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


2/15/2019: Gold higher for day, week

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold gained 0.6% to close at a two-week high above $1,322 as soft US data and optimism over US-China trade negotiations weakened the dollar, boosting appetite for alternative stores of value. The metal rose 0.3% for the week.

Beijing signaled that it plans to import more US goods, especially semi-conductors, in order to ease trade conflicts with the US. While the two sides remain deadlocked on some important issues, the news marks progress in overcoming the war of tariffs that has stymied growth in the world's two largest economies.

US industrial production fell in January for the first time in eight months, with weakness in all sectors but mining. Manufacturing has slipped into a mild recession because of pressure from the trade war and China's economic slowdown, according to analysts.

Import prices fell 0.5% in January for the third straight month of declines as the cost of fuel dropped 3.2%. Imports have fallen 1.7% in price over the past 12 months, helping to convince the Fed to pause rate hikes for now.

The dollar slipped on the softer data and upbeat news about China, with the ICE Dollar Index dropping nearly 0.2%. The buck still posted a weekly rise of 0.5% on safe-haven inflows because of fluctuations in US-China trade negotiations and worries earlier in the week about a possible government shutdown.

With a new budget bill passed into law, shutdown worries have now disappeared, removing some recent support for the dollar. Because the bill did not meet his needs for funding the wall on the Mexico border, President Trump has declared a state of emergency to draw funds from elsewhere. The market did not immediately react to this controversial action.

Oil rallied another 2.3% to more than $55 per barrel on China trade progress and production cuts from Saudi Arabia. Crude finished the week 5% higher. Gold often trade in sympathy with oil as a hedge against energy-related inflation.

The other precious metals were higher for the day but mixed for the week. Silver rose 1.4% but still lost 0.4% this week. Platinum added 2.2% today for a weekly rise of 0.5%. Palladium climbed 1.5% today and 2.2% this week.

At the Comex close: April gold gained $8.20 to $1,322.10; March silver rose 22 cents to $15.74; April platinum picked up $17.70 to $806.90; and March palladium climbed $21.30 to $1,407.20 an ounce.


2/14/2019: Gold channels on weak data

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold was little changed, edging down less than 0.1% to close below $1,314 before recovering after hours, as the dollar fell on weak US data and reports that President Trump will sign a budget deal.

Retail sales fell in December by the most in nine years, according to a delayed report from the Census Bureau, raising questions the economy's continued expansion. First-time jobless claims increased last month to a one-year high, suggesting that the historically-strong labor market might be running out of gas.

Stocks declined on the downbeat data, with the Dow and Global Dow both dropping around 0.4%. The dollar also slipped against major rivals, with the ICE Dollar Index losing 0.2%.

President Trump will reportedly sign the compromise bill to prevent another government shutdown. Because the deal includes only 25% of the funding requested for his wall on the Mexico border, the President has signaled that he will declare a national emergency to appropriate the resources, which may provoke a legal battle.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum losing 0.8% and 0.3%, respectively, while palladium added 1%.

At the Comex close: April gold dipped $1.20 to $1,313.90; March silver dropped fell 12 cents to $15.53; April platinum slid $2.60 to $789.20; and March palladium rose $13.30 to $1,385.90 an ounce, another record close.


2/13/2019: Gold inches up as oil rallies

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold inched up by less than 0.1% to close above $1,315 as rising oil prices overcame strength in stocks and the dollar to drive demand for alternative assets.

Crude jumped another 1.7% to surpass $54 per barrel, the highest level since November, after Saudi Arabia pledged to cut production by an additional 500,000 barrels per day beyond the reductions already agreed upon by OPEC. In addition, the IEA reported global supplies fell by 1.4 million barrels a day last month, supportng higher prices. Gold often trades in sympathy with oil as a hedge against higher energy costs.

President Trump said today that he may extend the March 1 deadline for a trade agreement with China if he feels a deal is close. If not, tariffs are set to rise from 10% to 25% on $200 billion in imported goods.

