Metal Traders Sidelined

Metal Traders Sidelined
Metal Traders Sidelined

Gold eased by $1.70 to trade at 1370.90 as traders sit tight ahead of next week’s FOMC meeting and keep an eye on global tensions in Eurasia. Gold prices gained around 0.2 percent yesterday taking cues from escalating geo-political tensions between Russia and Western nations over Ukraine. Russia launched new military exercises near its border with Ukraine on Thursday, showing no sign of backing down on plans to annex its neighbor’s Crimea region despite a stronger than expected drive for sanctions from the EU and United States. Gold is headed for its biggest gain in nearly four weeks as investors exited risky assets and divert their investments in gold. Gold prices are expected to move higher for the day over increasing tensions in Ukraine and over poor Chinese economic data came yesterday. Gold prices moved higher marginally by 0.14% yesterday as tensions in Ukraine and worries over China continued. Russia launched new military exercises near its border with Ukraine on Thursday, showing no sign of backing down despite a stronger than expected drive for sanctions from the EU and United States. German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned of “catastrophe” unless Russia changes course. SPDR holdings moved higher by 2.1 tonnes to 813.3 tonnes. The Bank of England is consulting users of its gold vaults over a review of its charges for storing and handling bullion.

Gold and silver prices are expected to trade on a positive note today on the back of rise in safe haven demand due to geopolitical tensions between Ukraine and Russia. Silver edged up 14 points this morning to trade at 21.212. Traders are more in a look see mood today.

Copper continued to ease as industrial metal traders worried about China’s economic situation along with the effects on banking and liquidity. Copper prices declined around 1.5 percent yesterday taking cues from decline in China’s industrial production thereby increasing growth concerns in world’s second largest economy. Further, strength in the DX along with weak market sentiments exerted downside pressure on the prices. However, favorable retail sales and jobless claims data from the US coupled with decline in LME copper inventories by 0.9 percent cushioned sharp fall in the prices. Copper is trading at 2.92 down by 2 points in the early session.  Platinum and palladium diverged from copper with platinum gaining $2.70 to trade at 1480.20 while palladium added $1.40 to hit 778.90.Copper(15 minutes)20140314081623

 

 

Metal Traders Sitting Tight

Metal Traders Sitting Tight
Metal Traders Sitting Tight
Tuesday morning markets are fairly quiet as traders continue to watch events unfold in the Ukraine, where more aggressive military action seems to be in all the headlines. Russia’s Putin in public says he wants diplomacy and not military action but behind the screens is trying to cower the governments and its citizens with discreet aggression.  Gold traders remain fairly calm with the metal trading at 1343.30 this morning with only a $1.80 cent increase but well below its high last week of 1351.00. Silver also is following cues from gold holding at 20.985. Platinum and palladium after close to flat, trading at 1479.35 and 776.50 respectively. Precious metals recovered from early losses to edge higher on Monday as support from the standoff in Ukraine offset pressure from last week’s strong U.S. payrolls data and weakness in other commodities after a sharp drop in Chinese exports

On Monday gold was trading on with negative sentiment. However, sharp downside in the prices was prevented due to rise in gold ETF holdings by 0.9 percent to 812.70 tonnes managed under SPDR Gold Holdings Trust.

The prices of gold and silver moved in an unclear trend during last week. Their prices started off strong at the beginning of the week only to change course and plunge at the end of the week. Several U.S reports may have contributed to movement of precious metals: Non-farm payroll report showed a 175k increase in jobs during February manufacturing PMI increased by 1.9 percentage points to 53.2. Finally, jobless claims fell by 26k to reach 323k. In the forex market, the euro, and Aussie dollar rose against the USD, while the Canadian dollar and Japanese yen depreciated. This mixed trend may have also contributed to the recent changes in the prices of gold and silver. The price of gold increased by 1.26% last week; moreover, during last week, the average price reached $1,343.70 which was 0.84% higher than last week’s average rate. Gold ended the week at $1,338.2. The price of silver declined by 1.46%; further, the average weekly rate was $21.28, which was 1.32% below last week’s price.

Copper traded in the red most of Monday and this morning recovered 12 points to trade at 3.0540. Industrial metals hit an eight-month low on Monday and Shanghai contracts dropped by their 5 percent daily limit, fanned by fears over the unwinding of copper finance deals in China after its first domestic bond default last week. Copper inventories in warehouses monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange rose 4.6 percent from last Friday, the exchange said on Friday. Base metals on the LME traded on a mixed note yesterday on the back of concerns of slowdown in growth in China after unfavorable data from the country last week. Also, mixed inventory data could not provide proper direction to prices.  However, strength in the DX coupled with mixed global market sentiments kept a check on gains. Copper prices slumped by more than 1 percent yesterday taking cues from growth concerns in the world’s biggest consumer, China after weak economic data from the country. Additionally, mixed economic data from eurozone acted as a negative factor.

Metals Sitting Still After Rallying Yesterday

gold barsGold gave back a bit of yesterday’s gains to trade at 1350.50 ahead of the much anticipated US nonfarm payroll report due in the early US session. Late in the day on Thursday gold climbed to trade above the 1350 level as global political tensions returned to the markets. The US and Russia squared off on the situation in the Ukraine and the Crimea. Gold prices ended the U.S. day session with moderate gains Thursday, boosted by bargain hunting and by a lower U.S. dollar index. The overall near-term chart posture of the gold market remains in favor of the bulls, which continues to invite technically inspired buying. Gold also got a lift Thursday from less-dovish comments from European Central Bank president Mario Draghi, at his press conference following the ECB monthly meeting. His remarks lifted the Euro currency, which in turn supported gold and pressured the U.S. dollar index. The ECB did not make any significant monetary policy moves Thursday. None were expected given some recent, generally upbeat economic data coming out of the European Union.

The situation in Ukraine has for now changed from a serious geopolitical matter to more of a regional issue of lesser significance—from a market place perspective. High quality global journalism requires investment. Events in Ukraine continued to keep diplomats on edge after Crimea’s parliament accelerated plans to secede and join Russia, but investors did not appear convinced that the heightened tensions would affect global growth, as attention turned to the forthcoming US non-farm payrolls report.

In the US, there was a sigh of relief as Unemployment Claims looked solid and dropped to 323,000 in February, down sharply from 348,000 a week earlier. The estimate stood at 336,000. The US faces a big test on Friday with the release of Nonfarm Payrolls. The markets are expecting an improvement in February, but the ADP Nonfarm Payroll release on Wednesday fell well short of the estimate. If Nonfarm Payrolls fails to meet expectations, we could see the US dollar lose ground.

