Morning Market Update August 5: Will They, or Won’t They?

August 5th, 2013 by

Gold is softer in overnight trading, as it drifts with no major impetus one way or the other.  The dollar is still trading near a five-week low, but oil is also lower this morning on a bit of profit taking.

Stocks opened lower on Wall St. after the S&P 500 hit an all-time record on Friday, as the equities market also look for guidance. With the earnings reports almost all in, the summer doldrums may be upon us.

We may be seeing some reticence mixed in with the apathy, as discouraging employment numbers have called into doubt the “sure deal” of the Fed beginning to taper its massive bond purchasing operations next month. Once again, everyone is trying to second-guess what Ben Bernanke is planning.

Low volumes and summer vacations aren’t just affecting the U.S. markets. The Nikkei closed down 1.4% on the U.S. jobs data, as traders locked in recent profits. The yen strengthened to 98.63 to the dollar. Chinese stocks gained 1%, in part on the news that the HSBC services sector PMI remained at 51.3 in July, the same as June.

Stocks in Europe were lower on news of retail sales falling, which offset good manufacturing news on Friday.  The euro was down slightly, still in the 1.32 range.

Gold and silver seem to be back in the very tight range on the COMEX that we have seen for a week. It seems that no matter the gyrations in Asia or Europe, precious metals are stuck in the same rut in U.S. trading.

by David Peterson