Paulson & Co. – a Victim of Redemptions?

Today news hit that John Paulson has finally sold a big chunk of his position in GLD. It is not terribly surprising that this happened in the quarter when gold made its low. After Paulson sold his holdings in bank stocks, the group soared, with many of the stocks he had sold at the lows rising by 200% and more therafter. However, this time it has probably less to do with his bad timing, but very likely more with the bad timing of investors in his funds. As the Bloomberg article mentions:

 

“Paulson & Co., the largest investor in the SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest exchange-traded product for the metal, pared its stake to 10.2 million shares in the three months ended June 30 from 21.8 million at the end of the first quarter, according to a government filing yesterday. The New York-based firm, which manages $18 billion, cut its ownership for the first time since 2011 “due to a reduced need for hedging,” according to an e-mailed response to questions.”

 

(emphasis added)

A friend reminded us that Paulson & Co. runs many funds that are denominated in gold. Any redemptions from these funds would therefore reduce the need for hedging. So it seems that Paulson's investors have cut their exposure to the gold denominated versions of his funds at exactly the wrong moment. This is actually something that always tends to happen near market lows. Apparently a number of other prominent hedge funds, including the Soros fund, also cut their exposure in the second quarter. So far they have all been wrong twice: first by holding on until the lows were made, and then by selling just as the market reversed and a rally started. As a matter of fact, we think it is a good thing these investors are gone. They were all late-comers to the gold bull market and their involvement has essentially proved to be a curse rather than a blessing. In fact, one should probably begin to get careful once they decide to get involved again, which is bound to happen at some point. In the meantime, these latest news may well contribute to a developing 'wall of worry' backdrop.

 

Gold Stocks – Technical Conditions Continue to Improve

In our last update we discussed the idea that the previous downside gap region in the HUI should begin to provide support if the recent advance was the 'real McCoy'. This appears to have happened and hopefully this time the support will manage to hold.

In addition, the HUI has in the meantime already advanced toward the 100-day moving average, which has not happened in a long time. A new MACD buy signal has been given as well. Last but not least, although this is written before the close of trading on Thursday, it appears as though the index may finally be about to make a higher high after putting in its first major higher low last week. This clearly represents a notable change in the market's character.

 


 

HUI-annot

The HUI daily. The technical backdrop continues to improve – click to enlarge.

 


 

Below is another look at the HUI-gold ratio, which has broken its previous downtrend and continues to advance. Currently the ratio is close to a lateral level of resistance, but it seems likely that it will be overcome. An ongoing rise in this ratio is a necessary precondition for the continuation of the rebound.

 


 

HUI-gold ratio

The HUI-gold ratio – there are numerous positive divergences, and it appears as though it is finally overcoming its medium term downtrend line for good – click to enlarge.

 


 

Gold – Dips Are Getting Bought, Sentiment and Positioning Leave a Lot of Room for Further Improvement

Gold suffered another sharp dip early in Thursday's trading, but once again buying emerged in an area of near term support. Note the surge in trading volume near the intraday lows. The probability that resistance in the $1,350 area will fall is clearly rising – the more often dips elicit new buying and the more often the resistance area is tested, the more likely it will fall.

 


 

Dec Gold-30 minute

Gold December futures contract, 30 minute chart. The dip early on Thursday has attracted buyers. Volume near the low was strong, which is often a positive indication – click to enlarge.

 


 

Lastly, we want to briefly comment on recent developments on the sentiment and positioning front. The most recent commitments of traders reports show that big speculators are finally reducing their gross short positions in gold futures, leading to a slight increase in their net long position. The net long position had recently fallen back to levels last seen in 2005. Contrary to the widespread idea that an increase in speculative short positions is a positive, we hold that on the contrary, that bulls want to see growth in the net long position held by large speculators. This is so because this is the group that usually gets market direction right and the buying and selling of which is the major driver in the futures market. It only serves as a contrary indicator at extremes. Quite often it happens even near extremes that the large speculator category is beginning to take defensive action shortly before major highs or lows are reached (this happened e.g. in the silver market shortly before it topped in late April 2011).