Silver took its cues from gold to trade at 21.548 down a few pips, along with platinum and palladium which also held their ground. Platinum is trading at 1485.40 while palladium is at 781.30.

Copper eased against a slightly stronger US dollar to trade at 3.208 down off its high earlier in the week of close to 3.26. Copper and other base metals slipped on Thursday on investor concern over future demand in top metals consumer China after more details emerged about reform plans.

Metals rallied on Wednesday after China said it aimed to expand the economy by 7.5 percent, but its finance minister said on Thursday that it was all right to miss that target slightly as long as enough jobs were created.

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Copper Recovering Nicely While Gold Eases

Copper Recovering Nicely While Gold Eases
Copper Recovering Nicely While Gold Eases
Gold prices are flat this morning as markets return to normal. Gold is trading at 1337.40 and silver added 51 points to trade at 21.273. Gold prices eased on Tuesday as safe haven buying of gold faded after fears of military action by Russia in Ukraine eased. Russian President Putin said he would use force in Ukraine only as a last resort. Major investors moved back to equities after the statement by Russia pushing Gold prices further down. Premiums in China, the top buyer of gold, have fallen to less than $1 an ounce from over $20 in the beginning of the year due to lack of robust demand.

In India gold demand still remains down as import curbs stands still, the Trade Ministry has raised the issue to the Finance Ministry as it has increased the Gold(15 minutes)20140305085109 smuggling and hurt exports. Gold prices are expected to move lower for the day over reduced tensions in Russia and Ukraine and lack of physical demand. Taking cues from fall in gold prices along with fall in iShares Silver Trust Holdings, silver prices slipped around 1.3 percent yesterday. Further, strength in the DX exerted downside pressure on the prices. The US Dollar Index (DX) gained around 0.1 percent yesterday on the back of rise in risk aversion in market sentiments in the earlier part of trade which led to increase in demand for the low yielding currency. However, sharp upside in the currency was capped as a result of ease in geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine, thereby leading to a recovery in market sentiments. The currency touched an intra-day high of 80.22 and closed at 80.18 on Tuesday. The dollar is flat in the Asian session this morning.

Copper(15 minutes)20140305085058Base metals and industrial metals have recovered slightly as stronger economic data has hit the wires lately but was overshadowed by the geopolitical situation. Base metals on the LME traded higher yesterday on the back of receding geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine after the Russian President Putin called back troops from the Ukraine border, thereby easing concerns regarding the demand outlook. Also, rise in risk appetite in the markets acted as a positive factor. Copper this morning has added 9 points and is trading at 3.221 after falling as low as 3.16 earlier in the week. Copper prices jumped by more than 1 percent yesterday taking cues from easing of war concerns between Russia and Ukraine, which was feared to damp demand for the red metal. Further, recovery in market sentiments in the latter part of trade supported gains. However, rise in LME copper inventories by 0.5 percent to 275,200 tonnes along with strength in the DX restricted further gains. The red metal touched an intra-day high of $7068/ton and closed at $7049/ton in yesterday’s trade. Traders can expect base metals prices to trade on a mixed note today on the back of upbeat market sentiments coupled with expectations of positive retail sales data from the Euro Zone which will act as a positive factor. Palladium gained $4.90 this morning to trade at 768.70 while platinum took cues from gold and traded flat at 1463.35

 

The Falling Chinese Yuan Weighs On Copper Prices

Copper BNSGold is trading flat on Tuesday morning at 1349.90. The price of gold rose to a four-month high Monday as tensions escalated over Russia sending troops into Ukraine. Traders often consider gold a safer investment in times of political or financial turmoil. Most other metals also rose. Silver increased 24 cents, or 1.2 percent, to $21.45 an ounce. April platinum gained $13.90, or 1 percent, to $1,460.70 an ounce and palladium added $5.95 to $749.80 an ounce.

Copper edged down as low as $3.166 a pound. Ignoring for a moment the geopolitical problems which are the overall market focus, copper continues to fall and thisgold silver is where the story in metals should be focused. Base metals such as copper fell along with shares as investors ditched higher-risk assets and due to worries that a conflict could damage global growth. “Trade sanctions and a general ratcheting up of global tensions could also endanger the fragile global economic recovery now under way, hurting commodity prices in the process. Also hitting metals was data that showed activity in China’s factory sector slowed to an eight-month low in February, reinforcing signs of a modest slowdown in the world’s No 2 economy as demand weakens. China is the world’s top user of the base metal, accounting for about 40 per cent of global demand.

London copper steadied this morning, holding not far off its three-month lows touched the day before as widespread risk aversion tainted sentiment already damaged by signs of shrinking manufacturing growth in top metals user China. Tepid growth in developed nations and fresh risks to emerging markets have battered sentiment towards metals as traders await orders to pick up after Lunar New Year, and signs of a deeper-rooted revival in the United States.

Meanwhile, manufacturing growth in Europe and Asia slowed last month, pressured by falling demand from abroad, while the United States bucked the trend with manufacturing expanding at its fastest pace in over three years. US auto sales in February finished even with the year-earlier period as hefty incentives to lure customers into dealerships late in the month could not overcome cold and snowy weather.

In China, a falling yuan, ample supply and tight credit conditions have curbed appetite for copper, a Singapore-based trader said. “The copper market is very weak right now,” he said. China’s central bank downplayed the yuan’s recent fall on Monday, saying the world’s second-largest economy is in a good shape and the currency’s decline did not reflect fundamentals. China’s sliding currency is hitting prices for copper and other commodities. Some investors are betting that a drop in the yuan will force Chinese manufacturers to cut back on the amount of copper, oil and other raw materials they import. These businesses must convert yuan into dollars to bring in commodities from abroad.

