Author Archives: bsbcom

February 23rd Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals are moving between minor gains and minor losses as of the writing of this post Monday morning. The reality of the matter is that things this week are shaping up to be just as slow as they have been for the past two or three weeks. Not only are there very few pieces of markets-moving economic data, what economic data is made public has thus far not had much of an impact on the global marketplace.

As has been the case for the better part of the past month, this week will more than likely see the market focus on the number of events unfolding across the European Union. With Greece in talks with creditors, Russia’s economy still lagging, and a surprise quantity of upbeat economic reports, there is quite a bit to talk about as far as the European economy is concerned.

Greece Reached Bailout Extension Deal

Thanks to the slow nature of last week’s 5-day trading session, we saw investors from all over the world give unusual amounts of attention to the talks taking place between Greece and their EU creditors. You see, with Greece’s financial future currently in the hands of a handful of EU countries, the new Greek government has been actively trying to wriggle into some freedom with regard to financial decisions. Unfortunately, EU creditors have been reluctant to give Greece any wriggle room when it comes to their ongoing bailout plan.

While most of the market was convinced that the end of last week meant the end of Greece’s chances of remaining part of the European Union, the reality of the matter was that Greece reached a buzzer-beating deal with its creditors that sees a financing plan extended by a third of a year. Thanks to this deal, not only will Greece see a lifesaving injection of cash, but they will also be able to put off worrying about certain debt reduction and austerity measures until sometime during this summer.

Though this deal being reached ended up being good for stocks across the European Union and the United States, most market experts agree that this deal is a perfect exemplification of how the EU is continuing to push glaring financial and economic problems under the rug to be dealt with sometime down the road. You can bet that before this upcoming Summer concludes, we will once again be dealing with Greece’s economic and financial troubles.

February 16th Weekly Silver Market Preview

As of the writing of this post early Monday morning, precious metals spot values are posting mixed earnings. With that being said, however, neither gold nor silver have moved all that much and are not too far from where they began the day. Like last week, this 5-day trading session is expected to be particularly slow and free from any noteworthy, markets-moving economic data.

While this is true, the market does have quite a few geopolitical stories to focus on, most notable of which is the ceasefire agreement in Ukraine. This is currently having a major impact on global markets and will continue to do exactly that so long as the ceasefire holds. Many people, however, do not foresee this most recent ceasefire lasting all that long. I suppose we will just have to see how the week unfolds to really find out what the deal is with Ukraine.

Crude Oil Extends Rally Into New Week

For now, crude oil is trading above $53/barrel and is continuing along its uptrend that has now persisted for about two weeks. Thanks to a host of factors, the price of crude oil has rallied and is looking like it will continue doing exactly that this week.

One of the biggest factors affecting the recent climb by the spot price of crude oil is the fact that a Libyan oil refinery played host to a crippling explosion only a few days ago. The facility, which produces up to 200,000 barrels of crude oil per day, has seen most of its production shut off since the time of the explosion.

In the United States, last week saw the number of deployed oil rigs fall for the tenth straight week. Now, just over 1,000 rigs are operating throughout the United States—the lowest such number of oil rigs in about three years. With demand for crude oil slowly but surely rising and the supply of oil diminishing, it only makes sense that spot values have increased in recent weeks. For precious metals, not only is crude oil’s rally a major factor to pay attention to, but so too is the effect this ongoing rally is having on energy stocks in the US and Europe. Thanks to higher spot values, energy stocks have also seen a price increase.

This week will see investors pay very close attention to the price action of crude oil as it will have a direct impact on the direction in which metals head. This is especially true when you consider how quiet of a week we are expected to have.

February 9th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Thanks to reeling equities as well as a USD Index that has come under pressure, gold and silver have been able to bounce back modestly on Monday. Unfortunately, gains thus far have been modest to say the least. With that being said, however, we are seeing more of a risk-off attitude developing amongst investors and there is a growing belief that such an attitude might consume the whole of this week. We will just have to wait and see to find out though.

On the whole, this week is not expected to bring about too much in the way of economic data and for that reason I do not anticipate metals moving too far in any single direction. Still, we all know that just about anything can happen over the course of a 5-day trading session.

Jobs Data Beats Expectations

The biggest piece of economic data last week came on Friday in the form of the most recent employment data for the US for the month of January. In the lead-up to the report’s release, most experts were anticipating that just around 230,000 new, non-farm payrolls had been added to the US economy. When the figures were made public they showed that nearly 260,000 new jobs were created in January.

As a result of this data beating expectations, the market immediately saw the US Dollar jump forward while gold and silver were punished.

Though the jobs figures themselves were great, the focus for many remains the fact that wage growth in the United States is almost non-existent. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter how many jobs are being added to the economy if workers are not getting higher wages. This is something we will continue to keep an eye on as the year moves forward.

