SLV Short Position Almost Doubles in the Last Two Weeks

12 September 2019 — Thursday


The gold price was higher by seven bucks or so by around 9:30 a.m. China Standard Time on their Wednesday morning.  From that juncture it wander quietly sideways until it was sold down to its low of the day starting at 9 a.m. in New York.  From there, it crawled rather unevenly higher until 3:30 p.m. EDT in the rather thinly-traded after-hours market — and was sold two dollars lower at that point, before trading mostly sideways into the 5:00 p.m. close.

The low and high ticks really aren’t worth looking up, but here they are anyway:  $1,486.80 and $1,499.60 in the October contract — and $1,492.90 and $1,506.20 in December.

Gold was closed at $1,496.90 spot, up $11.60 from Tuesday — and it’s fairly obvious that it would have broken through the $1,500 spot mark in after-hours trading, if it had been allowed to.  Net HFT gold volume was very heavy at just under 291,000 contracts — and there was just about 19,000 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume in this precious metal.

The silver price was up 23 cents by minutes after 2 p.m. CST on their Wednesday afternoon — and was then sold unevenly lower once the 2:15 p.m.  afternoon gold fix in Shanghai was put to bed.  Then, like gold, it was kicked downstairs a bit more starting at a few minutes after 9 a.m. in New York.  It rallied back to around the $18.10 spot mark by minutes after the London close.  It crept back to around $18 spot a few hours later, but rallied a bit from there – -and didn’t do much of anything after 3 p.m. in after hours trading.

The high and low ticks in this precious metal were recorded by the CME Group as $18.335 and $17.97 in the December contract.

Silver was closed in New York on Wednesday afternoon at $18.085 spot, up 9.5 cents from its close on Tuesday.  Net volume was a lot lighter that it has been recently, but still way up there at 79,000 contracts — and there was 6,000 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that.

The platinum price crept quietly higher until the afternoon gold fix in Shanghai yesterday — and then chopped unevenly sideways until around 10:20 a.m. in New York.  It was sold a bit lower from there until minutes after 1 p.m. EDT — and it jumped up a decent amount in the thinly-traded after-hours market.  Platinum finished the day at $942 spot, up 14 bucks from Tuesday’s close.

The palladium price crept quietly and somewhat unevenly higher until Zurich opened, but then was sold back to about changed by a few minutes before 2 p.m. CEST/8 a.m. EDT.  It rallied rather smartly from there until at, or a minute or so after, the afternoon gold fix in London…obviously running into ‘something’ along the way.  ‘Da boyz’ showed up in force at that point — and by the time they were done with it a few minutes after 1 p.m. in COMEX trading, they had it down a handful of dollars on the day.  It jumped higher from there — and was closed on Wednesday at $1,553 spot, up 15 dollars on the day, but miles off its high.

And to give you some idea of how thinly-traded and volatile this precious metal is, Kitco recorded the high and low ticks in palladium as $1,596 and $1,513 spot…an 83 dollar intraday range.  This is what an illiquid market looks like.

Note:  The four Kitco charts above only go up to the 5:00 p.m. close in New York on Wednesday afternoon.  Kitco is still having issues — and I couldn’t retrieve the full 24-hour charts for all four on their website when I tried late last night.

The dollar index closed very late on Tuesday afternoon in New York at 98.33 — and opened up 1 basis point once trading commenced around 7:45 p.m. EDT on Tuesday evening, which was 7:45 a.m. China Standard Time on their Wednesday morning.  It then proceeded to rise and fall a handful of basis points between then — and around 12:30 p.m. CST.  It began to head higher from there — and the 98.75 high tick was printed around 10:35 a.m. in New York.  From that point, it proceeded to crawl quietly lower until around 4:35 p.m.  — and didn’t do much from that juncture until the trading day ended at 5:30 p.m. EDT.

The dollar index finished the Wednesday session in New York at 98.65…up 32 basis points from Tuesday’s close.

It was another day where the precious metal prices and the currencies, hoed their own rows.

