Gold has been on a tear upward lately, and Citi thinks the precious metal will continue to break out as investors weigh the coronavirus and other dampers on global economic growth.
Gold is considered a safe-haven asset, and the financial firm sees it hitting $2,000 in the next 12 to 24 months. Fears surrounding the spread of the coronavirus outbreak pushed spot gold over $1,640 per ounce Friday afternoon.
“Gold should perform as a convex macro asset market hedge, resilient during ongoing risk market rallies but a better hedge during sell-offs and vol spikes,” Citi analysts led by Aakash Doshi said, according to CNBC.
The yellow metal crested the $1,600-per-ounce mark Tuesday after Apple announced it was going to miss its quarterly guidance because of lower Chinese demand for products as the country deals with the coronavirus.
Citi’s short-term outlook is already within reach if precious metals continue to climb. The firm set its six-to-12 month target at $1,700 per ounce.
Doshi thinks people may be rushing into gold because of increased investor concern surrounding the current business cycle. There are also some big question marks looming on the horizon with the 2020 U.S. presidential election and the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China.
The current low-interest environment means the gold market is a hotbed for investors hunting for yield, Doshi argues.
“With STIR (short-term interest rate) markets pricing in ~1.5 Fed cuts in 2020 and global growth risks skewed to the downside, gold is a direct beneficiary of the low nominal and negative real yield environment,” Doshi said. “(Gold can) outperform on a risk market unwind should coronavirus risks impact supply chains and thus US earnings momentum.”
Citi isn’t the only one bullish on gold, either. Economist David Rosenberg echoed some of the Doshi’s sentiments in a recent interview, and he thinks the yellow metal could even hit $3,000 — eventually.
“Gold is a place you want to be,” Rosenberg said. “I think that it’s partly because its inversely correlated with interest rates. But it’s also an insurance policy when things go wrong. There’s no such thing as a no-brainer, but this is close.”