No Follow-Through on Tuesday’s Precious Metal Rallies

04 October 2018 — Thursday

YESTERDAY in GOLD, SILVER, PLATINUM and PALLADIUM


The gold price rose quietly higher — and was up a bit over four dollars by minutes after 10 a.m. China Standard Time in Far East trading on their Wednesday morning, which put it back above its 50-day moving average by a few dollars.  But about two hours later, the price began to ‘sink’ — and that continued unsteadily for the remainder of the day, as gold was closed virtually on its low tick — and back below $1,200 spot in the process.

The high and lows, such as they were, weren’t worth looking up.

Gold was closed yesterday at $1,197.10 spot, down $5.70 on the day.  Net volume was not exactly light at a bit under 251,000 contracts — and roll-over/switch volume was 4,627 contracts on top of that.

With some minor variation during the Wednesday trading session, silver was forced to follow a price path very similar to gold’s — and the high and lows aren’t worth reporting, either.

Silver was closed on Wednesday afternoon in New York at $14.615 spot, down 5.5 cents from Tuesday.  Like for gold, silver traded above its 50-day moving average for a decent portion of the day, but mostly in the Far East and London trading.  Net HFT silver volume was a hair under 64,500 contracts — and roll-over/switch volume was 2,142 contracts in this precious metal.

The platinum price chopped quietly sideways until shortly after 1 p.m. CEST/7 a.m. EDT.  It rallied a handful of dollars from there — and continued to chop quietly sideways.  The high tick of the day, such as it was, came shortly after 10 a.m. in New York — and from that juncture, it was sold quietly, but unevenly lower into the 5:00 p.m. close.  Platinum finished the Wednesday session at $824 spot, down 5 dollars on the day.

The palladium price was up a couple of bucks by 2 p.m. CST in Far East trading — and then sold sold down nine dollars by a few minutes after 10 a.m. in Zurich.  Two hours later it was back to up two dollars — and then was sold back to about its low of the day by around 9 a.m. in New York.  The subsequent rally was capped and rolled over starting a few minutes before 1 p.m. EDT — and it was sold quietly lower into the close from there.  Palladium finished the Wednesday session at $1,056 spot, up 6 bucks from Tuesday — and 7 dollars off its high…which would have been much more, if allowed.

The dollar index closed very late on Tuesday afternoon in New York at 95.49 — and really didn’t do much of anything once trading began at 6:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday evening.  But a few minutes before 10 a.m. China Standard Time in Far East trading, it took a 20+ basis point header.  From that point it traded quietly sideways until a ‘rally’ began about ten minutes before the London open.  It then chopped quietly higher until about 4:15 p.m. in New York, when it blasted higher.  The 95.12 high tick was set just before 5 p.m. EDT — and it fell back from there…closing at 95.992…up 50 basis points from Tuesday.

And here’s the 6-month U.S. dollar index chart — and the delta between the close on the intraday chart above — and this 6-month chart is 48 basis points. The high on the doji in the 6-month chart is nowhere near the 96.12 high tick on the intraday chart — and I have no idea as to whey there’s such a huge difference.  But the intraday chart is based on numbers from the NYBOT…New York Board of Trade…and the figures from the 6-month chart are based on ICE [Intercontinental Exchange] numbers.

The gold shares opened unchanged — and then jumped a bit to their respective high ticks of the day about ten minutes later.  All those gains, plus a bunch more, were gone by minutes after 10 a.m. in New York trading — and the stocks traded mostly sideways, with a slightly negative bias as the Wednesday trading day wore on.  The HUI closed lower by 1.36 percent.

The price pattern for the silver equities was similar in most respects to what happened with the gold shares — and Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index closed down 1.06 percent.  Click to enlarge if necessary.

And here’s Nick’s 1-year Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index chart as well.  Click to enlarge.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 2 gold and 19 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Friday.  In gold, ABN Amro issued 2 contracts from its client account.  HSBC USA stopped 1 for its own account — and JPMorgan picked up the other contract for its client account.  In silver…Advantage, JPMorgan and ADM issued 13, 5 and 1 contracts from their respective client accounts — and the three long/stoppers were Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan and Advantage…picking up 7, 7 and 5 contracts for their respective client accounts as well.  The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Wednesday trading session showed that gold open interest in October declined by 68 contracts, leaving 2,652 still around, minus the 2 contracts mentioned just above.  Tuesday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that only 10 gold contracts were actually posted for delivery on Thursday, so that means that 68-10=58 more gold contracts disappeared from the October delivery month.  Silver o.i. in October fell by 59 contracts, leaving 23 still open, minus the 19 mentioned in the previous paragraph.  Tuesday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 72 silver contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that 72-59=13 more silver contracts just got added to October.


