Australian dollar on 2-month high due to currency traders’ thinking Brexit vote would lose in UK

Gold prices down on 4th consecutive day as investors wait for referendum result
By @vitthernandez on
Brexit
A Brexit supporter holds a Union Flag at a Vote Leave rally in London, Britain, June 4, 2016. Reuters/Neil Hall

The Australian dollar was sitting .7524 as of 7:50 am AEST, one percent above the opening level on Wednesday. It was the highest level since early May which extends the currency’s gains from late May to more than 5 percent.

Business Insider explains the strong Australian dollar to a consensus among currency traders that Britons would prefer to remain in the European Union. It attributes the thin market conditions to “large investors sitting on the sidelines before the referendum results are known” which adds to the outsized moves seen in Australian and other risk assets.

The lack of news about the Thursday Brexit referendum in Britain has caused a 4-point drop in Australia’s All Ordinaries Index and the benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that after shares went up and down throughout Wednesday, at the end, investors lost confidence, causing the All Ordinaries Index to close at 5349.5 points and the S&P/AX 200 Index to 5270.9 points.

Citing a note from Societe Generale, the daily writes that investors who want to profit from the Brexit referendum should benefit from gold volatility since the price of the yellow metal would like jump if Brits prefer to exit and drop if they remain in the EU. Ahead of the Brexit vote, the price of gold was down for the fourth consecutive day.

The Wall Street Journal reports that gold for August delivery dipped 0.2 percent to $1,270 a troy ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange’s Comex division. Besides being the fourth straight day in a row of price decline, it was a two-week low for gold prices.

“Gold right now is solely focused on the ‘Brexit,’” the business daily quotes RJO Futures senior market strategist Bob Haberkorn. He adds that gold is just processing through the information and waiting for the outcome of the referendum in Britain on Thursday.

Bill O’Neill, co-founder of Logic Advisors, a commodities investment company, explains that gold price’s dup is in anticipation of a “no” vote. He says, “I don’t think gold will go down much if the ‘no’ votes prevails. I do think it will go up significantly if we do get a ‘yes’ vote.”

On its April 26 note, HSBC predicted that gold prices would explode if the ‘yes’ votes prevail on June 23. However, until the referendum results are out, uncertainty would surround Brexit which is why HSBC suggested in early April that investors could secure protection from the financial impact of Brexit by investing instead in the Swiss franc.

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