It seems that some may be using this recent dip in Gold and Precious Metals prices as an opportunity to get long exposure to GLD (SPDR Gold Trust, Expense Ratio 0.40%) via call options.
We saw the July 124 strike calls trade more than 25,000 times on Friday, and given the high $119-$120 handle currently in GLD, these options are about 3% out of the money at the moment.
GLD has recently traded at its lowest levels since February on a nice spike in volume in it and related products as of late. GLD has seen about $350 million enter the fund in recent sessions as well, which for GLD is a small notional dollar amount in the context of the fund’s overall AUM size ($>31.5 billion currently but interesting nonetheless given the recent call activity in the name.
Despite the recent weakness, GLD is still reasonably above where it was back at the start of 2014 ($114-$115 handle), and it looks like the fund has actually seen relatively small net outflows year to date (->$450
Related fund IAU (iShares Gold Trust, Expense Ratio 0.25%) has seen flattish flows year to date, pulling in only about $4 million. GLD is still notably larger in terms of asset size in comparison to IAU, as IAU has about $6.5 billion in AUM, making it the second largest fund in the space.
It makes plenty of sense to look at leveraged long Gold ETPs at this point too given the recent activity here, and funds to note include DGP (PowerShares DB Gold Double Long ETN, Expense Ratio 0.75%) which is actually the largest leveraged “long” Gold ETP in the marketplace, but it only has $159 million in AUM.
UGL (ProShares Ultra Gold, Expense Ratio 0.95%) is slightly smaller, with about $125 million in AUM, while the 2011 launch, UGLD (VelocityShares 3X Long Gold ETN, Expense Ratio 1.35%) currently has about $44 million in AUM.
In spite of very weak average volumes in the markets, particularly in equity ETFs for the past two weeks, the aforementioned Gold ETPs have actually uniformly seen huge spikes in trading volume in the past couple sessions, making us pay even closer attention.
SPDR Gold Shares
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