There was a rather large withdrawal from GLD yesterday, as an authorized participant took out 198,711 troy ounces.  Over at SLV, there was a very large deposit, as an a.p. added 1,879,480 troy ounces.  I’m sure that Ted would suspect that JPMorgan is involved in some aspect of these withdrawals and additions.

There was no sales report from the U.S. Mint on Wednesday.

There wasn’t much physical activity in gold over at the COMEX-approved depositories on the U.S. east coast on Tuesday.  The reported receiving 1,887 troy ounces — and that was dropped off at Delaware.  There was 1,100 troy ounces shipped out of Brink’s, Inc.  There was also a paper transfer of 25,196 troy ounces of gold from Registered — and back into Eligible.  That occurred at JPMorgan.  The link to this is here.

There was some activity in silver, as 17,942 troy ounces were received — and 1,215,208 troy ounces…two truck loads…were shipped out.  In the ‘in’ category, there was 12,993 troy ounces dropped off at Delaware — and the remaining 4,949 troy ounces ended up at CNT.  In the ‘out’ category, one truck load…614,542 troy ounces…was shipped out of CNT — and the other truck load…600,665 troy ounces…departed Canada’s Scotiabank.  The link to all this activity is here.

Despite the ‘Golden Week’ in progress in Hong Kong, there was some activity in the gold kilobar depositories on their Tuesday.  There were 80 reported received — and 88 were shipped out.  All of this in/out activity was at Brink’s, Inc. of course — and the link to that, in troy ounces, is here.

Here are two charts that Nick Laird passed around on Tuesday.  They show gold and silver bullion coin sales from The Perth Mint…and they have been updated with September’s data.  As you can tell, they had a very decent sales month, blowing the doors off prior month’s sales — and September gold sales from the U.S. Mint as well.  Click to enlarge for both charts.  There’s a Bloomberg story about this in the Critical Reads section — and it’s linked here as well.

It was another day where there weren’t that many stories that I thought worth sharing.


CRITICAL READS

World’s Most Important Bank Issues Urgent “Zombie Alert” — Nomi Prins

So today we stand near — how near we don’t yet know — the edge of a dangerous financial precipice. The risks posed by the largest institutions still exist, only now they’re even bigger than they were in 2007–08 and operating in an arena of even more debt.

Now the Bank for International Settlements (BIS), or the “central bank of central banks,” is sounding a new alarm on this policy.

In its recent quarterly report, the BIS warned that low rates have catalyzed an increase in the number of “zombie” firms. The number of such firms has now risen to an all-time high.

Zombie firms are companies “that are at least 10 years old, yet are unable to cover their debt service costs from profits.” Their prospects for future growth aren’t so hot either.

The problem is that once a company becomes a “zombie” it tends to stay a zombie. That phenomenon is only getting worse. The BIS disclosed that “whereas in the late 1980s zombie firms had a 60% chance of staying in that condition the following year, the probability reached 85% in 2016.”

Zombies created from an influx of central bank money aren’t good long-term investments. It’s one thing for a company to take on debt to grow, but it is another to take on debt simply to re-pay other debt.

This brief, but worthwhile commentary by Nomi was posted on the dailyreckoning.com Internet site on Wednesday sometime — and another link to it is here.


The Real Winner of Trump’s New Trade Deal — Bill Bonner

Deals are made… the door revolves… and the Swamp deepens.

Even more importantly, today, the whole edifice of American swag – including Donald Trump’s remaining fortune – depends on fake money lent at fake rates sloshing around the world.

The fake money – $19 trillion has been added to the global monetary footing in the last 30 years – financed the factories in China… drove the stock market up 10 times… and (along with more than a dozen bailouts from his father) helped rescue the president from his bad deals.

Meanwhile, trade with China, India, and Southeast Asia drove down consumer prices.
Interrupt trade, and the whole shebang comes apart.

This commentary by Bill appeared on the bonnerandpartners.com Internet site very early on Wednesday morning — and another link to it is here.


