Monday, April 30, 2007


Falling Dollar Trend "Intact"

Bloomberg reports on currencies. "The dollar traded near a record low against the euro, posting the biggest monthly loss since November, as U.S. reports showing moderating inflation and slowing growth increased bets the Federal Reserve will reduce interest rates. The U.S. currency erased its earlier advance as the speculation on borrowing costs dimmed the allure of dollar- denominated assets."

"'You are continuing to see a flow of data from the U.S. on the weak side,'' said Greg Salvaggio, vice president of capital markets in Washington at currency trader Tempus Consulting Inc. 'Money is going to flow to the euro zone and away from the U.S. The trend of a falling dollar and a rising euro is intact.'"

"The dollar traded at $1.3648 per euro at 4:19 p.m. in New York compared with $1.3652 yesterday. It earlier touched $1.3679, near the record low of $1.3681 set April 27. The dollar dropped 2.19 percent against the euro in April for its biggest drop since falling 4.06 percent in November."

"The U.S. currency rose as high as $1.3590 in Asian and European trading as some investors sold the euro to book profits and as a government report showed German retail sales unexpectedly fell last month."

"The yen lost this month against all 16 major currencies as investors added to their holdings in higher-yielding assets financed by borrowings in Japan, a practice known as the carry trade. Japan has the lowest interest rates among major economies."

"The Japanese currency dropped 3.56 percent against the euro, for its biggest monthly decline since a 4.02 percent loss in November 2003. The yen gained 0.18 percent today to 162.98 versus the euro as investors exited some of their carry trades."

"The dollar dropped against 13 out of 16 major currencies this month, falling 2.2 percent against the euro, 1.6 percent versus the British pound and 4 percent against the Canadian currency. The Swedish krona was the biggest winner against the dollar this month, rising 4.3 percent, while the yen was the biggest loser, declining 1.4 percent."

"'The trend is clearly toward a weak dollar,' said Dennis Gartman, economist and editor of The Gartman Letter in Suffolk, Va. 'The only concern is that there are an awful lot of dollar bears around.'"

From MarketWatch. "Copper futures were a standout among the metals Monday, as news of a strike among Peru's labor unions helped raised concerns about production, prompting prices to tally a gain of more than 13% for the month. Helped by copper's strength, as well as weakness in the U.S. dollar, gold for June delivery closed up $1.70 at $683.50 an ounce. It posed a climb of 2.2% for the month of April. "

"Gold rose Monday mainly because prices held support at $675 '"and funds and a few previously cashed-out sellers were back buying the dips,' analyst Jon Nadler said. Gold is forming a base near here and was 'poised to move higher if conditions (economic data) permit later in the week and next month,' he said."

"For now, gold is "looking interesting,' said James Moore, an analyst at, and if the dollar continues lower, and particularly if it sets a fresh low again vs. the euro, 'then we might have a little pop up towards [the] $690-to-$692 resistance band' in spot gold prices.
'If not, I think it could mean further consolidation around $670 to $680,' he said."

"Other metals prices gained Monday, with the exception of June palladium, which gave back 45 cents to end at $374 an ounce. It was up 4.7% for the month. July silver closed at $13.575 an ounce, unchanged for the session and nearly flat for the month as well. July platinum rose $5.40 to close at $1,298.40 an ounce, up 3.5% for the month."

Friday, April 27, 2007


Gold "Resumes Journey" AS US$ Falls

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The euro climbed to an all-time high against the dollar Friday as weak U.S. growth figures reinforced fears of a widening economic disparity between Europe and the United States. The euro hit $1.3682, shooting past its previous high of $1.3667 from December 2004, after the U.S. Commerce Department reported that economic growth slowed to a 1.3 percent annual rate in the first quarter, its weakest performance in four years."

"The 13-nation currency then settled back to $1.3655 in late European trading, still up from its $1.3601 level in New York late Thursday."

"The euro also hit a record against the Japanese yen after inflation data from Germany, coupled with improved business and consumer sentiment, pushed it to 162.91 yen, up from the previous high of 162.53 yen on Thursday."

"Along with the rise in the British pound, which broke through $2 earlier this month for the first time in nearly 15 years, the stronger euro makes visits to much of Europe more expensive for travelers from elsewhere and makes shopping trips to the U.S. more appealing to Europeans."

"'Restaurants are too expensive and I find myself eating pizzas and paninis at grocery stores,' said Krysta Taylor, a 38-year-old transportation worker from Calgary, Canada. 'My next destinations will probably be less expensive countries, such as South East Asia and South America.'"

"On Friday, the British pound was trading at $2.0022, up from $1.9910 late Thursday. The dollar fell against the yen, dropping to 119.41 yen from 119.63 yen in New York."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures closed almost $4 higher Friday, boosted by the euro's record high against the dollar after data showed that the U.S. economy posted its weakest expansion in four years in the first quarter. But the day's gain wasn't enough to recoup the week's losses. The price of the precious metal finished the week with a loss of 2% as traders weighed investment-demand expectations for gold in the wake of U.S. stocks' climb into record territory."

"Gold for June delivery gained $3.80 to close $681.80 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It was down $14 from last Friday's closing level of $695.80."

"'For several years now, gold has gone through short, but sharp corrections on its march to new all-time highs,' said Peter Grandich, editor of the Grandich Letter. 'The surprise going forward is how fast it rebounds and hits $700.'"

"'A return to $682-$685 is indeed required in order to resume whatever journey we were on prior to this eventful week,' said Jon Nadler, an analyst at Kitco. 'Until then, more than a few participants will nervously ponder if this was 'it' or if there is more room to fill some chart points and redraw the lines.'"

"Other metals prices gained for the session along with gold, but July platinum gave back $10.60 to end at $1,293 an ounce, down 3.6% for the week. May silver rose 11.8 cents to finish at $13.443 an ounce, but it was down 3.7% from a week ago. June palladium tacked on $1.05 to close at $374.45 an ounce, up almost $14 for the week."

