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Week of November 14th Gold Market Update

Gold and silver, after declining drastically during the early morning hours, are adding value at a nice rate as of the writing of this post. Gold and silvers’ gains are being attributed to bargain-hunting buying and increased physical demand as a result of spot values being so low at the present moment in time. In all, this week did not bring about too much in the way of markets-moving economic data. While this fact did not really hurt precious metals, it didn’t provide them with any lasting boost or anything like that.

Bank’s Alleged to Be Involved in Fixing of Exchange Markets

One of the only major news stories made public this week came Wednesday in the form of a multinational investigation with regard to supposed exchange market fixings by some of the world’s largest banks. The investigation, which was led by Swiss, UK, and US authorities, alleges that Royal Bank of Scotland, UBS, Citibank, JP Morgan, and a few other banks participated in the fixing of foreign exchange markets with the goal of boosting their own bottom lines. A settlement between authorities and the banks was reached, and totaled in the $3.4 billion range.

This news did not have any major impact on global financial markets, but is still something investors want to pay close attention to. According to multiple sources, the entirety of the investigation is not complete, so it is thought that we will hear some more information in the coming days and weeks.

As we look ahead to next week, it is likely that things will remain fairly quiet and subdued should we not hear of any new geopolitical or economic developments. For gold and silver, there is no real way to tell what this means, but with a market as bearish as this, it is likely that things will only get worse for the metals. The real test will be to see whether gold and silver will be able to hang on to today’s gains or if we will see a repeat of what happened this Monday and metals lose all of the value that they had gained.

Week of November 7th Gold Market Update

Precious metals spot values have bounced back as of mid-morning on Friday, thanks, in large part, to today’s employment report from October. Even without today’s employment report, this week was extremely busy and had the attention of investors jumping all over the place. Unfortunately for gold and silver, most of the happenings worth paying attention to this week worked against spot values and only worsened last week’s losses.

In case you missed it, Tuesday’s midterm elections in the United States saw the Republican party seize control of both the House and the Senate. This is significant because it is the first time in decades that one party has control of both the House and the Senate, but is also significant because Republicans are viewed as being pro-business and generally better for economic growth. As you could have probably guessed, Tuesday’s election results gave the greenback as well as US equities a boost, but did not do gold and silver any favors at all.

Today’s Employment Data Mostly Disappoints

While there were a few anxiously-awaited pieces of economic data due for release this week, none of them were deemed by the market as being more important than today’s employment data from last month. According to a midweek survey of industry experts, the expectations were that October saw at least 230,000 new jobs added to the US economy. This may seem like a massive estimate, and is, but after September’s employment report showed that almost 250,000 new jobs were created, it really comes as no surprise that expectations were so lofty.

Unfortunately, today’s employment report disappointed due to the fact that only about 214,000 new jobs were added to the economy during October. This figure was much smaller than what was expected and ended up temporarily hurting the progress of both the US Dollar as well as US equities. For gold and silver, however, today’s employment report offered a bit of respite from recent losses as both metals were able to regain some of the losses they have incurred over the course of the past week or more.

Now, as we look ahead to next week, it is highly likely that the attention of investors will be directed towards the global equity and currency markets. As it stands, the US Dollar is performing extremely well against rivals, while the Euro is doing miserably. A strong US Dollar is not helping gold and silver at all, but perhaps what is hurting more is the continued depreciation of crude oil. The value of crude oil has been on the decline for the past few weeks and is really acting like a weight on all commodities, including precious metals.

Week of October 31st Gold Market Update

Gold and silver spent most of the first half of the week trading sideways, but by the time the FOMC meeting wrapped up and the post-meeting statement was made, spot values dropped significantly. On Thursday, things only got worse as upbeat economic data from the United States was made public.

As it stands now, the upbeat nature of the US economy is not doing gold and silver any favors. Risk-appetite has ticked up considerably and whenever that proves to be the case, gold and silver usually suffer. As we look ahead to next week, it will be interesting to see if metals can bounce back from this week’s late losses or if pressure that is currently piling on will only continue to grow worse.

FOMC Statement Does Metals No Favors

The tide really began to turn against precious metals upon the release of the FOMC’s post-meeting statement on Wednesday afternoon. Though the fact that the Fed was doing away with quantitative easing did not really surprise anyone, the upbeat outlook on the US economy described by the FOMC did. While the same language was used, saying that it will still be “considerable time” until interest rates in the US are raised, the Fed surprised everyone by saying that the US economy is showing signs of significant improvement.

In the immediate wake of the FOMC’s statement, gold and silver spot values declined slightly. While it was clear to see that metals were not receiving any benefits as a result of the FOMC statement, things only got worse on Thursday.