Wall Street and the dollar both extended their gains on the upbeat trade news. The Dow added 0.6% and the Global Dow 0.3%, while the dollar picked up 0.3% against major rivals. A stronger dollar pressures gold and other commodities by making them more expensive in other currencies.

Consumer inflation was flat in January, according the Consumer Price Index, and the cost of living dropped to an increase of 1.6% over the past 12 months, down from 1.9%. Flagging inflation has caused the Fed to signal that it will slow or pause rate hikes this year amid worries about slowing growth.

US national debt topped $22 trillion this week for the first time ever. According to the Peterson Foundation, our debt has risen $1 trillion over just the past 11 months, accelerated by tax cuts, and we now pay $1 billion every day in interest on it.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and palladium sliding 0.2% each while platinum added 0.3%.

At the Comex close: April gold rose $1.10 to $1,315.10; March silver slipped 4 cents to $15.65; April platinum rose $2.20 to $791.80; and March palladium dropped $2.80 to $1,372.60 an ounce.


2/12/2019: Gold rises on border compromise

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold gained 0.2% to close at $1,314 as a likely deal on border security weakened the dollar, boosting demand for alternative stores of value.

Congress reached a tentative agreement that will avoid another government shutdown if approved by President Trump. While full details have not been released, the deal apparently finances 55 miles of new fencing on the US-Mexico border while raising spending on port screening tech and humanitarian aid, giving both Republicans and Democrats some of what they sought.

Equities jumped on the hard-won compromise, with the Dow and Nasdaq gaining around 1.5% each on optimism that President Trump will sign it into law and prevent another drag on the economy. The 35-day shutdown earlier this year shaved around $11 billion off GDP, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

The dollar broke its eight-session winning streak, dropping 0.4% against major rivals, as traders shifted back into riskier currencies like the euro and pound. A weaker dollar supports gold and other commodities by making them less expensive overseas.

Oil rose 1.3% to a one-week high over $53 per barrel on reports that OPEC sharply cut production in January, easing the oversupply that has been pressuring prices. Gold often trades in sympathy with oil as a hedge against energy-related inflation.

The other precious metals were mostly higher, with platinum and palladium rising 0.4% and 1.4%, respectively, while silver was unchanged.

At the Comex close: April gold gained $2.10 to $1,314; March silver was flat at $15.69; April platinum added $3, to $789.60; and March palladium climbed $18.60 to $1,375.40 an ounce.


2/11/2019: Gold falls on dollar strength

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold fell 0.5% to close under $1,312 as slowing global growth and fears of another US government shutdown drove investors into the dollar, undercutting alternative assets.

The ICE Dollar Index added nearly 0.5% to reach its highest level in more than six weeks, with weakness in the euro and pound causing Forex traders to seek safety. The buck even made headway against traditional safe-haven currencies like the yen and Swiss franc, which were pulled lower by weakness in European and Asian economies.

Because gold is denominated in dollars for international trade, strength in the currency pressures the metal by making it more expensive outside of the US.

Last week, both Britain and the EU slashed their growth projections for 2019 from 1.7% to 1.2%. China has been posting weaker GDP numbers over the past quarter, stoking concerns that its trade war with the US may trigger a hard landing in its economy. While the US growth faces its own headwinds from slowing global growth and trade conflicts, investors still see it as the healthiest major economy in the world for now.

Congress reached an impasse over the weekend on negotiations to fund the government. Another partial shutdown will occur if no deal is reached by Friday. The last one cost the economy $11 billion, according to the CBO.

The other precious metals were also lower, with silver sliding 0.8% while platinum and palladium fell 2% and 1.1%, respectively.

At the Comex close: April gold fell $6.60 to $1,311.90; March silver lost 12 cents to $15.69; April platinum surrendered $15.90 to $786.60; and March palladium dropped $14.40 to $1,356.80 an ounce.


2/8/2019: Gold rises on growth, trade fears

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold rose 0.3% to close at $1,318.50 as renewed concerns about global growth and the US-China trade war undermined risk appetite and boosted demand for safe havens. The metal finished the week down 0.3% but remains nearly 3% higher for 2019.