Thursday, April 26, 2007


Gold Falls Away From $700 Mark

Bloomberg reports on the markets. "Gold in New York fell the most in eight weeks on speculation a rebound in the dollar may reduce the appeal of the precious metal as an alternative investment. Silver declined more than 3 percent. 'The weakness in the currencies are bearing down on the gold market,' said Stephen Platt, a commodity analyst at Archer Financial Services Inc. 'There's disappointment that gold wasn't able to break through to $700, so we've seen a pulling back in investment demand.'"

"Gold futures for June delivery fell $9.40, or 1.4 percent, to $678 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, the biggest percentage drop since March 2."

"Gold is sold in dollars and five of the past six bear markets in the U.S. currency have led to a higher gold price. The dollar yesterday touched an all-time low of $1.3666 per euro, previously set on Dec. 30, 2004. The European currency started trading in January 1999 at $1.17."

"'The surprising strength in the dollar overnight has had a negative impact in the gold market,' said Daniel Vaught, a commodity analyst at A.G. Edwards Inc. 'You're seeing general weakness in gold because it didn't break out of $700 when it had the chance.'"

"Silver, which has wider manufacturing use than gold, fell as a slump in the U.S. housing market sparked speculation that demand for copper and other base metals will slow. 'Silver seems to be backtracking,' Platt said. 'The market is going to need some fresh impetus in terms of industrial demand to get it going.'"

"Silver for July delivery fell 44.2 cents, or 3.2 percent, to $13.455 an ounce, the most since March 2."

"July platinum settled down $13.60 at $1,303.60 an ounce, while June palladium settled down $9.65 at $373.40 an ounce. Spot gold at 1:31 p.m. ET traded at $675.05, down $11 an ounce."

"The front-month June light, sweet crude contract settled down 78-cents at $65.06 a barrel. May gasoline settled up 0.77 cent at $2.2903 a gallon. May heating oil settled down 1.24 cents at $1.8891 a gallon."

The Associated Press. "The dollar traded mostly higher Thursday after holding off an all-time high by the euro. The British pound fell from record territory. The 13-nation euro rose as high as $1.3653, just short of its all-time high of $1.3667 in December 2004. It later retreated to as low as $1.3582 before climbing to $1.3601 in late New York trading. That compared with $1.3640 on Wednesday."

"The U.S. Labor Department reported that applications for jobless benefits totaled 321,000 last week, a drop of 20,000 from the previous week, making it the largest dip in nine weeks and double economists' expectations."

"The pound rose as high as $2.0059 before falling to $1.9910 in late trading. It bought $2.0020 on Wednesday after breaching $2 last week for the first time in nearly 15 years."

"The drop came after British housing prices surged in April, signaling that the Bank of England was likely to raise interest rates above the current 5.25 percent."

"In other New York the dollar moved little against Japan's currency, dipping to 119.63 yen from 118.69 yen. It bought 1.2079 Swiss francs, up from 1.2047 Wednesday, and 1.1205 Canadian dollars, up from 1.1150."

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


US$ Near All-Time Lows

Reuters reports on currencies. "The dollar fell on Wednesday to a record low against a trade-weighted basket of major currencies tracked by the Federal Reserve, reflecting prospects for slower growth in the U.S. economy. The index has dropped to the 79.20 area only two other times in the 34-year history of the gauge, once in April 1995 during a period of U.S. trade frictions with Japan and again in December 2004 when financial market concerns about the U.S. trade deficit reached a peak."

The Associated Press. "The dollar traded within a whisker Wednesday of an all-time low against the euro, which passed $1.3660 on rising business confidence in Germany and disappointing sales of new homes in the U.S."

"The euro, which peaked at $1.3667 in December 2004, climbed to $1.3664 in late afternoon European trading after the release of Germany's closely watched Ifo business confidence index. The euro bought $1.3626 late Tuesday in New York."

"The euro fell back to $1.3640 after the U.S. Commerce Department reported that sales of new homes rebounded slightly in March, but not enough to offset declines in January and February."

"Meanwhile, the pound rose as high as $2.0062, climbing from $2.0000 late Tuesday, after data showed the British economy defied expectations of a slowdown in the first quarter and expanded 2.8 percent from a year earlier."

"The British currency rose in late New York trading to $2.0020. It broke through $2 last week for the first time in nearly 15 years."

"The dollar barely budged against Japan's currency, edging up to 118.69 yen from 118.68 yen. It bought 1.2047 Swiss francs, up from 1.2028 Tuesday, and 1.1150 Canadian dollars, down from 1.1228."

"Gold prices held firm on Wednesday as weak U.S. housing market data hit dollar sentiment and as crude oil prices rose after news of falling gasoline stocks in the United States. Spot gold was up at $685.25/685.75 an ounce at 1500 GMT compared with $684.10/684.60 late in New York on Tuesday, when it hit a session low around $680."

"'The dollar has been the main thing behind gold's move this afternoon, and U.S. gasoline stocks fell,' a London-based trader said. 'If the dollar falls to new record lows, we could see gold trying the $690 level again.'"

"'Physical activity is strong in the mornings and has offset long liquidation in the afternoons,' said Frederic Panizzutti, analyst at MKS Finance. 'Physical demand is likely to remain strong, but the market needs a catalyst to move prices much higher.'"

"Also supportive were comments by a Chinese central bank official, who said the country should put its $1.202 trillion of foreign exchange reserves to better use by ploughing more money into gold, oil and metals."

"Analysts say the new ETFs may boost platinum prices in the longer term. 'If the platinum ETFs take more than about 500,000 ounces...of platinum out of the market then we would expect a material and sustained tightening of platinum forwards and much higher prices,' UBS said in a note."

"Silver gained to $13.83/13.87 an ounce from $13.78/13.81 late in New York on Tuesday and platinum was down at $1,306/1,310 an ounce from $1,315/1,320. Palladium was a touch softer at $378/383 an ounce from $379/384."

