Thursday, February 28, 2013
The good news is that the U.S. economy didn’t contract in the last quarter of 2012. The bad news is that data shows the economy is growing slower than molasses, up .1% from October to December to be exact. However, recent positive economic data surrounding the country’s housing market and consumer confidence have helped perpetuate the recent risk-on sentiment as of late. Weekly jobless claims will only add to the heightened sense of optimism as data shows 22,000 fewer people filed for unemployment last week. U.S. equities markets have pushed higher over the past few sessions and look poised to continue the uptrend. This has pretty much put the kibosh on any upward momentum gold may have had as investors look to be favoring riskier assets despite tomorrows scheduled sequestration. Platinum continues to search for direction as the white metal trades either side of the $1600 mark. Palladium made a push back toward $750 but has since retreated to yesterday’s closing levels. Have a great day!
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
It seems like the only people worried about this so-called “sequestration” are the government bureaucrats responsible for its existence. U.S. consumers seem pretty happy with the current situation as evidenced by better-than-expected consumer confidence data (Conference Board index up to 69.6), new home sales jumping 15% to start the year and home prices rising 7.3%. The gold was under early pressure on Tuesday as positive sentiment permeated the markets. However, Chairman Bernanke’s rhetoric was just the support the metals needed as his comments before the Senate Banking Committee pushed gold through the $1600 threshold. The yellow metal closed the day at $1615.5. Mr. Bernanke is set to speak to the other side of congress today and although we can’t expect a different speech we can expect a different line of questioning. The Commerce Department reported durable goods orders were up 1.9% in their latest reading. Pending home sales are due at 10:00 am EST. Have a great day!
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
The late-day sell-off in the equities arena, sparked by the political turmoil in Italy, sent investors for higher ground sending gold back toward the psychological level of $1600. The three major U.S. indices posted losses of more than 1.4% on Monday as uncertainty over who will be the next to lead Italy, and its struggling economy, has investors in the edge of their seats. The incumbent Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has already vowed not to work with Mr. Monti should be win this election and that has sent Italy’s bond yields nearer to 5%. Eurozone worries are not exactly a new concept but they haven’t been in the spotlight for quite a while. These developments come as the U.S. government faces automatic budget cuts on Friday that have the potential to send the world’s #1 economy back into a recession, according to some, and that’s not good for anybody. Platinum was helped by the safe haven moves but easing tensions in SA have held the PGMS back from breaking out to the upside. The AMCU has reportedly signed a peace and stability framework. Chairman Bernanke will sit before the Senate Banking Committee today and the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday which should give investors something to focus on ahead of Friday’s impending doom. Have a great day!
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Platinum is in retreat mode on the back of reports that Amplats workers are returning to the mines following Mondays clash between rival mining unions. The white metal closed near $1700 on Tuesday but the situation doesn’t appear to be escalating, which has pressured platinum to its current level of $1652 (down 2.7% on the day). Palladium has followed suit with a 2.7% decline in the early part of the session. Palladium is now trading at $743. A decrease in housing starts was counterbalanced by an uptick in housing permits which may lead to more positive sentiment in the equities markets. This has led to further pressure in the gold market as the yellow metal is down nearly 1% to start. The FOMC meeting minutes will be released later today any evidence to further support the idea that QE could be halted by the end of 2013 may have gold testing even lower. However, one must remember that the economy is still on a fragile footing as the looming spending cuts facing the U.S. government are a little more than a week away. Have a great day!
Friday, February 15, 2013
Just like the stock of Carnival Cruise lines, the precious complex is a sinking ship at the moment with seemingly no life raft in sight ( I can’t decide whether the pun is intended or not). However, all witticism aside, the less than inspiring GDP data of some of the world’s major economies over the past few days have given market participants little in the way of reason to hold the metals, particularly the industrial ones. Apparently, 27,000 fewer unemployment requests is enough cause for negative sentiment in the yellow metal. Perhaps some are forgetting the 6.5% unemployment and 2.5% inflation targets, that may trigger the end of QE Infinity, are about as far off land as those passengers in the gulf were just 5 days ago. Nonetheless, a bearish atmosphere in the precious metals has the entire complex in negative territory to start the day with all metals down more than 1%. Platinum is down 2% after closing Thursday’s session at $1711. The G-20 meeting takes place over the weekend but U.S. markets won’t be back in session until Tuesday. Have a great day!
