Another Highly Managed Precious Metal Price Action Day

22 March 2017 — Wednesday


The gold price inched higher in very early Far East trading — and then got smacked hard just minutes after 9 a.m. China Standard Time [CST] on their Tuesday morning.  The low tick of the day was set a minute or so before 12 o’clock noon in Shanghai trading — and began to rally quietly, but unsteadily, from there.  Then a minute or so after the COMEX open, the rally really got serious — and its high of the day came at a minute or so before 2 p.m. in the thinly-traded after hours market — and at the same instant the dollar index was turned higher as well.  It was sold down about 6 bucks at that point — and then inched higher into the 5:00 p.m. EDT close from there.

The low and high ticks were reported by the CME Group as $1,226.60 and $1,247.70 in the April contract.

Gold finished the Tuesday session in New York yesterday at $1,244.20 spot, up $10.30 from Monday — and net volume was very heavy at around the 224,000 contract mark.  Roll-over/switch volume out of April was fairly decent — and will increase substantially in the coming week, as First Day Notice for delivery in the April gold contract is only seven business days away.

Here’s the 5-minute gold tick chart courtesy of Brad Robertson.  There was very decent volume during the engineered price decline starting shortly after 19:00 Denver time on Monday evening — and it never really dropped off to background levels after that.  There was also decent volume in London trading as well but, as always, the big volume kicked in on the rally during the COMEX trading session in New York — and backed off somewhat after 13:00 MDT/3:00 p.m. EDT.

The vertical gray line is 10:00 p.m. Denver time, midnight in New York — and 1:00 p.m. China Standard Time [CST] the following afternoon in Shanghai—and don’t forget to add two hours for EST.  The ‘click to enlarge‘ feature is a must.

Silver also go blasted lower, along with gold.  Its rally that started at the COMEX open, looks far more impressive on the chart than it really was.  However, it should be obvious to anyone except those whose job depends on them not seeing it, that JP Morgan et al showed up a minute or so after the 9:30 a.m. EDT open of the equity markets in New York.  By 10:20 a.m., they had the price turned lower — and that lasted until a bit after 11 a.m. in New York.  It rallied weakly until it was turned lower at 2 p.m. along with gold, when the dollar index began to ‘rally’.

The low and high ticks in this precious metal were reported as $17.34 and $16.62 in the May contract.

Silver was closed yesterday at $17.51 spot, up 11.5 cents on the day.  Net volume was on the higher side, but not overly so, at just over 47,000 contracts.

Here’s the 5-minute tick chart for silver…thanks to Brad as well — and as for gold, there was decent volume in Far East trading on their Tuesday morning, when ‘da boyz’ put the boots the price, but it was pretty quiet during the London trading session.  The stand-out feature on this chart, as it was for gold, is that the real volume in silver’s rally didn’t kick in until the rally was in full cry to the upside.  Even then, it fell off quickly — and was back to more or less background levels by shortly after the 11:30 a.m. Denver time COMEX close.

As for gold, the vertical gray line is 10:00 p.m. Denver time, midnight in New York — and 1:00 p.m. China Standard Time [CST] the following afternoon in Shanghai—and don’t forget to add two hours for EST.  The ‘click to enlarge‘ feature is a must as well.

Platinum got it in the neck worst of all in Far East trading — and was down about 13 dollars at its low tick.  After that, it rallied in a similar fashion to both gold and silver — and its COMEX open rally was also capped when the equity markets opened at 9:30 a.m. in New York.  By 10:15 a.m., JP Morgan et al had turned the price lower as well — and that state of affairs lasted until around 11:40 a.m. EDT.  From there it was forced to chop more or less sideways into the close.  Platinum was closed on Tuesday session at $968 spot, down a dollar from Monday.

Palladium was the least affected during the engineered price down turns in the precious metals during Far East trading.  Its low tick came at the same time as the other precious metals — and began to rally seriously starting around 9:30 a.m. Central European Time [CET].  Like the other precious metal, its COMEX price rally got capped and turned lower as well.  But that didn’t begin until shortly after 11 a.m. in New York — and by the time ‘da boyz’ were done, over half the day’s gains went with it.  Palladium finished the day at $784 spot, up only 4 bucks on the day.  It was up 12 dollars at one point.