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


A Harsh Reality Check For The US$

MarketWatch reports on currencies. "The dollar approached an all-time low against the euro Tuesday after reports showed sales of existing homes plunged at the fastest pace in 18 years last month while consumer confidence dropped more than forecast in April, fueling worries that the U.S. economy is decelerating. The dollar has come under heavy pressure, hitting multiyear lows last week on the prospect of the Fed remaining sidelined or cutting rates, even as central banks elsewhere continue to lift borrowing costs."

"'To the surprise of the market, this morning's U.S. data was extremely ugly,' said Kathy Lien, chief strategist at DailyFX. 'Today's reports only reinforce the Federal Reserve's need to keep interest rates unchanged. The problems that the U.S. economy is facing are not going away, and today's numbers provide a harsh reality check,' she said."

"In New York trading, the euro stood at $1.3617, compared with $1.3571 late Monday. In intraday trading, the euro had climbed to a high of $1.3635, just a third of a cent below its all-time high of $1.3666. The dollar was last quoted at 118.54 yen, compared with 118.59 yen."

"The British pound traded at $2.0009 vs. $2.0006. The pound had climbed as high as $2.0133 last Wednesday, sterling's loftiest level since 1981. The dollar changed hands at 1.2032 Swiss francs, compared with 1.2095 francs."

"In other trading, the Australian dollar was the biggest decliner among major currencies, slumping 0.7% versus the greenback, after a report showed consumer prices rose less than expected in the first-quarter, denting any hopes for an imminent rise in interest rates."

"The below-expected CPI 'killed off any chance' of a rate hike by the Reserve Bank of Australia next week, said David Watt, senior currency strategist at RBC Capital Markets. 'The weakness spilled over into New Zealand and other high yielding currencies, on a moderate unwind of carry trades.'"

From Bloomberg. "Gold and silver fell the most this month in New York as a drop in prices for oil and other commodities reduced the appeal of precious metals as a hedge against inflation."

"Oil fell as much as 2.7 percent and the Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index of 19 commodities lost the most in more than six weeks after a drop in home sales sparked speculation an economic slowdown in the U.S. will curb demand for raw materials."

"'There's some selling around the oil drop and the housing numbers,' said Marty McNeill, a trader at R.F. Lafferty Inc.. 'If there's an economic slowdown, it's going to hurt commodities and gold, too.'"

"Gold futures for June delivery fell $6.50, or 0.9 percent, to $687.70 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, the biggest drop since March 23. The price failed for a second day to challenge last week's peak of $698."

"'Gold is facing stiff resistance as it heads toward the big number of $700,' said Tom Hartmann, commodity broker at Altavest Worldwide Trading Inc."

"Losses accelerated after gold dropped below $691, said Steve Phillips, a trader at Eagle Futures Inc. 'Everybody knew gold was too high,' he said. 'There are a lot more sellers than buyers at these prices.'"

"Hedge-fund managers and other large speculators increased their net-long position in New York gold futures in the week ended April 17, according to U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data."

" Silver, a precious metal with industrial applications in medical devices and batteries, fell the most since March 2 as copper used in pipes and wiring slumped as much as 3 percent. 'Silver came off on copper,' said Frank McGhee, head metals trader at Integrated Brokerage LLC."

"Silver for May delivery fell 26.8 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $13.782 an ounce on the Comex. Before today, the price had gained 8.6 percent this year."

Monday, April 23, 2007


US$ "Recovering"

Reuters reports on currencies. "The dollar gained across he board on Monday in generally light trading, recovering from last week's sell-off, as investors trimmed bearish bets ahead of a slew of U.S. economic data this week. 'The yen aside, the dollar is just going through a small corrective phase,' said Matt Kassel, director of foreign exchange at ING Capital Markets."

"'There's nothing going on that's changed the scope of dollar-bearish sentiment. The market has had several weeks of dollar selling and I think this just a little bit of profit-taking on the lack of upside momentum in other currencies,' he added."

"In late morning trading, the euro eased 0.2 percent to $1.3565, with investors taking profits after the single currency last week climbed within half a cent of the 2004 record high of $1.3670. The dollar was flat at 118.71 yen."

"'One source of solace for greenback bulls may be this week's housing data,' Boris Schlossberg, senior currency strategist at, wrote in a research note. 'If the numbers meet or beat expectations, talk of some sort of a bottom in housing could help fuel a more sustained rally.'"

"U.S. gold futures finished slightly lower on Monday as a recovering dollar prompted investors to lock in profits after last week's rally, but rising oil kept prices from falling further. The platinum group metals also ended down after a report showed that speculative long positions were building up, and that indicated the precious metals were at risk of liquidation."

"Most-active gold for June delivery on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange settled down $1.60 at $694.20 an ounce, traded from $690.50 to $697.70. Spot gold was quoted at $688.90/9.40 an ounce, below a late quote of $691.70/2.20 in New York on Friday. London's afternoon gold fix was $688.70."

"Bernard Hunter, director of precious metals marketing at ScotiaMocatta, said that selling after spot prices ran into resistance at around $690.50."

"Palladium and platinum also closed down after solid gains last week on proposals for physically backed exchange-traded funds. UBS Investment Bank said in a research note that futures positioning was approaching risky levels for precious metals, especially for palladium."

"'But we believe further short-term gains in metals can occur, especially in platinum and palladium due to the impending launch of the platinum and palladium ETFs, this week in London and then next month in Zurich,' UBS said."

"Platinum fell after hitting a one-year high last week. July platinum ended down $9.50 at $1,331.70 an ounce. Spot platinum was quoted at $1,315.00/20.00. June palladium eased 85 cents to finish at $387.40 an ounce. Spot palladium fetched $380.00/385.00."

"COMEX May silver reversed early losses to close up 9.50 cents at $14.050 an ounce, traded from $13.860 to $14.110. Spot silver was quoted at $13.90/3.95, compared with $13.92/3.96 late Friday. Silver was fixed at $13.860 in London."

