Yet Another of Ted Butler’s “Scams Within a Scam”

21 November 2017 — Tuesday


The gold price sold quietly lower — and was down 3 bucks or so by shortly after 3 p.m. China Standard Time on their Monday afternoon.  It traded flat from there until the noon silver fix in London — and then began to edge higher.  The powers-that-be showed up at the COMEX open — and they set the low tick of the day a few minutes after 1 p.m. EST.  It ‘rallied’ a few dollars higher in after-hours trading.

The high and low ticks were recorded by the CME Group as $1,295.10 and $1,274.10 in the December contract.

Gold was closed in New York yesterday afternoon at $1,276.00 spot — down $17.40 from Friday — and back below its 50-day moving average by a goodly amount.  Gross gold volume was reported at 450,143 contracts — and even after subtracting out December’s roll-over/switch volume, net volume was still over the moon at something under 354,000 contracts.

And here’s the 5-minute tick chart for gold, courtesy of Brad Robertson as usual.  There was some noticeable volume during early morning trading in London but, as usual, the only volume that really mattered came during the COMEX trading session in New York.  Volume dropped off considerably after the 11:30 a.m. Denver time COMEX close, which was 1:30 p.m. EST in New York.

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

The silver price was also sold quietly lower once trading began in New York at 6:00 p.m. EST on Sunday evening.  It was down about 13 cent by noon in Shanghai — and then it traded about a nickel either side of the $17.15 spot mark until the noon silver fix.  Then, like gold, it rallied a hair into the COMEX open, where it got the same treatment from ‘da boyz’.  The low tick was set a few minutes before the COMEX close.  It rallied a bit from that point until around 4 p.m. in after-hours trading — and then didn’t do a lot going into the 5:00 p.m. EST close of trading.

The high and low ticks in silver were reported as $17.335 and $16.82 in the December contract.

Silver was closed yesterday at $16.855 spot, down 42 cents on the day…taking all of Friday’s gains with it — and then some.  According to Ted Butler, all of last week’s gains in the silver price had vanished by the close of COMEX trading on Monday.  Of course, both 50 and 200-day moving averages were blow out to the downside in the process.  Gross silver volume was 179,158 contracts — and even when subtracting out the decent roll-over and switch volume, net HFT silver volume still checked in at about 97,000 contracts.

Here’s the 5-minute tick chart for silver, also courtesy of Brad R. — and it doesn’t look all that much different than the 5-minute chart for gold.

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

The platinum price was down 8 dollars by around 11:30 a.m. CST — and then chopped sideways in a very tight range until the COMEX open.  JPMorgan et al really laid the lumber to the price from that point onwards.  As in gold, they set the $917 spot low tick a few minutes before 1 p.m. in New York — and the price recovered a handful of dollars after that.  It finished the day at $921 spot, down 27 bucks from Friday’s close.  At its low, ‘da boyz’ had it down $31 dollars.

The palladium price spent all of the Far East, plus most of the Zurich trading session, chopping around a few dollars above unchanged on their respective Mondays.  Of course that all ended minutes after the COMEX open.  They weren’t very successful during their first attempt to bash the price — and really had to lean on it once trading in Zurich ended at 11 a.m. EST. Its low tick came at the COMEX close — and it added a few dollars from there during the after-hours session.  Palladium finished the day at $982 spot — and down 6 bucks from Friday’s close.

The dollar index closed very late on Friday afternoon in New York at 93.67 — and began to rally sharply sometime after 5 p.m. EST on Sunday afternoon, an hour and change after the market opened at 4:00 p.m.  The rally made it up just past the 94.00 mark — and then chopped sideways just below 94.00 until it began to fade shortly before 3 p.m. China Standard Time on their Monday afternoon.  The 93.58 low tick came just after 9:45 a.m. in London — and then away it began to chop steadily higher from there.  It’s 94.10 high tick came at precisely 3:00 p.m. EST — and then faded a few basis points from there into the close.  The dollar index closed on Monday at 94.06 — up 39 basis points from Friday’s close.

And, for reasons I can’t fathom, the folks at where I get the chart from, said the dollar index closed up only 10 basis points.

Here’s the 3-day U.S. dollar index chart, so you can see the entire Monday move starting at 4:00 pm. EST on Sunday afternoon in New York.  Once again, there was absolutely no correlation between what the currencies were doing vs. what was going on in the precious metals.

