By Frik Els
Gold was treading water on Thursday ahead of the release of key economic data in the US exchanging hands for a shade under $1,370 an ounce, not far off two-year highs. Year to date the metal has gained almost 30% or more than $300 an ounce.
The metal's good run year to date – one of the best performances in decades – has surprised many analysts (and even surpassed some fervent gold bugs' expectations).
The 2016 entries for the London Bullion Market Association long running forecasting competition show just how bearish the consensus view was at the beginning of the year.
The majority of investment and institutional analysts predicted gold would dip below $1,000 during the course of the year. The winner of last year's competition Bernard Dahdah of French investment bank Natixis, even predicted an average price in triple digits.
On the upside only five forecasters expected gold at $1,300 and only Martin Murenbeeld of BC-based Dundee Economics saw the price reaching today's levels.