Friday, April 20, 2007


Gold Closes In On $700

Reuters reports on precious metals. "Gold hit an 11-month high on Friday and platinum rose to its highest in five months, buoyed by a weaker dollar and hopes that proposed exchange-traded funds would boost demand for precious metals. Gold rose as high as $693.60 an ounce and was quoted at $691.50/692.00 an ounce by 3:08 p.m. EDT, sharply higher than $681.70/682.20 late in New York on Thursday."

"'I think that the prospect of more ETFs has supported the entire precious metals complex,' said James Steel, analyst at HSBC."

"The euro hit a two-year high against the dollar, coming within half a cent of a lifetime peak, but had largely erased its gains by afternoon in New York."

"'Gold is still keeping an upward pattern and a weaker dollar is a very supportive feature,' said Jon Bergtheil, global metals strategist at J.P. Morgan, adding a rally in platinum also was helping gold."

"But some traders remained cautions because of the condition of the Chinese stock market. Commodities prices tumbled in late February after a plunge in Chinese equities triggered a heavy sell-off in global shares."

"Chinese stocks rose sharply on Friday after tumbling 4.52 percent on Thursday in response to high inflation data, which further fueled expectations of an early interest rate hike."

"'The metal (gold) remains at the moment in an uptrend, but a healthy level of cautiousness that prevents the market from overheating for the time being prevails at the same time, making it difficult to pass the $700-mark with flying colours,' said Wolfgang Wrzesniok-Rossbach of Germany's Heraeus."

"Platinum gained upward momentum after breaking through $1,300 as speculators were keen to take new positions after recent plans to launch platinum ETFs. Spot price rose as high as $1,330 an ounce and was last quoted at $1,328/1,332, against its previous finish of $1,295/1,299 in New York on Thursday. It reached a record high of $1,395 in November."

" Gold ETFs have accumulated more than 650 tonnes of gold so far, while silver funds have about 4,200 tonnes."

"Palladium rose to $382/387 from $375.50/379.50 an ounce at its previous close in New York, while silver rose to $13.92/13.97 an ounce from $13.65/13.69 late in the U.S. market on Thursday."

Thursday, April 19, 2007


Gold Down On China Rate Talk

Daily FX reports on currencies. "Liquidation of EUR/JPY carry trades sent the Euro tumbling to 1.3565 against the US dollar. Despite this minor hiccup, Euro traders are still intent on taking the currency pair for a test of its December 2004 1.3667 all time highs as their determination was evidenced in the currency pair’s complete turnaround during the US trading session."

"For the first time in this latest wave of Euro strength, we heard comments from ECB officials about the level of the currency."

"After plunging back below the 2.000 mark momentarily, the GBP/USD stabilized throughout the US trading session. Now trading at 2.0018 at the New York close, the sterling bid tone may return with a vengeance as traders set their targets on tomorrow's retail sales report."

"The Japanese Yen was the story of the day as stronger economic data from Japan and China sent the currency tumbling against everything in sight. The early Asia trading session started with a sharp surprise in the tertiary activity index for the month of February."

"Originally expected to drop by 0.5 percent, activity actually accelerated by 1.0 percent. We expect this trend of upside surprises to continue as the recent weakness of the Japanese Yen boosts overall economic growth."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures dropped $5 an ounce Thursday to close at their lowest level in a week, as news of faster-than-expected growth in China in the first quarter triggered worries that the government will have to take measures to slow down its economy, reducing demand for metals."

"Gold for June delivery finished down 0.7% at $688.30 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange after a low of $682.50. These are the contract's weakest levels since April 12."

"The metals had 'a very negative session in Shanghai, where copper closed limit down," said Edward Meir, analyst at Man Financial. 'Negative sentiment in Shanghai was fueled by talk that the Chinese may once again raise interest rates in light of reports that China's economy grew at a faster-than-forecast 11.1% pace in the first quarter of this year,' Meir said."

"Metals traders have 'looked to the energy sector for direction today,' said James Moore, an analyst at rude-oil futures dropped to a level not seen since April 10 as traders worried about the potential for weaker Chinese energy demand."

"The correction in gold prices Thursday, however, 'comes as no great surprise considering the metal's lack of traction above $690,' said Moore."

"Silver prices also declined to a two-week low of $13.58 an ounce, with the May contract closing down 1.7%, or 24 cents, at $13.735."

"'Currencies and oil presented a somewhat nebulous picture and oil retreated under $63 per barrel,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers."

"'Then, there is the problem (if one can call it that) of China's amazingly hot rate of growth,' he said. It has prompted 'anxieties once again that the authorities will intervene in some manner to try to curb what could well become overheating.'"

"For now, other metals prices were sharply lower, with the exception of platinum, whose July contract continued higher, closing up $2.90 at $1,309.80 an ounce, extending Wednesday's 2% gain."

"'The metal is being pushed along by anticipatory fever for the platinum-oriented [exchanged-traded fund],' said Nadler. Sister metal palladium saw its June contract decline $2.80 to end at $380 an ounce."

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


"Sinking Dollar" Supports Gold

The Economic Times reports on currencies. "The euro surged past 1.36 dollars for the first time since December 2004 on Wednesday while sterling hit a near 26-year high against the dollar on fears for US economic prospects. 'The weakened dollar "reflects a combination both of concerns about the US economy, and at the same time the contrasting strength of the European economy which is growing much more rapidly,' Capital Economics analyst Jonathan Loynes said in London.

"Owing to strengthening European economies, particularly in Germany, the market is forecasting higher interest rates for the euro zone and Britain in the coming months."

"The euro reached as high as $ 1.3616 in early European trading before falling back to 1.3576 against 1.3564 late Tuesday in New York. The pound sterling struck 2.0133 dollars to reach its highest reading since June 1981. It later traded at 2.0040 against 2.0063 on Tuesday."

"'With the currencies like the British pound, euro and Japanese yen looking to benefit from rate hikes in the near future, the greenback is starting to lose its appeal in the global market,' said John Kicklighter at Forex Capital Markets."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures closed a bit higher, but remained below the previous session's seven-week high of $695.50. The metals markets are 'vacillating on currency moves and searching for additional market data with which to take out some psychologically important levels,' $700 for gold, $1,300 for platinum and $14.50 for silver, said Neal Ryan, director of economic research at Blanchard."