Here’s the DXY chart, courtesy of Bloomberg — and I’ve set the cursor on the high tick of the day.  Click to enlarge.

And here’s the 6-month U.S. dollar index, courtesy of the folks over at the Internet site.  The delta between its close…98.63…and the close on the DXY chart above, was 2 basis points on Wednesday.  I suspect this September U.S. dollar chart will roll-over to the December contract either today or tomorrow — and the delta will blow out to around 50 basis points once again, as it’s a futures contract chart from ICE…the Intercontinental Exchange.  Click to enlarge as well.

The gold stocks began to head higher as soon as the equity markets opened in New York on Wednesday morning — and their respective high ticks came a few minutes before 12 o’clock noon in New York.  Then, for no reason that I could discern, they began to head quietly lower until around 2:40 p.m. EDT.  They crept a tad higher into the close from there.  The HUI finished up only 1.12 percent.  At its high, the HUI was up a bit over 3 percent.

With some rather minor variations, the silver equities followed an almost identical price path — and Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index closed higher by 0.75 percent.  At their highs, the silver shares were up a bit over 2 percent.  Click to enlarge if necessary.

And here’s the 1-year Silver Sentiment/Silver 7 Index from Nick, updated with Wednesday’s doji.  Click to enlarge as well.

I was somewhat surprised with the precious metal share price action on Wednesday…surprised by the fact that they rallied so much at the open — and equally surprised that they sold off for no reason at the time of day that they did.  I’d like to suggest that ‘darkling forces’ were out and about…but I’ve accused myself on several occasions that I was looking for black bears, in dark rooms, that aren’t there — and this may be one of those times.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 4 gold and 268 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Friday.

In gold, the sole short/issuer was Advantage — and JPMorgan picked up 3 of those…2 for clients — and 1 for its own account.  The last contract ended up in Morgan Stanley’s client account.

In silver, there were 4 short/issuers in total.  They were Goldman Sachs, with 136 contracts…128 from its client account — and 8 more from its in-house/proprietary trading account. Tied for second were International F.C. Stone and Advantage, with 49 contracts each — and also from their respective client accounts.  The fourth short/issuer was ABN Amro with 34 from its client account.  There were seven long/stoppers in total.  The largest was JPMorgan, stopping 106 contracts…100 for clients — and 6 for its own account.  In distant second place was Advantage, picking up 69 contracts for its client account.  And in third and fourth spots were ABN Amro and Macquarie Futures…the former stopping 41 for its client account — and the latter..31 contracts for its in-house/proprietary trading account.

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 September declined by 21 contracts, leaving just 25 left, minus the 4 contracts mentions a few paragraphs ago.  Tuesday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 22 gold contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that 22-21=1 more gold contract was added to September deliveries.  Silver o.i. in September rose by another 98 contracts, leaving 696 still open, minus the 268 mentioned a few paragraphs ago.  Tuesday’s Daily Delivery Report showed that 156 silver contracts were actually posted for delivery today, so that means that 98+156=254 silver contracts just got added to the September delivery month.

For the second day in a row, there was no reported change in GLD…which I found even more surprising.  And there were no reported changes in SLV, either.

As Ted predicted, the short position in SLV blew out in the current report from 11.23 million shares/troy ounces, to 21.19 million shares/troy ounces, for the two week reporting period ending on August 30.  That’s an eye-watering 88.69 percent increase…so it’s obvious that they’ve been shorting the shares, because the physical silver is just not available to deposit.  And as Ted also suspects, that engineered price decline by JPMorgan last week allowed them to cover most, if not all of that short position during those two days.

The short position in GLD fell from 1,872,000 troy ounces, down to 1,266,000 troy ounces during that same two week reporting period.  That’s a decline of 32.35 percent — and erasing just about all the increase from the report two weeks prior to this one.

On a net basis, there was 119,899 troy ounces of gold removed from all the know depositories, mutual funds and ETFs on Wednesday — and that number in silver was down 864,650 troy ounces on a net basis.

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

There was no in/out movement in gold over at the COMEX-approved depositories on Tuesday.