Greek Developments Over the Weekend

With Greece’s new parliament/government being the center of attention recently, it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that we have some news to report from the struggling Mediterranean economy.

Over the weekend, worries regarding whether Greece will remain part of the European Union or not intensified as the new Greek PM openly tried to dodge previously agreed repayments of loans. In addition, Greek PM Tsipras made it clear that he would not accept an extension to the previously established bailout plan, but would rather like a bridge loan.

This news worked well to send Greek equities shooting downward and destabilized most other European equity markets as well as the Euro currency. Though the USD Index on the whole is trading down today, the Dollar itself managed to gain against the Euro.
Greek’s sovereign debt problems will continue to be a focus for investors as we head further into 2015.

February 2nd Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals are opening up the week having lost value thanks to some weaker economic data from the United States. With that said, however, losses are mostly marginal in nature and are not doing too much to shake the confidence of investors. On the whole, this week is expected to be quiet and mostly devoid of major economic data.

As a result of this, the market will focus on currency and equity markets for a majority of the 5-day trading session. For precious metals, it will be interesting to see if this week will see gains pile up or if the quieter market atmosphere will make for continued losses as a result of increased interest in stocks and the US Dollar.

Weaker Economic Data Weighs on Stocks

Stock indexes in the United States opened up the day having posted some decent gains, but by the time the afternoon rolled around some economic data ended up bringing equities down from daily highs. Today’s reports indicate that perhaps the United States economy may be slowing down.

Despite lower gasoline prices, it was reported that consumer spending in the US fell in December. Not only that, but the most recent ISM Manufacturing Index suggested that manufacturing in the United States was also slowing down. Keeping stocks afloat was a boost in the price of crude oil today. Now that crude oil has seen an uptick in recent days, it will be interesting to see what kind of impact it has on gold and silver.

Looking ahead to the rest of the week, all eyes will be on the price action of crude oil as it continues to make gains. Now, the real questions becomes whether crude oil is able to continue making gains or if profit-taking will see spot values decrease once more. For precious metals, the prospect of stronger crude oil prices is one that does a good job of limiting buying interest. So long as there is plenty of volatility across the global marketplace, however, I am of the belief that spot values will fare well.

Of course, the market will also be focusing on Europe as that part of the world is of particular importance to investors. For now, there really isn’t much going on across the EU worth speaking of, but we are all well aware that that can change in the blink of an eye.

January 19th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals, as of the writing of this post early Monday morning, were backing off from last week’s highs. Still, both gold and silver spot values are in solid positions and look to still be benefiting from the growing sense of uncertainty being exhibited by investors. Like last week, most are expecting that this week will see safe-haven demand for gold and silver contribute to nice daily gains. With that being said, however, anything can happen over the course of a 5-day trading session, so there is no guaranteeing that gains are going to be made.

As far as the week’s top events are concerned, investors are going to be wholly preoccupied with Thursday’s European Central Bank meeting. This meeting has been a top concern since the day 2015 began, and with a major shift in policy expected to be announced, it is easy to see why. The Euro’s value as it relates to Thursday’s meeting will be another talking point for investors as this week carries on. For now, the Euro is hovering around a 10-year low against the US Dollar and is not looking like it is going to improve anytime soon.

Big Week for European Monetary Policy

While we still don’t know exactly what this week has in store, we do know that the global marketplace will be paying close attention to the European Union. The region, which has been struggling greatly from an economic perspective, has been in and out of the headlines for the better part of the past year and cannot seem to shake the economic and financial ills that led to 2008’s downward economic turn. For this reason, the European Central Bank has decided that it wants to implement some sort of quantitative easing, bond-buying program. It is these prospective QE measures that are expected to be announced this week.

The likelihood of such an announcement is as good as ever, too, considering the European Court of Justice ruled last week that the ECB’s proposed bond-buying is within the realm of the law. Still, the market will just have to sit back and wait in order to see if the ECB is going to pull the trigger on QE measures.

For the Euro, it is widely expected that such a QE announcement would drive down the value of the currency even further. As it stands, the Euro is at its worst position against the Dollar in roughly ten years and is widely expected to do even worse than that as the year plays out. This week is looking like it will be pivotal in deciding the future of the Euro, so you can bet that every investor will be paying close attention to every word stemming from the ECB’s meeting.

January 12th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Keeping in line with last week’s price action, both gold and silver opened up this week in impressive fashion and were able to close the day having posted solid gains. Overall, it seems as though the attitude of the global marketplace is changing from one that was confident in equity markets to one that does not know what the immediate future holds. Because of all this uncertainty abounding across the global marketplace, it really should come as no surprise that gold and silver are doing so well during the opening stages of this week.