"Gold for June delivery finished 80 cents higher at $693.30 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It traded as high as $695.30 during the session."

"The metals market saw conflicting reports on activity at Freeport-McMoRan's Grasberg mine. Dow Jones Newswires reported that operations at the Indonesian unit are continuing as normal, despite a labor group's statement that a strike has halted all operations there."

"'Grasberg is the largest copper/gold mine in the world in terms of reserves and in the top three in terms of production,' said Ryan. 'Shutting down for a day isn't going to be too big an issue for the gold market (much more so for copper, where supplies are far tighter currently), but should this strike extend a few more days, we could be looking at more bullish news for gold prices entering the market.'"

"Indeed, 'should the dispute escalate to hit output, then it would be impacting an already tight concentrate market,' said William Adams, metals analyst at"

"Platinum was the biggest winner among the metals Wednesday, with its July contract up 2%, or $26, to close at $1,306.90 an ounce in New York."

"'Platinum has been particularly volatile the last few days as news has hit the market of a new [exchange-traded fund] being launched in Switzerland,' said Blanchard's Ryan. 'This one ETF being offered on a small bourse and available to only Swiss investors will not move the metal price a great deal on its own.'"

"But 'platinum and palladium are even thinner than gold and silver in terms of overall available supply and annual mine production. [So] should one or two ETFs socking away bullion in vaults begin to have some success, the impact on the market will be much more profound in platinum and palladium than in the gold and silver ETFs,' he said."

"Platinum's sister metal, palladium, saw its June contract tack on $2.45 to end at $382.80 an ounce. May silver finished down 4.5 cents at $13.975 an ounce."

"'In the final analysis, gold got its support for the day from the ever-reliably sinking dollar, a bit from oil, and the rest from the inflationary expectations that the biggest consumer price rise in 11 months has likely generated,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco."

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


Gold Traders "Cash In Chips"

FX Street reports on currencies. "The U.S. dollar weakened to a new 2-year low versus the euro this morning after a report showed core U.S. consumer prices rose by less than expected in March, supporting a view that U.S. interest rates may be set to move lower."

"The British pound rallied to $2 overnight, touching levels not seen for almost 15 years as news of accelerating British inflation last month stoked expectations of a further rise in borrowing costs from the Bank of England. Data showing a 3.1 percent annual jump in British consumer price inflation in March, the highest since comparable records began in 1997, served as the impetus for the pounds appreciation."

"Currency market analysts believe that further pound gains are likely. A move above $2.01 would herald the highest level in over quarter of a century."

"The Japanese yen continued to weaken across the board, primarily as a result of weak Japanese fundamentals and a continuation of the carry trade phenomena. The yen hit a record low versus the euro yesteray after a weekend meeting of Group of Seven finance officials expressed no concerns about the Japanese currency's weakness, prompting traders to load up on carry trades."

"The Chinese yuan closed slightly higher against the dollar overnight, stabilizing after its third-biggest one-day fall of the year on Monday as dollar supplies in the market felt a temporary pinch. Monday's fall came after the People's Bank of China set the yuan's daily mid-point at a post-revaluation high of 7.7220, indicating the market was at odds with the central bank's apparent willingness to let the yuan rise toward 7.7200."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures took second billing Tuesday, easing back after Monday's climb. June gold fell $2 to close at $692.50 an ounce on Nymex. 'Some participants cashed in their chips,' explained Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers."

"'Some traders feel that there may be more consolidation ahead before gold prices manage to break the psychologically important $700 mark,' Action Economics said in a research note."

"James Moore, metals analyst at, said gold 'appears to be catching its breath.' However, 'momentum is still firmly to the upside with further diversification away from the dollar looking set to propel gold through $700 and on to challenge the $732 high we saw last May,' Moore said."

"Most other metals prices moved lower along with gold, though June palladium rose $1.35 to close at $380.35 an ounce. May silver fell 6 cents to end at $14.02 an ounce and July platinum fell $8.60 to close at $1,280.90 an ounce."

Monday, April 16, 2007


US$ Pales Versus Rivals

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The dollar gave up more ground to the euro, which climbed to within one cent of its all-time high, and the pound neared $2 Monday. Supported by crackling economic growth, falling jobless figures and interest rates much lower than those in Britain and the United States, the 13-nation euro bought $1.3549 by afternoon in Europe after climbing as high as $1.3576, its highest point since January 2005 and near its record of $1.3667 from December 2004."

"Kristian Siggaard-Jensen, a foreign exchange strategist with Saxo Bank in Copenhagen, Denmark, said markets had factored in the increases, noting the steady guidance by the European Central Bank and the Bank of England. 'People have been expecting this sort of pick up for some time,' he said."

"The British pound rose to $1.9938, a 14-year high, on unexpectedly higher prices for manufactured goods and news that the sizzling housing market was not cooling off. Analysts said they expected the currency to cross the $2 mark this week. It later fell back to $1.9920, still less than a penny off of $2 barrier. That compared with $1.9870 on Friday in New York."

"'Clearly many are eyeing a test of the key $2 level, something that hasn't been seen since 1992,' said David Jones, chief market analyst for CMC Markets in London."

"The dollar rose to 119.54 Japanese yen from 119.06 yen late Friday after officials from the Group of Seven wealthiest nations did not press Japan to raise its own interest rates to buoy its currency at a weekend meeting."

"'The tenor of European rhetoric at the G-7 was surprising, and on the face of it, positive, as it's always good to see a lack of equivocation on the part of central bankers,' Siggaard-Jensen said of last weekend's meeting of G7 officials in Washington."

"'The fundamentals are in line to go higher and the politicians seem to be welcoming that,' Siggaard-Jensen said. 'The investors are more confident, too, and realize 'We can take euro/dollar above the all-time highs without getting too much (government) intervention.'"