The dollar index closed very late on Monday afternoon in New York at 100.35 — and minutes after trading began at 6:00 p.m. EDT on Monday evening, it jumped up to the 100.47 mark. which turned out to be its high tick of the day.  Then at 7:00 p.m. it began to head south with real authority — and the usual ‘gentle hands’ saved it at the 100.12 mark at 9:30 a.m. China Standard Time [CST] three hours later.  It ‘rallied’ to the 100.28 mark by shortly before noon over there — and began to roll over starting at 1:30 p.m. CST.  The 99.66 low tick was printed a few minutes before 2 p.m. EDT in New York — and the subsequent rally rolled over within about thirty minutes — and it crawled higher into the close.  The dollar index finished the Tuesday session at 99.77 — down 58 basis points on the day.

The fact that the dollar index collapsed and the precious metals got sold off hard, were certainly related in some way…unless one happens to be a card-carrying member of the willfully blind, that is.

And here’s the 6-month U.S. dollar index.  Its attempt to seek out its intrinsic value on Monday evening in New York was thwarted by the powers-that-be once again.

The gold stocks gapped up a percent or so at the open in New York yesterday — and then chopped more or less sideways until around 11:40 a.m. in New York.  They rallied until shortly after 2 p.m. when the dollar index turned — and gold was sold lower.  They headed lower into the close from there as well, as the HUI finished the day up 2.09 percent.

The silver equities opened up a percent as well, but then rolled over shortly after 11 a.m. EDT — and into negative territory briefly.  Like their golden brethren, they also began to rally around 11:40 a.m. — and after that they also rallied to their highs of the day by a few minutes after 2 p.m.  But their fall from grace from there was much more severe, as Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index closed up only 0.68 percent.  Click to enlarge if necessary.

I continue to be underwhelmed by the performance of the precious metal equities during this rally, as their respective performances have been on the putrid side since way back on February 9.

To make my point, here’s the Long-Term Silver 7 chart — and we’re miles off our highs of the year so far, plus up less than ten percent since the beginning of 2017.  The metals themselves have vastly outperformed the shares year-to-date.  Click to enlarge.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that zero gold and only 7 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Thursday.  Merrill issued all 7 — and JP Morgan stopped all 7…6 for its own account, plus 1 for its ‘client’ account.   At the rate they’re going now, it certainly looks like the short/issuers are going to drag out March deliveries in silver right until the very last day.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Tuesday trading session showed that gold open interest in March rose by 4 contracts, leaving 21 still around.  Monday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that zero gold contracts were actually posted for delivery today, which means that 4 more gold contracts got added to the March delivery month.  Silver o.i. in March declined by 119 contracts, leaving 430 left, minus the 7 mentioned in the previous paragraph.  Monday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 118 silver contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that only 119-118=1 short/issuer was let off the delivery hook by JP Morgan.

JPM certainly isn’t taking many prisoners in silver in March, as they obviously want every good delivery bar that they can get their hands on.

After three withdrawals in a row, there was finally a deposit into GLD, as an authorized participant added 133,294 troy ounces.  And as of 6:29 p.m. EDT yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV.

The folks over at Switzerland’s Zürcher Kantonalbank updated their website with the goings-on inside their gold and silver ETFs as of the close of trading on Friday, March 17 — and here’s what they had to report. There were increases in both ETFs, as they added 27,561 troy ounces of gold, plus 355,427 troy ounces of silver.

There was a tiny sales report from the U.S. Mint yesterday. They sold 500 troy ounces of gold eagles — 500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes — and 50,000 silver eagles.

There was only one reported gold movement over at the COMEX-approved depositories on the U.S. east coast on Monday.  There was 32,076 troy ounces received at HSBC USA — and that was it.  The link to that activity is here.

There was pretty big movement in silver, as 1,198,615 troy ounces were received — but only 181,774 troy ounces were shipped out.  One container load went into CNT — and another [599,065 troy ounces] went into JP Morgan’s vault.  Virtually all of the ‘out’ volume came from Canada’s Scotiabank.  The link to that action is here.

That deposit into JP Morgan yesterday brings their COMEX silver stash up to 93,545,854 troy ounces.

It was certainly busy over at the COMEX-approved gold kilobar depositories in Hong Kong on their Monday.  They only received 1,237 of them — but they shipped out 8,500.  All of this action was at Brink’s, Inc. — and the link to that, in troy ounces, is here.