That certainly wasn’t the case in silver, as 1,900,131 troy ounces was reported received — and 695,929 troy ounces were shipped out.  In the ‘in’ category, there was 1,007,029 troy ounces received at Brink’s, Inc. — and one truckload…599,886 troy ounces…was dropped off at HSBC USA.  The remaining 293,215 troy ounces was unloaded at Canada’s Scotiabank — and that was the precise amount that was shipped out of HSBC USA on Monday…so I guess it took a day to get it to their vault in Toronto, from the HSBC USA vault in New York.  In the ‘out’ category, there was one truckload…615,685 troy ounces…shipped out of CNT — and the remaining 80,244 troy ounces departed the International Depository Services of Delaware.  The link to all this is here.

There was a decent amount of activity over at the COMEX-approved gold kilobar depositories in Hong Kong on their Tuesday.  They reported receiving 2,400 of them — and shipped out another 706.  All of this activity was at Brink’s, Inc. — and the link to that, in troy ounces, is here.

Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg, Frederick I., 1680-1691, Thaler 1691

Origin: Roman German Empire     Mint: Gotha     Material: Silver     Full Weight: 29.18 grams  Price: €4,945.00/US$5,390

I only have a small handful of stories/articles for you today.


Retail Sales Shock: BofA Card Data Shows Plunge in August Spending

With the August payrolls report widely seen as disappointing, with less than 100k private payrolls added (despite accelerate wage growth), the last data point the Fed is waiting for to cement next week’s 25bps rate cut is this Friday’s retail sales data (assuming tomorrow’s CPI report is not a shock).

Luckily for the Fed, it appears that the August retail sales number is set to be the latest evidence of America’s rapid slowdown, if only based on Bank of America credit and debit card data, which shows that after a strong month of spending in July, consumers aggressively tightened the strings of their wallets in August.

Specifically, BAC found that retail sales ex-autos fell 0.5% month-over-month, which reversed the 0.9% gain in July, and was not only the first monthly contraction since February this year, but was also the biggest monthly drop in 2019.  Click to enlarge.

As BofA details, in August, spending for only 5 out of the 14 sectors increased in the month, led by strength in cruises and airlines. This was likely boosted by summer vacations, which usually take place in August. On the flip side, spending at clothing stores saw a 1.9% mom contraction accompanied by a 1.6% drop in gas stations. Luxury and department stores also posted losses. On a % yoy basis, 7 sectors posted negative growth. Excluding spending at gas stations, which is largely impacted by gas prices, spending at department stores continue to post the biggest % yoy loss, at -4.6%.

Yet while one month does not make a trend and consumer spending may still remain strong on the year – recall that last week, Morgan Stanley said that the Only Question That Matters Now: “Will The U.S. Consumer Hold Up” – BofA advises keeping a close eye on confidence measures as they will be critical to determining the willingness of the consumer to continue to spend.

This longish chart-filled Zero Hedge news item showed up on their website at 2:23 p.m. EDT on Wednesday afternoon — and another link to it is here.

Around 4,500 truck drivers lost their jobs in August as the trucking ‘bloodbath’ rages on

Truck drivers like Chad Boblett, a Lexington, Kentucky-based owner-operator, said 2019 has been a “bloodbath.” Rates in the spot market, where loads are moved on demand rather than being facilitated through a contract, are down 15% from last year, when truckers reaped historic profits.

  • And now the federal government’s jobs report has confirmed that truckers are losing their jobs by the thousands. According to preliminary payroll numbers reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics last week, around 4,500 trucking jobs were eliminated in the month of August.
  • It is the first time the agency reported a slash in trucking payrolls since March, when 1,200 truckers lost their jobs.
  • That’s also the biggest drop since April 2018, when some 5,500 trucking jobs were removed.

Indicators from the trucking industry have been sour in 2019. In the first half of the year, around 640 trucking companies went bankrupt, according to industry data from Broughton Capital LLC. That’s more than triple the number of bankruptcies from the same period last year — about 175.

This news item put in an appearance on the Internet site early on Wednesday afternoon EDT — and I thank Brad Robertson for sending it our way.  Another link to it is here.

