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Heraeus Precious Appraisal

  • Edition 21 - 16 July 2018

European gold ETF holdings climb as political and economic risks grow

Gold ETF holdings have increased by 2.2%, 1.5 moz, in the first half of 2018 to 73 moz, but are down from a peak in May at 75 moz. This follows a rise of 11% (7.4 moz) in 2017. German listed ETFs had the largest gain of 1.7 moz, whereas South Africa was the region with the biggest decline in gold ETFs of 250 koz.

Holdings in German listed gold ETFs increased strongly since the ECB reduced its main refinancing rate to zero in 2016, gaining 2.5 moz in 2016, 2.2 moz in 2017 and 1.7 moz in the first half of 2018. UK ETFs gained 1.7 moz over the last 18 months, although purchases have tailed off recently, and Swiss ETFs have also increased by 1.1 moz. Over this period, concerns about a global trade war grew as tariffs were enacted and political uncertainty increased, pushing investors towards gold.

Political and economic risks have not receded, market volatility has increased and the US$ is strengthening. Tariffs on car exports would damage the Eurozone economy and weaken the euro, and failure to reach an agreement in Brexit negotiations would also adversely affect the EU and UK. All of which suggests that European investors will continue to seek the safety of gold.

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The material contained in this document has no regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation or particular need of any specific recipient or organisation. It is not provided as part of a contractual relationship. It is not and should not be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to purchase or subscribe for any investment or as advice on the merits of making any investment.

This report has been compiled using information obtained from sources that Heraeus and SFA (Oxford) Ltd (“SFA”) believe to be reliable but which they have not independently verified. Further, the analysis and opinions set out in this document, including any forward-looking statements, constitute a judgment as of the date of the document and are subject to change without notice.

There is no assurance that any forward-looking statements will materialize. Therefore, neither SFA nor Heraeus warrants the accuracy and completeness of the data and analysis contained in this document.

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