Since recently a short term extreme in prices and positioning has in fact been reached, a change of opinion by this group of market participants would open the way for at least a major retracement rally. Here is a chart depicting the positioning of futures traders:

 


 

CoT gold

Commitments of traders in COMEX gold futures, via sentimentrader. Large speculators have finally stopped adding to their gross shorts and have begun to reverse the recent trend in positioning – click to enlarge.

 


 

Along similar lines, we find that the 'public opinion' chart – a composite of various sentiment surveys – remains at a very low level, just slightly off its recent lows. Should the recent rally prove durable, there would be a lot of negative sentiment that could be unwound and provide fuel for additional advances. Similar to the CoTs, negative sentiment is not a bullish indicator per se. It is contrarian only near extremes. Once a trend changes, it can help to support and magnify the new trend.

In other words, this will only be meaningful if a significant trend change is indeed in the works (the obvious caveat to this is that gold has yet to move above significant short term resistance). However, once one can be reasonable certain that a more durable trend change is indeed underway, it will of course be a good thing that the indicator is currently still at such a low level.

 


 

Public opinion gold

Gold, public opinion. If the market changes direction, there is a lot of room for sentiment to move from one extreme to the other – click to enlarge.

 


 

Conclusion:

So far, so good.

 

Addendum:

Shortly after we finished writing this update, gold has indeed broken out above the $1,350 resistance level. So a few of the above comments have already been superseded. If the breakout holds, there is likely going to be additional upside in the short to medium term.

 

 

Charts by: StockCharts, BarCharts, Sentimentrader


 

 

 

Emigrate While You Can... Learn More

 


 

 
 

Dear Readers!

You may have noticed that our so-called “semiannual” funding drive, which started sometime in the summer if memory serves, has seamlessly segued into the winter. In fact, the year is almost over! We assure you this is not merely evidence of our chutzpa; rather, it is indicative of the fact that ad income still needs to be supplemented in order to support upkeep of the site. Naturally, the traditional benefits that can be spontaneously triggered by donations to this site remain operative regardless of the season - ranging from a boost to general well-being/happiness (inter alia featuring improved sleep & appetite), children including you in their songs, up to the likely allotment of privileges in the afterlife, etc., etc., but the Christmas season is probably an especially propitious time to cross our palms with silver. A special thank you to all readers who have already chipped in, your generosity is greatly appreciated. Regardless of that, we are honored by everybody's readership and hope we have managed to add a little value to your life.

   

Bitcoin address: 12vB2LeWQNjWh59tyfWw23ySqJ9kTfJifA

   
 

3 Responses to “Gold and Gold Stocks Update – John Paulson Sells GLD”

  • ManAboutDallas:

    There’s another side to the GLD redemption : it’s how the Smart Money, i.e. the Soros’ and the Paulson’s, arbitrage their way into physical gold. Soros has done this already, then bought that huge call position in GDX or GDXJ, can’t remember which. Paulson may just be doing the same.

  • worldend666:

    A long time since I saw smiles on the faces of gold investors :)

  • rodney:

    Yes, the close at 30.40 for GDX makes it look like a genuine breakout. Strong volume too.

    Long @ 27.42, looking for opportunities to add some more. This could become another bull market.

Your comment:

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Most read in the last 20 days:

  • America Goes Full Imbecile
      Credit has a wicked way of magnifying a person’s defects.  Even the most cautious man, with unlimited credit, can make mistakes that in retrospect seem absurd.  But an average man, with unlimited credit, is preeminently disposed to going full imbecile.   Let us not forget about this important skill...  [PT]   Several weeks ago we came across a woeful tale of Mike Meru.  Somehow, this special fellow, while of apparent sound mine and worthy intent, racked up...
  • Retail Capitulation – Precious Metals Supply and Demand
      Small Crowds, Shrinking Premiums The prices of gold and silver rose five bucks and 37 cents respectively last week. Is this the blast off to da moon for the silver rocket of halcyon days, in other words 2010-2011?   Various gold bars. Coin and bar premiums have been shrinking steadily (as have coin sales of the US Mint by the way), a sign that retail investors have lost interest in gold. There are even more signs of this actually, and this loss of interest stands in stark...
  • Credit Spreads: Polly is Twitching Again - in Europe
      Junk Bond Spread Breakout The famous dead parrot is coming back to life... in an unexpected place. With its QE operations, which included inter alia corporate bonds, the ECB has managed to suppress credit spreads in Europe to truly ludicrous levels. From there, the effect propagated through arbitrage to other developed markets. And yes, this does “support the economy” - mainly by triggering an avalanche of capital malinvestment and creating the associated boom conditions, while...
  • Gold Divergences Emerge
      Bad Hair Day Produces Positive Divergences On Friday the ongoing trade dispute between the US and China was apparently escalated by a notch to the next level, at least verbally. The Trump administration announced a list of tariffs that are supposed to come into force in three week's time and China clicked back by announcing retaliatory action. In effect, the US government said: take that China, we will now really hurt our own consumers!  - and China's mandarins replied: just you wait, we...
  • Industrial Commodities vs. Gold - Precious Metals Supply and Demand
      Oil is Different Last week, we showed a graph of rising open interest in crude oil futures. From this, we inferred — incorrectly as it turns out — that the basis must be rising. Why else, we asked, would market makers carry more and more oil?   Crude oil acts differently from gold – and so do all other industrial commodities. What makes them different is that the supply of industrial commodities held in storage as a rule suffices to satisfy industrial demand only for a...
  • Chasing the Wind
      Futility with Purpose Plebeians generally ignore the tact of their economic central planners.  They care more that their meatloaf is hot and their suds are cold, than about any plans being hatched in the capital city.  Nonetheless, the central planners know an angry mob, with torches and pitchforks, are only a few empty bellies away.  Hence, they must always stay on point.   Watch for those pitchfork bearers – they can get real nasty and then heads often roll quite literally....
  • Lift-Off Not (Yet) - Precious Metals Supply and Demand
      Wrong-Way Event Last week we said something that turned out to be prescient:   This is not an environment for a Lift Off Event.   An unfortunate technical mishap interrupted the latest moon-flight of the gold rocket. Fear not true believers, a few positive tracks were left behind. [PT]   The price of gold didn’t move much Mon-Thu last week, though the price of silver did seem to be blasting off. Then on Friday, it reversed hard. We will provide a forensic...
  • Merger Mania and the Kings of Debt
      Another Early Warning Siren Goes Off Our friend Jonathan Tepper of research house Variant Perception (check out their blog to see some of their excellent work) recently pointed out to us that the volume of mergers and acquisitions has increased rather noticeably lately. Some color on this was provided in an article published by Reuters in late May, “Global M&A hits record $2 trillion in the year to date”, which inter alia contained the following chart illustrating the...
  • Cryptocurrency Technicals – Navigating the Bear Market
      A Purely Technical Market Long time readers may recall that we regard Bitcoin and other liquid big cap cryptocurrencies as secondary media of exchange from a monetary theory perspective for the time being. The wave of speculative demand that has propelled them to astonishing heights was triggered by market participants realizing that they have the potential to become money. The process of achieving more widespread adoption of these currencies as a means of payment and establishing...
  • The Fed's “Inflation Target” is Impoverishing American Workers
      Redefined Terms and Absurd Targets At one time, the Federal Reserve's sole mandate was to maintain stable prices and to “fight inflation.”  To the Fed, the financial press, and most everyone else “inflation” means rising prices instead of its original and true definition as an increase in the money supply.  Rising prices are a consequence – a very painful consequence – of money printing.   Fed Chair Jerome Powell apparently does not see the pernicious effects...
  • A Walk on the Wild Side
      A Walk on the Wild Side   “Never play cards with a man called Doc.  Never eat at a place called Mom’s.  Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own.” – Nelson Algren, A Walk on the Wild Side   Fresh Fruit or Rotting Vegetables? A subtle gas seems to always be vented into the atmosphere at the sunset of an extended bull market.  As the light fades, an odor that’s indiscernible from that of fresh fruit or rotting vegetables wafts down...

Support Acting Man

Item Guides

j9TJzzN

The Review Insider

Dog Blow

Austrian Theory and Investment

Archive

350x200

THE GOLD CARTEL: Government Intervention on Gold, the Mega Bubble in Paper and What This Means for Your Future

Realtime Charts

 

Gold in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Gold in EUR:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Silver in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

Platinum in USD:

[Most Recent Quotes from www.kitco.com]

 


 

USD - Index:

[Most Recent USD from www.kitco.com]

 

Mish Talk

 
Buy Silver Now!
 
Buy Gold Now!
 

Oilprice.com