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AGE Daily Gold Update presents a recap on today's action in the precious metals markets. View archives.


12/5/2019: Gold seesaws higher on trade

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold rose 0.2% to close above $1,483 as lingering uncertainty about the pending US-China trade deal pressured the dollar and boost demand for alternative assets.

China's commerce ministry released a statement today reiterating its demand for lower tariffs as a prerequisite to a limited trade pact. While negotiations are underway ahead of a new round of tariffs scheduled to kick in on December 15, Washington has yet to commit to lowering existing tariffs, let alone foregoing new ones.

Official attitudes about the so-called "phase one" deal seem to seesaw daily, gyrating financial markets in their wake. Early this week, President Trump suggested postponing talks until after the 2020 elections, sending Wall Street into a tailspin. By midweek both sides said talks are proceeding well, restoring risk appetite, only to have it undercut by further posturing.

The dollar fell 0.2% against major rivals led by the euro and UK pound after a spate of weak US data caused traders to speculate the Fed might have to lower interest again in coming months. It was the buck's fifth straight losing session.

Lower rates undermine the dollar by making it less attractive to Forex trades seeking yield. A weaker dollar, in turn, supports gold and other commodities by making them less expensive in other currencies.

The other precious metals were mixed, with silver adding 0.9% while platinum dipped 0.1% and palladium ended virtually flat.

At the Comex close: February gold gained $2.90 to $1,483.10; March silver added 14 cents, to $17.06; January platinum dipped $1.20 to $900.60; and March palladium edged up 30 cents to $1,845.70 an ounce.


12/4/2019: Gold slides on new trade hopes

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold slid 0.3%, holding above $1,480, after upbeat reports on US-China trade talks stoked risk appetite, causing traders to take some profits from yesterday's 1% surge and shift back toward risk.

Bloomberg reported the US and China are getting closer to a "phase one" trade pact and should final finalize the terms before new tariffs kick in on December 15. The news comes one day after President Trump discussed putting off the deal until after the 2020 elections, causing stocks to plummet and gold to rally sharply on safe-haven demand.

As if on cue, US equity indexes jumped on the prospect of a reduction in the 17-month trade war that has slowed growth at home and abroad. The Dow and S&P 500 rose nearly 0.7% while the Nasdaq added 0.6%.

The rise in risk appetite came despite another round of disappointing US economic data. ADP reported the private sector added merely 67,000 jobs in November, the least in six months and less than half the amount forecast.

And the ISM services index slowed again in November, reflecting the impact of tariffs on products offered by the service-oriented companies that constitute around two-thirds of economic activity. While the crucial sector is still expanding, it has trended sharply lower since hitting a 13-year high late last year.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum dropping 1.9% and 1.1%, respectively, while palladium added 1.2%.

At the Comex close: February gold slid to $1,480.20; March silver fell 33 cents to $16.92; January platinum dropped $9.80 to $901.80; and March palladium added $21, to $1,845.40 an ounce.


12/3/2019: Gold surges on trade pessimism

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold surged 1% to close at a four-week high above $1,484 as escalating trade worries damaged risk appetite, undercutting stocks and the dollar while boosting demand for safe-haven assets.

Speaking at NATO today, President Trump rattled markets by saying a trade agreement with China may have to wait until after the presidential election. Frustrated by the lack of progress in talks and apparently confident of his re-election prospects, the President seemed more than willing to extend the trade war for at least another year to get the deal he wants.

The announcement came one day after Trump said he will reinstate tariffs on Argentina and Brazil and levy new duties against France, casting a further pall over an already-slowing global economy.

Equities plunged on the aggressive new trade posture, with the Dow losing 1.2% and the Global Dow nearly 1.5%.

Benchmark 10-year Treasurys rallied alongside gold, knocking yields to the lowest level since August, as investors shed risk. Safe-haven currencies like the yen and Swiss franc rallied against the dollar, supporting gold and other commodities by making them less expensive overseas.

The other precious metals were mostly higher, with silver and platinum jumping 1.7% and 1.3%, respectively, while palladium dipped less than 0.1%.

At the Comex close: February gold gained $15.20 to $1,484.40; March silver rose 28 cents to $17.25; January platinum climbed $11.90 to $911.60; and March palladium edged down $2 to $1,824.40 an ounce.


12/2/2019: Gold steadies after soft US data

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold dipped 0.2% to close under $1,470, rebounding from early-session lows after weak US manufacturing data and unease about global trade caused reversals in the dollar and equities.

The metal initially fell to under $1,460 as solid manufacturing data from data from China stoked risk appetite, boosting equities and the dollar. The Caixin private PMI showed Chinese factory activity expanding in November at the fastest pace in almost three months.

But stocks and the dollar abruptly reversed directions, lifting gold almost to flat, after ISM index of US factory activity contracted in November for the fourth month and construction spending fell unexpectedly.

Adding to late-session risk-off sentiment, President Trump threatened to renew tariffs on Argentina and Brazil, and to increase tariffs on China even more if he doesn’t get the deal he wants. For its part, China said it will not agree to the so-called "phase one " pact unless the US commits to dropping tariffs, something Washington has refused to do.