And here’s the 6-month U.S. dollar index chart, which you can read into whatever you wish — and it shouldn’t be a lot, particular as it pertains to what’s happening to precious metal prices.

The gold stocks gapped down a bit at the open — and chopped unevenly lower until their respective low ticks were placed around 12:20 p.m. EST in New York trading.  They rallied a bit until around 1:40 p.m. — and then faded a hair into the close from there.  The HUI closed down only 1.06 percent.

The silver equities also gapped down a bit a the open, but were back in positive territory in a few minutes, but only for a few minutes.  Their respective lows came a minute or so after 12 o’clock noon in New York.  Then, like the gold shares, they rallied a bit until around 1:40 p.m. EST — and traded sideways for the rest of the Monday session.  Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index closed down only 0.92 percent.  Click to enlarge if necessary.

And here’s the 1-year Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index.  Click to enlarge.

I must admit to be rather amazed by how well the precious metal shares held up in the face of the big engineered price declines in the underlying metals.  Reader Judy Hobson from “down under” in Australia, sent this comment yesterday evening Denver time about the share price action in their precious metal stocks at the open on their Tuesday morning…”Well, they did it…smashed both silver and gold, BUT the precious metal shares on the ASX are actually up, not down like I expected, I know the Aus $ has dropped a bit, but still thought the shares would be down, not up.  What do you think?

To tell you the truth, dear reader…I don’t know what to make of it — and haven’t a clue if it means anything.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 1 lonely gold contract was posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Wednesday.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Monday trading session showed that gold open interest in November remained unchanged at 10 contracts, minus the 1 contract mentioned above.  Friday’ Daily Delivery Report showed that 1 gold contract was actually posted for delivery today, so that means that one more gold contract was added to the November delivery month in order for gold open interest in November to remain at unchanged.   Silver o.i. in November declined by 3 contracts, leaving zero left.  Friday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that those 3 silver contracts were posted for delivery today, so unless there are some last-minute deliveries thrown in between now and the end of the month, November silver deliveries are done.

Their were no reported changes in either GLD or 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 business on Friday, November 17 — and this is what they had to report.  Both ETFs showed slight increases…their gold ETF by 4,597 troy ounces — and their silver ETF by 23,630 troy ounces.

There was a small sales report from the U.S. Mint yesterday.  They sold 2,000 troy ounces of gold eagles, plus another 30,000 silver eagles.

There was a bit of movement in gold over at the COMEX-approved depositories on the U.S. east coast on Friday.  There was 104,107 troy ounces reported received at HSBC USA — and 3,697.250 troy ounces/115 kilobars [U.K./U.S. kilobar weight] shipped out of Canada’s Scotiabank.  The link to that activity is here.

It was fairly quiet in silver.  Only 299,903 troy ounces were received — and 25,083 troy ounces shipped out the door.  All of this activity was at Brink’s, Inc.  The link to that is here.

It was the same over at the COMEX-approved gold kilobar depositories in Hong Kong on their Friday.  They reported receiving 41 of them — and shipped out 595.  All of this activity was at Brink’s, Inc. as per usual — and the link to that, in troy ounce, is here.

Since the 20th of the month fell on a weekday, the good folks over at The Central Bank of the Russian Federation updated their website with October’s data — and this is what they had to report.  They added another 700,000 troy ounces/21.8 metric tonnes of gold to their reserves during that month.

Their total reserves now stand at 57.9 million troy ounces, or a hair under 1,801 metric tonnes.  In the last two months they’ve added 1.7 million troy ounces/52.9 metric tonnes of gold to their reserves.  Here’s Nick Laird’s most excellent chart, updated with October’s data.  Click to enlarge.

I don’t have all that many stories for you today — and I’ll leave the final edit up to you.


Bubble Dynamics and Market Crashes — Jim Rickards

To paraphrase one of the great gems of Wall Street wisdom, “Nothing infuriates a man more than the sight of other people making money.”

That’s a pretty good description of what happens during the late stage of a stock market bubble. The bubble participants are making money (at least on a mark-to-market basis) every day.

Meanwhile, the more patient, prudent investor is stuck on the sidelines — allocated to cash or low-risk investments while watching everyone else have fun. This is especially true today when the bubble is not confined to the stock market but includes exotic sideshows like crypto-currencies and Chinese real estate.

It gets even worse when investors are taunted by headlines like the one in a recent article, “Investors Can Either Buy Bubbles or Be Left Far Behind.” The article is a case study in the “Bubblicious Portfolio.” Infuriating indeed.

