The Drums of War

It is not the job of this blog to comment on the morality, or otherwise, on the imminent US military strike on Syria, in fact who can when there is so much “smoke and mirrors,” in respect of the facts provided. That said, the cynic (or realist) cannot but note the coincidence between difficult domestic market junctures and the start of external military events.

Furthermore, within the reams of written or spoken media coverage relating to the heinous use of chemical weapons and views on any appropriate response required, there has been scant, if any, comment on who supplied Syria with the chemicals in the first place.

The objective of this blog is to comment on market observations, albeit that it does include geo-political events bearing on them and indeed comment on political interventions of the markets, usually by way of charts.

So, if the drums of war are beating louder, where are the safe Havens?

The “traditional” safe-havens tend to be Gold, Oil or US Treasuries, so it’s worth a peek at what’s been going on here.


The chart shows the percentage performance of $Gold versus $Oil since 2006, with the 10-year Treasury yield (inverted to better show the relationship) shown on the left hand side.

Although not perfect, the correlation between the $Gold price and the inverted US 10-year Treasury yield remains in place, whereas the price of Oil peaked far earlier than Gold, in July 2008 versus September 2011, since when the Oil price rallied into April 2011 followed by a sideways range to date.

The $Oil price only needs to spike by $4, from its current $110 WTI price, to break through that April 2011 high (see red dashed line,) after which there is little resistance towards that all time high of $145 a barrel, so a close watch is required over the next days and weeks.

However, Gold and treasuries may be beating to a different drum, which is more to do with the fight between Central Bankers and the markets.

It may just be, this time around, that neither of the aforementioned asset-classes provides a safe-haven. Perhaps it’s time for the $US to shine, particularly as no one has a good word to say about it.


It has been within a pretty well defined trend channel for a couple of years now, trending higher. The lower RSI, in blue, appears to be turning up from its neutral position, which supports a move higher for the greenback. The 100-day moving average, again shown in blue, is only $1 above the $81.78 dollar price, which if penetrated would open the way to higher levels.

It’s time to place your bets, Ladies and Gentleman, we’ve made ours.


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