NEW YORK (
) -- Gold has been in a consolidation mode since mid-September, trading in a range from 1,760 on the low side to just under 1,800 on the high.
With all the recent interest in gold, I thought it fitting to address this market. After all, it makes sense that a lot of people would want to get involved in the yellow metal.
We are now in the midst of our third round of quantitative easing, better known as QE3. Central banks around the globe have taken an "accommodative" stance when it comes to monetary policy. Just yesterday, in fact, China pumped additional liquidity into the banking system. The European Central Bank has said it is willing to make unlimited bond purchases of member countries in trouble. We have a national debt that becomes more and more staggering by the day, a number so large that I do not personally see how it could ever be repaid without debasement of the dollar. The list goes on and on.
One can make a compelling case for gold to go considerably higher. But will it? Markets do not always act as we think they should. This is no secret. When it comes to markets and trading, my goal is to make money -- not to be "right." I think that one has to let the market lead the way, and not try to be calling tops or bottoms. Leave ego out of the equation and eventually the market will tip its hand. I believe that someday soon that is precisely what gold will do.
So far, the strong band of resistance from 1,790-1,800 has kept this market in check. What makes this test a little more interesting is how the market has behaved here as it has stalled out.
On previous tests of this area -- going back to November and February/March of 2011 -- the market sold off a good degree following these failed tests. As a matter of fact, the market sold off both times to the tune of over a $200 decline. This time is different -- so far. And although the market has pulled back, the pullbacks continue to be shallow in nature. The market is building a cluster of closes just under this resistance area.
In effect, the market is setting the stage for either a powerful move higher through resistance, a move I think could run a few hundred dollars to the upside, or the rally is coming to an end, in which case it is only a matter of time before this market sees a pretty nasty drop once everyone starts to liquidate. The fact is we just don't know right now. That makes sitting on the sidelines a great choice.
I still favor the upside because the longer-term trend is up. Volatility in gold options has come in from recent levels, and for those who feel we are going to see a big run either way in this market, buying options seems like a much better idea than it did a few weeks ago. Patience is key. Wait out the market.
If you are looking for long options positions, make sure you are using options that give you enough time to be right (at least 60 days until expiration). There are a ton of different ways to try to play this market. As always, feel free to contact me for details on potential trade setups. And remember, patience is key!
Note that today is Oct. 9, and trade information is based on the most recent data.
Please note: Futures and options trading is inherently risky and isn't suitable for all investors. Past performance isn't indicative of future results. Stop-loss orders meant to limit losses may not be effective because market conditions may make it impossible to execute such orders.