December 1st Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals are making gains as of the early morning hours of Monday, but after falling all weekend, these gains are nothing to write home about. Looking ahead to the rest of this week, investors will have plenty of information and economic data to mull over and discuss. One of the most noteworthy events of the week will come on Thursday in the form of the latest European Central Bank meeting. With policy changes possibly coming this week, you can expect that the entire global marketplace will be paying close attention to what the ECB has to say.

In addition to the ECB meeting this week, investors will also be paying close attention to the progress of crude oil spot values. After last week’s meeting, crude oil has declined considerably and is still in a fairly weak position. In fact, oil has spent much of the last few weeks on the decline and is in search of some aid from outside market factors.

ECB Meeting Takes Center Stage

Unless you simply haven’t been paying attention, you are likely well-aware of the European Union’s collective struggles. The EU is and has been underperforming from an economic growth perspective and is, in the opinion of many, hurting the growth of the entire global economy as well.

This week, the beleaguered European Union will see their central bank meet for their latest policy meeting. As is always the case, investors from around the world will be paying close attention to the meeting in order to see if the ECB decides to make any changes to current monetary policy.

Over the last few weeks, the marketplace has gotten word of a possible shift in policy coming in the form of the introduction of Quantitative Easing measures. Mario Draghi, European Central Bank president, was quoted as saying that QE measures are still a definite possibility and that the EU is not counting them out. As such, the market interpreted Draghi’s comments as meaning that QE measures are on the way, and on the way soon. It will be interesting to see what kind of reaction the market has to this week’s ECB meeting should a shift in policy be enacted.

OPEC Leaves Policy Untouched

For the last month or more, the value, or spot price, of crude oil has been on the decline. The world’s number 1 commodity is suffering due to an excess supply of oil flooding the market at present. While this has led to happy people at the pump, it has not boded well for commodities, including gold and silver.

As a result of oil’s recent decline, the spot values of gold and silver have fallen too. Just last week, OPEC, the world’s most well-known oil cartel, held a meeting with regard to the recently falling prices. Though this meeting was expected to see OPEC reduce daily oil production quotas for member countries, OPEC instead remained put and wholly determined to see the situation through.

As a result of their inaction, the value of crude oil as well as the value of energy shares took a dive late last week. This lack of action also weighed on the value of gold and silver, which were drug from their somewhat stable price ranges. Now, as crude oil continues to decline in value, gold and silver will have to look elsewhere for any fundamental, underlying support.

November 24th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Despite making solid gains to close out last week, both gold and silver spot values are moving back downwards as of the early parts of Monday. The reason for precious metals’ return to a downward trend is due to the fact that the US Dollar is hovering at a 4-year high yet again. Even though there was metals-friendly news made public out of Asia on Friday, the overall marketplace is still quite bearish and devoid of many factors able to lift spot values back up to where they were only a few months ago.

This week, at least for those in the United States, will be a shortened one due to the Thanksgiving holiday falling on Thursday and the unofficial “Black Friday” holiday coming the day afterwards. The end of last week, however, brought about some economic data from around the world and, surprisingly, most of it had a solid impact on the US marketplace. As we look forward to this shortened week, it doesn’t seem as though there will be all that much economic data for investors to talk about and mull over.

Chinese Central Bank Makes Shocking Rate Announcement

Last week, much like the previous two or three weeks, was quiet and mostly devoid of any markets-moving economic data. Fortunately for the market, however, that all changed by the last two days of last week. On Thursday, there was a solid batch of US economic data for investors to talk about. Generally, the data from the United States was upbeat and painted a picture of an economy that is still outperforming many of its rivals.

According to a few reports, factory activity, especially that in the mid-Atlantic US, was on the up and up in October and hitting at levels we have not seen in multiple decades. Adding to that report was one on existing home sales and how they were only continuing to improve. As you could have probably guessed, all the upbeat data from the US economy convinced investors that interest rate hikes have to be coming sooner rather than later.

While investors in the United States were left speculating with regard to interest rates, investors in China were dealt some shocking news regarding their interest rates. According to numerous reports, the Chinese Central Bank slashed its primary interest rates for the first time in more than 2 years. This decision came on the back of economic data that really has been sub-par by Chinese standards. As a result of this surprise rate decision, investors flocked to physical gold and silver as ways to defend themselves against currently uncertain economic conditions. In fact, the day’s news was so shocking that investors drove spot values directly upwards to close out the week. Unfortunately, however, some of the gains made on Friday are being conceded as of the writing of this post during the mid-morning hours of Monday. It will be interesting to see, as this week plays out, whether spot values will continue to depreciate or if some unforeseen factor will come in to once again give metals a boost.