Trump urges zero or negative interest rates to tackle U.S. debt

Trump, in a pair of Twitter posts, said negative rates would save the government money on its debt, which including Social Security accounts has reached a record $22 trillion on Trump’s watch. He did not address the risks or financial market tensions that central banks in Europe and Japan have confronted as a result of their negative rate policy, or the larger issue that negative rates have not secured higher growth or higher inflation for those economies.

The Federal Reserve should get our interest rates down to ZERO, or less, and we should then start to refinance our debt. INTEREST COST COULD BE BROUGHT WAY DOWN, while at the same time substantially lengthening the term,” Trump tweeted. “We have the great currency, power, and balance sheet… The USA should always be paying the … lowest rate. No Inflation!

It is only the naïveté of (Fed Chairman) Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve that doesn’t allow us to do what other countries are already doing,” added Trump, who has repeatedly noted that rates are negative in Germany, Europe’s trading powerhouse.

The president’s comments precede a week in which the world’s major central banks, including the Fed, are expected to lower rates or otherwise loosen monetary policy in what is widely seen as a move to protect the global economy against risks partly rising from Trump’s trade war with China.

This Reuters story, filed from Washington, showed up on their website at 3:58 a.m. EDT on Wednesday morning — and I found it embedded in a GATA dispatch.  Another link to it is here.

The Bolsheviks Are Coming! (Part I)  — Dmitry Orlov

Suppose you are an American. And suppose you spent the last 60 years laying in quiet repose in a freezer chest after expertly injecting yourself with enough glycerine to keep ice crystals from disrupting your cellular membranes. Lord only knows why the heck you did that, but that’s all past tense now. Anyhow, now it’s 2019 and for some other unfathomable reason your great-grandchildren dig you out of the freezer chest, defrost you, zap you a few times with a cattle prod to get your heart pumping, walk you around for a bit while feeding you strong black coffee and here you are again, good as new and ready for action.

Next thing you know your great-grand kids (or so they say) start telling you about life in America in 2019. They tell you that rent now eats up half of their incomes and that they can’t even dream of ever buying a house, never mind hoping to ever own it free and clear. They tell you that their college tuitions will take them a lifetime to repay and will probably eventually come out of their retirement savings (if they ever have any, which they presently don’t). They tell you that instead of leaving an inheritance their parents passed away leaving them useless, run-down property encumbered with huge medical debts for their end-of-life palliative medical care. When you wonder where all the children have gone, they patiently explain to you that it is now too expensive to have children, even with both mommy and daddy working full-time, unless mommy is a single mother, in which case the government pays her based on how many children she has with random men who aren’t allowed to live with her (and spend most of their time in jail in any case).

All of this unwelcome new information leaves you somewhat bewildered, but having been a man of the world with a wide mental outlook and a head for numbers you decide to zoom out a bit and take in the big picture, to see if you can figure out what the hell happened to your country. And you discover that the US government has gone well over $20 trillion into debt and is on course to continue taking on around $1 trillion in new debt every year just to stay solvent. You discover that something like half of that debt is owned by foreign countries that are actively arguing among themselves about the best way to unload it and stock up on gold instead. You are shocked to discover that federal, state and local governments have taken on some truly ridiculous amount of liabilities, to the tune of hundreds of trillions depending on how you estimate them, with no conceivable way of covering them.

This tongue-in-cheek/humourous commentary from Dmitri, would be hilarious if it were fiction.   Unfortunately, it’s the truth.  It appeared on the Internet site on Tuesday sometime — and it comes to us courtesy of Larry Galearis.  Another link to it is here.

Inflate-or-Die Traps Will Show up in Almost Every Economy — Bill Bonner

What goes around and comes around.

Specifically, on Monday, we were looking at how the “Inflate-or-Die” trap has moved from Germany to Zimbabwe to Venezuela… with many stops along the way… and where it will show up next.

Almost everywhere” is our guess. All the world’s major economies are now trying to inflate their economies with fake money.