War On Europe’s Backdoor Rallies Precious Metals

War On Europe's Backdoor Rallies Precious Metals
War On Europe's Backdoor Rallies Precious Metals
Gold got a big boost as traders move to risk aversion. Gold is trading at 1344.25 up by almost $23 this morning as traders focus on the possibility of war on the Russian border. Tensions have not been this high in the geopolitical arena in almost a decade. Libya, Egypt and the Arab Spring were nowhere near as serious a risk as war on Europe’s backdoor. What started out as news headlines just weeks ago, as the Ukraine which was ready to enter the eurozone, reversed its decision and the President wooed by promises of money and energy from Russia changed heart without the blessing of the government or the people and decided to allay with Russia for its economic future. Protests and violence swept through the country but remained a domestic issue. Although speculators were keeping a close eye on the situation over the past few weeks, it was not until just days ago, that the situation blasted onto the international scene late last week. Gold was seeing a bit of safe haven trading along with silver which has gained 252 points this morning to trade at 21.493. Events in Ukraine are changing quickly. After a bloody Thursday that featured some of the worst internecine fighting in recent memory, the past week brought one challenge after another for the fledgling interim government in Kiev. Yanukovych, now a wanted criminal, fled the capital for Russia, continuing to cling to his presidency, as former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was freed after 2 1/2 years in prison. Hundreds of protesters wandered the deposed leader’s gilded dacha outside of Kiev, snapping pictures. Now, Russian armed forces have occupied the Crimean peninsula, setting the stage for a counter-coup, as rallies for Russia took place in Kharkov and Donetsk. Post-Sochi, Putin appears to be doing whatever he can to distract the world from what has been won on the barricades in Kiev, forcing a choice between freedom and stability. The UN convened two emergency sessions and President Obama has been in touch with Putin as the situation continues to escalate.

Gold and silver prices had slipped during last week. The latest economic reports about the U.S and China may have contributed to the recent developments in the precious metals market: U.S new home sales jumped by 9.6%; pending home sales index inched up by 0.1% to 95 during January. Consumer confidence rose from 77.3 to 81.7; the U.S GDP growth rate for the fourth quarter dropped to 2.4%. Finally, jobless claims rose by 14k to reach 348k. In China, the PMI for February declined to 50.2 – the manufacturing sectors are growing as a slower pace. The US dollar declined to below 80 and is trading at 79.82 this morning as traders move to the safety of gold and the yen.

Gold(15 minutes)20140303090040

Copper is hurting badly, even with the US dollar tumbling to a recent low. Copper gave up 17 points this morning to trade at 3.171 while palladium and platinum have gained on safe haven trades to trade at 145.90 and 1451.70 respectively. There seems to be no support for copper after Chinese data weakened on Saturday with the release of a lackluster official PMI report showing an ongoing decline in manufacturing. This was compounded by the HSBC release this morning which showed manufacturing remaining in contraction. Pressure from safe haven trading has also moved traders into precious metals abandoning industrial and base metals today.

Metals Mixed With Gold Near Highs And Copper Near Lows

Metals Mixed With Gold Near Highs And Copper Near Lows
Metals Mixed With Gold Near Highs And Copper Near Lows
Gold is trading at 1332.50 coming off its recent high at 1340.00 touched earlier in the week as traders looked for safety as the Ukraine-Russian situation escalated after President Putin put the military on the borders on high alert. Yesterday, Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen said she isn’t sure how much of the recent deterioration in US economic growth is due to weather, adding the central bank might consider a pause in its reduction of bond buying if the weakness persists.

“Asset purchases are not on a preset course, so if there’s a significant change in the outlook certainly we would be open to reconsidering, but I wouldn’t want to jump to conclusions here,” Ms. Yellen told the Senate Banking Committee Thursday.

Gold was little changed on Friday but was on track for its biggest monthly gain since July after investors and speculators chased prices higher on concern about the pace of the US economy and unrest in Ukraine. However, recent gains may be hard to sustain in the absence of strong physical buying.  Spot gold was nearly flat at $1,330.86 an ounce down from a four-month high of $1,345.35 struck on Wednesday. Gold has gained 7% in February, its biggest monthly rise since the 7.2% added in July.

“Sentiment in the market is neutral from here. Resistance is at $1,350, while on the downside, $1,300 should be the support,” Mr Fung said. Premiums for gold bars in Hong Kong dipped to $1 an ounce to the spot London prices from as high as $1.70 last week, which reflected a slowdown in demand from China.

Silver took its cues from gold to trade at 21.288 down by 64 points.  Lately, investor appetite for gold is clearly on the rise, as the SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest gold exchange-trade fund of its kind, is set for its first monthly inflow since December 2012, according to a Reuters report on Thursday. The ETF has added 10.5 tons to its reserves so far in February.

Elsewhere in metals trading, platinum shed $30 to $1,450.40 an ounce, while palladium lost 45 cents to $743.40 an ounce. High-grade copper edged lower to $3.19 a pound. Copper traded near the lowest in more than two months on concern China’s slowing growth and a weaker yuan may reduce demand for the metal in the biggest user. An official report due tomorrow may show China’s manufacturing expanded this month at the slowest pace since June, with a private gauge next week projected to show slowdown. China’s yuan headed for the worst month in two decades on speculation the government will broaden the currency’s trading band after allowing more volatility at a time when growth is slowing in the world’s second-biggest economy.

 

 

 

Precious Metals & Industrial Metals Diverge

Precious Metals & Industrial Metals Diverge
Precious Metals & Industrial Metals Diverge
Gold traded near recent highs on Wednesday as traders worried about geopolitical tensions in the Ukraine along with lackluster US data. Market focus will be today’s testimony by Janet Yellen at the Senate Bank Committee. Traders are hoping to hear some clues into the FOMC thinking after two months of lackluster economics data.  Gold is trading this morning at 1328.90 close to Wednesday’s close. There isn’t much in economic data today, but traders are reviewing a strong housing release in the US yesterday. Silver on the other hand continues to plunge giving up 166 points to trade at 21.123 along with platinum and palladium which are both trading in the red. Platinum is trading at 1427.40 and palladium is at 730.40.

gold silver

Gold was above $1,340 yesterday, holding onto four month highs on uncertainty over China´s economic policy moves and with weaker data raising questions about the strength of the US recovery.  Investors have poured back into the metal, which has risen 11 percent since the beginning of the year, on worries about economic conditions in the United States and in China, which is now dealing with unprecedented growth in corporate debt.  SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest bullion-backed exchange-traded product, were unchanged on Wednesday after gaining for three days, and are heading for the first monthly expansion since December 2012.

The shiny metal is headed for a second month of advance, the longest such run since August, as concern that the U.S. recovery may be faltering and unrest in emerging markets boosted demand for a store of value. Gold added 10 percent this year, rebounding from the biggest annual decline in more than three decades, even as the Fed started to reduce its asset purchases.

Russian President Putin ordered military exercises amid deepening tensions in Ukraine, where lawmakers are set to approve Arseniy Yatsenyuk as prime minister today after a three-month uprising that ousted Viktor Yanukovych.