"Worries about the U.S. trade and budget deficits were a key factor in the euro's surge to its all-time high in 2004, but those worries were submerged over the past two years by the Federal Reserve's campaign of interest rate increases. The Fed has left rates unchanged over recent months, with markets watching U.S. data closely for pointers as to the Fed's course."

From AFX News. "The swiss franc meanwhile, which strengthened earlier following comments from Swiss National Bank chairman Jean-Pierre Roth, fell back as it is also a widely used currency in carry trades. Roth said the SNB has to be vigilant 'as the weak swiss franc and falling unemployment could pose a risk to price stability.'"

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures finished near $695 an ounce Monday to mark their strongest closing level since late February, finding support from strength in oil prices as well as some weakness in the U.S. dollar."

"'Gold continues to benefit from a declining U.S. dollar strong physical and investment demand, and the inability to cap its price for any real length of time by the shorts,' said Peter Grandich, editor of the Grandich Letter.
'While $700 is a psychological resistance level, the next real battle will be around the old highs from last year in the $735 area,' he said."

"Gold for June delivery closed up 0.7%, or $4.60, at $694.50 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its highest close since Feb. 26. The contract had touched $695 during the session, its strongest intraday level since Feb. 27. The metal closed last week with a gain of 1.5%."

"'While the bullish trend remains intact, some traders feel that there may be a period of consolidation before gold prices manage to break the psychologically important $700 mark,' according to Action Economics."

"In the backdrop, May crude held their ground above $63 a barrel, nearly recovering from a low of $62.58 on the heels of uncertainty related to the elections in Nigeria."

"Elsewhere in metals trading, silver prices posted a modest decline, with the May contract down 1 cent to close at $14.08 an ounce. It traded as high as $14.13 during the session."

"'The $14 level is a point of resistance, so it will slow the silver price, but once solidly over that hurdle, $15 looks a small climb,' said Julian Phillips, an analyst at"

"Rounding out the metals action, June palladium fell $2.05 to end at $379 an ounce while July platinum rose $3.10 to finish at $1,289.50 an ounce."

Friday, April 13, 2007


Gold Breaks Resistance

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The dollar rebounded against a nearly record-high euro Friday on expectations that the Group of Seven would maintain its position on addressing worldwide economic imbalances. The euro bought $1.3511 in afternoon trading after climbing as high as $1.3547 earlier in the session; its highest level since January 2005."

"That compared with the $1.3480 it bought in New York late Thursday, and was about one cent short of its all-time high from December 2004 of $1.3667."

"The dollar bounced back on expectations that the G-7 finance officials' communique Friday would not propose continued weakness to stabilize global trade and account imbalances. Word from an Italian representative, though, that yen carry-trading would enter the discussions prompted some dollar selling, according to Michael Woolfolk, senior currency strategist at the Bank of New York."

"The dollar also lost ground against the British pound, which rose to $1.9825 from $1.9783, while strengthening against Japan's currency to 119.25 yen from 119.06 yen."

"The euro slipped slightly after the release of data showing that U.S. wholesale prices increased by 1 percent in March, although, with volatile energy and food prices removed, other prices were flat. Evidence that inflation hasn't spread through a wider range of goods might put less pressure on the Fed to raise rates."

"Separately, the Commerce Department said the U.S. trade deficit lessened for a second month, with oil imports down sharply and the politically sensitive deficit with China narrowing to its lowest point in nine months."

"In other trading, the dollar bought 1.2157 Swiss francs, down from 1.2167 late Thursday, and 1.1384 Canadian dollars, up from 1.1348."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures rose sharply Friday, as the dollar fell to a more than two-year low versus the euro, boosting demand for the precious metal. Gold for June delivery closed up $10.20 at $689.90 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract gained 1.5% on the week."

"'Gold finally made a successful attempt at overcoming resistance at the $682/$685 level, after the US dollar sank to a 24-month low against the euro and oil prices firmed,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers. 'A combination of adverse factors keeps gnawing at the US currency and may leave the Fed in the unwelcome predicament of having to boost rates to throw out a life-preserver to the greenback,' Nadler said."

"Weakness in the dollar, firmer crude-oil prices and strong physical demand for gold have supported gold prices, said James Moore, metals analyst at
Crude-oil futures were flat Friday, having surged 3% in the previous session, drawing support from U.S. refinery outages and concerns over declining OPEC production."

"Other metals prices also gained. May silver closed up 23.5 cents at $14.090 an ounce, gaining 2.5% on the week. June palladium rose $6.75 at $381.05 an ounce, gaining 6.9% on the week, and July platinum rose $6.90 at $1,286.40 an ounce, gaining 1.6% on the week."

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Gold Falls From "Key Technical Levels"

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The euro fortified itself on recent gains against the dollar on Thursday, trading around two-year highs as the European Central Bank kept its interest rate steady and U.S. jobless claims hit a two-month high."

"The 13-nation euro bought US$1.3488 in afternoon European trading, up from US$1.3427 in New York late Wednesday. That put it at less than two U.S. cents short of its all-time high of US$1.3667, reached in December 2004."

"The euro was up amid the ECB's decision to keep its interest rate unchanged at 3.75 percent and Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet's tacit admission that it would likely lift the rate to 4 percent by June."

"The U.S. Federal Reserve has left rates unchanged over recent months even as the ECB steadily increased the cost of borrowing. The dollar was also hurt by worse-than-expected jobless claims in the U.S. which saw the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits reach a two-month high."

"That helped push the British pound up slightly to US$1.9791 from US$1.9753 and caused the dollar to fall to 119.01 Japanese yen from 119.30 yen."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures fell in volatile trading Thursday, as traders locked in gains, shrugging off weakness in the dollar and strength in crude-oil prices. Gold for June delivery closed down $2 at $679.70 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange."

"'Today's gold trading session was agonizingly lackluster as the metal tried to get its bearings, but was unsuccessful at either rising convincingly through the $682 price, or at falling under $670 per ounce,' said analyst Jon Nadler. 'Bullion has been repeatedly running into strong headwinds of resistance near the $682 area, despite continuing perceptions that the US dollar is on a basically one-way street lower,' Nadler said."