Everybody’s doing it,” says the U.S. president. And since everyone is doing it – lower rates, quantitative easing, deficits, etc. – everyone HAS to do it to keep up.

Mr. Trump wants the U.S. to do more of it (more on that tomorrow). Which puts the whole world in an Inflate-or-Die trap.

Nobody wants his currency to go up – unless he’s on a vacation abroad, or shopping for investment bargains.

Nobody wants his economy to go down, either – which is why you can count on more stimulus. Barron’s: “It’s Time for Massive Government Spending to Avert a Coming Economic Crisis”.

This commentary from Bill was posted on the Internet site early on Wednesday morning EDT — and another link to it is here.   Dan Mannarino‘s post market-close rant on Wednesday [which I must give an ‘R‘ rating to] is linked here — and I thank subscriber “Mac P.” for sharing it with us.

New York Area Fire Commissioners Demand New 9/11 Investigation

September 11, 2001, was nearly 20 years ago, and after all this time, so many questions still remain about what exactly happened. It is not socially acceptable to question the official explanation that was given for the collapse of the towers and the other events of that day, but now these questions are being taken more seriously.

However, the rushed and poorly managed 9/11 commission report did not do an adequate job at investigating the crimes, which left experts in a variety of different fields with questions about the official story. Many of these professionals belong to an organization called Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, who have been pushing for a new investigation into the attacks for many years.

However, the rushed and poorly managed 9/11 commission report did not do an adequate job at investigating the crimes, which left experts in a variety of different fields with questions about the official story. Many of these professionals belong to an organization called Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, who have been pushing for a new investigation into the attacks for many years.

This July, they announced a major breakthrough in their fight for a proper investigation. According to a press release published on the group’s website, New York Fire Commissioners who were closely involved with the events of that day, have called for a new investigation into the 9/11 attacks.

On July 24, the Franklin Square and Munson Fire Districts voted unanimously for a new investigation, citing “overwhelming evidence” that “pre-planted explosives . . . caused the destruction of the three World Trade Center buildings.”

Commissioner Gioia said that he expects support from other districts throughout the city, and hopes that they will be passing similar resolutions in solidarity.

We were the first fire district to pass this resolution. We won’t be the last,” Gioia said.

As I said right from the outset eighteen years ago, this was an inside job by the U.S. Deep State — and my opinion about that has only grown stronger over the intervening years.  This very worthwhile article appeared on the Zero Hedge website at 12:07 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon EDT — and I thank Brad Robertson for pointing it out.  Another link to it is here.

Last Minute Hurdle Emerges in the ECB’s Attempt to “Shock and Awe” Markets

With just hours left until Mario Draghi has to “shock” markets with a bang in the ECB’s triumphant return to monetary easing, unleashing even lower rates and a new round of QE, which however as Goldman warned this morning has to be coupled with rate-tiering or else risks destabilizng Europe’s already frail banking system, the outgoing central banker may instead settle for a whimper.

Can’t wait for his retirement to begin and dump 5 years of failed monetary policy in the lap of Christine Lagarde.

As Mario Draghi approaches his Oct. 31 retirement, and prepares to welcome his replacement Christine Lagarde, who leaves the IMF’s reputation in tatters and scrambling to salvage a record loan to Argentina, the central banker has signaled plans for a massive burst of monetary stimulus to prop up a eurozone economy that is teetering on the verge of a recession with Germany’s economy already said to be contracting for two consecutive quarters.

As such most investor expect a roughly 50% chance of a 20bps rate cut to Europe’s already negative -0.40% deposit rate…coupled with a restart in roughly €30BN in corporate and sovereign bond purchases. This is, believe it or not, merely the “medium” package that the ECB will unveil according to banks, such as Goldman.

Yet for once, voices of reasons have emerged: why, if the ECB’s magic cocktail of negative rates and asset purchases, has achieved nothing for the past 5 years, will something be different this time? These same voices have also realized that by punting to the central banks for years, Europe has become crippled when it comes to providing the kind of fiscal stimulus boost that Europe truly needs.

