since the CFTC reports on Friday (using data of Tuesday), it is already over a week old. Chances are commercials are even more bullish now than shown on the chart.

Regardless, commercial hedgers have scaled down their short exposure in anticipation of rising prices. Their timing is not always right on the money, but they rarely end up on the wrong side of the trade.

Technical Analysis

Gold is nearing a long-term support zone. A new low against a bullish RSI divergence, panic selloff (which Monday could have been) or move back above 1,135 is likely to spark a tradable rally.

This doesn’t mean gold won’t resume its decline later on, but prices appear to be near a short-term exhaustion point.

Simon Maierhofer is the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013 and 17.59% in 2014.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

 

Gold Seasonality and Sentiment Turned Frosty

In early November, gold finally reached my down side target and I became a self-proclaimed gold bull, at least for 2015.

After over three years of falling prices (from 1,927 to 1,130) it just felt right to put the bear down for its hibernation and become a bull. In November 2014, at the 1,130 low, the pieces were in place for at least a tradable and perhaps a lasting low:

  1. Gold reached my down side target
  2. There was a bullish RSI divergence
  3. There was a big green reversal candle at the November 7 low
  4. Seasonality was turning temporarily bullish
  5. Sentiment was ripe for a reversal. The ‘smart money’ was bullish and the ‘dumb money’ was bearish

On queue, gold started cruising higher and everything went according to plan … until something odd happened in late January.

 

The January 27 Profit Radar Report noted that commercial traders (smart money) were selling gold at a rapid pace, and published the chart below. The dashed red lines illustrate what happened the last two times commercial traders fled gold.

The chart also included Elliott Wave labels (numbers from 1 – 5). In case you’re not familiar with Elliott Wave Theory, you may find this excerpt from the same Profit Radar Report interesting:

The chart shows that current trade is important from an Elliot Wave perspective. Gold appears to have completed a 3 wave rally. There are now two options:

  1. Gold will trace out a wave 4 correction followed by wave 5 higher. Target for a wave 5 high is around 1,330.

    Longer-term, a complete 5-wave rally will be followed by a corrective decline and at least one more rally leg.

    Shorter-term, a wave 4 correction could become a pain to manage. Waves 4 tend to seesaw over support/resistance levels, therefore using the trend channel support at 1,275 as stop loss could kick us out at the wrong time.

  2. A 3-wave rally is indicative of a correction and would translate into a relapse to new lows. This option is unlikely, but theoretically possible.”

Balancing the potential of long-term gains and short-term risk was a tough call, but my recommendation was as follows:

We can either take our profits and run or commit to endure a potentially painful correction in exchange for further gains. I like to keep things simple and recommend taking profits. Lets cash in gold around 1,295 and GLD around 124.20 for a nice 13.5% gain.”

In addition to bearish sentiment developments, the Profit Radar Report cautioned of weak gold seasonality. The chart below plots the actual price of the SPDR Gold Shares ETF (NYSEArca: GLD) against gold seasonality up until mid-March (a full year gold seasonality chart is available to subscribers of the Profit Radar Report).

It’s hard to ignore the textbook November bottom, but it’s also hard to ignore the January sentiment and seasonality warnings. The risk of more down side is real, and my inner gold bull is set on hibernation mode for now. As per the second Elliott Wave Theory option discussed above, new lows are at least possible.

Simon Maierhofer is the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013 and 17.59% in 2014.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

Is Gold Rolling Over Again?

I published the chart with the two CNBC headlines in the January 19 Profit Radar Report. It just illustrates nicely how the change of price affects sentiment and vice versa. A risk trend followers hate and contrarian investors love.

We bought gold at 1,140 (as per the November 5 Profit Radar Report recommendation) when no one wanted to own it.

Now, it’s more fashionable to own the yellow metal again.

This alone is reason to be cautious, but it’s not the only one.

The gold seasonality chart below, featured in the January 25 Profit Radar Report, shows that seasonality soured around January 22.

Although it’s a couple of days old, the assessment published in the January 27 Profit Radar Report is still fully applicable.