November 17th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Gold and silver spot values are not really doing much moving during the early parts of the day on Monday. For the second consecutive week last week, gold and silver finished the 5-day trading session having made some decent, last-minute gains. This time around, however, precious metals are not conceding value as quickly as they did a week ago. With very few pieces of economic data expected to be made public this week, it will be interesting to see if gold can hang on to levels above $1,180 or if another pullback is lying in wait.

In case you missed it, the latter part of last week did not bring about too much in the way of markets-moving economic data. Things were generally quiet and, apart from the weekly jobless claims report, there wasn’t much of any economic data for investors to mull over and discuss. The weekly jobless claims report was especially important because, after the poor employment data from October, investors are looking towards every other relatable piece of data in order to garner a better idea of how well the US employment sector is faring. Much to the dismay of many people, however, there were far more unemployment claims last week than expected. This news helped give gold and silver a bit of a boost to finish the week.

OPEC May Have To Act In Near Future

With the spot value of crude oil still sitting near multi-year lows, it is a growing belief that OPEC will soon have to take decisive action in order to pull up spot values. As it stands, crude oil has been on an almost consistent decline for the past three or more weeks. For precious metals, this most recent decline has pulled them downwards as well because crude oil was acting as a weight on the value of all raw commodities.

With so much oil in the current supply, OPEC will likely have to take some action aimed at limiting the oil on the market today. Without this type of action, many people are under the impression that crude oil will continue to decline over the coming weeks. As of now, however, a lot of investors are making bets that OPEC will take decisive action and that crude oil prices will appreciate sometime in the near future.

For precious metals, there is no saying for sure what the duration of this week has in store. There isn’t much economic data, so it is really just a toss-up with regard to whether the week sees gold and silver appreciate or if action in currency and equity markets will drive spot values downward once again.

November 10th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Gold and silver spot values ended the day conceding much of the value that they had gained towards the end of last week. The beginning of today saw spot values moving mostly sideways, but by mid-afternoon, that had all changed.

In case you missed it, the latter part of last week brought about a boatload of information for investors to mull over. First, on Wednesday, the market was mulling over the results of Tuesday’s midterm elections in the United States. To the surprise of very few, Republicans had seized control of both the House and the Senate. This was viewed as bad for gold and silver simply because Republicans are viewed as being good for economic growth and good for business.

Then, on Thursday, the European Central Bank met for their most recent policy meeting. Unfortunately, and to the dismay of many, the ECB meeting did not bring about any new policy shifts. What it did bring about, however, was a more dovish post-meeting statement from ECB president Mario Draghi.

Finally, Friday brought about the most recent employment data from the United States from October. Fortunately for gold and silver, the data came back far weaker than expected and provided a much-needed boost. Despite expectations for more than 230,000 new jobs created in October, the actual data showed that only about 213,000 new jobs were created a month ago. These figures, though decent in the grand scheme of things, were far weaker than expected and ended up having adverse affects on both US equities as well as the US Dollar.

Uneventful Monday Hurts Metals

Despite all of last week’s action, today did not bring about much action at all. While the day started out with metals moving mostly sideways, by mid-afternoon that had changed. Past noon, crude oil prices began to dip again while the value of the US Dollar rose. This always works against gold and silver, and today was no different. When all was said and done, gold lost about half the value it had gained on Friday, as did silver.

As we look ahead to the rest of the week, it is likely that investors the world over will continue to closely analyze both currency and equity markets. As of now, the short to long-term outlook on equities is upbeat simply because of the likelihood that interest rates in the US will be raised in conjunction with the fact that most people are expecting the US economy to continue improving. All of this remains to be seen, but if things do go as expected, gold and silver spot values may fall even further.

November 3rd Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals are holding mostly steady to slightly lower to begin the first full week of trading in November. Though we are not seeing much movement by spot values this morning, I highly doubt that such will remain the case as the rest of the week plays out simply because of the number of economic happenings that will be taking place.

In case you missed it, the latter part of last week played host to a number of economic happenings and data points that almost all worked against gold and silver. First, it was a more hawkish FOMC post-meeting statement that worked against both the near and long-term outlook on gold and silver. Then, only a day later, it was record-breaking 3rd-quarter GDP report and upbeat unemployment data that put even more pressure on gold and silver. Now, with safe-haven demand almost nonexistent, it will be interesting to see what the week has in store for metals.

