Investing Ideas

Asia Wrap: Gold Continues To Shine Bright

Gold

Equities have been marching higher, the EUR/USD is trading sub 1.0800, and gold is holding above $1600, suggesting investors are continuing to seek gold as a quality asset and hedge against the economic impact of Covid-19 amid a laundry list of global growth concerns. Yesterday marked the 19th day in a row of gold ETF inflows; indeed, there is a significant appetite for this segment of the market to continue adding gold as a strategic part of the portfolio.

The Fed’s review of thier policy strategy, tools, and communications may be the next most important transit point for gold. As the Fed moves to tweak the inflation target, the approach may have a massively bullish imprint on gold markets.

Asia Markets

Markets were a little jittery this morning as South Korea reported a total of 46 coronavirus cases early in Asia, and a total of 2000 deaths were recorded in China. Asian equities recovered, however, and followed the S&P500 higher Markets were generally buoyed by news that China is reportedly mulling options to help promote liquidity, including cash injections.

Asia FX

USD/KRW traded up to 1193.3 after the USD/CNY fix and higher USD/CNH. It has been trending lower since then as USD/CNH returned below 7.01, and Kospi turned positive, settling at 1190-91. I’m not even going to pretend I have a salient view on Asia FX at the moment, I’m open to suggestions, however.

US dollar

On the USD, the “cleanest dirty shirt” argument for owning US assets remains particularly salient at the moment, given the likely asymmetric growth impact of the coronavirus shock. The growth impact of the virus remains expected to be more severe in China hence Germany, which is the sell EUR/USD trigger.

Oil

The PBoC stimulus impulses continue to resonate in the commodity market as oil moves higher. Oil prices are also getting buttressed after a US move to cut more Venezuelan crude from the market by sanctioning Rosneft trading arm. The Swiss subsidiary “has been Venezuela’s primary conduit for brokering cargos, which find their way predominantly to refineries in India and China,” and “Throttling this Asian supply channel will provide some support for oil prices,”

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