"'While the bullish trend remains intact, some traders feel that there may be a period of consolidation before gold prices manage to break resistance at $682 and the psychologically important $700 mark,' according to Action Economics."

"Other metals prices were mostly lower. May silver fell 3.5 cents to $13.855 an ounce, July platinum closed down $1.80 to $1,275.50 an ounce. June palladium bucked the trend, rising $4.75 to $374.30 an ounce."

From Reuters. "Palladium climbed to a new 11-month peak on Thursday and platinum touched its highest in nearly five months, buoyed by technical buying and positive momentum in the market."

"'Palladium's fundamentals are pretty poor. It's really a technical rally more than anything else,' said Robin Bhar, metals analyst at UBS Investment Bank. 'It's a small market and liquidity is poor. One can argue that it's easier to push up palladium than some other markets. We don't trust this rally and think it is unsustainable.'"

"Dealers said gold was supported by a weaker dollar but the metal struggled to break key technical levels."

"'The fundamentals remain positive for gold, but the market appears to lack conviction that the upside potential is not exhausted,' Dresdner Kleinwort said in a daily report."

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Palladium In "Technical Breakout"

Bloomberg reports on currencies. "Canada's dollar reached a four- month high as technical analysts said the currency's recent advances suggest further gains and the government said housing starts rose in March. The currency's appreciation accelerated after it moved past its average of the past 200 days, traders said. For some investors who use historical patterns to forecast the currency's future, that break was bullish."

"The Canadian economy is performing much better than people had thought,' said Jonathan Gencher, vice president of foreign exchange sales at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto. 'There is a lot of interest to buy the Canadian dollar.'"

"The Canadian currency rose 0.7 percent to 87.74 U.S. cents at 4:46 p.m. in Toronto. One U.S. dollar buys C$1.1398, the strongest for Canada's dollar since Dec. 5. The Canadian dollar's 200-day average is about C$1.1450 today."

"The move below C$1.1447 meant '`our bullish forecast for the U.S. dollar is at risk,' said George Davis, chief technical analyst at RBC Capital Markets in Toronto. RBC, Canada's largest bank by assets, forecast the Canadian dollar weakening to C$1.2100 this year."

"The currency got a boost earlier today after a report showed housing starts rose to 210,900 on an annual basis in March from 196,000 in February. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. released the data today."

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures closed marginally higher Wednesday, as the dollar recouped some of its prior-session losses and crude-oil futures traded flat on conflicting supply data. Gold for June delivery ended up 20 cents at $681.70 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange."

"'Bullion closed Wednesday's session on a markedly less enthusiastic note,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers. 'The gold rally shows some signs of fatigue and now has to contend with a rebounding US dollar and a renewed anti-inflation stance from the IMF as well as the Fed.'"

"Other metals prices were mixed. May silver fell 4 cents to $13.89 an ounce. July platinum closed up $7.70 at $1,281.30 an ounce, June palladium rose $6.10 at $369.55 an ounce."

"U.S. Federal Reserve members were very uncertain about the economic outlook and changed their policy statement to gain more flexibility to respond to the incoming data, the minutes said. 'The FOMC agreed that further policy firming might prove necessary to foster lower inflation, but in light of increased uncertainty about the outlook for both growth and inflation, the FOMC also agreed that the statement should no longer cite only the possibility of further firming,' the FOMC minutes said."

"'Instead the statement should indicate that future policy adjustments will depend on the evolution of the outlook for both inflation and economic growth, as implied by incoming information,' the minutes said."

"Elsewhere on the commodity markets, reformulated gasoline futures rallied Wednesday to an eight-month high, as a greater-than-expected draw on gasoline stocks helped support the belief that demand will remain strong through the summer driving season. Crude oil for May delivery was up 14 cents at $62.03 a barrel on NYMEX, but had been up as much as 67 cents at its intraday high of $62.56."

From Reuters. "Commission-house and technical buying sent U.S. palladium futures to a ten-month high on Wednesday, while gold contracts finished a touch higher after breaking above trading ranges a day earlier."

"Most-active palladium futures for June delivery on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange settled up $6.10 at $369.55 an ounce."

"Ralph D'Esposito of RJ Futures cited a technical breakout on the charts, along with commission house short covering, the buying back of futures or options previously sold to close out short positions."

"'We are hitting commission-house (buy) stops and speculative buying in palladium,' D'Esposito said, adding he also saw some good trade and commercial selling at the same time."

"The June palladium contract has risen more than 10 percent after setting a low of $336.20 on March 5."

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


A "New Selling Wave" For US$

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The dollar fell against other major currencies Tuesday amid worries over trade troubles between the U.S. and China and persistent concern about the strength of the U.S. economy. The 13-nation euro traded at $1.3424 in late New York trading, up from $1.3360 late Monday. The British pound rose to $1.9716 from $1.9610, while the dollar slipped to 119.12 Japanese yen from 119.30 yen."

"The dollar bought 1.2181 Swiss francs, down from 1.2264 late Monday, and 1.1475 Canadian dollars, dropping from 1.1529."

"On Tuesday, the United States filed two new complaints against China at the World Trade Organization over copyright policy and restrictions on the sale of American movies, music and books. The Chinese Commerce Ministry expressed 'strong dissatisfaction.'"

"'The fear is that China will retaliate to U.S. action and sell U.S. treasuries or simply not buy more,'analysts at Brown Brothers Harriman said. But they also noted that such concerns are largely unfounded, because 'China gains nothing by retaliating by selling treasuries (bonds) and driving the dollar down.'"

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures climbed to a five-week high Tuesday, as renewed trade tensions between the U.S. and China and a slide in the U.S. dollar boosted demand for the precious metal. Gold for June delivery settled up $4.60, or 0.7%, at $681.50 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It reached a high of $686.80 in intraday trading, the highest price seen for that contract since Feb. 28."