US and global equities fell, with the Dow and Global Dow both losing 0.6%, as worries about growth and trade conflicts soured demand for risk assets. President Trump confirmed that he will not meet China's President Xi Jinping before the March 1 deadline for the current suspension of additional tariffs. While some headway has been made, Larry Kudlow told Fox News that a "pretty sizable distance" remains between the two nations.

Yesterday, the EU projected growth in the Eurozone of just 1.2% for 2019, down from 1.7%. Today, the Bank of England also cut its growth forecast to 1.2% for 2019, the lowest since the financial crisis of 2019. These growth forecasts assume Britain and the EU will reach a trade agreement before late March. A hard Brexit, with no agreement in place, would further reduce growth in both economies.

The dollar edged up less than 0.1% as forex traders opted away from the pound and euro. The buck closed the week up 1% for its first weekly rise in three weeks. Treasury yields fell on safe-haven inflows.

James Bullard of the St. Louis Fed said today that US interests are now "slightly restrictive" and GDP is growing "considerably slower" than forecast. Bullard's comments add to the growing belief that the Fed will cut rates sometime this year. Former Fed Chair Janet Yellen said earlier this week that a rate cut could be coming if slowing growth in China and Europe spills into the US.

Consistent hikes over the past two years have been a major cause of strength in the dollar, pressuring gold by making it more expensive overseas. Rate cuts would reverse that trend, weakening the dollar and likely boosting the gold price.

Deutsche Bank issued research today concluding that the combination of US-China trade wars, slowing growth in China's economy, and a hard Brexit could combine to create a global downturn as damaging as the 2009 financial crisis.

The other precious metals were higher for the day and mixed for the week. Silver gained 0.6% today but ended the week down 0.8%. Platinum added 0.7% but still lost 2.9% this week. Palladium rallied 1% for a 4.4% rise this week.

At the Comex close: April gold rose $4.30 to $1,318.50; March silver added a dime, to $15.81; April platinum picked up $5.20 to 802.50; and March palladium gained $13.10 to $1,371.20 an ounce, another record close.

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2/7/2019: Gold edges down on dollar strength

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold edged down 20 cents but held above $1,314 after weak Eurozone data and pessimism about a trade deal with China lifted the dollar, dulling demand for alternative assets.

While House economic advisor Larry Kudlow told Fox News that a "pretty sizable distance" remains between the US and China in trade negotiations, reigniting trade war jitters despite ongoing talks. Stocks tank on the news, with the Dow losing 0.9% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq 1.2%.

The dollar rallied for a sixth straight session, adding 0.2% on flights to safety with only the yen trading higher among major rivals. The euro fell after the Eurozone cut its growth forecast for 2019 from 1.7% down to 1.3% because of weaker data from Germany and slowing growth in the glob al economy. A rising dollar pressures gold and other commodities by making them more expensive in other currencies.

The other precious metals were mixed, with silver and palladium rising 0.1% and 0.5%, respectively, while platinum dropped 2%.

At the Comex close: April gold dropped 20 cents $1,314.20; March silver picked up a penny to $15.71; April platinum lost $16.50 to $797.30; and March palladium rose $6.50 to $1,358.10 an ounce, another record close.


2/6/2019: Gold slides with Aussie dollar

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold slid 0.4% to close under $1,315 as the dollar climbed against major rivals on weakness in the Aussie dollar and continued US-China trade uncertainty, undermining demand for alternative stores of value.

The ICE Dollar Index rose 0.3% to the highest level in nearly two weeks as the Australian dollar plummeted after the country's central bank opened the door to rate cuts. In an abrupt shift from an ongoing policy of monetary tightening, Reserve Bank Governor Philip Lowe said rates could go lower because of slower global growth, weakening labor markets, and softer inflation.