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
While the term “Currency Wars” might make you cringe at the thought of yet another awful reality television show, let not your heart be troubled. It’s merely the headline topic at the recent gathering of the G-7 where discussion surrounding exchange rates pushed the greenback lower during Tuesday’s session which, in turn, helped gold and silver ward off further downward pressure. Both metals are relatively unchanged from yesterday’s close. Currency tensions will remain a hot topic as an even larger gathering, the G-20, takes place this weekend and the prospect of “too many chefs in the kitchen” could lead to an interesting start to next week. Platinum and palladium found good buying support following the most recent liquidation that had platinum trading below the psychological level of $1700 and palladium losing ground as well. Reports that Zimbabwe not only seeks to localize platinum refining but has also apparently taken land owned by Impala, have provided the catalyst for the two metals to push higher. Platinum is now trading near $1730 while palladium is trading at $770. Not surprisingly, January retail sales left much to be desired as 2013 brought about the expiration of the payroll tax cut that was enjoyed for the past few years. Retail sales were up just .1% to start the new year. More corporate earnings and some analysis of The President’s State of the Union Address are pretty much what’s on the agenda for the remainder of the day.
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Platinum and palladium have managed to buck the downward trend that has permeated the precious complex as a significant portion of the Asian market remains on holiday for the Chinese New Year. Platinum closed Monday’s rather quiet session below the psychological level of $1700 but has since found some bargain hunting support that has pushed the white metal to $1707 at the moment. Palladium is up $10 from yesterday’s close and now trades at $769. The rest of the complex seems to have stopped the hemorrhaging for now, perhaps supported by reports of North Korean chest thumping. The super secretive nation is said to have detonated a nuclear device yesterday. Nothing noteworthy on the economic data front for today. Have a great day!
Monday, February 11, 2013
The precious complex appears a bit fatigued at the moment following the most recent run-ups in the past few weeks. Silver is taking it the hardest right now, down more than 1.5% to start the week. Gold is down roughly 1% and trading at $1648. Platinum is hovering just above the $1700 threshold, currently trading at $1705 while palladium is trading either side of $750. The Chinese New Year and lack of any economic reports her in the states has things off to a rather quiet start and things should remain quiet ahead of any new out of the G-20 meeting being held in Russia this week. Have a great day!
Friday, February 8, 2013
Westminster Mint is pleased to offer these massive silver bullion bars to investors and collectors nationwide. Each bar has a surface area that exceeds 30 inches, contains 4 troy ounces of .999 fine silver and has a gleaming Proof-like finish.
These massive silver bullion bars minted with 4 troy ounces of .999 fine silver are a faithful rendition of the U.S. Treasurys new 2013 $100 bill. They are about the same size as the original but are much thicker and more heavy!
Unlike most bullion items that are struck just for investors, these massive pieces have exceptional visibility and popularity in the collector market where millions have been sold. They are individually minted and are exceptionally high quality. Each piece has been struck numerous times under intense pressure to bring out all of the fine details. This is a similar process to the one used to strike valuable Proof coins and ensures a better eye appeal than is normally associated with silver bullion products.
These Franklin $100 silver bars are easily bought, sold, stacked stored and counted and offer excellent bullion and additional collector value.
Thursday, February 7, 2013
Collect six of the world’s most popular silver bullion coins with this magnificent six coin set. Each coin is struck from one ounce of pure silver, is encapsulated in a clear plastic protective holder and presented in a custom display case. Included is the: 2013 American silver eagle, the 2013 Canadian silver maple leaf, the 2013 silver Britannia, the 2013 Austrian silver philharmonic, the 2013 Australian silver kookaburra and the 2013 Chinese silver panda. Each coin is offered in brilliant uncirculated condition.
2011/1013 Canadian Wildlife 6-coin set – Uncirculated. Collect all six of the popular Canadian Wildlife coins with this stunning set. Each coin is minted from one ounce of Canada’s legendary 99.99% pure silver.