What’s worse, these critical voices are multiplying, including a growing number from the ECB’s own 25-member rate-setting committee.

As the WSJ notes, on one hand, Draghi’s critics say the eurozone economy isn’t weak enough to warrant aggressive new measures just a year after the ECB began phasing out its €2.6-trillion bond-buying program. Borrowing costs for households, businesses and governments are so low, they argue, that easier money will have little effect. The bank’s key interest rate is already minus 0.4%.

Then there are those warning that the measures Draghi has extensively flagged – his “whatever it takes” swan song so to speak – which include further rate cuts and a new bond-buying program, risk leaving the bank with virtually no ammunition if the economy sinks further, while also exacerbating the risk of asset bubbles and damage to the region’s banks. Several eurozone governments moved in recent months to rein in excess lending, including France.

All of which makes me look at the recent headlines in Europe; the number of ECB members openly disagreeing with Draghi’s calls to further ease, or German politicians arguing against a fiscal boost for the ailing German economy. These sound very negative and orthodox.  But are we looking at a under the radar Central Banking coup in Europe?

Is it deliberate?  If the ECB can’t keep buying.. then maybe its time for Plan B?  These comments above all play into the hands of new ECB head, Christine Legarde, whose job will be to politically herd the felines of the ECB and European governments into a Fiscal Union to boost German and European fiscal spending.

It will certainly be interesting to see what Draghi does today.  But whatever action he takes, will certainly move the markets, both in Europe — and abroad.  We won’t have to wait for long now.  This very long chart-filled Zero Hedge article was posted on their Internet site at 6:25 p.m. on Wednesday evening EDT — and another link to it is here.

A Forgotten Gold-Rush Hub Is Producing More Than It Has in a Century

Deep under gum-tree lined paddocks in southern Australia that delivered a bullion bonanza in the 19th Century, the unexpected promise of a second gold rush is luring a new generation of prospectors from billionaires to global miners and weekend panhandlers.

As prices soar, production in the goldfields of Victoria state is rising again and has already climbed to the highest since 1914 as mining companies dig deeper and new technology helps to uncover once hidden and richer deposits in a region that almost rivaled the Californian gold rush and was thought to have petered out decades ago.

I’ve never seen anything like it in all my life — it’s like finding a safe underground,” David Baker, managing partner of gold investor Baker Steel Capital Managers LLP, and a visitor to mines for more than 30 years, said following a tour last month of Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd.’s Fosterville mine, the flagship for the region’s revival. “You don’t get better than that unless you can dig into Fort Knox.”

With Victoria’s state government forecasting there may be as much as another 80 million ounces buried underground in the region —about as much as was dug out during the initial gold rush from 1851 — major players are moving in, including Newmont Goldcorp Corp. and billionaire miner Gina Rinehart.

The region’s renaissance is also stoking hopes that new exploration of other historic global mining hubs could yet yield more riches.

This very interesting photo essay put in an appearance on the Internet site at 12:00 p.m. PDT on Tuesday — and I thank Swedish reader Patrik Ekdahl for sending it our way.  Another link to it is here.


This photo sequence began on June 23 right off the Trans-Canada Highway a bit south of Spences Bridge, in and around a picnic/camping area called Gold Pan on the Thompson River.  What started off as a sunny day, quickly turned cloudy.  In the first shot, that’s a CNR train on the other side of the river.  The third photo shows a train on the CPR tracks on this side of the river — and the tunnels on the CNR tracks can be seen on the very left of the shot.  The river is out of sight on the left.  The last picture was taken about a hundred meters/yard from the third photo and from an elevated position — and you can just make out the river on the far left.  Click to enlarge.


Looking at the entire Wednesday trading session, it certainly appeared to have all the hallmarks of another ‘care and maintenance’ sort of day — and nothing much should read into yesterday’s price action in either silver or gold.

I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop — and the engineered price decline to recommence.  But as Ted pointed out on the phone, they may have done as much damage as they can or will do.  However, the jury is still out on that — and we won’t know until we get a look at the numbers in tomorrow’s Commitment of Traders Report.  At that point, the picture should be a lot clearer.