Copper took its clues from silver plummeting 6 points to trade at 3.192 after a serious tumble on Wednesday as traders worried about Chinese credit and the overall economy. An official gauge of manufacturing for China due March 1 probably slowed this month, according to economist estimates compiled by Bloomberg. A private measure released last week fell to a seven-month low. Copper stockpiles monitored by the Shanghai Futures Exchange swelled to a nine-month high, bourse data showed Feb. 21. Copper slipped to the lowest price in more than two months amid concern that China’s growth is slowing and as stockpiles rose in the biggest user. Sentiment is souring as traders, impatient for signs that the industry is ramping up after the Lunar New Year, are facing slowly filling order books, while falling property prices in China have dented the appeal of copper imports for financiers.

But orders may yet pick up as March gets underway for the seasonally strongest second quarter of demand, suggesting prices may not fall too far from here, said Sijin Cheng, analyst at Barclays in Singapore.

 copper

 

Gold Holds On To Gains As ETF’s Grow

Gold Holds On To Gains As ETF's Grow
Gold Holds On To Gains As ETF's Grow
Gold is surprising many metal dealers; just a few weeks ago major brokers and analysts were predicting gold to tumble as low as $1120 before the spring time. Commodity traders goldseemed oblivious to the dire predictions as gold tipped a recent high this week and closed at 1342 on Tuesday. In the Asian session on Wednesday morning gold is holding steady at 1340.30 while silver gave up 109 points to fall to 21.892.   An increase in holdings of bullion-backed exchange traded funds highlights renewed investor interest in gold, but physical buyers in key consumers such as India and China could be waiting for a price correction.  Hong Kong’s net gold exports to China fell 5.4 percent to 89.745 tons in January from 94.847 tons in December, reflecting a slowdown in demand from record levels in 2013.  SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, showed on its website that holdings rose 0.26 percent to 803.70 tons on Tuesday from 801.61 tons on Monday.  Speculators have moved back into the metal on worries about economic conditions in the United States and also China, which is now dealing with unprecedented growth in company debt.

Market analysts said a weak trend in the overseas markets due to subdued physical demand at higher levels mainly put pressure on gold prices in futures trade here. Gold is set for the first back-to-back monthly gain since August as concern that the U.S. recovery may be faltering and unrest in emerging markets including Ukraine increased demand for a store of value. Bullion rose 11 percent this year even as the Fed scaled back stimulus, rebounding from last year’s 28 percent drop that was the biggest annual loss since 1981. The US dollar gained a few points this morning to trade at 80.21.

Industrial and base metals continued to ease this morning as weak US and Chinese data weigh heavily on the metals family. Copper gained a few points coming off of its recent low to trade at 3.227. Copper traded near a three-week low after a report showed flagging U.S. consumer confidence and amid concern that China’s growth is slowing, damping demand prospects from the world’s two biggest users. The Conference Board’s U.S. consumer confidence measure fell more than analysts predicted in February, a report yesterday showed. In China, a weaker property market and falling currency fueled concern about the country’s slowing economic growth.

Platinum gave up 0.2 percent to $1,436.38, trimming a third monthly advance, while palladium increased 0.1 percent to $736.10 an ounce, poised to snap a three-month drop. In South Africa, the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration will meet the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union to resolve a strike that began Jan. 23.

Gold And Silver Trading Near Top Of Recent Ranges

Gold And Silver Trading Near Top Of Recent Ranges
Gold And Silver Trading Near Top Of Recent Ranges
Gold gave back some of yesterday’s gains in early Asian trading declining by $4.20 to trade at 1333.80 remaining close to the top of its trading range. Silver gave up 159 points continuing its wild swings to trade at 21.93. Gold is seen gaining strengthen on concerns over growth in China which is seen faltering and the unrest in Ukraine, which could default on its payment. Oleksander Turchinov, Ukraine’s acting President, has sought global help to overcome the financial crisis after the country angered Russia by staging a coup to oust Viktor Yanukovych. Investors, too, have joined the rally that however seems short-term. Holdings in SPDR Trust, world’s biggest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, are back above 800 tons at 801.61 tons. Adding to concerns of market players would be the drop in gold holdings in SPDR Trust, the world’s largest bullion-backed exchange traded fund, to below 800 tons. The trust said that during the weekend its holdings dropped to 795.61 tons, an indication that investors are looking at every available opportunity to book profits.

More cues for gold should be available later in the day when the US releases its home price index and consumer confidence. A recovery in the US economy and data, due later in the day and which could point to where the economy is heading, will keep the market quiet for a major part of the day.

“So far gold’s resilience has surprised me,” Marex Spectron’s David Govett said. “We have dipped off a few times, but these dips have been met by some good buying, and certainly some of the large selling that was so evident last year seems to have disappeared.” Govett did, however, warn that the Shanghai premium has fallen flat, and that doesn’t bode well for those who believe that Chinese buying will save the gold market.

The latest rise could be a move to safety ahead of economic numbers in the coming weeks that some expect to be weak. Uncertainty in Ukraine, Venezuela and Egypt are also to blame for the jitters that tend to draw investors to gold.

In other metals news, platinum dipped $8.20, or 0.6%, to $1,433.20 an ounce, while palladium eased by $5, or 0.7%, to $738.05 an ounce. Copper, which sat out the metals rally in the prior session amid weakness in the Chinese yuan, dropped another penny to $3.26 a pound. Copper prices are failing to rise even as stockpiles slump because of concern that slowing growth in China will stifle demand, according to Societe Generale SA. Chinese manufacturing data released last week by HSBC and Markit Economics fell to the lowest level in seven months. The nation accounts for about 45 percent of global copper consumption, according to Barclays Plc, which estimates supply, will outpace demand by 81,000 metric tons this year.

Metals Trading In The Red As Chinese Data Weighs Heavy

Metals Trading In The Red As Chinese Data Weighs Heavy
Metals Trading In The Red As Chinese Data Weighs Heavy
Gold ended the week on a positive note at 1324, but eased a bit in the Asian session on Monday giving up $2.60 to trade at 1321.00. Silver followed cues from gold to give up 200 points to trade at 21.615. The negative tone of the markets weighed on both platinum and palladium. Platinum tumbled to 1421.90 giving up $6.90 while palladium lost $4.70 to trade at 737.50. Gold inched lower after posting a third straight week of gains, but the precious metal may get support from worries over the pace of the U.S. economic recovery and China’s growth. Investors on Friday had increased bullish bets on bullion after prices broke through tough resistance at $1,300 an ounce, with weak U.S. manufacturing data and uncertainty over China’s economic expansion lifting the metal’s safe haven appeal.

