Gold Prices May Be Reaching a Bottom

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Gold prices were rising on Monday as sentiment among traders remained positive for the yellow metal.

Gold for August delivery at the COMEX division of the CME were increasing $5.10 to $1,282.70 an ounce. The gold price traded as high as $1,293.60 and as low as $1,272.50 an ounce, while the spot price was slipping 82 cents.

Multiple research notes out Monday morning suggested that more analysts believe price support for gold may be firming following the shift to a bear market in mid-April, when prices plummeted some 13% across two consecutive trading sessions .

"The strength in China and India gold premiums, the recent move higher in gold lease rates and central bank gold buying indicate physical demand for gold may provide some support in the near term," Deutsche Bank wrote in a note on Monday.

Silver prices for July delivery were up 3 cents to $19.83 an ounce, while the U.S. dollar index was adding 0.28% to $83.16.

Also lending support to prices was a mixed bag of economic data from China overnight. Second-quarter gross domestic product there slowed to 7.5% year over year from 7.7% the previous quarter, which bolstered a trend of declining GDP numbers in the country. China also reported that industrial production dipped, but retail sales increased.

"We saw a lot of weakness out of China and that weakness is thought that China is going to still be continuously ramping up their quantitative easing plan -- or at least getting in the market and driving it in that direction," Phil Streible, senior commodities broker at RJO Futures, said in an interview.

Streible said he was expecting momentum to continue. Last week COMEX gold rose 5.4% as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke commented that the central bank would remained committed to a highly accommodative monetary policy and that the short-term federal funds rate wouldn't rise anytime soon.

Paper markets -- COMEX futures and exchange-traded funds -- have led the charge lower in gold prices as record outflows from the ETFs have mounted in 2013. But last week marked the first week in more than two years during which the lowest trade of gold ETF SPDR Gold Trust ( GLD) didn't dip below the closing price for the previous week, according to Miller Tabak.

"This is not a call for a huge rally in gold, just that we are probably finished with the huge move down for now," Miller Tabak wrote on Monday.

Investors should remain cautious, though, as the unfavorable market trends to the yellow metal remain a factor. Analysts from Barclays warn that gold would need more support to sustain its recent, short rally, and that it "is likely to be short lived."

"Gold has taken its lead from U.S. macroeconomic developments for a number of months, sidelining positive price catalysts such as the Bank of Japan's liquidity injection, and although prices have responded to concerns over growth, in our view, a deterioration in U.S. macro data would be required for prices to make a sustained move higher in light of record gross short positions," Barclays's Suki Cooper and Lynnden Branigan wrote in a Monday note.

Gold mining stocks were mixed on Monday. Shares of AngloGold Ashanti ( AU) were dropping 2.8%, while shares of NovaGold Resources ( NG) were jumping 6.4%.

Among volume leaders, Barrick Gold ( ABX) were gaining 1.3%.

SPDR Gold Trust was effectively unchanged at $124.13 a share, as was iShares Gold Trust ( IAU) at $12.47 a share.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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