The Dow plunged to a loss of nearly 1% while the Nasdaq fell 1.1%.

The dollar fell from small gains to a loss of around 0.4% against major rivals as traders speculated that the weak US data will prompt the Fed to cut interest rates again early next year. Lower rates weaken the dollar by making it less attractive to Forex investors seeking yield. A weaker dollar, in turn, lifts gold and other commodities by making them less expensive in other currencies.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum dropping 0.8% and 0.1%, respectively, while palladium rose 0.8% on supply worries.

At the Comex close: February gold slipped $3.50 to $1,469.20; March silver fell 14 cents to16.97; January platinum dipped 70 cents to $899.70; and March palladium added $14.60, to $1,824.70 an ounce.


11/27/2019: Gold slips after upbeat US data

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold slipped 0.4% to close under $1,461 as a raft of upbeat US economic data rallied stocks and the dollar, undercutting demand for safe havens.

Consumer spending rose in October for the eighth straight month, signaling momentum in this crucial sector entering the holiday season. While consumer confidence has fallen for four months, Americans continue to buy things, which has carried an otherwise tepid economy. Household spending constitutes around 70% of GDP.

Durable goods orders rose 0.6% in October behind a strong uptick in defense spending on fighter planes and ships. Orders for non-military goods were nearly flat.

The Fed's Beige Book said the economy expanded "modestly" across the Fed regions in the period from October through the middle of this month. The anecdotal summary marked a mild improvement over the previous period, which was characterized as growing at a "slight to moderate pace."

The Commerce Department upgraded its growth estimate for the third quarter to 2.1% from 1.9%, citing slightly better business investment than previously measured.

Stocks rallied on the improved data, with all three main US indexes reaching new records ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday closures. The Dow added 0.2% while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq rose 0.4% and 0.6%, respectively.

The dollar also gained ground, adding 0.1% against major rivals. A strong dollar pressures gold and other commodities by making them more expensive in other currencies.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum dropping 0.7% and 2.1% while outlier palladium rose 1.3%.

At the Comex close: February gold fell $6.90 to $1,4560.50; December silver lost 12 cents to $16.92; January platinum dropped $16.30 to $892; and March palladium rose $23.90 to $1,805.90 to an ounce.


11/26/2019: Gold gains on consumer data

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold gained 0.2% to close above $1,460 as soft US economic data and lingering uncertainty about US-China trade relations underpinned demand for safe havens.

Consumer confidence fell for the fourth straight month in November, according to the Conference Board, with Americans expressing decreased optimism about the job market. While surveys on consumer sentiment focus on attitudes toward buying goods today, consumer confidence readings project out six months to offer a forward-looking metric on expected spending.

Comprising roughly 70% of GDP, consumer spending has almost single-handedly kept the US economy from slipping in into recession over the past year. The services and especially manufacturing sectors have struggled under the pressure of trade conflicts and slowing growth at home and abroad.

Dallas Fed President Robert Kaplan said today that US growth is likely to fall sharply in the fourth quarter as businesses cut inventories because of the trade war. The New York Fed and Atlanta Fed are projecting GDP growth 0.7% and 0.4%, respectively.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell was more optimistic in a speech in Rhode Island, saying the data "paint a hopeful picture" for wage increases among "low- and middle-income workers." He also signaled that interest rates are likely stay low for a long while because inflation remains stuck below the Fed's 2% target.

Low rates support gold prices by reducing the opportunity cost for holding the metal instead of bonds, which offer a yield, and by making the dollar less attractive to foreign exchange investors seeking higher yields. A weaker dollar, in turn, makes gold less expensive in other currencies.

The other precious metals were also higher, with silver rising nearly 1% while platinum and palladium added 1.2% and 0.6%, respectively.

At the Comex close: December gold gained $3.40 to $1,460.30; December silver rose 16 cents to $17.05; January platinum climbed $11.30 to $911.70; and December palladium added $10.90, to $1,782.30 an ounce.


11/25/2019: Gold slides with rising risk appetite

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold slid 0.5% to close under $1,457 as growing optimism about a possible US-China trade deal fueled risk appetite, undercutting demand for safe-haven assets.

According to the Global Times, an official publication of China's communist party, the so-called "phase one" trade agreement between the world's two largest economies is near completion. The news comes after US national security adviser Robert O’Brien said on Saturday the agreement with may come by the end of the year.

The limited deal would roll back some tariffs on Chinese goods in exchange for the purchase of US agricultural products like soybeans. In addition, China will agree to raise the upper limit on fines for the violation of US intellectual property rights, a major sticking point.

Investors jumped prospect of a de-escalation in the 16-month trade war that has damaged the global economy. The S&P 500 rose 0.6% while the tech-heavy Nasdaq added 1.2% to new record highs.

The dollar rose to a one-week high against the safe-haven yen, pressuring gold and other commodities priced in dollars for global trade.

The other precious metals were mixed, with silver dropping 0.7% while platinum and palladium, more directly tied to industry, rose 0.8% and 1.6%, respectively.

