Gold has traditionally been seen as a way to store your money. It’s not affected directly by either fiscal policy or monetary policy of governments and central banks like currencies.
It will always be worth something – unlike a currency that can end up being almost worthless as a result of rapid inflation, for instance. That’s why whether it’s in the uptrend or in the downtrend, the gold market offers high liquidity and excellent profit-making opportunities due to its unique position within the world’s economic and political systems.
Some traders often fail to take full advantage of the changes in gold prices because they haven’t learned its unique characteristics or the hidden pitfalls that can steal their profits. Let’s take a look at the advantages of trading gold, factors that can influence its prices and how to trade gold profitably.
What Drives Gold Prices
Like we’ve mentioned before, gold prices can be driven by a limited number of catalysts. Market sentiment, volume and trend intensity are generally driven by:
- Inflation and deflation
- Greed and fear
- Supply and demand
Market participants can face increased risk when they trade gold in reaction to one of these factors, when in fact, it’s another one driving price action. Imagine there’s a major selloff in the financial market, and gold starts rallying.
Traders assume that fear is moving the precious metal and expect that the emotional crowd will carry the price higher.
However, inflation may have actually triggered the stock’s decline, attracting a more technical crowd to the market that will sell aggressively.
Combinations of these forces are always in play in world markets, establishing long-term themes that track equally long uptrends and downtrends.
Gold attracts numerous crowds with diverse and often opposing interests. The so-called gold bugs (individuals who buy gold as protection against an anticipated collapse in the value of currency, stocks, etc.) stand at the top of the crowd, allocating an outsized portion of family assets to gold equities. They are long-term market players who are rarely discouraged by recurring downtrends, so they eventually shake out less ideological traders.
Gold bugs add massive liquidity, providing a continuous supply of buying interest at lower prices. They also serve the contrary purpose of providing efficient entry for short-sellers, especially in emotional markets when one of the three above-mentioned factors swings the market in favour of strong buying pressure.
To trade gold profitably, you need to know the crowd sentiment. Cayman Sentiment Index is a unique indicator offered by the AMarkets online broker absolutely for free to all of its clients that will allow you to spot potential market extremes, which can be considered as a strong signal for a correction or a trend reversal.
Examine long-term charts
Make sure to examine the gold chart carefully. Start with a long-term history that goes back at least 100 years. In addition to spotting trends that lasted for decades, you’ll see that the yellow metal has also trended lower for long periods of time, robbing profits from gold bugs. From a strategic standpoint, such an analysis is useful because it helps you identify price levels that need to be watched if and when gold decides to test them again.
To trade the gold market profitably, make sure to study how the three polarities we mentioned in this article impact gold buying and selling decisions. Don’t forget to devote some time and analyze the long and short-term gold charts to see which key price levels may come into play.
Keep in mind that traders widely use gold as a “safe haven” asset. When market participants are worried about risk trends, they tend to flock to gold.
On the other hand, as risk appetite grows, expect a selloff in haven assets. As you can see, gold is an important hedge tool against inflation and a valuable asset that can bring you good profits.
If you consider trading gold, make sure you choose a reputable global broker with favourable trading conditions. AMarkets offers some of the lowest spreads in the industry to trade gold.
Just recently, it slashed its spreads on gold by 30% on ECN accounts, allowing its clients to make the most out of their gold trading.