Actually it should not be.

On a risk-adjusted basis, the prudent investor is not missing much.

This commentary by Jim was posted on the Internet site on Monday — and it comes to us courtesy of Brad Robertson.  Another link to it is here.

Markets Are Trapped in “Zombie-like” State — Jim Rickards

Markets are holding their collective breath. Not much is happening. But the potential for huge moves has not been greater since late 2015.

The euro is meandering between $1.16 and $1.17. Gold is going sideways between $1,270 and $1,295 per ounce. The yen is trading around 113 to the dollar. The yield to maturity on a 10-year Treasury note is stuck around 2.35% with just small moves on a daily basis.

If you had positions in these global macro markets two weeks ago and spent those two weeks in a submarine without surface communications, you would have emerged from undersea to find nothing had changed. It’s as if you were never away.

Of course, the mother of all complacency metrics is volatility in the stock market. It’s near all-time lows and has been stuck there for an unprecedented period of time. No worries here; it’s all good. Why?

Why are markets moving sideways in a complacent, almost zombie-like state?

The reason is that the world is waiting for the Fed.

This second commentary from Jim also showed up on the website yesterday — and it’s from Brad Robertson as well.  Another link to it is here.

Where Does It End? — Jeff Thomas

It’s nothing new.

Whenever a major country is in decline and approaching collapse, a contingent arises that does everything it can to speed up the process toward collapse. This is always done in the same way:

  • Vilify the established rulers as being the culprits for the nation’s woes.
  • Establish simplistic arguments to support that view. (The arguments need not be entirely logical or supportable, but they must have emotional public appeal.)
  • Create simplistic rhetoric that supports the destruction of the establishment and its icons.
  • Make the arguments and rhetoric as ubiquitous as possible (particularly through the media).

Then, like any recipe, turn up the heat and bake until done.

This very worthwhile commentary by Jeff put in an appearance on the Internet site on Monday — and another link to it is here.

Europe Faces a Hamstrung Germany After Merkel’s Coalition Bid Fails

Angela Merkel may be running out of road after 12 years at the helm in Germany.

With the chancellor’s attempt to form a fourth-term government in disarray, Merkel’s once unquestioned ability to steer Europe is waning as the region’s biggest economy heads into uncharted waters and possibly a protracted political stalemate.

The breakdown in coalition talks late Sunday — amid disputes over migration and other policies between a grab-bag of disparate parties — raised the prospect of fresh elections, which probably would be held next spring. Relying on a minority administration with shifting alliances to pass legislation would run counter to Merkel’s promise to provide a stable government.

However she attempts to move forward, European decisions on everything from Brexit and Greece to Russian sanctions and French President Emmanuel Macron’s proposals for strengthening the euro region will now be hemmed in by Merkel’s weakened role as a caretaker chancellor.

What it means is that Germany is pulled inward because it has to manage its political transition,” said Daniel Hamilton, executive director of the Center for Transatlantic Relations at Johns Hopkins University in Washington.

So the state of drift in Europe continues and now Germany, which has been the stabilizer of the last number of years, is part of that.”

This Bloomberg story was posted on their website at 9:46 p.m. Denver time on Sunday evening — and subsequently updated about seven hours later.  It’s from Zero Hedge via Brad R. — and another link to it is here.

Lavrov Throws Washington a Bone over ISIS Collusion

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov hasn’t become the world’s most respected diplomat without cause.  His recent statement, carried by Russian news agency ITAR-TASS, leaves open the avenue for a face-saving statement by the U.S. after the bombshell BBC report that it cut a deal with ISIS fighters in Raqqa, allowing them to leave unmolested.

I cannot speak about any collusion. We use facts. We have no evidence of any collusion but the fact is that that the actual picture that emerged after such exodus of militants safe and sound has already impacted the situation on the ground, and it is evident,” he said.

Anyway, be it a collusion or not, it needs to be probed into and we have issued a relevant inquiry to Washington,” Lavrov stressed.

Lavrov went on to say that he is confused by the U.S.’s seeming contradiction with its own stated goals in Syria – to oust ISIS from the country.  Now that we’ve reached “mission accomplished” we intend to stay behind with thousands of troops in as many as thirteen bases littering eastern Syria to oversee the political process.

Now Lavrov is not stupid.  He’s being droll.  Since he’s already termed groups like ISIS “wards of the U.S.