Upbeat Economic Data Dooms Metals

As if Wednesday’s FOMC statement wasn’t enough, the precious metals market was dealt another setback yesterday in the form of the most recent batch of US economic data. According to reports, the US economy grew by far more than expected during the 3rd-quarter of 2014. In fact, this most recent US economic progress caps off the best 6-month run the US economy has seen in more than a decade.

Adding to that was a separate report claiming that October filings for unemployment benefits were the lowest seen in more than 14 years. As expected, yesterday’s data not only gave the US Dollar a boost, but also helped stock indexes surge to record-highs. Now, it seems as though the interest the market had in gold and silver less than a week ago has just evaporated into thin air.

Week of October 24th Gold Market Update

Gold and silver price began this week in decent fashion, but through Wednesday and Thursday losses really began to add up. Today, metals are rebounding a bit, but that bounce is looking like it will not be enough for this week to be a third week of gains. To be fair, a majority of this 5-day trading session has been quiet and devoid of much economic activity. With that said, however, investors have had plenty to pay attention to as there is still volatility in global equity markets, some data was made public out of China, and the world is gearing up for yet another monetary policy announcement out of Europe.

Today, the US Dollar, which has been limiting the buying interest in gold and silver, backed down upon the release of revised housing sales figures from the last few months.

Revised Housing Data Does Greenback No Favors

Throughout much of this week, the progress of the US Dollar had been preventing gold and silver from both making any gains as well as preventing metals from holding on to any gains made last week. Today, however, brought about a bit of a different story shortly after revised housing data was made public.

According to the data, sales of new homes in August was not nearly as robust as originally though. The original figures showed August home sales somewhere in the neighborhood of 505,000, but in reality, the revised figures showed that really only 466,000 news homes were purchased. The revisions also took their toll on the months of June and July, as their figures were revised downward ever so slightly. For September, it was reported that 467,000 new homes were purchased, but even this figure fell short of the 470,000 mark expected by market experts. This data and this data alone was a major part of the reason behind why the greenback finished the day and week downward and why gold and silver were able to add just a bit of value on Friday.

As we look ahead to next week, it is almost a guarantee that the marketplace will be a bit busier than it was this week. With the marketplace expecting to hear some news out of the EU with regard to future monetary policy shifts, it is likely that there will be a good amount of information for investors to pay attention to and mull over.

Week of October 17th Gold Market Update

Precious metals are trending slightly downward to finish this 5-day trading session, but as for weekly gains or losses are concerned, it seems as though metals are poised for this to be a second consecutive week of gains. There hasn’t been too much in the way of economic data made public, but what data has hit the market has acted as a support system for precious metals. Now, it seems as though the metals bulls are gaining momentum and might ride that momentum into next week.

A major theme in the marketplace throughout much of this and last week has been the volatility of US equity indexes. With stocks jumping all over the place, a lot of risk-aversion has entered the marketplace and fueled safe-haven demand for gold and silver. It isn’t just volatile equities that have been instilling fear into the marketplace either, as a number of other factors have done their part to really push gold and silver forward.

A Bad Week of Economic Data Across the Board

Though there wasn’t all that much economic data made public this week, what data did hit the marketplace was almost wholly negative. For one, data out of the European Union indicated that industrial production across the region continues to lag. Not only that, but the economic growth of periphery nations such as Spain and Greece is being cited as a factor slowing the economic progress of the region as a whole.

Now, the attention of investors from around the world is slowly but surely turning to the European Central Bank in order to see what, if anything, they will do in order to combat rising deflationary pressures as well as slowing economic growth. If something isn’t done soon, the whole of the EU will continue to suffer.

While the European Union has been playing host to poor economic data for some time now, the data emitted by the United States has generally been upbeat. This week, however, the story was a bit different as a few economic reports indicated that all might not be well with the US economy. Not only were retail sales reported as being down in September, but so too was the PPI of the US. This news only acted as a buffer for the safe-haven demand of precious metals, which, like I have been saying, is on the up and up as of late. It will be interesting to see what the next few weeks have in store for gold and silver spot values, but from the looks of it, with gold bulls gaining momentum, things are looking up.

Week of October 10th Gold Market Update

Precious metals are trading ever so slightly lower as of the writing of this post, but are poised to make their first weekly gain in more than a month. Though there wasn’t a whole bunch of economic activity to report on this week, what little economic data made its way to the table really shifted the way the marketplace perceives investments in physical precious metals. While the market is still definitely bearish with regard to gold and silver, the selling pressure has lightened up significantly and has allowed for a combination of bargain-hunting and safe-haven demand to drive spot values. upward.

From Europe, what little data we received was in line with that of other recent data and came back far poorer than expected. One report that stuck out was with regard to German factory output in August. According to the figures, factory output in the EU’s leading economy in August declined by more than 4%. While most experts were anticipating a decline, they were expecting the downturn to be somewhere in the neighborhood of 1-2%, not 4%. As we move forward, the eyes of the world will continue to be fixated on the EU economy and all data stemming from it.