Today, the market reacted to many of the same factors as the eyes of investors were firmly fixated on equity markets, currency markets, and the price action of crude oil. All in all, I expect that these same factors will continue to have a heavy influence on the market as the rest of this week plays out. For gold and silver, it will be interesting to see if today’s gains can be retained or even built upon as we head further into this New Year.

Led by Oil, Stocks Decline

Thanks to crude oil spot values that hit fresh 5.5 year lows today, stocks in the US and elsewhere around the world were prompted to turn downward. Led by the declining share price of energy shares, most major global stock indexes opened up this week performing similarly to how they did a week ago. Overall, there is a general sense of uneasiness on the part of global investors. With a few upcoming central bank meetings garnering a lot of investor attention, most investors simply cannot decide what moves to make.

Others, however, have seen this growing sense of uncertainty and have immediately fled to precious metals for protection. Thanks to growing safe-haven demand, physical purchases of gold and silver are, and have been, on the rise. More economic data from the US and elsewhere around the world is expected to be released as this week plays out, so it will be interesting to see what kind of impact it has on the precious metals market.

Helping gold and silver even more today was the fact that the US Dollar Index backed off from record highs experienced last week. Though the greenback remains in good standing compared to its European rival, the same cannot be said about many other currencies around the world. For the Euro, a growing belief that a bond-buying program will be announced at the upcoming European Central Bank meeting is keeping the currency in check and trending downward. Already at record lows against the USD, some experts believe the Euro’s descent is not quite finished.

January 5th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Gold and silver spot values are making marginal gains early Monday morning despite the better-performing US Dollar. After the last few weeks, both of which were shortened due to holiday celebrations, brought about almost no economic data, investors are looking forward to what this week has to bring seeing as there is a plethora of year-end pieces of economic data expected to be made available. Early reports from the United States are doing their part to reaffirm the overall confidence in the US economic system, but who knows if that will be the case from other economies.

Looking back on 2014, the year was overall fairly poor for gold and silver. The previous 12 months played host to a wide array of economic activity and saw spot values fluctuate, dramatically at times, before finishing the year having posted losses. Despite the fact that both gold and silver ended 2014 with net losses, things could have been much worse. As we look ahead to the duration of this year, it is plain to see that things are already shaping up to be similar to what we saw last year.

US Dollar Gains Market Attention

Throughout the latter part of last week and continuing into today, the US Dollar is making gains against rival currencies. Against the Euro specifically, the Euro has fallen to a 6-year low and is not looking like it is getting any stronger. Today’s more than 1% Euro decline is surprising, but by no means unprecedented. As US and EU monetary policies continue to diverge, so too will the value of the regions’ respective currencies.

For gold and silver, both of which are Dollar-denominated, the stronger Dollar will more than likely do its part in preventing gains from being made. While both gold and silver are in the green at the present moment in time, there is no guaranteeing that this will remain the case as we head further into the day and week.

Looking ahead, this week is expected to bring about a solid quantity of economic data from the US and from around the world. With the New Year holiday just having took place, the market is expecting a boatload of year-end data from all over the world. Already today from the United States, investors were greeted with a report claiming that young people are buying new homes at a faster rate now than they ever have in the past. This is yet another sign that the US economy is in solid shape and is continuing to improve. For gold and silver, upbeat US economic data is typically none too beneficial.

December 29th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Gold and silver spot values are hovering near even as we kick off yet another shortened holiday week. While last week saw the Christmas holiday come and go, this week will see us say goodbye to 2014 and ring in the New Year. Due to this being yet another abbreviated week of trading, it is highly likely that we will not have too much, if any, economic data to contend with. Last week brought about but one noteworthy piece of data, but I am not expecting the same for this week.

Instead, you will find that the quieter market atmosphere is a direct result of investors looking to hold their positions until the New Year. With the New Year comes a heaping amount of economic data, so it is only right that investors be patient and make their next investing moves based off of what data is delivered through the next few weeks. All in all, I do not expect this week to be very action-packed at all.

US 3rd-Quarter GDP Revision Raises Eyebrows

Like this week, last week was expected to be almost wholly quiet due to the absence of any real economic data. Much to the surprise of everyone, however, last week brought about a crucial economic reading from the United States in the form of a 3rd-quarter GDP revision. According to the revision, released by the US Commerce Department, the US economy did not grow by little more than 3% as was originally recorded. Instead, it was reported that during the 3rd-quarter of 2014, the US economy actually grew by a robust 5% on an annualized basis.

As you could have probably guessed, this data was welcomed with open arms by investors as it almost immediately translated into surging stocks as well as a surging US Dollar. Those stock and Dollar rallies have continued into this week and are a major part of the reason gold and silver have been flat-out incapable of making any gains. Even when metals do make gains, they are almost instantly vaporized due to their inability to hang on to value in such a bearish market.

