Gold Claims ETF as Latest Victim as Assets Tumble to 2008 Low

(Bloomberg) — Holdings in the worlds biggest exchange- traded product backed by gold tumbled to the lowest since 2008.

Assets in the SPDR Gold Trust fell 1.6 percent to 696.25 metric tons on Friday, the lowest since September 2008. It was the biggest one-day drop since June 2013. Since peaking in December 2012, holdings have contracted 49 percent.

Gold prices fell to the lowest since 2010 on Friday, dropping for a seventh straight session in the longest slump since November. The price rout has worsened the outlook for miners, with shares of Barrick Gold Corp. dropping to the lowest since 1991.

The metal was little changed in the first half of 2015 as uneven U.S. economic growth helped to stabilize the market after two years of losses. Now, with Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen giving an upbeat outlook for expansion, investors are fleeing.

Yellen on Wednesday repeated that U.S. interest rates will probably increase this year. Higher rates cut the appeal of precious metals because they dont pay interest or give returns like other assets such as bonds and equities. Platinum dropped to a six-year low Friday, while silver fell for a fifth session. Global holdings in exchange-traded products backed by gold are near the smallest since 2009.