Markets remain unease as more lackluster data hit the wires this morning. Chinese housing price increases printed lower that in the previous month adding to speculators stress. New-home price growth in China’s first-tier cities slowed in January, National Bureau of Statistics data today showed. Developers in a few large cities have started to cut prices as supply outstrips demand, Last week the flash PMI for February declined to 48.3 – the lowest level in months.

Last week precious metals rallied. The recent U.S reports may have contributed to the slow recovery of precious metals: housing starts and building permits fell by 16% and 5.4%, respectively, during January; existingcopper silver home sales dropped to 4.62 million in January; Philly fed index decreased from +9.4 to -6.3 in February; jobless claims slipped by 3k to reach 336k. The minutes of the last FOMC meeting didn’t reveal much more information regarding the future plans of the FOMC. Holdings in SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, rose 0.34 percent to 798.31 tonnes on Friday from 795.61 tonnes on Thursday.

Copper retreated 1.2 percent, leading industrial metals lower, as swelling stockpiles in China added to price concerns. London copper fell sharply to its lowest in more than two weeks as worries about tightening monetary policy in the United States and fragile growth in China hurt the demand outlook for industrial metals.  According to data released by China’s State Statistical Bureau this morning, China’s gross domestic product growth was 7.7% in 2013, the slowest since 1999. The figure is slightly above market expectations of 7.6% growth but further slowing down of the economy is expected. Copper futures fell by 0.15 per cent to 3.221 down 29 points today as speculators trimmed their positions due to subdued demand at domestic spot markets amid a mixed trend overseas.

 

Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Tumble

Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Tumble
Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Tumble
Gold is treading between small gains and losses this morning after declining on Thursday to trade at 1317.90, while silver eased by 61 points to trade at 21.623. Market participants aregold closely watching for developments from this weekend’s Group of 20 meeting of finance ministers and central bank chiefs in Sydney, at which global growth and recent turmoil in emerging markets are expected to be in focus. The G20 needs to discuss the impact of the Fed’s stimulus withdrawal on emerging markets, a top Russian central banker said on Friday.

Precious metals fell for the second straight day as concern that the Federal Reserve will press on with cuts in U.S. monetary stimulus damped demand for the metal as an alternative asset. Several Fed policy makers said that in “the absence of an appreciable change in the economic outlook, there should be a clear presumption in favor of continuing to reduce the pace” of bond purchases. Gold rose 70 percent from December 2008 to June 2011 as the central bank pumped more than $2 trillion into the financial system. The Fed cut monthly bond buying by $10 billion at each of its past two meetings, leaving purchases at $65 billion. Gold plunged 28 percent in 2013, the most since 1981, partly as the prospect of less stimulus reduced demand for the metal as an inflation hedge. The cost of living rose at a slower pace in January, the government showed on Thursday.

Gold has climbed 9.5 percent this year as signs that the U.S. economy wasn’t recovering in line with expectations boosted demand for a haven. Some analysts are split on the outlook for prices. Gold has lost its luster and will decline to $1,011 in December as the Fed tapers and the dollar strengthens, Westpac Banking Corp. said today in a report. Holdings in exchange-traded products backed by gold declined 5.5 metric tons to 1,735.4 tons yesterday, data compiled by Bloomberg show. Assets fell 33 percent last year.

Palladium gained 0.1 percent to $736.30 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Platinum declined 0.8 percent to $1,412.50 an ounce.

Industrial and base metals continue to trade on the downside after lackluster data yesterday weighed on the commodities. Copper continued to ease this morning to trade at 3.277. Copper futures fell to a one-week low after manufacturing shrank more than estimated in China and some Federal Reserve officials advocated further curbing of U.S. economic stimulus. China is the world’s biggest user. The government reduced this year’s target for expansion in factory output to 9.5 percent, compared with 10 percent last year.

 

Will Diamonds Become The New Gold Not Bitcoin ?

Will Diamonds Become The New Gold Not Bitcoin ?
Will Diamonds Become The New Gold Not Bitcoin ?
The old familiar phrase goes “Diamonds are a girl’s best friend” but soon it maybe “Diamonds are an investors best friend”.  Lately there have been several articles that have caught trader’s attention as gold seems to have lost its luster since touching the 1900 price a bit ago. Many speculators were hoping that bitcoin the new digital currency would serve as a new investment vehicle, but with global legal problems have scared off investors along with the difficulty of owning, trading or possessing their “digital” investments.

The questions on many traders lips is could diamonds be the new gold? As traders look for a new commodity, many are behind the scenes pushing to turn the gem into a commodity that would be available to investors in the way that gold has been traded through funds on exchanges. At present trading in diamonds is limited in the United States to the retail market for engagement rings and other jewelry and the back-room bargaining among merchants in places like Manhattan’s diamond district.

Speculators in New York, London, Switzerland and Israel say there is an opening to provide reliable public access for the growing universe of investors who have been willing to sink money into funds backed by exotic assets like palladium and silver. Those investors have turned a gold-backed fund, the SPDR Gold Shares, into one of the world’s largest exchange-traded funds, with a market capitalization of about $70 billion.

The advantage diamonds have over bitcoins, is that they are real and can be bought, sold and owned in the physical market and not deep in the internet. Pressure has been growing in recent months around the potential of diamonds to become a veritable asset class for the first time. Unlike gold, the gems currently have no spot price or conventional market besides jewelers and pawn shops. The renowned emerging markets investor Mark Mobius recently told MarketWatch that he has visited pawn resellers to get a firsthand view of the market for diamonds, which he believes are on the cusp of a boom, and which may eventually be available to investors via funds.

One surprising factor that’s driving demand is the relatively new but exploding appetite in China for diamond engagement rings. Prospective grooms splurging on a diamond is, of course, a standard part of the American engagement process. But it was largely a foreign concept to the Chinese until just a few years ago, says Rick de los Reyes, portfolio manager for T. Rowe Price’s Global Metals and Mining Strategy. Diamond demand has increased in the U.S., too, thanks to the strengthening economy. The U.S. imported nearly $23 billion of polished diamonds in 2013, up more than 16% from 2012, according to the Rapaport Group, a market research firm that maintains its own index for diamond prices. According to that index, the average price of diamonds increased almost 14% to $1,855 per carat last year.

