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Metals ETFs Attracting Safe Haven Crowd

CNBC.com
Tuesday, 29 May 2012 | 4:05 PM ET

Investors who jumped into U.S. Treasurys and the dollar during the latest flare-up of the EU crisis appear to have expanded into hard assets, according to a report out Tuesday.

"People become more aware that the unintended consequence is an environment of negative real interest rates, and the value of cash is worth less," says Will Rhind of ETF Securities, whose "Precious Metals Weekly" report showed an uptick in metals holdings by exchange traded funds . It notes that in the second half of May, "The gold attraction is gaining."

Gold and other metals fell with stocks in the aftermath of the Greek and French elections May 6, then reversed course as stocks continued to suffer.

By extension, the best-performing global equity ETF in May is the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF , which is up 2.32 percent through May 25.

The report shows gold holdings of exchange traded products dipped in mid-May but then recovered later in the month. Silver and palladium holdings exhibited a similar pattern.

Metals prices in general will continue to derive support from the global economic recovery and central bank purchases, according to the report.

Meanwhile, the furious dollar rally of recent weeks has paused.

"This is exactly the kind of environment in which we see hard assets becoming attractive to people," says Rhind, general manager of ETF Securities' U.S. operations.

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