The Most Important Indicator For Gold

The fundamental driver for gold is declining real interest rates or expectations of such. Fed rate cuts, accelerating inflation, and rising inflation expectations lead to declining real interest rates. In the current macro-market context, the most important indicator is something different.

Recently, we wrote why the real bull market has barely started. A huge bull market in gold precludes the stock market from performing well. Sure, there can be some periods where both perform well together. These include the early to mid-1960's, 2003 to 2007, 2009-2010, and 2020. However, given the structure of the gold market, the next leg higher will include dramatic outperformance against the stock market.

The gold to S&P 500 ratio (bottom right) needs to break past a seven-year range (resistance at 0.70). That break is likely to coincide with gold exploding out of its cup and handle pattern and past $2,100/oz. The cup and handle pattern is super bullish, and there’s little chance gold is going to bust out of it while capital favors US equities. 

Gold (top), Gold vs. S&P 500 (bottom)

Hence, the gold to S&P 500 ratio is the most important indicator at present for gold and the gold market.

Capital has moved out of bonds and into stocks and commodities. Worries over accelerating inflation, stagflation, and the like will trigger capital rotating primarily into gold and silver instead of stocks. In the meantime, the US Dollar has put in a bottom and could trend higher or remain stable well into the third quarter of the year. That could keep a lid on inflation expectations. 

Some leading indicators that could indicate gold is closer to a renewed uptrend (and not just an oversold rebound) include gold’s performance against the S&P 500 as well as foreign currencies. 

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