UBS UPs One-Month Silver Forecast To $46/Oz

Swiss investment bank UBS upped its gold price forecast Tuesday, saying it expects gold to exceed $2,000 a troy ounce before year-end but cautioning that a correction to the market’s impressive rally looks increasingly possible.


Less than three weeks since it last revised its price forecast, the bank said it now sees one-month gold at $1,950/oz, up from $1,725/oz previously, and three-month gold at $2,100/oz from $1,850/oz previously. The market is already on its way toward $1,950/oz–earlier Tuesday, spot gold hit a new all-time high of $1,912.29/oz.


“But we want to stress that predicting price levels for gold has become a difficult exercise. No sooner are forecasts revised than gold targets new records, somewhat like the palladium market in 2010,” said UBS analyst Edel Tully. “We think gold has enough momentum currently to travel north of $2,000/oz before year-end, but we caution that some volatile price moves–both to the upside and the downside–lie ahead,” she added.


UBS is the latest in a line of banks and brokers to upgrade its gold price forecast as the deteriorating macroeconomic backdrop has sent investors into the precious metal as a safer bet than equities and currencies. Overnight French bank Societe Generale upped its fourth quarter gold forecast to $1,950/oz, pushing the 2011 average to $1,660/oz.


Given the speed of the recent rally, the possibility of a correction is rising as investors look to bank profits, UBS said. Although not yet a dominant trend, the bank’s clients are increasingly looking to book profits, Tully noted, and the risk of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange hiking gold margin requirements is rising; the Shanghai Gold Exchange announced margin hikes overnight for its forward contract.


Volatile trade is likely, UBS said, particularly in the wake of the speech buy U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke at Jackson Hole Friday, which is eagerly anticipated amid expectations he’ll outline plans for fresh steps to stimulate the struggling U.S. economy.


Silver is benefiting from gold’s gains, she noted, largely because “those who have missed out on the last few hundred dollar rally in the gold price perhaps believe that gold is near its short-term peak. And instead of playing gold from the short side, they prefer buying silver.”


UBS upped its silver price forecasts, with one-month prices of $46/oz from $35/oz and three-month prices of $50/oz from $33/oz previously. – Source: MarketWatch.com