Palladium’s Price Getting Very Close to Gold’s

05 December 2018 — Wednesday

YESTERDAY in GOLD, SILVER, PLATINUM and PALLADIUM


The gold price crawled quietly higher until around 12:30 p.m. China Standard Time on their Tuesday morning — and then traded sideways into the London open from there.  It rallied a bit more until 10 a.m. GMT — and then chopped quietly sideways until the COMEX close.  From that point the gold price was sold lower until shortly before 3 p.m. EST in New York — and didn’t do much after that.

The low and high ticks aren’t worth looking up.

Gold finished the Tuesday session at $1,238.00 spot, up $7.70 from Monday’s close.  Net gold volume was nothing special at just under 214,000 contracts — and roll-over/switch volume added up to about 8,000 contracts.

The gold price pattern on Tuesday was generally similar to that of gold’s, except there was a bit of a price rally in morning trading in New York.  That was capped and turned down shortly before 10 a.m. EST — and it was sold quietly lower until around 12:30 p.m.  The price didn’t do much after that.

The low and high ticks in this precious metal were reported by the CME Group as $14.46 and $14.745 in the March contract.

Silver was closed in New York yesterday at $14.505 spot, up 15 cents on the day — and well off its high.  Net volume was certainly heavier than I wanted to see at a bit over 75,000 contracts — and roll-over/switch volume in this precious metal was only about 2,300 contracts.

The platinum price was sold down a bit until shortly after 12 o’clock noon in Shanghai on their Tuesday — and began to inch unsteadily higher from there until a few minutes after the COMEX open in New York.  The price pressure began at that juncture — and the $796 low tick was set at 12:30 p.m. EST.  It jumped up a bit into the COMEX close from that point — and wasn’t allowed to do much after that.  Platinum finished the Tuesday session at $802 spot, down 4 bucks from Monday’s close.

The palladium price began to edge higher starting around 9 a.m. CST on their Tuesday morning — and was up around 8 bucks by 11:30 a.m. in Shanghai.  It traded flat from there until around 9:40 a.m. CET in Zurich — and began to creep unsteadily sideways-to-higher from that point.  It jumped up a whole bunch of dollar shortly before 2 p.m. CET — and then took a rest until 10 a.m. in New York, when it jumped up some more.  The $1,234 high tick was placed shortly after the Zurich close — and it was sold a bit lower until around 1 p.m. EST.  It then ticked up a big handful of dollars in the thinly-traded after-hours market.  Palladium closed on Tuesday at $1,226 spot, up 34 dollars from Monday — and off its high tick by 8 bucks or so.

Palladium is coming up hard on the gold price now — and set another new intraday and closing high on Tuesday.

The dollar index closed very late on Monday afternoon in New York at 96.95 — and began to head lower around 9 a.m. China Standard Time on their Tuesday morning.  The 96.38 low tick was at 9:41 a.m. in London.  It certainly appeared that ‘gentle hands’ showed up at that point — and it began to head quietly, but unsteadily higher from there until minutes after the COMEX open.  At that juncture, the ‘rally’ picked up more steam — and the 97.12 high tick was set at 12:33 p.m. in New York.  About fifteen minutes later it was back at virtually unchanged on the day — and traded almost ruler flat until trading ended on Tuesday.  The dollar index finished the day at the 96.96 mark, up 1 whole basis point — and well off its low tick of the day.

The folks over at the ino.com Internet site haven’t fixed their version of the intraday DXY chart, so here’s one I borrowed from the marketwatch.com website — and it’s somewhat larger.  You’ll need to use the ‘click to enlarge‘ feature to see this one clearly, as it’s pretty big.

And here’s the almost 1-year dollar index chart — and the delta between its close…96.90…and the close on the intraday chart above was 6 basis points yesterday.  Click to enlarge.

The gold stocks rallied right out of the gate once trading began at 9:30 a.m. in New York on Tuesday morning — and their respective highs came around 10:15 a.m. EST.  From that point, they chopped quietly, but very unsteadily lower until the markets closed at 4:00 p.m.  The HUI closed higher by 0.62 percent.

It was mostly the same for the silver equities, with their respective highs coming right at 10 a.m. EST…the afternoon gold fix in London.  Then, like their golden brethren, chopped quietly lower for the rest of the Tuesday session — and couldn’t quite squeeze a positive close.  Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index finished the Tuesday session down 0.57 percent.  Click to enlarge if necessary.