The Tyranny of the U.S. Dollar

The incumbent international currency has been American for decades. Is it time for regime change?

The U.S. share of the world economy has drifted lower for decades, and now President Trump is retreating from the American chief executive’s traditional role as Leader of the Free World. Yet the U.S. dollar remains, as the saying goes, almighty. “American exceptionalism has never been this stark,” Ruchir Sharma, head of emerging markets and chief global strategist for Morgan Stanley Investment Management, said at a Council on Foreign Relations symposium on Sept. 24.

By the latest tally of the European Central Bank, America’s currency makes up two-thirds of international debt and a like share of global reserve holdings. Oil and gold are priced in dollars, not euros or yen. When Somali pirates hold up ships at sea, it’s dollars they demand. And threats to be cut off from the dollar-based global payments system strike terror into the likes of Iran, North Korea, and Russia. It’s no exaggeration to say that the dollar’s primacy is at least as valuable to the U.S. as a couple of aircraft carrier strike groups.

Now the dollar paradox shows signs of unraveling. Political leaders who once accepted the dollar’s hegemony, grudgingly or otherwise, are pushing back. Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the European Commission, said in September that it’s “absurd” that European companies buy European planes in the American currency instead of their own. In March, China challenged the dollar’s dominance in the global energy markets with a yuan-denominated crude oil futures contract. Russia slashed its dollar holdings this year, claiming (inaccurately) that the greenback is “becoming a risky instrument in international settlements.” And French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire told reporters in August that he wants financing instruments that are “totally independent” of the U.S., saying, “I want Europe to be a sovereign continent, not a vassal.”

This very interesting article put in an appearance on the Bloomberg website at 3:00 a.m. Denver time on Wednesday morning — and I found it embedded in a GATA dispatch. Another link to this worthwhile commentary is here.


How the tentacles of the U.S. military are strangling the planet

In June this year in Itoman, a city in Okinawa prefecture, Japan, a 14-year-old girl named Rinko Sagara read out of a poem based on her great-grandmother’s experience of World War II. Rinko’s great-grandmother reminded her of the cruelty of war. She had seen her friends shot in front of her. It was ugly.

Okinawa, a small island on the edge of southern Japan, saw its share of war from April to June 1945. “The blue skies were obscured by the iron rain,” wrote Rinko Sagara, channeling the memories of her great-grandmother. The roar of the bombs overpowered the haunting melody from the sanshin, Okinawa’s snakeskin-covered three-string guitar. “Cherish each day,” the poem goes, “for our future is just an extension of this moment. Now is our future.”

This week, the people of Okinawa elected Denny Tamaki of the Liberal Party as the governor of the prefecture. Tamaki’s mother is an Okinawan, while his father – whom he does not know – was a U.S. soldier. Tamaki, like former governor Takeshi Onaga, opposes the U.S. military bases on Okinawa. Onaga wanted the presence of the U.S. military removed from the island, a position that Tamaki seems to endorse.

The United States has more than 50,000 troops in Japan as well as a very large contingent of ships and aircraft. Seventy percent of the U.S. bases in Japan are on Okinawa island. Almost everyone in Okinawa wants the U.S. military to go. Rape by American soldiers – including of young children – has long angered the Okinawans. Terrible environmental pollution – including the harsh noise from US military aircraft – rankles people. It was not difficult for Tamaki to run on an anti-U.S. -base platform. It is the most basic demand of his constituents.

But the Japanese government does not accept the democratic views of the Okinawan people. Discrimination against the Okinawans plays a role here, but more fundamentally there is a lack of regard for the wishes of ordinary people when it comes to a U.S. military base.

It was impossible to go against U.S. military policy and to rebalance Japan’s relationship with the rest of Asia. Japan, but more properly Okinawa, is in effect a U.S. aircraft carrier.

This very interesting and worthwhile commentary appeared on the Asia Times website at 2:36 p.m. Hong Kong Time on their Wednesday afternoon, which was 2:36 a.m. EDT.  I thank Tolling Jennings for pointing it out — and another link to it is here.


After U.N. Top Court Rules In Favor of Iran, Pompeo Terminates Decades-Old Treaty

The drums of war are beating over Iran and Syria as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday morning responded to the United Nations’ top court ordering the U.S. to lift sanctions on “humanitarian” goods to Iran. Pompeo made a series of threatening statements targeting Iran as well as Syria, which also comes after the latter received delivery of Russian S-300 anti-air defense missiles early this week.

