Author Archives: Everett Millman

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Gold Prices Steady to Start April

April 3rd, 2017 by

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Barring some unforeseen “April Fools” revelation from over the weekend, gold has charted a steady path to close March and begin April. The gold price has held ground at almost exactly where it began last week, hovering just below $1,250/oz. Spot gold was trading around $1,247/oz on Monday morning, largely flat. Meanwhile, spot silver was down about 0.3% to $18.20/oz.

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Precious Metals Log Weekly Gain

March 24th, 2017 by

The precious metals opened slightly higher again on Friday morning, charting a solid weekly gain. Spot gold has gained 1.2% this week, steadying at $1,245/oz in early trading this morning. The silver price, meanwhile, was up 0.3% (or +5¢ per ounce) on Friday, approaching $17.70/oz.

gold rally

Platinum traded flat but palladium was more than 1.5% higher, extending beyond a 22-month high the metal hit yesterday.

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1994 Proof Gold Isle of Man 5 Angels Coin - Reverse

Tower Mint and Isle of Man Strike New Partnership

March 23rd, 2017 by

For years, the Pobjoy Mint struck all of the circulating and commemorative coinage for the Isle of Man, which is a self-governing entity within the United Kingdom. (Specifically, Isle of Man is a “Crown dependency,” roughly like a commonwealth or protectorate of Great Britain.)

However, the island recently ended its agreement with the Pobjoy Mint. (No real reason was given by either party other than It will now partner with the Tower Mint, which is now owned by the world-famous coin engraver and artist Raphael Maklouf.

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© KCRA Channel 3, Sacramento, CA

Importance of Gold Mining in America’s Founding

March 22nd, 2017 by

Most of our history books in the U.S. explain the colonization of North America primarily through the prism of religious freedom. There are good, compelling reasons why: The motivation to establish a society with protections of religious tolerance no doubt informs the country’s long-standing doctrines of pluralism and separation of Church & State. While it’s also true that many Puritans and other Christian sects fled persecution in Britain by coming to the New World, this hardly accounts for all of the European migration to the colonies in North America.

The narrative of America’s settlement and early development is enriched by giving weight to another, perhaps equally crucial, factor: free markets.

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Gold Jumps Despite Profit-Taking

March 22nd, 2017 by

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While the rest of the precious metals were largely steady on Wednesday morning, spot gold surged higher yet again. Gold withstood a bout of profit-taking early this morning that sent the yellow metal down to $1,244/oz before recovering to $1,249/oz, up 0.35%.

Spot silver didn’t fare quite as well, losing about 2¢ per ounce (-0.1%) to trade shy of $17.55/oz. Palladium added 0.75% while platinum was flat.

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Precious Metals Break Sideways Pattern

March 21st, 2017 by

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Tuesday morning began as a rather dull one for the precious metals, with mostly sideways action in trading. Gold prices have remained stuck in neutral the past several sessions, hanging out in the $1,230/oz to $1,235/oz range. By 10 am EST, however, the yellow metal had risen about $4 per ounce to finally break out to nearly $1,240/oz. Spot silver likewise jumped after having hardly budged from Friday’s levels, trading 0.8% to $17.55/oz. The Platinum Group Metals were also mostly flat, with platinum and palladium trading near $970/oz and $790/oz, respectively.

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Curbs on Indian Gold Demand Succeed

March 20th, 2017 by

For years, the government of India, the world’s second-most populous country, has made reducing gold demand one of its primary focuses. It seems that after years of failure, the government finally hit upon a fool-proof way to cut down on gold purchases: just take away the people’s cash!

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Gold Prices Steady as Oil Falls

March 20th, 2017 by

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The precious metals slipped from their highs on Monday morning but remained slightly above unchanged when markets opened in New York.

Spot gold traded about 0.3% higher this morning, just shy of $1,234/oz. Meanwhile, spot silver was just a pip higher (+1¢) as it approached $17.50/oz. The Platinum Group Metals were each trending 0.2% higher.

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The Forgotten Precious Metal

March 19th, 2017 by

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Periodictableru (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Unless someone is deeply involved in the commodities trade or some specialized industrial process, they are probably unaware of the market for the somewhat obscure metal rhodium. Although it is sometimes used to coat white gold or silver jewelry, rhodium’s primary usefulness is as a catalyst in automobile exhaust systems. Unsurprisingly, it is a Platinum Group Metal closely related (in appearance and properties) to platinum and palladium, which are used for the same catalytic converters.

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silver lion daalder coin

Royal Dutch Mint’s New Gold and Silver Coins

March 18th, 2017 by

Although it is today overshadowed by many of Europe’s more prominent government mints, the Royal Dutch Mint (Koninklijke Nederlandse Munt) boasts an impressive history that traces back to the 1500s.

The Leeuwendaalder and America’s Silver Coins

The Netherlands’ flagship silver coin, the leeuwendaalder (literally, “lion thaler”), was an especially important trade coin in the 17th and 18th centuries.

The Dutch daalder featured prominently alongside the Spanish 8 reales (also known as the Spanish pillar dollar) and Maria Theresa thaler of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in global trade. This time period was, in fact, the beginning of colonialism and the early era of growth in shipping and international trade, when something approaching “global” channels of commerce first flourished. The Dutch played a central role in this evolving world.

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FOMC conference room (photo: Federal Reserve)

Is the Fed Finding Its Footing?

March 15th, 2017 by

So the Federal Reserve met the markets’ expectations and raised its target interest rate by 0.25% today. (Interestingly, Wall St immediately jumped higher as the news broke right along with gold prices.) But what direction will the Fed ultimately go over the next two years?

Before we dive into the rate hike, here’s a quick video explaining why the fed funds rate is so important.

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custom-fed-seal

Gold Tests $1,200/oz on Fed Day

March 15th, 2017 by

The precious metals clawed back some of yesterday’s losses on Wednesday morning. Virtually everything in the markets today will hinge on the decision by the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) about whether its target interest rate should go up this month. The central bank will announce its decision and publish a statement that explains their reasoning and provides some forward guidance at 2 pm EST today. This will be followed by a press conference with Fed Chair Janet Yellen at 2:30.

Spot gold and spot silver were slightly off their morning lows, hovering above the key support levels of $1,200/oz and $17/oz, respectively.

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Copyright: rrraven / 123RF Stock Photo

WGC Releases Central Bank Gold Demand Numbers

March 14th, 2017 by

The World Gold Council (WGC) publishes quarterly data about trends in gold demand around the world, from industry to investment to mining and new technologies. In February, the research group released its 2016 report on central bank gold demand. As central banks have consistently been net buyers of the yellow metal over the past five years or so, this is always a key area of interest for understanding the international gold market.

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Gold Price Steady Amid FOMC Week

March 13th, 2017 by

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The precious metals woke up to some buying pressure on Monday morning before slipping back to where they started by 9:00 am EST. Sentiment around the markets appeared to be mixed as everyone awaits the two-day meeting of the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC) on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Spot gold still traded flat by 10 am in New York, holding right at $1,205.50/oz. The yellow metal jumped higher in the early hours of the morning but ultimately fell back to unchanged. Spot silver moved 3¢ per ounce lower (-0.2%) to just below $17/oz. Platinum and palladium were mixed though only moved modestly.

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