I have an average number of stories for you today, so that makes your final edit all that much easier.


Liquidity Suddenly Collapses as U.S. Stocks Tumble

This is the biggest drop for Bank stocks since Brexit, as investor concerns over Trump’s reform agenda grow…

And, as Nanex points out, S&P 500 futures liquidity is collapsing today.

Why? Because whereas the BTFDers have been willing to jump in and, well, BTFD, on days where there is a sharp move lower, both the HFTs and the carbon-based traders step aside and pull their bids, unsure if this is “the start” of the selloff.  Maybe this time they are right, as the bank bloodbath continues:

This very brief 3-chart Zero Hedge article put in an appearance on their website at 11:27 a.m. EDT on Tuesday morning — and it’s the first of several stories from Brad Robertson.  Another link to it is here.

Despite Financial Engineering & Clever Reporting Schemes, S&P 500 Earnings per Share Stuck for 3+ Years

$1.7 trillion blown on making EPS look less bad.

The S&P 500 index, closing today at 2,373, hovers near its all-time high. Total market capitalization of the 500 companies in the index exceeds $20 trillion, or 106{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} of U.S. GDP. In the three-plus years since the end of January 2014, the index has soared 33{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e}.

And yet, over these three-plus years, even with financial engineering driven to the utmost state of perfection, including $1.7 trillion in share buybacks and despite “ex-bad-items” accounting schemes that are giving even the SEC goosebumps – despite all these efforts, the crucial and beautifully doctored “adjusted” earnings-per-share, perhaps the single most manipulated metric out there, has gone nowhere.

“Adjusted” earnings per share are back where they’d been at the end of January 2014. It’s a sad sign when not even financial engineering can conjure up the appearance of earnings growth.

This very interesting, but not surprising commentary showed up on the Internet site on Monday sometime — and it comes to us courtesy of Richard Saler.  Another link to it is here.

NADA report: U.S. used car prices crash most since 2008

According to NADA Used Car Guide, wholesale prices on used vehicles are getting crushed.

In a reversal of what typically occurs in February, wholesale prices of used vehicles up to eight years old fell substantially last month, dropping 1.6{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} compared to January. The drop was counter to the 1{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} increase expected for the month and marked just the second time in the past 20 years prices fell in February (last years’ scant 0.2{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} being the other instance).

NADA Used Car Guide’s seasonally adjusted used vehicle price index fell for the eighth straight month, declining 3.8{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} from January to 110.1. The drop was by far the worst recorded for any month since November 2008 as the result of a recession-related 5.6{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} tumble. February’s index figure was also 8{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} below February 2016’s 119.4 result and marked the index’s lowest level since September 2010.

Automakers grew incentive spending once again in February, making it the 23rd month in a row where spending was increased. On average, spending reached $3,594 per unit versus $3,043 per unit in February 2016 according to Autodata.

Among the U.S. Big Three, GM raised incentives by 27.4{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} in February to an average of $5,125 per unit. Spending at Ford Motor Company rose by 20.9{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} to $4,012 per unit, while FCA increased incentives by 10.6{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} to $4,365.

This commentary appeared on the Internet site on Monday afternoon EDT — and I thank Kathmandu reader Nitin Agrawal for sharing it with us.  Another link to it is here.  There was a Zero Hedge story about this yesterday evening as well — and it’s headlined “Ally Financial Slashes Guidance As Used Car Prices Suffer “Worst Decline In 20 Years”

Is McCain Hijacking Trump’s Foreign Policy? — Patrick Buchanan

The senator from Kentucky,” said John McCain, speaking to his colleague Rand Paul, “is working for Vladimir Putin … and I do not say that lightly.

What did Sen. Paul do to deserve being called a hireling of Vladimir Putin?

He declined to support McCain’s call for a unanimous Senate vote to bring Montenegro into NATO as the 29th member of a Cold War alliance President Trump has called “obsolete.”

What happened to the foreign policy America voted for — rapprochement with Russia, an end to U.S. wars in the Middle East, and having rich allies share more of the cost of their own defense?

This very worthwhile commentary from Patrick was posted on the Internet site on Saturday — and I thank subscriber Jim Rodgers for sending it our way yesterday.  Another link to it is here.

