Sunday, March 1, 2009

The tug of war between the gold and crude oil!

The rise in crude prices halted after four days of continuous surge owing to the forecast that fourth quarter contraction of the U.S economy was steeper than expected. The estimate points out that gross domestic product fell at an annual rate of 6.2%, the worst since 1982.
As the dollar showed an improvement, oil took a beating and so too the appeal of commodities as an alternative investment. The drop in crude prices happened despite the OPEC’s decision to curtail production in a bid to boost up the crude prices. It seems that the demand-supply theory doesn’t work very well here in deciding the crude prices and the data on the economic growth especially that of the U.S has a bearing on it.
In the New York Mercantile Exchange, the April delivery crude oil futures fell 46 cents or roughly 1per cent to $ 44.76 a barrel. This has to be viewed from the context that the price of crude has dropped to a whopping 70 per cent from its July 11, 2008 peak of $147.27 a barrel.
Gold loses its sheen
The past week saw the gold shed some of its sheen with 6% drop in its value, mainly because of the appreciation of dollar which rose to the highest in almost three years against six major currencies. But analysts point out that the gold bull run is far from over and it is mainly due to worries that paper currencies are being debased, especially given the tight economic situation and liquidity being pumped in to the financial system.
The demand for gold stems from the jewellery business and some of the Asian countries, especially India being the major consumer. It is hoped that the price of gold will stabilize during the second half of the next year.