During a time when inflation is skyrocketing, gold prices have reached an all-time high. Recent optimism surrounding potential interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve has significantly boosted the value of the precious metal.
While the prices of commodities, including gold, typically experience fluctuations, the current inflationary environment has driven gold to a peak of $2,135.39 per ounce this week, surpassing the previous record set more than three years ago.
Traders have predicted that the Federal Reserve will shift its policy from raising to cutting interest rates. This shift has led to a depreciation of the U.S. dollar, enhancing the value of gold, which is not only priced in dollars but also in various other currencies.
Analysts say higher prices are partly down to more purchases by governments and central banks. Geo-political concerns, including tensions in Ukraine and Gaza, along with the upcoming U.S. presidential election in eleven months, are also seen as potential contributors.
Since October, gold prices gained approximately 14%. Many analysts anticipate further increases if evidence emerges during upcoming Federal Reserve meetings indicating a more dovish stance among policymakers and an improved likelihood of interest rate cuts.
Looking ahead, Heng Koon How, the head of markets strategy, global economics, and markets research at UOB, projects that gold prices could reach $2,200 per ounce by the end of next year. Factors such as the expected decline in the U.S. dollar and interest rates throughout 2024 are significant positive drivers for gold.
This bullish trend in gold prices recalls the last major surge observed in 2011, during the recovery from the Great Recession. Additionally, the late 1970s and early 1980s saw gold rise to $850 per ounce during hyperinflation, which remains the inflation-adjusted high.
Gold is not the sole alternative to the U.S. dollar performing well in late 2023, as Bitcoin has also experienced a rally. Starting at $25,220 in mid-September, the digital currency has surged to nearly $42,000 this week.