U.S. reverses course and offers new dates for NATO talks

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson proposed new dates on Tuesday for a NATO meeting, the State Department said, after he initially decided to skip the talks and rebuffed the alliance’s efforts to reschedule them.

Tillerson’s decision to miss his first meeting with NATO foreign ministers, set for April 5-6 in Brussels, unsettled European allies who worried it reopened questions about U.S. President Donald Trump’s commitment to the alliance.

Reuters exclusively reported on Monday that Tillerson would stay in the United States to attend Trump’s expected April 6-7 talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Florida. U.S. officials also said Tillerson would visit Russia later in April.

The alliance had offered to change the meeting dates so Tillerson could attend both it and the Xi talks but the U.S. State Department rebuffed the idea, a former U.S. official and a former NATO diplomat, both speaking on condition of anonymity, said on Monday.

On Tuesday, State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the department put forward new dates for a meeting when Tillerson could come, noting that such a decision would have to be made by consensus among the 28 NATO members.  “We are certainly appreciative of the effort to accommodate Secretary Tillerson,” Toner told reporters. “We have offered alternative dates that the secretary could attend.

This updated Reuters story, co-filed from Washington and Brussels, put in an appearance on their Internet site at 7:43 p.m. EDT on Tuesday evening — and it comes courtesy of Brad Robertson via Zero Hedge.  Another link to it is here.

Muni Massacre – Puerto Rico Bonds Plunge Near Record Lows

The last 5 days have seen the biggest crash in Puerto Rico muni bonds since June 2015 when the Governor declared debts “unpayable.” As Bloomberg notes, investor speculation about the scale of the losses Puerto Rico will foist on bondholders caused the price of the island’s most active bond to continue to slide in the heaviest trading in nearly four months.

As Bloomberg detailed previously, the Puerto Rico fiscal recovery plan that was approved by the island’s federal overseers isn’t good news for investors holding its $70 billion of debt. The proposal, which was redrawn by Governor Ricardo Rossello to address concern that he was relying on overly optimistic forecasts, would leave less than $7 billion for debt-service costs from 2018 through 2026, according to figures included in the most recently released proposal.

That’s less than a quarter of what’s coming due and nearly $4 billion less than in Rossello’s initial proposal last month, which the board said didn’t do enough to steady the territory’s finances.

John Oliver explained the PR disaster a year ago…it’s only got worse.

This short Zero Hedge article showed up on their website at 7:45 p.m. on Tuesday evening EDT — and another link to it is here.

Venezuela Stops Publishing Money Supply Data For Obvious Reasons

More than a year after hyperinflating banana republic Venezuela stopped reporting official inflation data, Venezuela has stopped publishing money supply data, depriving the general public of the last, and best, available tool to ascertain soaring inflation in what has become the world’s worst-performing economy. Then again, one hardly needs official data to confirm the blistering wave of hyperinflation sweeping through the nation which has seen the value of the bolivar disintegrate under the Maduro regime.

The money supply indicator suddenly stopped appearing on the central bank’s website on Feb. 24. The data in question, which will no longer be updated, looked as follows most recently.

Despite the halt of CPI data, consumer price rises are widely seen to be in triple digits, driven by an unraveling socialist system in which many people struggle to obtain meals and medicines. The M2 money supply was up by nearly 180{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} in mid-February from a year earlier, according to the central bank before it halted the release of the weekly data without explanation last month Reuters reports.

If they are not publishing, you know it must be skyrocketing,” Aurelio Concheso, director of the Caracas-based business consultancy Aspen Consulting, stated the obvious. The central bank and ministry of communications did not respond to a request for comment, Reuters adds.

This Zero Hedge news item appeared on their Internet site at 1:51 p.m. EDT yesterday afternoon — and I thank Brad Robertson for sending it along.  Another link to it is here.

IMF postpones decision on Ukraine funding

As Ukraine becomes increasingly engulfed by crisis, the IMF has postponed the decision as to whether or not to provide Ukraine with the latest tranche of its bailout funding.

That decision was supposed to be made today (Monday 20th March 2017).  Instead, without any formal announcement, the IMF put off the decision, giving no date for when it would be made.

The Ukrainians – but not the IMF itself – are saying that the IMF postponed its decision in order to give the Ukrainians time to provide information about the effect on Ukraine’s economy of the transport blockade of the Donbass.