The easy money in the gold trade has been made. More attention and mental stamina is required now. Sunday’s PRR showed seasonality is turning bearish. Commercial traders (‘smart money’) have further reduced exposure.

The chart shows that current trade is important from an Elliot Wave perspective. Gold appears to have completed a 3 wave rally. There are now two options:

Gold will trace out a wave 4 correction followed by wave 5 higher. Target for a wave 5 high is around 1,xxx (reserved for subscribers of the Profit Radar Report).

Longer-term, a complete 5-wave rally will be followed by a corrective decline and at least one more rally leg.

Shorter-term, a wave 4 correction could become a pain to manage. Waves 4 tend to seesaw over support/resistance levels, therefore using the trend channel support at 1,275 as stop loss could kick us out at the wrong time.

A 3-wave rally is indicative of a correction and would translate into a relapse to new lows. This option is unlikely, but theoretically possible.

We can either take our profits and run or commit to endure a potentially painful correction in exchange for further gains. I like to keep things simple and recommend taking profits. Lets cash in gold around 1,295 and GLD around 124.20 for a nice 13.5% gain.”

Gold has since dropped to 1,255. The SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD, iShares Gold Trust (NYSEArca: IAU) and Market Vectors Gold Minders ETF (NYSEArca: GDX) also peeled away from their recovery highs. I still think gold, GLD and IAU will see higher highs, but it will take some patience to get there.

Simon Maierhofer is the publisher of the Profit Radar Report. The Profit Radar Report presents complex market analysis (S&P 500, Dow Jones, gold, silver, euro and bonds) in an easy format. Technical analysis, sentiment indicators, seasonal patterns and common sense are all wrapped up into two or more easy-to-read weekly updates. All Profit Radar Report recommendations resulted in a 59.51% net gain in 2013 and 17.59%.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF or sign up for the FREE iSPYETF Newsletter to get actionable ETF trade ideas delivered for free.

Gold Seasonality Projected This Sell off – What’s Next on the Calendar?

Central banks are buying gold, China is buying gold … and gold prices continue to slide lower. This doesn’t make sense if you’re following fundamental research. Seasonality however projected the recent drop. What’s next based on seasonal patterns?

Like a knocked out boxer, gold prices just can’t ‘get off the mat,’ and smart money gold traders have been selling into every rally.

Weak gold prices persist despite a weak dollar and a strong S&P 500 (NYSEArca: SPY).

Apparently the smart money doesn’t care that China and almost every other central bank in the world is (allegedly) buying gold (this reasoning is flawed anyway, more below).

The best hope for bullish gold investors might be a return of seasonal strength.

Below is a very unique seasonality chart specially created for subscribers of the Profit Radar Report.

It is based on actual gold prices, but can be applied to gold ETFs like the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD), iShares Gold Trust (NYSEArca: IAU) and even the Gold Miners ETF (NYSEArca: GDX) and UltraShort Gold ProShares (NYSEArca: GLL).

The gold seasonality chart is created from averaging together 33 years of gold behavior.  But since gold is at a different price level every year, using just the average gold price would inappropriately skew the result by overweighting the years when it was at a higher level and vice versa.

To equally weigh every year, the price history is adjusted (using a divisor) to begin at the same level on the first trading day of every year.  Then each day’s values for the rest of the year reflect the percentage change from that first day of the year.

This chart was originally featured in the September 16 Profit Radar Report and projected a seasonal drop starting on October 10.

Seasonality and particular technical analysis are much better forecasting tools than fundamentals. It’s now obvious: The fundamental reasoning that gold prices must go up because central banks and China are buying doesn’t work.

The Profit Radar Report looks at technical analysis, seasonality and sentiment to identify low-risk buy/sell signals. We sold our gold position (established near the low) at 1,420 on August 27). Wednesday’s Profit Radar Report identified the must hold support level, that once broken should lead to much lower prices.

Here is why this reasoning is flawed: Why The Notion of a Demand Driven Gold Rush is Flawed

Simon Maierhofer is the publisher of the Profit Radar Report.

Follow Simon on Twitter @ iSPYETF