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

The CME Daily Delivery Report for Day 4 of December deliveries showed that 73 gold and 245 silver contracts were posted for delivery on Thursday.

In gold, there were five short/issuers — and the biggest was ABN Amro with 33 — and in second and third spots came Advantage and RCG with 17 and 12 contracts…and all were from their respective client accounts.  There were six long/stoppers as well — and the only two that mattered were Goldman Sachs with 45 for its own account, plus JPMorgan picked up 16 for its client account.

In silver, there were four short/issuers — and the three largest were ABN Amro with 139 contracts from its client account.  In second spot was Goldman, with 73 from its in-house/proprietary trading account — and number three was Advantage with 32 from its client account.  JPMorgan was the largest stopper by far, picking up 176 in total…132 for its clients — and 44 for its own account.  In distant second place was Advantage with 31 contracts for its client account.

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 December dropped by 658 contracts, leaving 3,562 still open, minus the 73 contracts mentioned two paragraphs ago.  Monday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 440 gold contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that 658-440=218 more gold contracts disappeared from the December Delivery month.  Silver o.i. in December fell by 248 contracts, leaving 976 still around, minus the 245 mentioned a few paragraphs ago.  Monday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 269 silver contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that 269-248=21 more silver contracts just got added to December.


There were no reported changes in GLD on Tuesday.  But there was a smallish withdrawal from SLV, as an authorized participant took out 133,627 troy ounces.  An amount that size most likely represents a fee payment of some kind.

There was a small sales report from the U.S. Mint, as they sold 150,000 silver eagles — and that was all.

For a change, there was a decent amount of activity in gold over at the COMEX-approved depositories on the U.S. east coast on Monday.  There was 128,455 troy ounces received — and nothing was shipped out.  There was 96,453.000 troy ounces/3,000 kilobars [SGE kilobar weight] dropped off at Brink’s, Inc. — and 32,202 troy ounces was left at HSBC USA.  Ted was of the opinion that the physical gold market must be fairly tight if they had to bring in gold to meet December deliveries, as obviously nothing was currently available for delivery from their own vaults.  The link to all this is here.

It was another big day in silver, as 599,823 troy ounces was reported received — and 1,748,862 troy ounces were shipped out.  All of the ‘in’ activity…one truckload…was dropped off at CNT.  In the ‘out’ category…997,209 troy ounces departed Canada’s Scotiabank — and the remaining 751,653 troy ounces was shipped out of CNT.  There was also a transfer of 506,038 troy ounces from the Eligible category and into Registered — and that occurred at CNT as well.  The link to this activity is here.

It was pretty quiet over at the COMEX-approved gold kilobar depositories in Hong Kong on their Monday.  Nothing was reported receiving — and only 680 kilobars were shipped out.  This activity was at Brink’s, Inc. of course — and the link to that, in troy ounces, is here.


Here are the usual two charts that Nick Laird passed around to his subscriber base on Saturday.  They show the weekly changes in all known gold and silver depositories, mutual funds and ETFs as of the close of business on Friday, November 30.  For the reporting week in gold, there were 310,000 troy ounces of net withdrawals from these sources — and in silver, that number was 1,402,000 troy ounces.  The ‘click to enlarge‘ feature helps with both.

I have very little for you today as far as stories/commentaries go.


CRITICAL READS

Something Wicked This Way Comes: Economic Meltdown — Mike Maloney

Mike Maloney covers all the trouble brewing in the global economy in this 11-minute video – including data he promised to show you last week.

I watched it from start to finish — and I feel it’s worth your while.  Besides which, I have next to nothing for you in the way of stories today.  The first reader through the door with this yesterday was Roy Stephens.


May Loses Control Over Brexit Endgame in War With Parliament

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is locked in a power struggle with the British Parliament that looks set to determine the final shape of Brexit.

May lost three key votes on a day of drama in the House of Commons on Tuesday, highlighting the weakness of her position as she tries to ratify the deal she’s struck with the European Union.

The result is that Parliament now has the potential to decide on Britain’s “plan B” if — as expected — it rejects May’s divorce agreement with the E.U. in the biggest vote of all next week.

That’s not what the premier wanted. It raises the possibility that members of Parliament could seek to pursue a softer withdrawal — including potentially staying in the bloc’s single market — or even attempt to stop Brexit entirely. One option that could gather momentum over the weeks ahead is for a second referendum to allow the public to overturn the decision of the first.

