Supply and demand are the essence of any market, and the precious metals are not excepted from this fact. This principle is particularly true of silver, however. More so than even gold, which has tremendous existing stockpiles that are frequently remelted (and endlessly loaned out), the price of silver is sensitive to disruptions in the mining industry.
Platinum also followed its cousins lower, losing more than 0.7%. Meanwhile, palladium was flat at $800/oz.
The focus of the markets on Monday was the results from the preliminary round of France’s presidential election. The polls showed that Emmanuel Macron, who is seen as the moderate or centrist candidate, finished first in the pack with 24% of the vote. Macron came in ahead of right-wing National Front candidate Marine Le Pen, who finished second in the polls.
In response, much of the safe-haven flight into gold eased up in early trading. The gold price retreated about $15 per ounce, or 1.15%, to trade around $1,269/oz. Spot silver was also lower, dropping about 0.67% to $17.75/oz.
Much has been made by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and her predecessor Ben Bernanke about making the central bank’s actions more open and transparent. A variety of steps have been taken toward this end, but they mainly consist of greater disclosure of Fed officials’ thinking on monetary policy and interest rates.
As far as the actual business of conducting policy goes, however, the Fed still has a long way to go.
With unrest and uncertainty characterizing the global climate heading into the first round of France’s presidential elections this weekend, gold prices moved marginally higher in early trading on Friday. Spot gold traded at $1,283/oz around 10 am EST in New York while silver prices were actually 15¢ per ounce lower at $17.85/oz.
For several years, one of the least controversial criticisms of the way the Treasury Department operates has been the need for a major coinage reform. For each of the last 11 years, Treasury has been subsidizing production of the one-cent penny and the five-cent nickel, both of which actually cost more to manufacture than they are worth as legal tender.
It costs 1.5¢ to strike and distribute each penny, and about 7.5¢ for the nickel. In other words, the government—and taxpayers—actually loses money by making these coins. 11 years in a row!
The precious metals continued to benefit from rising tensions around the globe, particularly with North Korea. The gold price traded as high as $1,295 an ounce overnight before traders took some profits. When markets opened in New York on Monday morning, spot gold was down just $1 per ounce to $1,287/oz.
Spot silver was also off slightly, losing 3¢ per ounce to $18.50/oz. Platinum was actually 0.7% higher, while palladium lost 0.5%.
Coin and currency collectors can be a quirky lot. It’s the nature of numismatics: sometimes the most interesting—and valuable!—rare collectibles are the product of some very small nuance or detail.
For the collectors chasing the novel new polymer five-pound banknotes introduced in the U.K., this has undeniably been the case.
There was no trading in the gold markets in the U.S., the U.K. (the world’s two biggest markets for gold), and Shanghai on Friday. In the West, this was in observance of the Good Friday holiday that precedes the Easter weekend. Accordingly, spot gold was at $1,287/oz and spot silver was around $18.60/oz, where they closed yesterday.
Early morning gains during Thursday’s trading session propelled spot gold to a fresh five-month high. The yellow metal was up slightly, about 0.1%, to $1,286/oz, its best intraday mark since November 10th. This followed a 1% advance on Wednesday.
For some perspective on the level of volatility in gold prices around that date, gold’s previous five-month high had occurred on November 11th (the next day) around $1,264/oz—more than $20 lower. On the previous day, November 9th, gold was trading as high was $1,333/oz!
In other words, the sell-off after the election was swift, and the precious metals have been mostly flat since then (but gradually on the rise).
Spot silver also moved higher on Thursday, adding 8¢ per ounce (+0.4%) to $18.60/oz.
The gold price broke through an important resistance level (its 200-day moving average) on Tuesday, crossing above the $1,260-per-ounce threshold for the first time since November. This represents a five-month high for the yellow metal, which added 0.65% on Tuesday to trade around $1,264/oz. Spot silver likewise pared its previous losses, advancing 0.75% to trade near $18.10/oz. Meanwhile, the Platinum Group Metals were sharply higher, as platinum gained 1% and palladium jumped 2% in early trading.
Two men with metal detectors struck it big over the weekend when their find in southern Zealand (Denmark) led archaeologists to 130 Viking silver coins.
Financial markets were troubled by news overnight of U.S. military response to the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime in Syria. Friday morning’s nonfarm payrolls also offered a disappointing picture of the American economy, further driving safe-haven buying of precious metals.
After jumping above $1,270/oz at one point when markets opened this morning, spot gold traded a solid $14 per ounce higher (+1%) at $1,265/oz. This was still a five-month high for the yellow metal.
In tracking major trends in the global gold trade (i.e. large-volume sales), there are two (sometimes related) factors that tend to provide the clearest macro picture: central bank net purchases and raw domestic import number for various countries.
Although each of the precious metals were treading negative territory by 9:30 am in New York on Thursday, gold and silver held onto most of yesterday’s late-session gains. This was surprising given the release of an encouraging weekly jobless claims report from the Labor Department this morning. Spot gold still traded above $1,250/oz despite losing 0.25% following the opening bell.
Spot silver was down 7¢ (-0.35%) to just north of $18.20/oz; meanwhile, platinum and palladium both lost about 0.8% during the first hour of the trading session.
We all know that gold and silver bullion are lustrous—in a word, shiny. It’s one of the physical properties that helps distinguish these metals from their more commonplace cousins.
In a more figurative sense, however, 2017 may prove to be the time that these precious metals really began to shine (as financial assets).
The precious metals bore the brunt of traders’ wrath on Wednesday, losing ground due to profit-taking and renewed exuberance for equities. The main driver of this momentum shift was the release of yet another exceptionally good jobs report from ADP this morning.
In response to an intriguing revelation about American Silver Eagle (ASE) production, the United States Mint has dropped a bombshell on collectors regarding the provenance of Silver Eagle coins produced at the mint’s branch facilities in Philadelphia and San Francisco.