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It’s past time to short gold: Dennis Gartman

Investors looking to short gold have missed their chance, commodities trader Dennis Gartman said Monday.

"I've been long in yen terms—everybody knows that—for quite a long period of time," he said. "I'm about to get long of gold in euro terms at the same time. And I do think the time for being short of gold is past."

Gold prices ended the day lower after a sudden drop earlier in the day, settling at $1,238 an ounce.

(Read more: Gold ends lower at $1,238 after sudden early tumble)

On CNBC's "Fast Money," the editor and publisher of The Gartman Letter said he doesn't expect a jump in gold prices yet, either.


Dennis Gartman
Peter Foley | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Dennis Gartman

"It's not quite time to be bullish of gold in dollar terms, but it's getting closer than it has been," he said. "Gold has taken a lot of ill news. It's fallen quite a long way. The merchants are all net long, which is something we haven't seen for a long ... time. And the last time the merchants got long was at gold's bottom."

(Read more: Sudden gold plunge has traders looking for answers)

Gartman said he would be watching the trend line in euros, as well as in Japanese yen, for a sign to expect higher prices.

"If gold can go through 140,000 yen per ounce, which it hasn't been able to get through for a while, I'll be even more impressed," he said. "If you missed the first $20 in gold, you won't be missing much. So, you've got to break trend lines. They haven't done it yet, but they're putting those downward-sloping trend lines to test from beneath, and that's important."

By CNBC's Bruno J. Navarro. Follow him on Twitter @Bruno_J_Navarro.

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