Pompeo said in his State Department press briefing, “I’m announcing that the United States is terminating the 1955 treaty of amity with Iran. This is a decision that is 39 years over due.”

He was referencing a 1955 “friendship treaty” or so-called Treaty of Amity which had been established long before the 1979 Islamic Revolution brought the Ayatollahs to power.

In July Tehran had pulled the U.S. before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to demand that the UN immediately suspend economic sanctions leveled by Washington after Trump ordered U.S. pullout of the 2015 nuclear deal and the reimposition of far-reaching rounds of sanctions targeting Iran’s energy and other vital sectors.

The ICJ’s ruling is a huge blow to Washington (though perhaps largely symbolic) and a diplomatic win for Iran as it unanimously ruled that Washington “shall remove by means of its choosing any impediments arising from the measures announced on May 8 to the free exportation to Iran of medicines and medical devices, food and agricultural commodities” as well as airplane parts, said judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf. The court pointed out that targeting aviation parts created the “potential to endanger civil aviation safety in Iran and the lives of its users“.

The decision essentially gives U.N.-imprimatur and legal cover for countries and companies seeking to still do business with Iran amidst threats of punitive action by the U.S. should they proceed. But Pompeo slammed the international court’s decision as null and void and Iran’s clinging to the “decades overdue” treaty “absurd” in announcing the “termination“.

This interesting news item showed up on the Zero Hedge website at 1:23 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon EDT — and I thank Brad Robertson for this one.  Another link to it is here.


Banks in Estonia Handled $1 Trillion in Flows Dwarfing Danske

Danske Bank A/S has become almost synonymous in Denmark with laundering. But there are growing signs that it only represents a small slice of Europe’s dirty money machine.

For the Scandinavian country’s biggest bank, the scandal started in Estonia, where Danske has admitted that much of $235 billion in non-resident flows between 2007 and 2015 can be deemed suspicious. Though a huge figure, it represents less than a quarter of cross-border transactions that passed through the country at the center of the dirty money saga, according to figures provided to Bloomberg by the central bank in Tallinn.

The fact that other banks may be conducting their business in a similar way hardly detracts from Danske’s guilt,” said Mark Galeotti, an organized crime expert and senior researcher at the Prague-based Institute of International Relations.

Yet it does speak to more of a systemic issue for the Baltics, according to Sven Stumbauer, managing director for New York-based consultancy AlixPartners.

The region was keen to become a private banking center for eastern Europe, he said. “Instead of more traditional private banking, they started doing more transactional banking, meaning the money comes in and goes out more or less immediately,” he said.

Banks doing business in Estonia handled about €900 billion, or US$1.04 trillion, in cross-border transactions including non-resident flows between 2008 and 2015 (the central bank couldn’t provide comparable data for 2007).

This news item appeared on the Bloomberg website at 6:02 a.m. MDT on Wednesday morning — and it comes to us courtesy of Swedish reader Patrik Ekdahl.  Another link is here.


Italy Contagion Fears Bubbling Beneath Surface of Apparent Calm

The latest collision between Italy’s markets and politics is beginning to fuel concern that shock waves could spread to elsewhere in Europe.

As Italian bond yields touched a four-year high, the euro extended losses and the region’s equities slumped, while haven assets such as German bunds and the Swiss franc rallied. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. warned that the risk of a wider impact of the Italian turmoil has increased, even as markets in Spain and Portugal — seen as a key barometer for any debt contagion to Europe’s periphery — have so far shown little sign of anxiety.

Budget official Claudio Borghi’s comments that the common currency is “not sufficient” to solve the country’s fiscal problems have rekindled worries that a breakup of the world’s largest trade bloc is still a possibility. He later denied that the country’s populist government had any plans to leave the euro. Two-year German debt, a popular hedge against regional risks, saw smaller gains this week than in May, suggesting that the latest Italian sell-off is driven more by concern about fiscal weakness than the risk of an exit from the euro.

European risky assets remain vulnerable and there is potential for negative spillovers to the euro area given the high trade exposure to Italy,” Goldman Sachs strategists led by Alessio Rizzi wrote in a research note. “While our economists do not expect systemic implications for the global economy, contagion risks have risen.

