Gold has faded from interest in the past couple months, overshadowed by the monster stock-market rally. But gold has been consolidating high, quietly basing before its next challenge to major $1350 bull-market resistance. A decisive breakout above will really catch investors’ attention, greatly improving sentiment and driving major capital inflows. With gold-futures speculators not very long yet, plenty of buying power exists.
Last August gold was pummeled to a 19.3-month low near $1174 by extreme all-time-record short selling in gold futures. The speculators trading these derivatives command a wildly-disproportional influence on short-term gold price action, especially when investors aren’t buying. Gold-futures trading bullies gold’s price around considerably to majorly, which can really distort psychology surrounding the gold market.
The main reason is the incredible leverage inherent in gold futures. This week the maintenance margin required to trade a single 100-troy-ounce gold-futures contract is just $3400. That’s the minimum cash traders have to keep in their accounts. Yet at the recent $1300 gold price, each contract controls gold worth $130,000. So gold-futures speculators are legally allowed to run extreme leverage up to 38.2x!