Though it is unclear what the New Year will bring, we do know that precious metals investors are hoping for a turnaround of sorts. Metals have been battered for much of the year and, though it doesn’t look like it, most are hoping that 2015 will be bullish for gold and silver. At this point, however, we will just have to wait and see what happens.

December 22nd Weekly Silver Market Preview

The spot values of gold and silver have not moved all that much today, but have been heading downwards the entire time. Being that the Christmas holiday falls this week on Thursday, you can expect a generally quiet market atmosphere through this abbreviated week. There isn’t all that much economic data set to be made public, but what data is presented will be of the utmost importance to investors who may be trying to make a few more moves before we break and head into the new year.

Last week was an important 5-day trading session, but it failed to produce the results investors were so anxious to see. During the middle parts of last week, the Federal Open Market Committee of the United States convened for their monthly policy meeting. Of course, as you probably know very well by this point, the market is lying in wait for the FOMC to make a decision about when they will raise interest rates. Last week was when investors expected to be given a solid timeline with regard to when interest rates would be raised, but such did not prove to be the case.

Instead, Janet Yellen remained quite dovish during her post-meeting comments, reiterating that there is still “considerable time” until interest rates in the US are raised. This more dovish news afforded global equity markets enough room to move forward and recover from recent losses.

Russia Building Up Gold Reserves

Russia and its failing economy have been in the news a lot during recent weeks, and this week is already proving to be bringing about much of the same. Just today, a report published indicated that Russia, though struggling economically, is actually building up its precious metals reserves.

The report said that for the past 8 months, Russia has been continually adding to its gold stockpiles as a means of mitigating the negative impact of the falling ruble. As of December 1st, the report went on to say, Russia’s gold stockpiles had risen from 37.6 million ounces to more than 38 million ounces. So long as the ruble continues to fall in value, Russia will have to do something to keep the company afloat economically. It will be interesting to see, over the course of the coming months, if Russia’s commitment to gold does anything in the way of boosting its economic standing, or if it will continue to be a move that does more in the way of limiting the negative effect felt by such sluggish economic conditions.

As we look ahead to the rest of the week, investors the world over will continue to occupy themselves with the progress, or lack thereof, of equity markets from around the world. European and US stocks have been on the up and up for the last few days and it will be interesting to see if they can continue that trend through this shortened week. Of course, as equities do well and crude oil continues to slump, both gold and silver are feeling the downward pull.

December 15th Weekly Silver Market Preview

As of the writing of this post early Monday morning, gold and silver spot values are trending downward. This week, though admittedly lacking in the economic data department, is set to bring about a lot of investor concern due to the upcoming Federal Open Market Committee meeting. The FOMC is expected to convene for their latest meeting tomorrow and Wednesday, and as per usual the market is paying extremely close attention.

Just like every other time, investors are anticipating that more information regarding interest rate hikes will be divulged in the wake of this week’s meeting. There is no surefire way of determining whether this week’s meeting will bring about more information regarding interest rates, but investors will be paying close attention nonetheless.

FOMC Meeting On the Horizon

As is always the case, this week’s FOMC meeting will be the number one concern for global investors. Though the FOMC’s monthly meetings are always a hotly contested topic, they are even more of a concern in recent history simply because of the expectation that they will be hiking US interest rates sometime in the near future. Of course, it has now been more than half a year that interest rate hikes have been making headlines, and thus far very little has happened to make one believe that rate hikes will be coming soon.

Still, the market will be taking into consideration the attitude and language of the FOMC and use that to hopefully garner a clearer image of when interest rates will be raised in the United States. As it stands right now, the US Dollar is making nice strides forward ahead of this week’s meeting, and that is causing gold and silver to continue to tick downward. For gold and silver, an announcement regarding when interest rates will be raised will likely not help their prospects at all. Still, with that being said, the market has now known about the possibility of interest rate hikes for some time now, so when they come, it is likely that investors will not be caught so off guard.

Gold’s Solid Last Week

In case you missed it, last week saw both gold and silver add a lot of value. Beginning on Monday and carrying on through Tuesday, both gold and silver were seen spiking as a result of bargain-hunting and increased safe-haven demand. Though the next three days saw mild chart consolidation par some of the early week’s gains, the week was still a win for precious metals.

Now, the real test will be to see if metals can withstand whatever it is that this week throws their way. Interest rate hike talks have not boded well for gold and silver up to this point, so there is very few who think that will change this time around. Still, we will keep a close eye on anything and everything stemming from the latest FOMC meeting, which will wrap up with a post-meeting press conference sometime Wednesday afternoon.