Gold prices are on pace for their fifth monthly drop, and investors have not been very happy with the precious metal’s performance as the largest gold-related exchange traded fund was the least popular ETF trade of August.
The SPDR Gold Shares (NYSEArca: GLD) experienced the most redemptions of any ETFs in August as investors pulled $1.6 billion from the fund, according to XTF data. Global holdings in physically backed gold ETFs have dipped close to their lowest level since November.
GLD fell 1.7% over the past month and declined 8.1% year-to-date. Gold Comex futures are now trading at around $1,208 per ounce.
Dragging on gold prices, the U.S. dollar has appreciated against its foreign peers amid the ongoing U.S. trade dispute with other major partners, which has diminished demand from foreign buyers. The USD also recently gained momentum as President Donald Trump is expected to move ahead with tariffs on an additional $200 billion in Chinese imports as soon as next week.
Gold & Interest Rate Tightening
Furthermore, investors have been shunning physical assets like gold in face of further interest rate tightening out of the Federal Reserve amid a robust U.S. economy. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said earlier in August that gradual rate hikes will come, and with inflation still low, there was little concern over the economy overheating.