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Never talk to a gold bug about a sell-off in gold. Each sell-off has to be a buying opportunity.

Dow Jones News Wire: In the medium-to-long term however, gold's uptrend remains intact, gold developer G-Resources Vice Chairman Owen Hegarty said.

"The selling we've been seeing is more to do with pre-Christmas book squaring and technicals than anything else," he said. "At the moment we've got tremendous volatility...and so it's no surprise we've got some mispricings that will be corrected."

Next year, gold will trend higher as investors seek safe stores of value and central banks continue adding to their gold reserves, he said.

Standard Chartered also remains bullish on the medium- to long-term prospects for gold, due to robust Asian demand forecasts and concerns over sovereign debt that should spur safe-haven buying, it said in a report Wednesday.

"Consumers should look to buy the dips in gold, on the basis that any weakness is likely to be short-lived and problems in the global economy will be supportive over the medium term," it said.

Perhaps. It's all "technicals" - Asia demand will pull gold out of its funk. True, Asia continues to be a big source of demand for gold. But should Asian economies begin to struggle, it is possible that gold will follow. Certainly in the short term the Asia risk impact on gold price is clearly visible. The chart below shows how gold futures have been moving in tandem with China's stock market.

Gold Futures vs. the Shanghai Composite (Bloomberg)

Source: Gold Bugs Should Be Watching China