The buck was also boosted by safe-haven inflows following President Trump's State of the Union address. While the President mentioned increasing infrastructure spending, he outlined no substantive economic policy initiatives. And while investors were hoping for news of progress in the ongoing trade war with China, no new information was forthcoming.

Along with rising interest rates, trade conflicts have been a source of support for the dollar over the past year as global forex traders have sought safety, pressuring gold and other commodities priced in dollars for global trade. The Fed's newly dovish attitude and improving prospects for trade détente with China will likely undermine that dollar-support and boost gold this year.

Former Fed Chair Janet Yellen said today that the Fed's next move could be a rate cut, depending on whether weakening global growth spills over into the US economy. Current Fed Chair Jerome Powell signaled last week that the next move could go either way.

The US trade deficit fell more than 11% in November to a five-month low, according to government report delayed by the recent shutdown. Falling oil prices and tariff-related declines in industrial imports drove most of the reduction. The 2018 trade gap remains on track to be the largest in 10 years.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum dropping 0.9% and 0.7%, respectively, while palladium added 0.8%.

At the Comex close: April gold slid $4.80 to $1,314.40; March silver lost 14 cents to $15.70; April platinum dropped $6.10 to $813.80; and March palladium gained $10.40 to $1,351.60 an ounce, a new record high.


2/5/2019: Gold dips before Union address

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold inched down a dime to hold above $1,319 as hopes for a conciliatory State of the Union address boosted stocks and the dollar, trimming appetite for alternative stores of value.

Investors are optimistic that President Trump will have positive news about US-China trade negotiations when he addresses the nation tonight. Talks are underway to end the tariff war that has hampered the world's two largest economies since last summer, with tech intellectual property rights occupying center stage.

Adding to upbeat sentiment, the White House has telegraphed that a state of emergency will not be called over funding for the proposed wall between the SU and Mexico. Rather, further talks over border security are intended to find a compromise that will avert another shutdown of the government. According to the CBO, the last one shaved some $11 billion off GDP.

Wall Street rose on the hope, with the Dow and Global Dow adding 0.6%. The dollar climbed 0.2% against major rivals, pressuring gold and other commodities priced in it for global trade by making them more expensive overseas.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum shedding 0.3% and 0.4%, respectively, while palladium picked up 0.8%.

At the Comex close: April delivery dipped 10 cents to $1,319.20; March dropped 5 cents to $15.84; April platinum lost $2.90 to $819.90; and March palladium rose $10.80, or 0.8%, to $1,341.20 an ounce.


2/4/2019: Gold dips on dollar uptick

Source: Bill Musgrave, American Gold Exchange

Austin — Gold dipped 0.2% to close under $1,320 as tech shares pulled Wall Street higher and the dollar ticked up for a second day, dulling demand for alternative assets.

The Dow rose 0.4% and the Nasdaq added 1% as traders bet on solid earnings from major players like Google-parent Alphabet and Disney. Optimism about US-China trade talks also fueled risk appetite.

The dollar rose 0.3% against major rivals as forex traders coasted on Friday's stellar report of 304,000 new jobs added in January. Given the Fed's avowal last week to be "patient" before further rate hikes, however, most analysts see little cause for continued dollar momentum. Eurozone wholesale inflation fell by 0.8% in December, undercutting the case for tighter monetary policy and weakening the euro.

Tepid US data capped gains by the dollar and limited gold's decline. Data delayed by the government shutdown showed factory orders fell by more than expected in November, at 0.6%. Business investment in core durable goods, considered a weathervane of future growth, dropped for the third straight month.

The other precious metals were mostly lower, with silver and platinum dropping 0.3% and 0.5% while palladium picked up 1.3%.

At the Comex close: April gold dipped $2.80 to $1,319.30; March silver lost 5 cents to $15.88; April platinum slid $3.90 to $822.80; and March palladium climbed $16.80 to $1,330.40 an ounce.

  

Metal Ask      Change
Gold $1,322.33           $0.00
Silver $15.85           $0.00
Platinum $810.32           $0.00
Palladium $1,440.99           $0.00
In US Dollars

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