Here are the 6-month charts for all four precious metals, plus copper and WTIC — and there’s not much to see in the precious metals.  Copper isn’t doing much, either…but WTIC got hammered back below — and was closed below both its 50 and 200-day moving averages by a hair yesterday.  Click to enlarge.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is less than a minute away — and I see that the gold price didn’t do much until shortly after 7 p.m. EDT on Wednesday evening. It was sold down to its current low of the day around 9 a.m. China Standard Time on their Thursday morning, but gained all that back by the 2:15 p.m. CST afternoon gold fix in Shanghai. It sold off a bit from there, but recovered just before the London open — and is currently up $4.30 the ounce — and back above $1,500 spot by a hair. It was exactly the same price path for silver — and it’s now up 4 cents as London opens. Platinum traded quietly and unevenly sideways until shortly after 12 o’clock noon CST — and it also ticked a few dollars higher into the afternoon gold fix over there — and is now up 7 bucks. The palladium price didn’t do much of anything until just before 11 a.m. CST. It has rallied unevenly higher since — and is now up 15 dollars as Zurich opens.

Net HFT gold volume is a bit over 61,000 contracts — and there’s a minuscule 527 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that. Net HFT silver volume is around 11,700 contracts — and there’s an equally tiny 288 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume in this precious metal.

The dollar index opened down 2 basis points once trading commenced at 7:45 p.m. EDT on Wednesday evening, which was 7:45 a.m. China Standard Time on their Thursday morning. It has been trading quietly sideways ever since — and is back at unchanged as of 7:45 BST in London/8:45 a.m. CEST in Zurich.

Yesterday evening ‘the word’ came out from President Trump that there was some sort of temporary trade truce between the U.S. and China.   The Zero Hedge spin on this [at 7:53 p.m. EDT] is headlined “Trump Delays Increase in China Tariffs Until October 15; Futures Surge” — and I thank Brad Robertson for that one.  Gregory Mannarino has a 2:45 minute rant on this from yesterday evening — and it’s linked here.  That’s from Brad as well.

The U.S. futures market is being spun higher as the headline states, but are currently well off their high, so it could be a wild one in New York later this morning.

It will be interesting to see if this development has any effect on what Draghi and the ECB do with their interest rates this morning.  If it does make a difference, it probably won’t be mentioned.

But the real question will be as to what difference it will make at the FOMC meeting next week in Washington.

Both gold and silver got tapped lower shortly after 7 p.m. EDT on Wednesday evening — and whether or not that coincided with the above story is hard to tell.  I expect that it was, although the ‘reaction’ of both gold and silver occurred a bit later.  However, it was rather short-lived, as silver is now up a penny — and gold is only down a few dimes going into the afternoon gold fix in Shanghai.

And as I post today’s column on the website at 4:02 a.m. EDT, I note that gold jumped a bit higher at the London open, but is off its current high by a bit. It’s up $5.70 the ounce at the moment. Ditto for silver — and it’s up 6 cents as the first hour of London trading ends. Platinum is also higher, but hit a $950 the ounce price ceiling — and is up 8 bucks. Palladium is now up 21 dollars and off its current high tick as well, but only by a hair…as the first hour of Zurich trading draws to a close.

Gross gold volume has shot up to about 88,000 contracts — and minus what little roll-over/switch volume there was, net HFT gold volume is a bit under 86,000 contracts. Net HFT silver volume is now way up there as well, at a bit over 16,000 contracts — and there’s still only 565 contracts worth of roll-over/switch volume on top of that. It’s obvious that these rather modest rallies are not going unopposed.

The dollar index had a tiny, but sharp up/down move that began at 2:35 p.m. CST in Shanghai — and ended forty-five minutes later at 8:20 a.m. in London. It’s off that low by a bit — and down 3 basis points as of 8:45 a.m. in London/9:45 a.m. in Zurich.

It will certainly be interesting trading session in just about everything in New York today — and it remains to be seen how the precious metals make out when COMEX trading begins at 8:20 a.m. EDT.

See you here tomorrow.