At the Comex close: December gold slid $6.70 to $1,456.90; December silver lost 11 cents to $16.88 January platinum $7.80 to $900.40; and December palladium added $28.30, to $1,771.40 an ounce.


11/22/2019: Gold flat after upbeat US data

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold closed unchanged at $1,463.60 after upbeat US economic data lifted stocks and the dollar, undercutting demand for alternative assets. The metal traded above $1,473 earlier in the session before slipping back on rising risk appetite, ending the week with a loss of 0.3%.

IHS Markit reported its flash PMIs for both US manufacturing and US services were sharply higher in November, fueling hopes that the decade-long expansion is recovering from its recent slow patch. Manufacturing expanded at the fastest pace since April, while the services sector grew by the most since July.

Separately, consumer sentiment rebounded this month after falling in October, according to the University of Michigan survey, as Americans became more hopeful about a trade deal with China. Comprising roughly 70% of the GDP, consumer spending has been the economy's primary bulwark against recession as the 16-month trade war has hammered manufacturing.

The Dow added 0.3% as the upbeat data stoked risk appetite among investors. The dollar also rose 0.3%, pressuring gold and other commodities priced in it for global trade by making them more expensive overseas.

Conciliatory comments from China and the US about reaching a trade agreement further supported risk-on sentiment. President Trump said today that a deal is "potentially very close." His Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, asserted yesterday that China wishes to work toward completing a pact soon.

The other precious metals were mixed on the day and week. Silver dropped 0.4% today but rose 0.3% this week. Platinum fell 2.7% but held a weekly rise of 0.2%. Palladium gained 0.7% today and 3.6% this week.

At the Comex close: December gold was flat at $1,463.60; December silver dropped 7 cents to $17; January platinum lost $24.90 to $892.60; and December palladium gained $11.50 to $1,743.40 an ounce.


11/21/2019: Gold drops on rekindled trade hopes

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold fell 0.7% to close under $1,464 as seeming progress in US-China negotiations rekindled hopes for a trade deal, undercutting demand for safe havens. The metal surrendered all its gains for the week but remains up 14% so far this year.

China has reportedly invited top US trade negotiators for a new round of talks, saying it will work with the US to resolve the 16-month trade war that has damaged global growth. Vice Premier Liu He, China's chief negotiator, said he is "cautiously optimistic" that the so-called "phase one" pact will be completed.

Treasury yields rose on the trade optimism, snapping a three-day losing streak, and the dollar rose against major rivals. Higher yields pressure gold because it is a non-yielding asset, while a stronger dollar weighs on the metal by making it more expensive in other currencies.

The gold price was backstopped by a new round of soft US data. The Mid-Atlantic Fed region posted a sharp slowdown in factory orders and shipments in November. And the US leading economic indicators index fell in October for the third straight month. A weighted gauge of 10 indicators, the LEI has posted negative six-month growth for the first time in three years.

The other precious metals were also lower, with silver sliding 0.3% while platinum and palladium dropped 0.3% and 0.6%, respectively.

At the Comex close: December gold lost $10.60 to $1,463.60; December silver slid 5 cents to $17.05; January platinum dipped $2.50 to $917.50; and December palladium shed $9.90 to $1,731.90 an ounce.


11/20/2019: Gold dips on profit-taking, Fed

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold was nearly flat in regular trade, edging down a dime to close above $1,472, as safe-haven demand from trade uncertainty was neutralized by profit-taking. The metal then edged down a buck in electronic trading after the minutes from the Fed's last meeting, released following the Comex close, were upbeat on the US economy.

The pending "phase one" trade deal between the US and China may not happen this year after all, according to Reuters. Talks have stalled over two main points: Beijing's willingness to buy $50 billion in farm goods, and Washington's commitment to lowering tariffs. The limited deal was supposed to finalized before additional tariffs are imposed on December 15.

Talks have become further complicated by China's violent crackdown on pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. Yesterday, the Senate unanimously passed a human rights resolution in support of the protestors, drawing the ire of China. President Trump has warned that he will "raise the tariffs even more" if no deal is reached.

Wall Street slid on the rising trade tension, with all three major US indexes dropping 0.5%. The dollar edged up 0.1% against major rival, pressuring gold by making it more expensive in other currencies.

Gold had rallied above $1,479 early in the session as trade worries pulled investors into safe havens, only to settle back to near-flat as traders took profits from two winning sessions.

Further eroding the gold price, the minutes from the Fed's recent meeting on monetary policy showed the central bank to be more upbeat on the economy than expected. Members "generally viewed the economic outlook as positive," and felt global risks to growth "had eased somewhat."

The other precious metals were mixed, with silver dipping less than 0.1% while platinum and palladium added 0.8% and 0.3%, respectively.

At the Comex close: December eased a dime to 10 cents to $1,474.20; December silver dipped half a cent to $17.115; January platinum gained $7.70 to $920; and December palladium rose $4.40 to $1,741.80 an ounce.

  

Metal Ask      Change
Gold $1,476.80           $-0.67
Silver $17.01           $-0.03
Platinum $903.75           $0.03
Palladium $1,874.51           $-6.09
In US Dollars