And it is this near infinite patience of both Lavrov and Russian President Vladimir Putin that is helping to create the exact post-war framework in Syria that the U.S., Israel and Saudi Arabia do not want.

This very worthwhile news item appeared on the Internet site last Friday — and it’s definitely worth reading if you have the interest.  I thank reader M.A. for pointing it out — and another link to it is here.

Trump’s Saudi Scheme Unravels — Alastair Crooke

President Trump and his son-in-law bet that the young Saudi crown prince could execute a plan to reshape the Mideast, but the scheme quickly unraveled revealing a dangerous amateur hour, writes ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke.

Aaron Miller and Richard Sokolsky, writing in Foreign Policy, suggest “that Mohammed bin Salman’s most notable success abroad may well be the wooing and capture of President Donald Trump, and his son-in-law, Jared Kushner.” Indeed, it is possible that this “success” may prove to be MbS’ only success.

It didn’t take much convincing”, Miller and Sokolski wrote: “Above all, the new bromance reflected a timely coincidence of strategic imperatives.”

Trump, as ever, was eager to distance himself from President Obama and all his works; the Saudis, meanwhile, were determined to exploit Trump’s visceral antipathy for Iran – in order to reverse the string of recent defeats suffered by the kingdom.

So compelling seemed the prize (that MbS seemed to promise) of killing three birds with one stone (striking at Iran; “normalizing” Israel in the Arab world, and a Palestinian accord), that the U.S. President restricted the details to family channels alone. He thus was delivering a deliberate slight to the U.S. foreign policy and defense establishments by leaving official channels in the dark, and guessing. Trump bet heavily on MbS, and on Jared Kushner as his intermediary. But MbS’ grand plan fell apart at its first hurdle: the attempt to instigate a provocation against Hezbollah in Lebanon, to which the latter would overreact and give Israel and the “Sunni Alliance” the expected pretext to act forcefully against Hezbollah and Iran.

Stage One simply sank into soap opera with the bizarre hijacking of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri by MbS, which served only to unite the Lebanese, rather than dividing them into warring factions, as was hoped.

This commentary by Alasdair is definitely worth reading if you have the interest — and puts a totally different spin on the current situation in the Middle East compared to the one presented by The Saker in Saturday’s column.  This article showed up on the Internet site last Friday — and I thank Larry Galearis for bringing it to our attention.  Another link to it is here.

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe told to resign from office in 24 hours after being stripped of party leadership

Embattled Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has been formally removed from his leadership of the ZANU-PF party which before its merger with rival Zimbabwe African People’s Union in 1987, he helped to lead during the period of UDI Rhodesia, as the Zimbabwe African National Union. Later, he was told by ZANU-PF that if he did not relinquish the Presidency in 24 hours, his safety could not be guaranteed.

This represents a seismic blow to  Mugabe whose leadership of ZANU-PF was seen as all but permanent in the eyes of many Zimbabweans and international observers. Additionally, Mugabe’s wife Grace has been expelled from the party, thus officially affirming that she will likely not ever become the President of the country, even though the 93 year old Mugabe had effectively chosen her as his hand picked successor. It has been reported that Grace Mugabe fled Zimbabwe days ago.

ZANU-PF moved quickly to instate Emmerson Mnangagwa as the party’s new leader, while also putting him back into office as Zimbabwe’s Vice President, thus reversing his earlier firing at the hands of Robert Mugabe. Should Mugabe step down or be forced out of power, Mnangagwa would almost certainly assume the Presidency.

Last week, when units of the Zimbabwean Army flooded the street of the capital Harare, an announcement was made by General Constantino Chiwenga that the leaders of the events many called a “coup”, sought not to remove Mugabe nor to harm him. He further stated that their intention was to merely “remove criminals” surrounding Mugabe.

This story by Adam Garrie showed up on Internet site at 4:22 p.m. EST on Sunday — and I thank Roy Stephens for pointing it out.  I haven’t seen any follow-up to this news item, which is more than 24 hours old as I type this paragraph.  Another link to it is here.

Toshiba gains breathing room with $5.4 billion share issue to overseas investors

Toshiba Corp’s planned $5.4 billion new share issue to overseas investors is set to provide it with most of the funds it needs to avoid a delisting – a quickly arranged deal that underscores both the weakness of its finances and the allure of its chips unit.