No longer must the will of Parliament — reflecting the will of the people — be diminished,” Tory lawmaker Dominic Grieve said after engineering one of May’s defeats Tuesday. “Parliament must now take back control and then give the final decision back to the public because, in the end, only the people can sort this out.”

It seems to me that the people have already decided, or am I wrong about that?  This Bloomberg new story put in an appearance on their website at 3:43 PST…Pacific Standard Time…on Tuesday afternoon — and I thank Patrik Ekdahl for pointing it out.  Another link to it is here.


Macron Blinks: France Suspends Fuel Tax Hike After “Yellow Vest” Riots… But It’s Not Enough

Update: Despite French President Emmanuel Macron letting his people “eat cake” with a six-month suspension of the government’s new “climate change” fuel taxes, the so-called “Yellow Vest” movement which has been protesting throughout France for more than three weeks is still spitting mad.

We didn’t want a suspension, we want the past increase in the tax on fuels to be canceled immediately,” said Yellow Vest organizer Benjamin Cauchy on BFM TV. “Suspending the tax to re-instate it in six months is taking the French people for a ride. French people aren’t sparrows waiting for crumbs from the government.”

French students, meanwhile, have intensified their protests around the country – setting ire to buildings and engaging in violent clashes with the police. The students have “gradually started to get involved” with the Yellow Vest movement, leading to riots in southwest France, Lyon, Marseille, Bordeaux and the city of Orleans. A school in Blagnac, near Toulouse was reportedly set on fire Tuesday, according to Reuters.

Macron’s backing down comes as his popularity hit a new low. A poll by Ifop for Paris Match magazine and Sud-Radio released Tuesday found the president’s support had fallen six points to 23 percent. Philippe was at 26 percent. While Macron and parliament, where his party holds a majority, don’t face new elections until 2022, the reversal on taxes may undermine the rest of his reform agenda.

The protesters, who started out blockaded traffic across France, brought their fight to Paris over the last two weekends. They defaced the Arc de Triomphe, burned hundreds of cars and blocked roads and fuel depots.

Recent polls have shown that most of France supports the cause of the yellow vests. Similar protests have broken out around Europe, spreading to Belgium, Italy and the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, more protests are scheduled: Christophe Castaner, the French interior minister, said on Sunday that measures under consideration by the government include the imposition of a state of emergency and the deployment of soldiers to help contain the next protests, which are scheduled for Saturday.

This long news item appeared on the Zero Hedge website at 1:25 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon EDT — and I thank Brad Robertson for sending it along.  Another link to it is here.


Tucker Carlson speaks with Stephen F. Cohen on Fox News

This brief 4:10 minute video interview appeared on the Fox News website on Monday — and was posted on the youtube.com Internet site yesterday.  I thank Bill Moomau for sending it our way.


Bank of Mongolia purchases 1.2 tonnes of gold in November

The Bank of Mongolia (BoM) bought 1.2 tonnes of gold in November, 2018, which shows the same  amount comparing to the same period of previous year. The gold purchase reached 18.9 tonnes as of the first 11 months of this year and it equals with amount of the previous year as well.

Between October 15 to November 30, the Darkhan-Uul and Bayankhongor branches of the BoM bought 93.3 kg and 41.6 kg of gold respectively.

Throughout November, average price for a gram of gold stood at MNT 100.995.

The above three paragraphs are all there is to this tiny story that was filed from Ulaanbaatar yesterday.  It was posted on the montsame.mn Internet site — and I lifted it from Sharp Pixley.  Another link to it is here.


Perth Mint’s November gold sales surge; silver sales dip from previous month

The Perth Mint’s sales of gold products surged by nearly 75 percent in November from the previous month, while silver sales fell, the mint said on Monday.

Sales of gold coins and minted bars climbed to 64,308 ounces in November, its highest since January 2017. Sales nearly tripled compared with the same month last year, the mint said in
a blog post.

Silver sales in November were down 19 percent month-on-month at 876,446 ounces. From a year earlier, sales rose 61 percent.

This is another tiny 3-paragraph new item.  It’s from Reuters — and showed up on their Internet site minutes after midnight on Monday morning EST.  I lifted this one from Sharp Pixley as well — and another link to the hard copy is here.