Stock Market Volatility a Theme This Week

For some of last week and much of this 5-day trading session, US equity markets have been all sorts of volatile. While one day the S&P 500, Dow, and Nasdaq are trading upwards, the next day they were seen racing downward. Though it is not clear why such volatility is plaguing equities, it is clear that some investors are under the impression that the equity rally we have seen over the past many months may finally be coming to an end. Though there is no way to say for sure whether the stock market rally is concluding, early indications are that stock markets are, in fact, topping out.

Not helping equity markets at all was Wednesday’s release of the FOMC’s minutes from their latest meeting. According to many Fed members, the weakening of economies in Asia and Europe are a major contributing factor to the Fed’s reluctance to raise interest rates. Not only that, but other members of the Fed feel as though the USD’s recent rally will, sometime down the road, weigh on the economic growth of the US. As a result, most experts have changed their projections for interest rate hikes from next summer to the following fall.

This week’s data, albeit limited, has really paved the way for some bargain-hunting purchases as well as increased safe-haven demand. It will now be interesting to see if metals can hang on to this week’s gains as we head into the weekend and into next week.

Week of October 3rd Gold Market Update

Precious metals are reeling today after the latest US employment report came back far better than expected. On the whole, this week was generally quiet from an economic standpoint, and that did not at all bode well for precious metals. In fact, as of the writing of this post, both spot gold and silver are below price points that have long been considered bottoming out points. It will be interesting to see if, over the week, spot values are able to bounce back, or if they will continue to feel the heavy selling pressure that has been a mainstay in the marketplace for the past month or more.

Geopolitics Take Center Stage This Week

Despite there being very few pieces of economic data for investors to talk about, the week was not totally quiet. Beginning late last week and intensifying over last weekend, many Hong Kong citizens had taken to the streets in order to protest what, according to them, is becoming an increasingly restrictive government. Though the protests have remained mostly peaceful, the fact that such unrest is happening in the financial capital of the world is and has been weighing on equity markets. This has provided a bit of support for precious metals, but has done more in the way of limiting selling pressure than it has contributed to any gains being regained.

The protests are still ongoing, but they have faded from the immediate attention of the market simply because of the lack of violence. Regardless, investors the world over will be interested in what is going on in Hong Kong as it will always have at least some sort of impact on the spot values of gold and silver as well as the progress, or lack thereof, of equity markets around the world.

US Employment Report Weighs on Gold and Silver

The biggest piece of economic data for the week came this morning in the form of the latest US Labor Department employment report for September. In the lead up to the report’s release, the market was expecting to hear that somewhere in the neighborhood of 215,000 jobs were added to the US economy last month. Unfortunately for gold and silver, the actual figures showed that nearly 250,000 new jobs were added to the US economy in September.

This news pushed the spot values of metals downward while simultaneously delivering US equities as well as the USD a nice upward boost. On the day, the USD Index has jumped upward by nearly 1.5% and is closing in on another, fresh 12-month high.

Week of September 26th Gold Market Update

Precious metals spot values are moving slightly lower as of the writing of this post and are looking like they will end the week posting minor losses again. To be fair, metals didn’t stand much of a chance during this 5-day trading session simply because the attention of the marketplace remains fixated upon the progress of US equities as well as the US Dollar. There was some US economic data released this week, but the impact it had on the marketplace can best be described as momentary.

What did help gold and silver this week was news of the United States sanctioning and beginning the use of air power against ISIS rebels in Syria. Beginning late Monday evening, reports streamed in claiming that a combination of US planes, bombers, drones, and cruise missiles were bombarding ISIS strongholds through Eastern and Central Syria. Though it was not necessarily unexpected that the US would strike in Syria, it was relatively unexpected that strikes would begin so soon. The news gave gold and silver a bit of a safe-haven demand boost, but any gains that were made on Tuesday were quickly lost by the end of the week. it will be interesting to see what kind of impact the United States’ involvement in the Middle East will have going forward.

US Dollar Continues to Move Forward

The talk of the marketplace the last few weeks has been with regard to when the US Dollar will halt its upward trend. The early parts of this week had some people thinking that the Dollar had run out of gas, but after hitting a 14-month high on Thursday, it is clear to see that momentum is still very much on the greenback’s side. The Dollar was fueled on Thursday by a report from the US which indicated new home sales hit record highs during August. This piece of data came on the back of an earlier week report which indicated existing home sales were suffering. Though the data was mixed, the market perceived the latter good news as outweighing the early week’s sub-par economic report.

