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Gold funds lose luster on coronavirus scare

All News 09:28 March 19, 2020

SEOUL, March 19 (Yonhap) -- Gold funds in South Korea have posted dismal returns over the past month amid falling gold prices due to the coronavirus scare, data showed Thursday.

Local gold funds with assets of 1 billion won (US$796,000) or more registered an average return of minus 12.45 percent over the last one-month period, according to the data from FnGuide.

They outperformed stock investment funds over the cited period, but the performance failed to live up to expectations, given the metal's nature as a traditional safe haven, the financial information provider said.

Comparable yields were minus 25.53 percent for domestic stock funds and minus 20.27 percent for overseas equities.

Gold funds lose luster on coronavirus scare - 1

Market watchers said the yellow metal, one of the safest assets, has also been hit by the fallout of the global financial turmoil triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.

Gold funds have been faring ill in recent months. Their average return came to minus 6.73 percent for the past three months and minus 8.61 percent for the last six months.

Burnt by the metal's sinking prices, investors have been pulling money from gold funds. Twelve gold funds had 380.3 billion won under their management as of Thursday, down 120 billion won from a month earlier.

Gold prices swung to a downturn last week after continuing to renew yearly highs early this month amid investors' flight to safety.

According to the Korea Exchange, international gold prices amounted to $1,484.70 per ounce Tuesday, off 11.2 percent from a year high of $1,672.74 on March 6.

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