Gold cracks $1300 to finish year up 12.5%- Best performance since 2010

Gold bulls have something to cheer about today even before the champagne corks fly on Sunday night.

In afternoon trading on Friday, the last business day of the year, gold was bid up to $1306.50, before dropping to $1303 at 13:53 EST. It was the first time since August, corresponding with a terrorist attack in Barcelona, that gold crossed the important $1300 an ounce thresshold. The yellow metal hit a 52-week high of $1346 an ounce in early September but then quickly sold off. February Comex gold was last trading at $1307.10, up .76% on the day.

On Tuesday spot gold reached a three-week high of $1281.03 in post-holiday trade on geopolitical concerns, while February gold futures hit $1285.10.

The gains continued yesterday, with spot gold closing in New York at $1294.70.

Today’s price jump means gold has posted a monthly rise of 1.51% and a yearly advance of 12.53% – its best annual performance since 2010.

A wilting US dollar, political tensions and less concern over the impact of US interest rate hikes, all fed into the gold rally.

Reuters noted the dollar is heading towards its worst year since 2003, “damaged by tensions over North Korea, the Russian scandal surrounding U.S. President Donald Trump’s election campaign, and persistently low U.S. inflation.”

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index dropped 0.5% on Friday, deepening its 2017 loss to 9.7%.

According to analysts the $1300 target will be the psychological level to reach in the new year.

“Look for continued steady gold over the 200-day moving averages and as gold is under invested. If we close over $1,300 more asset allocators joining the long side,” Kitco quoted George Gero, managing director at RBC Wealth Management. “Gold is still much about the dollar weakness, bonds — ten-year [yields] not moving after rate hike — and tax season in full swing.”

 

SOURCE: mining.com, Andrew Topf , 30/12/2017

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Thessaloniki Port Sold to German Fund

Although delayed for a few days, the announcement concerning the privatization of the Thessaloniki port came late on Thursday, by the country’s liquidation fund.

The Hellenic Republic Asset Development Fund has announced the sale of its 67% stake in Thessaloniki Port to Deutche Invest Equity Partners, Belterra Investments and CMA CGM’s ports division, Terminal Link.

The German-led joint venture – called South Europe Gateway Thessaloniki (SEGT) – beat out bids from International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI) and DP World to win the concession agreement.

HRADF had asked the bidders to improve their first-round offers in April, and SEGT’s proposal came out ahead.

The price of the shares acquisition was $275 million, and the contract requires a further $215 million investment in the port within the next seven years, along with concession revenues. In total, the agency estimates that the agreement is worth $1.3 billion.

“The exploitation of the Thessaloniki port along with the positive impact the successful conclusion of the exploitation agreement of Piraeus Port already has, form an axis of growth and development that crosses vertically our country, further enhancing the role of Greece as the European gateway to international companies for trade and cruise,” said HRADF chairman Aris Xenofos.

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