ZLATO – ponuka vs dopyt a vplyv na cenu

Faktory dopytu a ponuky by mali udržiavať cenu na úrovni $700 v roku 2007 a $800 v 2008.

OVER THE LONG TERM the outlook for gold, supply and demand will feature significantly going forward,” says David Davis, Credit Suisse Standard Securities gold analyst. South Africa, still the world’s largest producer of gold, has seen production fall from a peak of 1,000 tonnes/year in 1970 to just 297 tonnes last year.

What’s more, rising costs from unionisation and the increasing depth at which gold must be mined means that South Africa will struggle to see its gold production recover to 300 tonnes over the next three years, according to JP Morgan’s recent gold and platinum forecast.

JP Morgan also reports that US production is now down 29% from its 366 tonnes peak in 1998, while the combined gold production of US and Canada is on a decline since peaking at 533 tonnes in 1997 – it was down 29% to 380 tonnes in 2005. Australian production is down 13% from its 300 tonnes high in 1997.

In other words, gold production is starting to stall – with the result that supply and demand will be in precarious balance over the next three years. JP Morgan expects demand to equal supply at 3,890 tonnes both this year and next, a clear driver of its decidedly bullish gold stance.

Says JP Morgan’s Steve Shepherd: “Going forward, limited mine supply growth and limited (if any) growth in central bank sales should ensure a long-term average real price of $575/oz for gold. More near-term we expect gold to average $678/oz this year and $725/oz in 2008, as the combination of the above industry factors and trends in the US dollar combine to give gold an ongoing lift while its base metal peers enter a decline.”

Davis is even more bullish on the metal. “Due to the tight supply and demand scenario I see gold trending upwards, with and average price of $700/oz by 2008 not unreasonable and $800/oz by 2010.”

However, it’s Davis’s long-term prognosis that’s truly startling. “GFMS [a British-based metals consultancy] put average global gold mining cost increases at 17%,” says Davis. “If the current cost escalation continues it’s likely that gold would have to rise to $1,400/oz by 2015, assuming current margins.”

Of course there are those who argue that central banks – which sit on huge stockpiles of gold – could again ramp up secondary supply of the metal, thereby tilting the balance in favour of a far lower gold price.

However, JP Morgan doesn’t buy that. “Central bank sales in the Nineties contributed to the depressed gold prices through the late Nineties. Now with new mine supply threatened and central banks holding back on supplies higher gold prices seem likely.”

Another view is that central banks won’t be willing to sell gold, as they’re effectively in a catch-22 situation. That’s because the minute they indicate a desire to sell gold the price will drop, thereby diminishing the value of their remaining reserves.

But there’s also the fear factor at play. In 1999, the Bank of England sold a portion of it’s gold for under $300/oz – only to see the price rocket to more that $700/oz. Of course, you can’t talk about the gold price without mentioning the so-called speculative element of investor-driven demand.

To date, gold-backed exchange traded funds (ETFs) have sucked in around 700 tonnes of gold, making them the perfect foil for the possibility of higher central bank sales.

Davis says the 700 tonnes of gold in ETF vaults is enough to put them in eighth position if you were to benchmark that against central bank gold holdings. “That’s why I call ETFs the people’s central bank,” he says.

That ETF activity has obvious upside potential for the gold price, with more to come if any new versions are introduced in India and China.

Source: MiningM


"In the absence of the gold standard, there is no way to protect savings from confiscation through inflation. There is no safe store of value."   Alan Greenspan