This is a valid reason to postpone the decision.  The Ukrainian enterprises that the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics have now nationalised paid taxes into the Ukrainian budget.  Beyond the immediate effect on the budget is the larger effect that the transport blockade and the nationalisation of the enterprises is having on Ukraine’s economy.  A Russian expert, Andrey Zolotaryov, has described the effect of the nationalisation of the enterprises this way for TASS…

It is clear that the aftermath for Ukraine’s economy will be very serious and the likelihood of the early elections is growing dramatically. All these developments will lead to further escalation of the internal political conflict in the country and the least-evil solution is the snap elections,” he said.

The expert added that enterprises making part of Metinvest mining and metallurgical company operating in Donbass and yielding 20{f02ffe5e8b39fd7974c2720d01ccf381ddc9ebb4164215842085b3c57e4f642e} of foreign currency revenues for Ukraine’s budget will be affected most. “Ukraine’s balance of payments deficit, that is, the difference between imports and exports, is $4 bln, and it will increase. If that is the case, where will the government get foreign currency? After all, it has to repay external debt and provide for critically important imports. It is obvious that it will resort to printing money,” he noted.

This commentary by Alex Mercouris put in an appearance on Internet site on Monday — and it’s certainly worth reading if you have the interest.  I thank Roy Stephens for bringing it to our attention — and another link to it is here.

Russia to pay off balance of Soviet-era debt within 45 days

The Soviet Union’s foreign debt will be paid in full within weeks, once Moscow settles with Bosnia and Herzegovina, according to the Russian Ministry of Finance.

According to calculations, Russia owes the Balkan country, once part of the former Yugoslavia $125.2 million, said Deputy Finance Minister Sergey Storchak. This is the last Soviet debt, and it will be paid back in 45 days, he added.

The debt to the former Yugoslavian republics of Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro, Slovenia, and Macedonia, had been paid off by Russia from 2011 to 2016.

In February, the Finance Ministry said the debt would be cleared quickly once an executive order was signed. On Tuesday, the final step in the process was announced officially.

By assuming the Soviet-era debt, Russia gained international recognition as the USSR’s successor.

This news story was posted on the Internet site at 2:14 p.m. Moscow time on their Tuesday afternoon, which was 7:14 a.m. EDT in Washington — EDT plus 7 hours.  I thank Roy Stephens for finding it for us — and another link to it is here.

Russia adds another 9.33 tonnes to its gold reserves in February — Lawrie Williams

Russia now only lags China by some 188 tonnes in terms of its gold reserves.  Last year Russia added just over 200 tonnes to its reserves and a continuation at this kind of rate – if China continues its halt of official gold buying – would mean Russia’s reported reserves would be pretty much on a par with those of China by the year end.

Even so adding Russian and Chinese reported reserves together would only come to 3,497 tonnes – a little more than those of Germany in second place and still hugely behind the reported US holding which has, officially, remained unchanged since 2006 when it reported a reduction of 1.6 tonnes.  All the IMF reported reserve figures are somewhat open to question as leased gold – and a number of nations have reported gold leasing activities – remains in reserve figures although it may not actually be available.

China has also been seen to add gold into its reserves surreptitiously by holding it in non-reported accounts and then updating its total figures at five or six year intervals, although it has been officially been reporting monthly changes in its holdings since July 2015 – but who knows?  Other countries could also be non-reporters of changes in their gold reserves to the IMF for various reasons, so we can only really take the IMF figures as being the best guide available.  We can’t vouch for their overall accuracy!

This brief commentary by Lawrie showed up on the Sharps Pixley website yesterday — and another link to it is here.

Legendary sunken treasure found in Sichuan Province, China

Photos taken on March 19, 2017 shows golden ingot and jewelleries unearthed during an archaeological excavation at Pengshan District in Meishan City, southwest China’s Sichuan Province.

More than 10,000 gold and silver items that sank to the bottom of a river in Sichuan Province over 300 years ago have been recovered, archeologists said Monday.

The items included a large amount of gold, silver and bronze coins and jewelry as well as iron weapons such as swords, knifes and spears.