Each design is a sold out limited edition of just one million coins making them almost twenty times more rare by mintage the silver maple leaf coins. The Timber Wolf, Grizzly bear, cougar, moose, pronghorn antelope and wood bison designs have been a massive hit with coin collectors and silver bullion investors. Each coin is individually encapsulated in a clear plastic protective holder and presented in a custom display case.
2013 25TH Anniversary 5-coin Silver Maple Leaf Reverse Proof Set. These stunning 5-piece coin sets have been issued to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Silver Maple Leaf coin series. The coins have a special one-year-only-design and are the first Silver Maple Leaf fractional coins sets issued for ten years. Best of all they have a shockingly low mintage of just 9,999! Sets. Each coin is minted from Canada’s legendary 99.99% pure silver. Each coin features the same, one-year-only, three leaves design, commissioned specifically for this set from Canadian artist Arnold Nogy! An added feature is the “Tiara portrait” of Queen Elizabeth II taken directly from the original 1988 Silver Maple Leaf and the duel dates 1988-2013. Their beauty, collectability and value is further enhanced by all five of the coins having a high quality reverse Proof strike. Each coin is individually encapsulated in a protective clear plastic holder and is presented in the original government packaging that includes a numbered certificate of authenticity.
With little in the way of catalyst to propel the metals complex to even fresher highs the market held relatively flat to yesterday’s close until just moments ago when the metals pushed southward. The BOE and ECB stayed the course with their respective interest rate policies and with the sharp pullback in the euro one could presume that the inquisition of Mario Draghi might not be going so well. Gold is down .5% now trading at $1666 and silver has fallen 1% in the early part of the session to $31.385. Platinum and palladium are nearing a .25% pullback. U.S. initial jobless claims had 5,000 fewer requests than the previous week but business activity in arguably the most prosperous country on earth dropped 2% to end 2012. Perhaps some cushioning can be had from Chicago Fed President, Charles Evans, comments that he doesn’t see the unemployment rate improving to 6.5% until mid-2015. The 6.5% is the threshold for which the Fed has said it will stop printing money out of thin air. Have a great day!
Wednesday, February 6, 2013
It’s a case of mind over matter this morning. If the market doesn’t mind then it doesn’t really matter as fears of turmoil in the Eurozone’s political arena weren’t enough to suppress the positive sentiment in the region over the past several months. Helped by upbeat readings on Eurozone business activity and better economic data out of China and the U.S., the PGMs found some buying support that pushed platinum to within reach of $1750 in overnight sessions after closing Tuesday at $1707. Palladium continues to find good support above $760 and now trades at $764. Profit taking is a strong possibility with a run-up like this and platinum has backtracked slightly but is still up 1.32% to start the day. Palladium is relatively unchanged from yesterday’s close. Not much on tap as far as economic reports today so investors will have time to figure out what they are going to do about not getting mail on Saturday’s anymore. Have a great day!
Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Allegations of corruption and scandal in the Eurozone satiated risk appetite for a brief moment, sending the DJIA back below the 14,000 threshold and supporting the metals complex with gold up ..34% and silver up more than .5% to start the day. In Italy, the world’s oldest bank is facing losses of €720 million from derivatives trades that happened years ago and are only now coming to light. In Spain, allegations of slush fund payouts in the country’s political circle are also sapping recent positive sentiment in the region. However, the sell-off appears to have reversed as focus shifts back to U.S. earnings and comments from computer giant Dell about going private. Equities have since fought back toward the 14,000 level and the metals complex now sits relatively flat to yesterday’s closes. Have a great day!
Monday, February 4, 2013
Gold and silver are going through a bout of profit taking following last week’s run-up on the back of poor GDP data and an unemployment rate that went in the wrong direction despite modest additions to U.S. payrolls. The yellow metal closed Friday’s session at $1669 and silver closed at $31.958 as government data showed merely 157,000 jobs were added to the economy and the unemployment rate actually moved up to 7.9%. Both metals are in negative territory this morning but should find some cushion as Fed thresholds for ending QE remain far out of reach, keeping the safe-havens in play. Platinum broke through $1700 overnight, topping out at $1709 ahead of Amplats release of 2012 earnings. It was no surprise that 2012 was a difficult year for the world’s #1 producer of platinum and with no unexpected news the platinum rally lost steams with the white metal now trading below $1700, now at $1698.5, but still more than .5% up on the day. Have a great day!