As we look ahead, it is likely that the US Dollar will only continue to gain momentum and gain ground against the Euro. You see, the Fed is increasingly tightening monetary policy while the European Central Bank is taking steps to make their’s as accomodative as possible. So long as these divergent policies continue, so too will the inverse relationship of the Dollar and the Euro. It is important to keep in mind, however, that the Dollar is making gains against more than just the Euro. As such, it is hard to envision a scenario where the next few weeks and months provide precious metals with a market atmosphere that would lend itself to gains being made.

Week of September 19th Gold Market Update

For a third consecutive week, it seems as though precious metals are going to be posting a loss. On the whole, this week was fairly busy, but things didn’t really begin to pick up until the last few days, when the FOMC meeting concluded and the Scottish referendum on independence took place. These two events both had their impacts on the marketplace, but as you can see, those impacts were mostly negative for precious metals.

On the geopolitical front there were multiple developments, but none of them had much of any impact on the marketplace. For this week, the eyes of the world were on US president Barack Obama and his military colleagues. After recently announcing that the US would be increasing the use of air power against ISIS militants in Syria and Iraq but not utilizing ground troops, some military advisers this week indicated that the use of ground troops is not out of the question quite yet. As has always been the case, it will be interesting to see how this situation develops as the US becomes more heavily involved in the fighting.

FOMC Holds Rates Steady, Market Reacts

The biggest economic event taking place this week came over the course of Tuesday and Wednesday in the form of the Federal Open Market Committee’s monthly policy meeting. Because there is so much talk of the US raising their key interest rate sometime in the near future, the eyes of the investing world were readily fixated on this week’s meeting.

Everyone was expecting to hear more information regarding the possible upcoming interest rate hike, but such proved to not be the case by the time the meeting concluded on Wednesday afternoon. When the dust finally settled, the FOMC announced that they would retain current interest rate levels for “considerable time” yet. This language eased the concerns of equity investors as US equity markets shot upward (and are continuing to do so today).

On the flip-side, the relatively uneventful FOMC meeting also came to the aid of the US Dollar simply because it is known that interest rates will be raised at some point in the future–how far into the future, however, remains up for debate. Now, just about two days after the meeting, it is clear to see that precious metals were the big losers as a result of the FOMC’s latest conversations.

Scotland Stays

In other news, the Scottish referendum on independence took place on Thursday and appears to have resulted in Scotland’s remaining part of the UK. As the weekend approaches, I am sure we will hear just a bit more information about the final results of the vote and just how close the numbers were.

Week of September 12th Gold Market Update

Gold and silver spot values are trading steady but are still definitely feeling pressure as of midday on Friday. All in all, this 5-day trading session proved adversarial to precious metals. A quieter market atmosphere–one devoid of many markets-moving data points–did not help precious metals at all, but it is the currently bearish marketplace that is weighing on spot values more than anything else. Next week is expected to bring about a good amount of economic talking points, but the preconceived notion held by many investors is that these talking points will, in all likelihood, be bearish for gold and silver.

On the geopolitical front, this week was also fairly quiet. A ceasefire agreement between pro-Russian and Ukrainian troops is now in its 5th consecutive day and appears to be holding strong. Whether or not this ceasefire leads to productive peace talks, however, is where the real test lies. After all, the powder keg that is Eastern Ukraine can blow its top at any point in time. Unfortunately for precious metals, the less attention being paid to violence around the world is yet another factor working against spot values.

In other news from the geopolitical front, US president Barack Obama recently announced that the United States will be upping the use of airstrikes against ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria. This news was not really unexpected and didn’t have all that much of an impact on spot values. What was eye-rising, however, was the fact that Vladimir Putin, Russian president, remarked, saying that any strike in Syria would be considered a strike on Russia itself. Though the market didn’t really react to Putin’s statement, it will be interesting to see what the next few weeks hold for the Middle East, the US, and Russia.

Light Week Sees Investors Looking Ahead

Admittedly, this week was not the busiest we have seen recently. With that said, next week is already shaping up to bring with it a flurry of economic and geopolitical activity. Apart from the continued focus on currency markets, the investing world will also be taking a close look at what the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the United States has to say in the wake of their upcoming policy meeting.

As you are probably well aware, the focus of investors from around the world has been and continued to be when and by how much the Fed plans on raising interest rates. While last week’s poor employment report from the US led many to believe that higher rates are further off than many people had anticipated, a survey from the San Francisco Federal Reserve this week made it clear that a large portion of investors are underestimating just how quickly interest rates in the United States can be jacked up. For this reason and many more, investors will be paying incredibly close attention to anything and everything Janet Yellen and the rest of the Fed has to say about the future of interest rates in the United States.

Next week will also see the attention of the market diverted to a referendum vote to determine the future of Scotland. The referendum will determine whether Scotland becomes independent (ie Ireland) or if they will remain part of the United Kingdom as they have for the past few centuries. As of now, the polls are split, but the outcome of the vote will undoubtedly have a major impact on the UK and European economies.