Gold bugs were holding out for a Democratic victory in Tuesday’s presidential election, several market analysts noted, aware of the implications short-term political decisions will have on the price of their holdings.
In the long-term, however, any outcome would do.
“Bullion markets should be dominated by the U.S. elections in the near term,” James Steel, an analyst at HSBC Securities in New York, wrote in a note to clients late Monday, noting an Obama victory would likely usher in a loose monetary policy regime that would likely be beneficial to the price of the yellow specie.
It wasn’t just a question of where interest rates will go following the election. The steps the U.S. political leadership takes to avoid the looming “fiscal cliff” of austerity cuts and tax hikes, several analysts noted, was being watched as likely having a great effect on the short-term price for gold.
“The uncertainty surrounding negotiations arising from the political gridlock should have a positive impact on gold, as we saw back in the summer of 2011,” Edel Tully, a market strategist at Swiss bank UBS wrote in her note to clients Tuesday morning.
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Because the baseline scenario is for President Obama to be reelected but faced an ornery, divided Congress, “an Obama win would be the best case scenario for gold, both from its implications for both monetary and fiscal policy,” Tully wrote.
In the longer term view, even if gold dipped on a Romney victory, Tully noted, it was likely to still have upside further down the road. The analyst said that, regardless of who won, she expected politicians would pass the buck on fiscal reform, “putting off measures that aim to set the U.S. on a more sustainable fiscal path and raising the debt ceiling yet again.” Those actions “are likely to invite action from ratings agencies.”
“Another U.S. sovereign downgrade, which is likely in either an Obama or Romney scenario, would be beneficial for gold,” Tully noted.
HSBC’s Steel put it more succinctly: “U.S. fiscal problems appear likely to persist well beyond the 6 November elections. This should be gold-positive, we believe.”