Diamonds have one big advantage as they are already graded and rated which will make them easy to trade in standardized global contracts, they are also easy to hold and store, where gold storage is expensive taking up safety vaults around the world. Diamond are also etched with number so they are easily tracked. Many investors are hoping to see Diamonds traded on the global exchanges within the next year or two.

 

Precious Metal Traders Sell Off While Industrial Metals Strong

Precious Metal Traders Sell Off While Industrial Metals Strong
Precious Metal Traders Sell Off While Industrial Metals Strong
Gold prices are expected to move higher for the day as safe haven buying of Gold and upcoming poor US data expectations can push the prices higher. Gold tumbled in the Asian session giving up $9.20 to trade at 1315.20. Today US Building permits; PPI and housing starts with UK Unemployment rate, votes on official bank rates and asset purchase facility and Claimant Count Change would be eyed. Gold prices moved higher as poor data from US, Germany and UK raised the safe haven buying for Gold. German ZEW economic Sentiment and Manufacturing Index from US raised the doubt on the global growth pushing Gold’s safe haven buying. SPDR holdings moved lower by 0.63%. Net gold demand fell by 15% in 2013 as huge outflows from physically backed investment funds moved lower. Gold demand in India is expected to be robust in 2014 but will increase smuggling if import duty and curbs is not reduced, says World Gold Council.  US Empire State Manufacturing Index plunged to 4.5-mark in February from 12.5 level in January. TIC Long-Term Purchases fell by $5.9 billion in December from earlier decline of $28 billion in November. NAHB Housing Market Index slumped by 10 points to 46-mark in February from 56 level in January. Silver tumbled 228 points to trade at 21.670 after traders sold off metals to book profits as safe haven trading and risk aversion eased.

Gold demand fell 15 percent in 2013 as huge outflows from ETF’s outweighed record consumer demand, but disinvestment has been slowing down this year pointing towards recovery, the World Gold Council said on Tuesday. Massive liquidation of bullion-backed exchange-traded funds returned 881 tons of gold to the market last year, part of a 51 percent slump in investment demand to 773.3 tons. China overtook India as the world’s biggest gold consumer, with overall demand of 1,065.8 tonnes, largely driven by a 29 percent rise in Chinese jewelry demand and a 38 percent increase in coin and bar buying.

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US Dollar Index decreased by 0.04 percent in yesterday’s trading session on the back of weak economic data from US. Further, subdue trading due to holiday in US kept dollar under pressure. However, sharp downside in the dollar was cushioned on the back of expectation among the investors that the US Federal Reserve may continue to scale back its stimulus program. The US dollar is trading at 80.01 down by 5 points this morning.

Copper eased by 2 points to trade at 3.284 trading near recent highs after its climb earlier this week on demand from China. Copper prices in US moved higher for the day on Tuesday as markets reopened after a long weekend. China’s central bank drained funds from the market on Tuesday as it strengthened its money management strategy after unexpectedly strong credit growth in January put downward pressure on rates. Traders can expect Copper prices to remain in range to higher for the day as tighter monetary policy by China can help supporting the copper prices. Other base metals would follow copper prices for the day, except for aluminum

Precious Metals, Industrial Metals, Base Metals All Green

Precious Metals, Industrial Metals, Base Metals All Green
Precious Metals, Industrial Metals, Base Metals All Green
Gold continued to climb as the new week started off, adding $7.20 to trade at 1325.80 as risk aversion returned to the markets. This morning it seems like the hairs on the back of the necks of global traders stood up simultaneously. It could be just the lack of US traders with the US closed and a day of very light data outside of the Pacific region, but traders seem to be heading into metals and the yen in a flight to safety. The US dollar tumbled as markets opened giving up 9 points to trade at 80.08, while silver soared again adding 372 points to trade at 21.793, just a week ago it did not look like silver would be able to mount the 20 price level, it soared right through to break above 21 in just two days and has continued to climb. Platinum and palladium continue to take advantage of the shift in market sentiment to trade at 1431.65 and 739.80 respectively, both well in the green this morning.

Late in the trading day on Friday US data left traders a bit unnerved. US Industrial Production declined by 0.3 percent in January with respect to rise of 0.3 percent in previous month. Prelim University of Michigan (UoM) Consumer Sentiment was unchanged at 81.2-mark in Feb’14.

Gold prices increased by more than 4 percent in the last week on the back of rise in gold ETF’s holdings managed under SPDR Gold Holdings Trust by 0.5 percent to 801.25 tons. Further, weakness in the DX supported an upside in the prices. Hedge fund Paulson & Co the biggest stake holder in SPDR maintained its stake in the SPDR Gold Trust, in the fourth quarter. CFTC says Hedge fund and money managers, raised its bullish bets in gold futures and options. Gold premiums in India fell 17% on Friday as buyers postponed their purchases over a possible cut in import duties. Gold prices are expected to move higher for the day as poor US data raised the hopes of easing the Fed tapering of bond buying. Poor data also raised the safe haven buying for gold.

Industrial and base metals are trading in the green this morning on the back of the weak US dollar. Copper climbed 26 points to trade at 3.288 touching recent highs. Copper prices remained in a range to higher on Friday as positive data from Eurozone and poor data from US kept the prices in range. Slightly stronger-than-expected growth in Germany and France pushed the euro zone’s recovery up in the fourth quarter. CFTC says Hedge funds and money managers raised its net short positions in Copper. Copper hit its highest in almost two weeks this morning as soft US manufacturing data dragged down the dollar and sent short-position holders scuttling for cover. Cooling growth in the United States and China has curbed demand for metals. This has encouraged some investors to bet on falling prices, leaving them vulnerable to currency movements. A weaker dollar makes commodities more affordable for holders of other currencies.