Unfortunately, this 20-photo essay doesn’t really have a background story to go with it, saying how all this stuff found its way to the river bottom, but a shipwreck of some sort would be suspected.  The pictures speak volumes — and are definitely worth your time.  It was posted on the Internet site yesterday — and I thank Ellen Hoyt for sharing them with us.  Another link to this incredible photo sequence is here.  And as I was putting today’s column to bed, Ellen sent along this same story from another website that has a lot more background material with it — and this is certainly a must read as well, except not all of the 20 pictures are shown in this story headlined “LOOK: Legendary sunken treasure unearthed by archaeologists in Sichuan“.


Here are two more photos from Andy Seliverstoff, a professional photographer from St. Petersburg, Russia.  The click to enlarge feature doesn’t help with these pictures.


The concurrent sell-off in both the precious metals and the dollar index in early Far East trading on their Tuesday was anything but a free market event.  And the rallies at the COMEX open would have certainly ended up being Ted Butler’s “big ones” if JP Morgan et al hadn’t shown up as short buyers and long sellers of last resort when they did.

As I’ve said before on numerous occasions…”until that situation changes, nothing changes.

Here are the 6-month charts for all four precious metals, plus copper, once again.  Gold is now approaching its 200-day moving average once again — and would have closed well above it yesterday, if allowed.  Silver is back above its 50-day moving average — and would have closed at heaven-only-knows what price if it had been allowed to trade unopposed, which it obviously wasn’t.  The click to enlarge feature helps a bit with the first four charts.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is an hour away — and I see that the gold price rallied a bit in the first hour of trading after New York opened at 6:00 p.m. EDT yesterday evening.  That was dealt with — and after that price crawled along less than a dollar either side of unchanged until minutes after 2 p.m. China Standard Time [CST] on their Wednesday afternoon.  It has rallied a bit since then — and is currently up $2.90 an ounce.  It was the same for silver, except it was sold back below unchanged after its tiny rally yesterday evening in New York.  It was down a nickel or so by noon CST — and has been inching higher since.  Its tiny rally after 2 p.m. CST has put it in the plus column by 3 cents the ounce.  It was the same general price pattern for platinum and palladium — and the former is up 2 bucks and the latter is still down a dollar.

Net HFT gold volume is coming up on 33,000 contracts — and roll-over/switch volume out of April is on the lighter side.  Net HFT silver volume is a hair over 6,600 contracts.

The dollar index, after dropping a handful of basis points at the 6:00 p.m. EDT open yesterday evening, rallied up to the 99.85 mark by 11:30 a.m. in Shanghai, but rolled over at that point — and dropped a quick 10 basis points shortly after 2 p.m. CST — and that most likely explains the sudden pop in the precious metal prices at that moment.  The dollar index is down 8 basis points currently.

Yesterday, at the close of COMEX trading, was the cut-off for this Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report — and it pretty much goes without saying that we’ll see huge increases in the commercial short positions in both gold and silver, but particularly gold.  It won’t be enough, as Ted said on the phone yesterday, to turn things bearish in either precious metal from a COT standpoint, but it leaves the door open enough that ‘da boyz’ could engineer price declines to get these newbie Managed Money traders to puke up their freshly-placed long positions — and allow them to ring the cash register one more time for fun, profit and price management purposes.

We’ll have to wait and see how long these rallies are allowed to last.

And as I post today’s missive on the website at 4:02 a.m. EDT, I note that not much has happened from a price perspective in any of the four precious metals in the lead-up to the London open, which is just a few minutes away.  Gold is up $2.60 an ounce, silver’s up 3 cents, platinum is still up 2 bucks, but palladium is now down 2 dollars.

Net HFT gold volume is approaching 40,000 contracts, with very little roll-over/switch volume — and silver’s net HFT volume is just under 7,800 contracts.

The dollar index bottomed out around the 99.64 mark about 2:50 p.m. China Standard time — and in the last hour of trading has gone from down on the day, to unchanged.  Funny how the dollar index seems to catch a bid the moment that the precious metals show signs of getting frisky.

As for what might happen for the rest of the Wednesday trading session, I haven’t a clue.  I’m still face down watching how the delivery month in silver is proceeding and, like Ted, in shock over how openly blatant JP Morgan’s grab for physical silver has become…without a word about in the main stream press, or even on other precious metal sites.

That’s all I have today — and I’ll see you here tomorrow.


Print Friendly, PDF & Email