Burdened by billions of dollars in liabilities at its bankrupt U.S. nuclear reactor maker Westinghouse, Toshiba has been seeking to make up the difference by the end of the financial year in March or face a delisting. A long and contentious auction for its $18 billion chip unit has meant it cannot rely on those funds coming in on time.

The share issue, decided at a board meeting on Sunday, is equivalent to a 35 percent stake in the embattled Japanese conglomerate and will see more than 30 overseas investors, including Third Point LLC, Oasis Management Company and Cerberus Capital Management, take part.

The deal, engineered by Goldman Sachs, was structured for overseas investors as Toshiba has only recently come off a Tokyo Stock Exchange watch list it had been on after a 2015 accounting scandal, making it difficult for domestic firms to invest.

This Reuters news item, co-filed from Tokyo and Hong Kong, appeared on their Internet site at 5:17 p.m. EST on Sunday afternoon — and was updated about thirteen hours later.  It’s another story from Zero Hedge via Brad Robertson — and another link to it is here.

Gold Drops to Key Technical Support After $2 Billion Purge

After surging above its 50-day moving-average on Friday, it appears someone is keen for that key technical level not to hold as they dumped almost $2 billion notional in seconds this morning, testing down to the 50-day moving average (but holding for now).

The Dollar Index has been flying around after the Merkel headlines over the weekend…

Of course the 50-day moving average is now history, but nobody ‘dumped’ anything yesterday, as this was just another of Ted’s patented “scams within a scam”….jam the Managed Money traders onto the long side one day — and pull the rug out from under them on the next.  I’ll have more about this in The Wrap.  This 2-chart Zero Hedge story put in an appearance on their website at 9:14 a.m. EST yesterday morning — and I found it embedded in a GATA dispatch.  It’s not worth reading.

Zero Hedge invites Financial Times to heed GATA’s urging on gold suppression

[Friday] night Zero Hedge called attention to Friday’s column by Gillian Tett of the Financial Times, to which GATA also had called attention in which Tett speculated, as many in the gold sector have done, that the futures market being planned in bitcoin by CME Group would tend to suppress the cryptocurrency’s price.

Of course the use of futures markets to suppress gold and commodity prices has been one of GATA’s themes for a long time, and a theme of the British economist Peter Warburton for even longer.

So Zero Hedge concluded its post last night by suggesting that Tett now pursue the gold price suppression angle, noting that GATA has been urging just that on the FT for quite a while.

This very worthwhile article was posted on the Internet site at 12:56 p.m. EST on Saturday afternoon — and another link to it is here.

Another Step Forward for Sound Money: Location Picked for Texas Gold Depository

The Texas Bullion Depository took a step closer becoming operational earlier this month when officials announced the location of the new facility. The creation of a state bullion depository in Texas represents a power shift away from the federal government to the state, and it provides a blueprint that could ultimately end the Federal Reserve’s monopoly on money.

Governor Greg Abbot signed legislation creating the state gold bullion and precious metal depository in June of 2015. The facility will not only provide a secure place for individuals, business, cities, counties, government agencies and even other countries to store gold and other precious metals, the law also creates a mechanism to facilitate the everyday use of gold and silver in business transactions. In short, a person will be able to deposit gold or silver in the depository and pay other people through electronic means or checks – in sound money.

Earlier this summer, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced Austin-based Lone Star Tangible Assets will build and operate the Texas Bullion Depository. On Nov. 3, the company announced it will construct the facility in the city of Leander, located about 30 miles northwest of Austin. According to the Community Impact Newspaper, the Leander City Council has approved an economic development agreement with Lone Star. Construction of the depository is expected to begin in early 2018. Lone Star officials say it will take about a year to complete construction of the 60,000-square-foot secure facility located on a 10-acre campus.

This state-of-the-art facility will provide tremendous benefits to the citizens of Leander and will give Texans a secure facility right here in the Lone Star State where their gold and precious metals will be kept safe and close at hand,” Hegar said in the press release.

This is not new ‘news’…but there’s a lot more detail in this story than the ones I’ve posted about it before, so it’s worth reading if you have the interest.  It was posted on the Internet site last Thursday — and I thank Judy Sturgis for sharing it with us.  Another link to it is here.


Today’s ‘critter’ is a red-whiskered bulbul, or crested bulbul.  It’s a passerine bird found in Asia — and is about 20 cm/8 inches long.   It feeds on fruits and small insects.  It has been introduced in many tropical areas of the world where populations have established themselves. It has established itself in Australia — and in Los Angeles, Hawai’i, and Florida in the United States, as well as in Mauritius.  ‘Click to enlarge‘.


