It's looking like a pretty disappointing day for most ASX investors so far this Tuesday. At the time of writing, the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) has kicked off today's trading on a negative note. The index is currently down a rather horrid 0.85%, pulling it back under 7,100 points. But let's talk about ASX gold shares.
If you own any ASX gold shares, I'm afraid you're fortunes are faring even worse so far this session. Gold stocks are getting smashed across the board, no other way about it.
Capricorn Metals Ltd (ASX: CMM) seems to be the worst-hit gold miner thus far. The Capricorn share price is presently down by a nasty 9.05% at $4.43 a share.
Gold Road Resources Ltd (ASX: GOR) is one of the luckier ones. But it has still given up 3.54% of its value.
And the ASX's largest gold share, Newmont Corporation (ASX: NEM), has slipped by 2.53%.
So long story short, it's a bad day to be invested in a certain yellow metal. So much so that gold is currently the worst-performing sector on the entire market. The All Ordinaries Gold Index (ASX: XGD) has cratered by a painful 3.2% at present.
But why? Why are ASX gold shares seemingly being singled out for this punishment by investors?
Why are ASX gold shares being thrown out today?
Well, it could be a combination of two things. Firstly, gold shares have actually had a fantastic time on the markets of late. While the All Ords Gold Index is down big today, the three weeks to yesterday saw it climb a whopping 16.1%.
Between the start of October and yesterday, these gains extended to almost 25%. This has been fuelled by an underlying rise in the price of gold itself.
Only a few days ago, gold hit an all-time record high of US$2,135.39 an ounce.
Thus, some investors might argue that gold shares are due for at least some sort of correction.
Secondly, gold prices did pull back substantially overnight. As my Fool colleague reported this morning, the spot gold price fell 2.15% in overnight trading down to US$2,045 an ounce. That's still high by historical standards, but clearly the sharp downward move was enough to take the collective wind out of the sails of ASX gold shares.
So it's probably for these reasons that ASX gold shares are having such a dire Tuesday. Even so, ASX gold investors arguably don't have too much to complain about, considering recent developments. Let's see where the precious metal and its miners head to next.