Demand For Precious & Industrial Metals Support Price Increases

Demand For Precious & Industrial Metals Support Price Increases
Demand For Precious & Industrial Metals Support Price Increases

European stocks closed higher on Wednesday as investors around the globe cheered a combination of U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s reassurance of supportive monetary policy, strong Chinese export data and a U.S. debt deal in Congress. U.S. stocks were mixed on Wednesday, with Procter & Gamble’s reduced earnings outlook weighing on the Dow industrials and the S&P little changed after its largest four-day rise in more than a year. Traders seemed to refocus on commodities after the strong Chinese import and export data. Gold continues to climb as Chinese buyers grab up as much gold as they can. It seems the physical buying of gold has entered a frenzy state where buyers will just continue to buy until there are exhausted. China’s gold consumption has surged to a new record in 2013, despite a demand slowdown in the international market, as consumers took advantage of lower prices and bought more jewelry and gold bars. The China Gold Association (CGA) said that gold consumption in the country surpassed the 1,000-tonne mark in 2013, rising 41.4% on year to 1,176.4 tons. China produces only one-third of its gold requirement. The CGA noted that the rising amount indicates that China would overtake India as the world’s largest consumer of gold. Indian gold demand increased only 4.8% in 2013, as the government took measures to discourage gold imports to rein on a huge trade deficit. Demand for gold jewelry and bars in China increased by 42.52% and 56.57% to 716.5 tons and 375.73 tons, respectively, according to the association. The physical demand pushed gold to open this morning $1295 its highest level in 2014. Some analysts are project gold to touch the resistance level at $1300 before the close of the week; speculators took advantage of the strong prices to book profits this morning as the price eased by $5.70 in the Asian session. However, a sharp downside in the prices was prevented due to rising trend in gold ETF’s managed under SPDR Gold Holdings Trust.

Gold, considered a safe-haven, usually trades in the opposite direction to equities, the metal has snapped out of that in recent days and have been trading along the line of equities. U.S. Congress approved an increase in the country’s debt limit through March 2015, bowing to President Barack Obama’s demands for a debt limit increase without any conditions. African Barrick Gold will overcome last year’s 28 percent fall in the gold price with a big increase in output and stringent cost cutting. Gold prices are expected to move in a range to lower for the day as correction in the market and lower physical demand could keep the prices in range. Silver gave up 126 points as its continues its seesaw action making huge gain one day and then giving them back the next. Silver is exchanging at 20.215 remaining at the top of its trading range for 2014.

Copper also is seeing positive numbers trading above 3.25 yesterday and remaining flat this morning. Data from China showed a huge increase in copper demand, well above market expectations. Copper prices moved higher for the day as positive Chinese data and optimistic speech by Janet Yellen helped copper prices to move higher. Lower industrial production data from Eurozone and India kept the copper prices intact. Weaker dollar internationally also helped Copper prices to move higher. Traders can expect Copper prices to move higher for the day after positive Chinese Trade balance data and positive data coming from US. Other Base metals can move differently and can keep the prices in range to lower for the day. Palladium and platinum are trading in the red this morning with platinum falling below $1400 after topping it for the first time in weeks. Platinum is trading at 1399.85 while palladium is at 726.50

Yellen And Chinese Trade Data Spark The Metals Market

Yellen And Chinese Trade Data Spark The Metals Market
Yellen And Chinese Trade Data Spark The Metals Market

At her first testimony to lawmakers, new Federal Reserve Chief Janet Yellen, painted a rosy picture of the current US economic situation. The Fed director seemed undisturbed by the lackluster jobs data pointing to the weather situation in the US as the “polar vortex” kept most of the US frozen.  Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen signaled no change to the Fed’s policy path in her testimony to Congress. The fed’s massive stimulus program would be wound back in “measured steps”, she said. The recovery in the US jobs market was “far from complete.”

In light of the two weak jobs reports in a row, the fact that Yellen is continuing with tapering is giving investors’ confidence that the weather issues are transitory and that emerging markets concerns are not big enough to drag the U.S. into a recession. The House Financial Services Committee released Yellen’s prepared which was followed by a Q&A session with the panel On Thursday, Yellen will also testify before the Senate Banking Committee. Gold rose to the highest price since November as a weakening dollar spurred demand. Silver extended its longest winning streak in almost six months.

Gold’s 30-day correlation coefficient to the dollar gauge strengthened to -0.46 compared with -0.23 at the start of the year. Gold prices which earlier hit a recent high eased on Yellen’s comments. This morning Asiangold today traders pushed gold down by $4.50 to trade at 1285.30 The metal slumped by the most since 1981 last year as some investors lost faith in the commodity as a store of value. Gold rebounded this year as global equities and emerging markets weakened and lower gold prices spurred physical demand. Volume for Shanghai’s benchmark bullion spot contract surged to a nine-month high on Monday. Holdings in gold-backed exchange-traded products rose 1 ton, the most since January 29, to 1,738 ton on Monday. Assets reached the lowest since October 2009 last month. The Fed said last month it will cut monthly bond purchases by $10 billion to $65 billion.

Silver added 0.2% to $20.1215 after Yellen’s testimonial but gave back 41 points this morning to trade at 20.112. Tuesday’s close was the eighth successive daily advance would be the longest since Aug. 16. Palladium rose 0.7% to $723. Platinum gained 0.1% to $1,388.24. 

copper led gains in industrial metals after China’s trade surplus widened more than estimated in January and as imports of the commodity used in wiring rose. Copper gained 6 points this morning to trade at 3.233 after the release of Chinese data. China’s imports climbed 10 percent from a year ago, versus estimates for 4 percent, while exports jumped 10.6 percent compared with forecasts of 0.1 percent, which may have been distorted by fake invoices and holidays. Inbound shipments of unwrought copper and copper products increased by 53 percent from a year earlier to a record 536,000 tons, according to data from China’s customs agency.

 

 

 

Gold Traders Eagerly Await Words From Yellen

Gold Traders Eagerly Await Words From Yellen
Gold Traders Eagerly Await Words From Yellen

Gold prices moved higher for the day on Monday as buying from Chinese markets helped pushing the commodity higher. Fed Chair Janet Yellen testifies for the first time before the house financial Services Committee, hopes build up that Fed may rethink its pace of the tapering for its stimulus after the data on Friday. Workers go on strike for five days in three top producing gold mines, resulting in scarcity of gold in the market. Gold prices are expected to move in a range to higher for the day as investors would await Yellen testimony today which could trigger some buying in Gold prices. Gold prices continued to climb in Tuesday’s Asian session adding $8.40 to trade at 1283.10 as silver followed cues from gold to add 28 points trading at 20.14.  Gold has rocketed to its highest price in 2014 and since August last year, hitting $1,283.76 in afternoon Asian trading on Tuesday. This is a gain of 0.71% as physical buyers out of Asia increased their demand for bullion, coins and jewelry. In addition, investors in Europe and North America reacted to slower U.S. jobs growth than forecast.

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The US Dollar Index (DX) traded on a flat note and declined marginally in yesterday’s trade on the back of rise in risk appetite in the markets sentiments in later part of the trade which led to decline in demand for the low yielding currency. Gold prices gained around 0.6 percent yesterday on the back of rising trend in gold ETF’s managed under SPDR Gold Holdings Trust. Further, upbeat market sentiments in later part of the trade supported an upside in the prices. Additionally, weakness in the DX acted as a positive factor. The yellow metal touched an intra-day high of $1277.7.