Another late-Friday price jolt, this time up, explained gold’s $18 (1.4%) weekly gain and silver ending 42 cents (2.5%) higher. These were the highest weekly closes in five weeks. As a result of silver’s relative outperformance, the silver/gold price ratio tightened in by three-quarters of a point to 74.8 to 1, still stuck in a tight trading range that seems at times as existing since the dawn of civilization. Of course, it’s not how long the tight trading range has lasted, but the lack of any apparent explanation why these two metals would be so joined at the hip. I mean away from their mutual artificial price setting mechanism of COMEX futures positioning.

I remember a past period of volatile Friday price activity in gold and silver, but the last two Fridays broke the usual pattern of sharp movement at the opening of the day session of COMEX trading, when other markets (London) were still open. And there was always some convenient cover story to explain the early Friday price volatility, such as the monthly employment report. The past two Fridays had late day price moves, yesterday’s up, the previous Friday down. Since there are no other world markets open late Friday, other than the COMEX, it is axiomatic that something on the COMEX caused gold and silver prices to move like they did.

My point is that the timing of the last two Friday price moves proves conclusively that COMEX futures positioning was the cause of those moves and not anything else. As an analyst, I’m always looking for the most plausible explanation to back up what has occurred and, as you know, I contend that COMEX positioning best explains price change, whenever that price change occurs. But sometimes, “most plausible” becomes the “only possible” explanation and that’s the case with late-Friday price jolts.Silver analyst Ted Butler: 18 November 2017

The price run-ups through the moving averages in both silver and gold on Friday — and then the engineered price declines on Monday though those same moving averages to the downside, reeked of Ted’s “scam within a scam”.

I though maybe the Big 8 traders were responsible — and there may have been some of that, but Ted thought it more likely that it was the small commercial traders other than the Big 8 that did the dirty in this event.  They profited from it mightily from it as well.  And there was no question as to which traders were on the losing end of this scam — and that was the Managed Money traders getting skinned again.

Of course all four precious metals got it in the ear yesterday — and I would suspect that the same series of events happened in platinum as well.

Here are the 6-month charts for all four precious metals, plus copper once again — and they obviously weren’t taking many prisoners yesterday…taking back all of Friday’s gains, plus a bunch more in the process, particularly silver and platinum.  As a matter of fact, all of last week’s gains in the silver price had vanished by the close of COMEX trading yesterday.  Note that copper was up a few pennies on the day — and back above its 50-day moving average.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is less than ten minutes away — and I note that the gold price rose quietly until around 11 a.m. China Standard Time on their Tuesday morning — and has traded pretty much ruler flat since — and is currently up $3.40. It was mostly the same for silver — and it’s up a nickel at the moment. Ditto for platinum — and it’s up 6 dollars. Palladium has been all over the place a few dollars either side of unchanged — and it’s up a buck as Zurich opens.

Net HFT gold volume is already pretty decent at around 44,000 contracts, with a fair amount of roll-over/switch volume out of December already — and silver’s net HFT volume is coming up on 7,500 contracts. Roll-over/switch volume is already very healthy in this precious metal.

The dollar index has been wandering very quietly lower ever since trading began in New York at 6:00 p.m. EST on Monday evening — and it’s back below the 94.00 mark by 1 basis point — and down 6 as London opens.

Today, at the close of COMEX trading, is the cut-off for this Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report.  Unless we have a big up or down day during the Tuesday trading session, I’m going to pass on what Friday’s report will show.  But I’ll be more than interested in the breakdown of what each group of commercial traders did, vs. what the Managed Money traders were doing.

And as I post today’s column on the website at 4:02 a.m. EST this morning, I see that all four precious metals have done virtually nothing from a price perspective during the first hour of London/Zurich trading. Gold is up $3.70 the ounce, silver is up 5 cents — and platinum and palladium are about unchanged from an hour ago as well, at up 6 bucks and 2 bucks respectively.

Gross gold volume is coming up on 70,000 contracts — and net of roll-over/switch volume out of December, net HFT gold volume is sitting around 57,000 contracts. Net HFT silver volume is a hair under 10,000 contracts.

The dollar index has jumped up in the last few minutes — and is sitting at the 94.05 mark, which is within a basis point or two of unchanged from its close in New York yesterday afternoon.

There’s nothing going on at the moment, but I certainly don’t expect that to last.

See you here tomorrow.