Markets were firmly in risk-off mode Tuesday, with demand rising for popular risk hedges. Italy’s two-year bonds took the brunt of the selling pressure, flattening the country’s yield curve. The cost of protection against a potential credit default by the nation rose and traders priced in a greater premium for three-month money-market borrowings over overnight loans.

This second Bloomberg story in a row is one that I lifted from the Wednesday edition of the King Report.  It was posted on the Bloomberg website at 7:01 a.m. Denver time on Tuesday morning — and another link to it is here.


Trump told Saudi King he wouldn’t last ‘2 weeks’ without U.S. support

The Saudi Arabian monarchy would fall “within two weeks” if it wasn’t for the military support that the U.S. has provided to the Gulf kingdom over the decades, Donald Trump noted in graceless remarks to the King.

We protect Saudi Arabia,” Trump proclaimed at a rally in Southaven, Mississippi. “And I love the King, King Salman. But I said ‘King, we’re protecting you, you might not be there for two weeks without us. You have to pay for your military.’

While Trump failed to mention when the undiplomatic remarks were made to King Salman, it is known that the two leaders held a phone conversation on Saturday to discuss global oil supplies.

Trump has repeatedly vaunted the might of the U.S. military and the country’s role as the “protector”. Time and again, he has urged NATO nations to contribute to the overall maintenance of the alliance, which is heavily dependent on U.S. military and industrial spending. South Korea and Japan also have the U.S. to thank for stability in the Asian region, according to Trump, who previously demanded increased payments from U.S. allies to keep American bases in their countries.

While the U.S. does not have any military bases in Saudi Arabia, neighboring Qatar hosts a large American contingent at Al Udeid Airbase. In the immediate vicinity of Riyadh, Bahrain remains home to the U.S. Fifth Fleet, while adjacent Kuwait also continues to host U.S. troops. There is also an American military presence in the UAE, Iraq, Jordan, and Oman, which can rush to help Saudi Arabia at a moment’s notice.

These blunt, but very true comments from Trump re King Salman were all over the Internet yesterday — and this iteration was posted on the rt.com Internet site at 6:03 a.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday morning, which was 11:03 p.m. Tuesday night in Washington.  I thank Patrik Ekdahl for this story — and it’s certainly worth reading.  John Perkins of “Confessions of An Economic Hit Man” fame would heartily agree.  Another link to it is here.


U.S. Mint nixes production of 2018 American Eagle palladium bullion coins

No American Eagle palladium bullion coins will be struck and issued by the U.S. Mint in 2018, bureau officials announced Sept. 27.

The only American Eagles struck in palladium to be issued in 2018 are the 15,000 Proof 2018-W coins offered by the Mint Sept. 6. The bureau is still reconciling orders placed Sept. 6 that exhausted the number of coins offered within five minutes of their release. The Mint’s Sept. 23 sales report indicates 14,881 of the 15,000 coins are sold.

Also, according to Mint spokesman Michael White, the 30,000 2018 American Eagle platinum bullion coins struck at the West Point Mint and sold to authorized purchasers so far this year comprise the entire 2018 mintage for that bullion version.

The U.S. Mint first began accepting orders for the American Eagle platinum bullion coins on Feb. 12, 2018, when 20,000 coins were made available. The Mint reported a temporary sellout on Feb. 14 while additional production was executed. An additional 10,000 coins were offered to authorized purchasers on May 18 and sold out the same day.

No additional platinum bullion coin production is scheduled.

U.S. Mint officials indicated earlier in the year that American Eagle platinum bullion coins would be struck to meet demand. There was also an indication that a palladium bullion coin release was in the Mint’s production schedule but that has since been canceled.

U.S. Mint officials have not indicated whether an American Eagle palladium bullion coin will be introduced in 2019 or later.

Well, dear reader, I suspect the reason for this sudden change of heart by the mint has everything to do with the fact that there’s a genuine physical shortage of this metal in world markets — and they don’t want to add to the problem by using more of it to exacerbate the situation.  This news item was posted on the coinworld.com Internet site on Tuesday — and another link to it is here.


Gold Coins Fly Off the Shelf at The Perth Mint as Prices Drop

Gold coins are back in favor.

Australia’s Perth Mint reported a jump in sales of coins and minted bars to 62,552 ounces in September, the highest since January 2017. Sales of similar silver products more than doubled from a month earlier to 1.3 million ounces, the highest in two-and-a-half years, according to the company’s blog.