Chinese PMI Puts More Pressure on Gold and Silver

This week got off to a slow start, there is no denying that, but in the early morning hours of Monday the latest Chinese Purchasing Manager’s Index reading was made public. Unfortunately, the data came back a bit weaker than expected as October’s reading came back beneath 51, at 50.8. This reading was more or less in line with expectations, but was down from September’s PMI reading of 51.1. This data hurt most Asian equity markets and was an underlying bearish factor for raw commodities, including gold and silver.

The EU’s October PMI reading was also published early this morning, but it was more or less in line with expectations and did not have much of an impact on equity markets nor the Euro currency. Now, the attention of the marketplace shifts to Thursday when the European Central Bank is expected to meet for their most recent policy meeting.

In addition to the ECB meeting, investors from around the world are going to be paying close attention to Friday’s October employment data. Unfortunately for gold and silver, preliminary expectations are that this week will add even more selling pressure to already existing selling pressure.

October 27th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals are moving downward to begin the trading week thanks, in large part, to the falling value of crude oil. For the past two or so weeks now, crude oil prices are slacking and, as a result, so too are the values of most other raw commodities. Luckily, the demand for precious metals is picking up in Asia as Hong Kong reported September gold imports that were the highest in half of a year.

The focus of investors’ attention this week will continue to be on the equity and currency markets, but with a policy statement expected from the Fed sometime later this week, you can bet that investors will be paying attention to that as well.

Dollar Falls Against Yen, Fed Statement In Focus

Today offered up a bit of a surprise as the greenback continued to decline against the Yen after making a week or more of solid gains against the Japanese currency. All in all, the greenback is still in a very strong position, but it seems as though Asian economies are emerging from their slump. Just last week, some economic reports from China came back far better than expected and really surprised the marketplace. With a stronger physical demand emanating from Asia, the tough times for gold and silver might finally be coming to an end. While that remains to be seen, investors will definitely bee keeping an eye on any and all economic data from the Far East.

As we look ahead to the later parts of this week, the attention of investors will be drawn to a policy statement expected to be released by the Fed. Early expectations are that the US Federal Reserve will reiterate that, while intent on raising interest rates, they are still going to hold off on making such a move until the global economy is in a much more stable position. While the US economy is doing better, the fear is that struggling parts of the world such as Europe will, in time, end up dragging down the pace at which the US economy is improving. Not helping the cause of interest rate hikes at all was a US report indicating that October service sector activity was the lowest we have seen since last Winter. As an economy largely based upon services, any sub-par report with regard to the services sector will undeniably bode poorly for the possibility of interest rate hikes happening anytime soon.

October 13th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Though the first day of this week is set to be particularly quiet simply because the United States is celebrating the Columbus Day holiday, precious metals are moving ever so slightly upward as the US Dollar continues to move the opposite direction. The early parts of this week are bound to be slow, but as the week moves on, I expect we will see a bit more action due to the release of some economic data.

Last wee brought with it additional poor economic data from the European Union, and investors are just as perplexed as ever with regard to what the European Central Bank plans on doing in order to stem deflationary pressures and give the EU economy as a whole the impetus to begin showing signs of growth. At present, the EU and its assortment of economies are doing particularly poorly and have been for quite some time now.

FOMC Minutes Mostly Disappoint Marketplace

The biggest data point of last week came on Wednesday in the form of the latest minutes from the FOMC’s September meeting. While, as always, the market was expecting to hear more information regarding interest rate hikes in the United States, the minutes did not provide much of that.

With that said, however, the marketplace digested the minutes as meaning that the Fed will hold off, for some time, on the raising of interest rates in the United States. Citing slow economic growth in places like Europe and Asia, the FOMC simply does not feel comfortable being in a rush to raise rates. Now, instead of the expected June or July of 2015 dates for interest rate hikes, the marketplace is slowly but surely coming to terms with the “fact” that rates may not be raised until this time next year. As a result, the precious metals market has benefited greatly and is on its way to posting a fourth consecutive positive day of trading.

Increased safe-haven demand coupled with very low prices has drawn a lot of people to precious metals over the past few days. As this week plays out, it will be interesting to see if gold and silver can continue adding value or if they will top out sometime soon.

October 6th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals rode a bargain-hunting wave to begin the week and finished the day having regained some of the value lost during last week’s trading session. All in all, last week did not provide investors too much in the way of markets-moving economic data, but by Thursday and Friday, the market was abuzz with activity.

Something that faded in and out of the headlines last week and is still doing the same was pro-Democracy demonstrations currently taking place in Hong Kong. Though the protests remained mostly peaceful, the fact that they were taking place in the world’s financial capital brought some unrest to global equity markets. The protests have since calmed down a good bit, but are still catching the attention of investors from around the world.