The PHOTOS and the FUNNIES

Today’s first photo is one from the Siena International Photo Awards — and I thank Swedish reader Patrik Ekdahl for sending me this sequence.  It was taken by Tony Wu just off the coast of Sri Lanka — and is entitled ‘Sperm Whale Herd’.  “The sperm whales pictured here had just emerged from milling around in a gigantic cluster. This scene was part of a large, multi-day aggregation comprising hundreds, perhaps thousands of whales.”  Click to enlarge.

This second photo was taken on Alaska’s North Slope by Peter Mather. “I encountered this fox scavenging a Caribou’s carcass on the coastal plains of Alaska’s Arctic. I spent two hours slowly approaching it until I took this picture from six feet away, as she finished her meal. It was a surreal and unforgettable experience and a rare opportunity to be accepted into a wild animal’s existence for a few special hours.” [I saw lots of these animals in my eight years in Canada’s High Arctic.  Where I was stationed, they had virtually no fear of man, because they’d never been hunted. – Ed]  Click to enlarge.


The WRAP

For the second day in a row, the heaviest precious metal volume occurred during the rallies in Far East trading — and after that, the volume numbers died off considerably.  And also like on Monday, Tuesday’s volume in silver was certainly higher than I’d like to see.  I’m not sure what should be read into it, but we’ll find out for sure on Friday.

Here are the almost 1-year charts for all four precious metals, plus copper and WTIC.  Gold is now a decent ways above its 50-day moving average — and silver closed above its 50-day moving average for the second day in a row.  Palladium’s new high should be noted as well.  The ‘click to enlarge‘ feature helps on all six graphs.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is less than ten minutes away — and I see that the gold price traded sideways for an hour once trading began at 6:00 p.m. EST on Tuesday evening in New York. At that juncture, a dollar index ‘rally’ began — and the gold price began to sink lower. That lasted until shortly after 11 a.m. China Standard Time on their Wednesday morning — and it’s been trading quietly sideways to down since — and is currently down $4.60 the ounce. It was similar for silver, but it has been chopping quietly lower in afternoon trading in Shanghai as well — and it’s down 11 cents at the moment. The platinum price also began to sell off an hour after the New York open yesterday evening — and was down 13 dollars by around 11:30 a.m. CST. It bounced off that price numerous times until the 2:15 p.m. afternoon gold fix in Shanghai — and has rallied a handful of dollars since…but it’s still down 9 bucks. Palladium edged very quietly lower in Far East trading on their Wednesday morning — and has been trading pretty flat for the last five hours or so — and is down 2 dollars as London opens.

Net HFT gold volume is pretty quiet at around 32,300 contracts — and there’s only 497 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that. Net HFT silver volume is a bit over 8,400 contracts — and there’s only 353 worth of roll-over/switch volume in that precious metal.

The dollar index traded a few basis points lower in the first hour once trading began at 6:00 p.m. in New York yesterday evening — and then trended unevenly higher until the 2:15 p.m. CST afternoon gold fix in Shanghai. It has been chopping quietly lower since — and is up 14 basis points as of ten minutes before the London open.

Yesterday, at the close of COMEX trading, was the cut-off for this Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report — and companion Bank Participation Report.  For this one day a month we get to see what the world’s banks have been up to in the precious metals market, which is usually quite a bit — and I’ll have all that in my Saturday column.

The five days of the current reporting week just past indicates that we’ll probably see some deterioration in the commercial net short positions in both silver and gold.  But as to how much, I haven’t a clue.  Ted posts his mid-week commentary to his paying subscribers on his Internet site this afternoon — and he may have something to say.  If he does, I’ll ‘borrow’ a couple of sentences for my Friday column.

And as I post today’s missive on the website at 4:04 a.m. EST, I note that precious metal prices are off their current lows during the first hour of London/Zurich trading. Gold is now down $2.50 an ounce, silver by 7 cents — and platinum by 6. But palladium screamed higher shortly after Zurich trading began in Zurich — and from down 2 bucks an hour ago, it’s now up 12 dollars…higher than gold.

Gross gold volume is coming up on 41,000 contracts — and minus what little roll-over/switch volume there is, net HFT gold volume is is a bit under 40,000 contracts. Net HFT silver volume is around 10,300 contracts — and there’s only 388 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that.

The dollar index has continued lower in the first hour of London trading — and it’s taken a bit of a header since 8:25 a.m. GMT — and is now back unchanged as of 8:50 a.m. GMT/9:50 a.m. CET.

That’s all I have for today, which wasn’t a lot — and I’ll see you here tomorrow.

Ed