The slump in prices has fanned interest, the Perth Mint said in an email. Spot gold touched a 19-month low in August, while silver tumbled last month to the lowest since January 2016.

Some of this is down to the previously dormant U.S. market, which at last is showing signs of reawakening,” the company said. “We’ve seen growth in sales of our Australian Kangaroo gold and silver coins, while the unveiling of our 2019 Australian Lunar series in September has led to significant demand globally.”

And, dear reader, you should also note the two graphs of Perth Mint Sales further up in today’s column.  This brief Bloomberg news item put in an appearance on their website at 11:31 p.m. MDT on Tuesday night — and I found it on Sharps Pixley.  Another link to it is here.


The PHOTOS and the FUNNIES

I was out at the pond yesterday, probably for the last time this year, as winter has shown up a bit early in these parts.  We’ve had a cold, wet, snowy fall to date — and the farmers are in big trouble around here.  Except for the geese and the ducks, most other migratory birds are long gone.  But this juvenile red-necked grebe was the exception — and he was all by himself, as his sibling and his parents appeared to have already vacated the premises.  He’s got less than a month left until freeze-up — and just looking at his current stage of maturity, I don’t think he’ll make it.  Too bad.  Click to enlarge.


The WRAP

Well, dear reader, whatever caused that big price rally on Tuesday, showed no signs of follow-through in Far East markets on their Wednesday morning.  But that statement is not entirely true, as gold was up 4 bucks and change — and silver by about a dime by around 10 a.m. China Standard Time on their Wednesday morning.  But that was pretty much it starting about two hours later at noon CST, as the precious metals were sold quietly lower from there for the remainder of the Wednesday session.  That wasn’t entirely true of either platinum — and particularly palladium, as both wanted to rally further in New York trading, but weren’t allowed.

Copper didn’t do much yesterday — and WTIC took another jump higher — and I’m sure Trump’s comments re Saudi Arabia the previous evening, contributed to that in some way.  It’s in overbought territory now — and it remains to be seen if it will go higher before the inevitable happens…although there are other dynamics in play in this critical commodity — and it’s spelled..I.R.A.N.

Here are the 6-month charts for the Big 6 commodities — and both gold and silver are below their 50-day moving averages by a bit more after yesterday’s price ‘activity’.  The ‘click to enlarge‘ feature only helps with the four precious metal charts.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is less than ten minutes away — and I note that the gold price crawled a dollar or so lower until around 1 p.m. China Standard Time in Far East trading on their Thursday afternoon. It’s been edging higher since — and is currently up 60 cents an ounce. The price pattern for silver was very similar up until 2 p.m. CST. The price was turned lower at that juncture — and is down 6 cents at the moment. Platinum followed a similar path as silver — and it was back at unchanged by 2 p.m. CST, but is now down a dollar. Palladium was sold lower by a couple of dollars in morning trading in the Far East — and is down 3 bucks as Zurich opens.

Net HFT gold volume is a bit over 43,000 contracts — and there’s only 521 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume in this precious metal at the moment. Net HFT silver volume is around 12,200 contracts — and there’s 765 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that.

The dollar index began to edge higher as soon as trading began at 6:00 p.m. EDT in New York on Tuesday evening. It chopped quietly sideways until shortly before 1 p.m. CST on their Wednesday afternoon — and has turned lower since — and is currently back at unchanged thirty minutes before the London/Zurich opens.

Other than that, there’s nothing much to report on today.  I’m sitting here rather impatiently, awaiting tomorrow’s Commitment of Traders Report — and the companion Bank Participation Report — and whatever is in it, I’ll have it all for you on Saturday.

And as I post today’s column on the website at 4:02 a.m. EDT, I see that the gold price has continued to crawl quietly higher during the first hour of London trading — and is currently up $2.70 the ounce. Silver is still ‘struggling’…but is only down a penny at the moment. Platinum is now up a dollar — and palladium is now down 4 bucks — and off its current low by a bit.

Gross gold volume is a bit over 56,500 contracts — and net of what little roll-over/switch volume there is, net HFT silver volume is about 55,500 contracts. Net HFT silver volume is around 15,300 contracts — and there’s 775 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume in this precious metal.

The dollar continues to crawl quietly lower at glacial speed — and is down 9 basis point as of 8:30 a.m. BST/9:30 a.m. CEST.

That’s it for another day — and I’ll see you here tomorrow.

Ed