Employment Report Handily Bests Market Expectations

For last week being as quiet as it was, it still played host to some fairly important economic data from the United States. Apart from the European Central Bank meeting on Thursday, which offered no changes to EU monetary policy, the market was very interested in Friday’s release of the most recent employment data from the United States.

With every investor from around the world concerned about where the United States Federal Reserve is heading with monetary policy, any and all economic data from the United States will be hawked over with an absurd amount of scrutiny. In the lead-up to Friday’s data release, most experts and investors were expecting to see US job growth in September reach the 215,000 new job mark. What really happened, however, is that the data showed an increase in non-farm payrolls by nearly 250,000. This number, which handily beat the expectations of most experts, almost instantly caused the value of the USD to spike. What’s more, it also pulled US equities up from the slump they were in for most of last week. Though both markets are suffering a bit today, it is clear to see that most investors are bullish on most asset classes other than precious metals. As this quiet week wears on, I would be surprised to see the value of precious metals stay where they are at right now. The fact of the matter is that we are in the midst of a bearish market and the buying interest in gold and silver is limited to say the least.

September 29th Weekly Silver Market Preview

Gold and silver spot values are moving lower as of the writing of this post. Metals continue to be pressured by a stronger US Dollar, which has been hovering near a 4-year high since late last week. Though some unrest in Hong Kong has provided gold and silver with a little bit of underlying support, the strength of the greenback has effectively made making gains impossible. This week is set to bring with it a large quantity of economic data, most of which will be of the utmost importance to investors.

Gold has been falling for the past few weeks, but seems to be gaining some support near the $1,220 level. So long as the geopolitical situations that are currently unfolding stay in the news, I think metals will be able to at least retain their current positions. With that said, however, there is no real way of knowing what the next few days and weeks have in store for precious metals.

Hong Kong Unrest Grabs Headlines

Beginning late last week, citizens of Hong Kong began taking to the streets in order to demand a more democratic government. To put it simply, citizens of the former British colony are fed up with the way things work in the region and want to be supported by a government that has their best interests in mind. As a result of the unrest, most world equities, including equity markets in the United States, have begun moving downward. While this is good for precious metals, the US Dollar has continued to trend near a 4-year high.

As we look ahead to the latter parts of the week, it is likely that things will begin to pick up and more activity will grace the marketplace. With interest rates in the US still the world marketplace’s hot topic, it is likely that investors will be using this week’s data as a way to gauge the current strength of the US economy as well as a way to gauge when exactly interest rates in the US will be raised. Unfortunately for precious metals, this week’s data is only looking like it will weigh more heavily on spot values as the market continues to be bearish as ever. With that said, however, a poor batch of data just might help gold and silver spot values regain some of the value that has been lost over the past few weeks.

September 22nd Weekly Silver Market Preview

Precious metals ended the day just under even, but were trading significantly lower for a large portion of the trading session. In stark contrast to what things were like for most of last week, this 5-day trading session is shaping up to be quiet and subdued. Though there is still plenty of interest rate talk making rounds amongst investors, the reality is that most everyone is now on more or less the same page with regard to rate hikes.

In case you missed it, last week brought about the FOMC’s latest policy meeting and, as always, it was met with a wave of speculation on the part of investors. With the US economy on the up and up over the past year or so, there has been almost non-stop talk about if and when interest rates will be raised. Very few people expected the FOMC to make such a move at last week’s meeting, but almost everyone was hoping that they would provide some insight with regard to when rates would be raised and by how much. The Fed didn’t provide explicit answers to the market’s inquiries, but by meeting’s end most everyone was certain that rates will be raised sometime in 2015, likely before the initial projections of June or July. While there is no guaranteeing that such is the case, the actions of the market in the wake of the meeting has led me to believe that the market believes rates will be raised sooner rather than later.

Weak Housing Data Offers Metals Some Respite

On the whole, this week is not going to bring about anything in the way of major pieces of economic data. Today, however, saw a report on existing home sales in August be released in the afternoon. According to the report, August saw existing home sales decline for the first time in almost 6 months. This news ended up dealing US equities a blow and turned a day of gains for the US Dollar into slight losses.

For precious metals, the housing data brought spot values up from daily lows, but still only offered temporary relief for the spot values of gold and silver. Unless we are dealt some unexpected, markets-shifting news in the near future, it is likely that bearish conditions will continue. As we head into the middle parts of this week, I imagine that investors will continue to keep a close eye on equity and currency markets in the US and around the world.