Gold’s 12-year rally, the longest in at least nine decades, is poised to continue in 2013 as central bank stimulus spurs investors from John Paulson to George Soros to accumulate the highest combined bullion holdings ever.
The metal will rise every quarter next year and average $1,925 an ounce in the final three months, or 12 percent more than now, according to the median of 16 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Paulson & Co. has a $3.62 billion bet through the SPDR Gold Trust (GLD), the biggest gold-backed exchange- traded product, and Soros Fund Management LLC increased its holdings by 49 percent in the third quarter, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings show.
Central banks from Europe to China are pledging more steps to boost growth, raising concern about inflation and currency devaluation. Investors bought 247 metric tons through ETPs this year, exceeding annual U.S. mine output. While both sides said talks Nov. 16 between President Barack Obama and Congress over the so-called fiscal cliff were “constructive,” the Congressional Budget Office has warned the U.S. risks a recession if spending cuts and tax rises aren’t resolved.
“We see gold as a hedge against the follies of politicians,” said Michael Mullaney, who helps manage $9.5 billion of assets as chief investment officer at Fiduciary Trust in Boston. “It’s a good time to garner some protection in portfolios by having some real asset like gold.”