Poor demand from factories even after Chinese markets back from a week holidays pushed the copper prices down. China’s export and import growth likely cooled in January, underlining a broader slowdown in the world’s second-largest economy. Investors would await Yellen’s speech and Chinese Trade Balance data which could set the course for Copper. However, rise in risk appetite in the latter part of the trade along with decline in inventories by 0.5 percent to 306,400 tons cushioned sharp downside in the red metal. Traders can expect Copper prices to move lower for the day after Yellen’s speech, stronger dollar and poor demand from China. Other Base metals can follow copper and keep the prices in range to lower for the day. Copper eased this morning to trade at 3.211 while palladium gained $2.50 to reach 718.90 and platinum added $6.25 to trade at 1391.80.

Base metals on the LME traded on a negative note yesterday on the back of negative industrial production data from Eurozone. However, decline in LME inventories along with positive consumer confidence data from Eurozone restricted sharp downside movement in the base metals. Also, upbeat global market sentiments in the latter part of trade acted as a positive factor. 

 

Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Trading In The Green

Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Trading In The Green
Precious Metal and Industrial Metals Trading In The Green
Gold added $5.70 as Asian traders took advantage of the weak US dollar to buy up the shiny metal. The US dollar tumbled last week after a disappointing jobs gold silverreport in the US surprised traders. The US dollar took a turn downward at the moment of the release. Market expectations were for 185k new jobs but the actual was only 113k jobs compounding the previous month’s lackluster report. The dollar dipped to 80.75 on Friday to recover a few pips this morning to trade at 80.79. Silver has also gained nicely trading over the 20 psychological barriers at 20.05 this morning up by 69 points. Silver has been reactive as of late taking dramatic swings up and down day by day while gold has remained in a fairly tight trading range while edging up over the past week.  Platinum is trading in the red at 1383.60 while palladium is up $3 at 712.60.

Last week saw the return of Chinese traders who were on vacation for the Lunar Holiday for the past week. Traders returned on Friday with vengeance consuming bullion at record levels. China’s gold consumption jumped 41 percent in 2013 to exceed 1,000 tons for the first time, an industry body said on Monday, as a sharp slide in prices attracted buyers for jewelry and bullion. The demand surge has helped China become the No. 1 gold consumer and should support prices, which took a hit last year from expectations of a tapering of commodities-friendly economic stimulus by the U.S. Federal Reserve and a drop in demand in the other major buyer India. Gold consumption in China grew to 1,176.40 tonnes last year, with jewelry demand climbing 43 percent to 716.50 tons and bullion demand soaring 57 percent to 375.73 tons, the China Gold Association said on its website.

This week the economic calendar is rather light, though retail sales and consumer sentiment are on tap. Also, Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen is due to testify Tuesday in front of the House Financial Services Committee, her first appearance since taking over for Ben Bernanke.

copper ended Friday on a three-session winning streak, up nearly 2% for the week, as investors mulled the U.S. labor data’s potential influence on the Fed’s monetary policy. High-grade copper for coming off a 1.2% gain last week is up 0.3%, to $3.25 a pound. Copper lifted for its biggest weekly gain since December, on anticipation of China traders replenishing dwindling stockpiles after the Lunar New Year holiday. Inventories at warehouses monitored by the London Metal Exchange have declined 16% this year to the lowest since December 2012. Copper the bedrock industrial metal and a benchmark for gauging the strength of the global economy is likely to soften further in the coming year as production growth is expected to exceed that of consumption. However, any weakness may be cushioned by steady demand in China. China accounts for about 44 per cent of global copper consumption, estimates by Barclays showed. Copper is the most widely used industrial metal, found in products from vehicle parts and electronics to home appliances.

 

 

 

Precious Metals Holding Tight Ahead Of The Nonfarm Payroll Data

Precious Metals Holding Tight Ahead Of The Nonfarm Payroll Data
Precious Metals Holding Tight Ahead Of The Nonfarm Payroll Data
After the monthly meetings of the Bank of England and the European Central Bank yesterday, traders are now faced with the US nonfarm payroll release gold silverscheduled for early in the US session today. Gold traded mostly flat on Thursday at 1256.35 but managed to climb this morning adding $3.20 and remains right under the 1260 price range. The bump in gold prices this morning can be accounted for by the return of Chinese traders who have been on holiday for the last week to celebrate the Lunar New Year, leaving market volume light and no physical demand. Silver, tracking gold, is up 4 percent this week – its biggest weekly gain since mid-August. Silver is exchanging at 19.868 down by 60 points this morning as traders close positions to book profits. Platinum is up by $10.75 at 1387.10 and palladium is in the green adding $4.50 to trade at 714.40. Gold held steady yesterday as global equities remained volatile amid lower risk appetite and concerns over economic growth, and as investors waited for cues from US jobs data. A mixed bag of US data added to pressure from the emerging markets turmoil on equity markets, underpinning safe-haven assets such as gold and the yen.

The US non-farm payroll data, is keenly awaited even as other data show that jobless claims in that country fell more than what had been projected. This is seen as signs of revival in the economy. But these statistics have been tempered by another data that showed a decline in the US export. Later in the day, more evidences could be available from Europe on the export front.

In India, currency movements will matter somewhat as a weaker rupee against the dollar will make imports of gold, crude oil and vegetable oils costlier. Holdings in SPDR Trust, world’s biggest gold-backed exchange traded fund were unchanged at 797.05 tons.

Speculation is mounting the cost to issue dollar debt may rise after U.S. 10-year Treasury yields climbed from almost a three-month low as the Labor Department said initial claims for unemployment benefits declined last week. The payrolls report later today will show that companies added 180,000 workers in January after a 74,000 increase in December, according to the median forecast of economists.

Base metals traded on a positive note as Chinese trades returned from holidays. Copper rose for a second day, heading for a weekly advance, as stockpiles declined and biggest-user China returned from Lunar New Year holidays. Copper gained 18 points to trade at 3.242 returning to its normal trading range after trading below the 3.20 level for the past weeks. Stockpiles monitored by the LME shrank for a 15th day to 309,250 tons, the lowest since December 2012, exchange data showed yesterday. “With Chinese traders returning, liquidity for copper has increased and expectation of post-holiday demand lent support,” said Chae Un Soo, a metals trader at Korea Exchange Bank Futures Co. in Seoul. The market was also supported by dwindling LME stockpiles and tight supplies, he said.