"'The U.S. currency took another hit this morning after overnight data showed a widening (actually a doubling) Chinese trade surplus,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers. 'Bullion was also bolstered by rising crude oil prices which showed strength after several sessions of significant weakness.'"

"'Many are expecting the dollar to come under some significant pressure in the near term with new rhetoric out of the U.S. government yesterday about another set of piracy and trade issues with China,' said Neal Ryan, director of economic research at Blanchard."

"'Again, this is a slippery slope and should the US ramp up the trade sanctions and protectionist trade policies, China will hit back,' he said. '[Since China is] one of the largest holders of our treasuries and dollar denominated assets, it doesn't take long to figure out how they could hurt the U.S. economy the most.'"

"The dollar 'enters a new selling wave' as the U.S. trade action 'is fuelling speculation of retaliatory acts from Beijing, which has already reported it will not attend this week's [Group of Seven] meeting in Washington, D.C.,' said Ashraf Laidi, chief foreign-exchange analyst at CMC Markets."

"James Moore, metals analyst at, said: 'Gold again looks well-placed to continue higher both short and long-term with negative dollar sentiment likely to be the main catalyst in the coming sessions.'"

"'Oil prices seem to have found some stability and may look to add additional momentum as we head towards peak summer demand period,' Moore said. 'Resistance in gold is now pegged at $684/89, but having spent some time consolidating the metal may now look to challenge $700.'"

"May silver settled up 12.0 cents at $13.930 an ounce on NYMEX. 'Silver is looking set for further gains short-term as the improved sentiment in gold and the phenomenal movements in the base metals seem set to draw further interest from investors and speculators,' Moore said."

"July platinum settled up $9.30 at $1,273.60 an ounce on NYMEX, while June palladium closed up $5.45 at $363.45 an ounce."

"'Platinum was in part aided this morning by a UBS AG report which raised its forecasts for platinum because of demand from automakers that use the metal in car parts to reduce harmful emissions,' Nadler said."

"Blame for the recent turmoil in global stocks should not be laid at China's feet, a new study released Tuesday found."

"Although stocks' sharp drop in late February began in Shanghai, 'the broad and global scope of the sell-off suggested the underlying causes lay elsewhere,' the International Monetary Fund said in its latest report about stability in financial markets."

"On Monday, IMF chief Rodrigo de Rato described global financial markets as a 'dry forest' in which sparks could set off unintended forest fires, and Tuesday's report served to flesh out his comments."

"The growth of carry trades is a sign that 'market participants do not view the cyclical factors contributing to the low-volatility environment, abundant low-cost liquidity, low leverage in the corporate sector, and high risk appetite, are likely to reverse in the near term,' the report said."

Monday, April 09, 2007


US$ Recovery "Unconvincing"

MarketWatch reports on currencies. "The dollar hovered near a six-week high against the yen and rose against the euro Monday, as traders played off growth in U.S. nonfarm payrolls for March that was much stronger than expected. The growth in payrolls raised the prospect that the Federal Reserve's next move on interest rates may be a further hike rather than a cut."

"'Thin trading conditions have kept the U.S. dollar in narrow trading ranges, while the stronger-than-expected employment data before the weekend is lending it support,' said Marc Chandler, global head of currency strategy at Brown Brothers Harriman."

"That said, 'the dollar's recovery...has thus far been unconvincing,' he said. 'It could be a function of the lack of participation, even though that very same fact could have produced a more violent reaction.'"

"Late in New York, the dollar was quoted at 119.28 yen, compared with 119.30 yen late Friday. The euro stood at $1.3356, compared with $1.3373. The British pound traded at $1.9615 vs. $1.9650. The dollar changed hands at 1.2262 Swiss francs, compared with 1.2189 francs."

"The Fed's scheduled to release the minutes from its most recent interest-rate meeting on Wednesday. The minutes will give 'some color on the Fed's decision to abandon its outright tightening bias,' said David Watt, senior currency strategist at RBC Capital Markets."

"Another key piece of data for currency traders will be producer prices for March, due for release on Friday at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time. Also on Friday, the Commerce Department releases data on the U.S. trade deficit for February. Economists expect the trade gap to have widened to $60.3 billion from $59.1 billion in January."

"'With few expecting the BoJ to hike this week, carry trades will remain in favour,' Watt said."

"Gold for June delivery ended down $2.50 at $676.90 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange Monday, reversing early-session gains, as falling crude-oil prices and the rising dollar weakened demand for the precious metal."

"With economic data lacking until the latter half of the week, 'gold will have to find its bearing on internal market conditions and show strength or weakness based mainly on the appetite of physical buyers and the gut feelings of speculative institutionals,' said analyst Jon Nadler."

"'Gold's ability to withstand a marked increase in central bank sales recently implies that physical demand is quite strong,' said Peter Grandich, editor of The Grandich Letter. 'In addition, another failed attempt to cap the gold price by the shorts has led to a breakout on the charts.'"

"Other metals prices were mixed. May silver ended down 7 cents at $13.81 an ounce. July platinum fell $1.60 at $1,264.30 an ounce, while June palladium rose $1.60 at $358.0 an ounce."

Thursday, April 05, 2007


US$ Bears "Remain Firmly In Control"

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The 13-nation euro rose to a two-year high against the U.S. dollar on Thursday, before the Easter holiday, after Washington reported increased unemployment. In late European trading the euro hit as high as US$1.3442, the highest since March 2005, before retreating slightly to US$1.3425."

"The British pound dropped to US$1.9707 from US$1.9753, after the Bank of England held interest rates steady at 5.25 percent, while the dollar rose slightly to purchase 118.69 Japanese yen from 118.67 in New York."

"The euro has been trading near its all-time high of US$1.3667, set in December 2004, on concerns over the U.S. economy and the massive trade and budget deficits."

From MarketWatch. "Dollar bears 'remain firmly in control,' said Sophia Drossos, currency strategist at Morgan Stanley. 'Our sense is that it was a combination of thinner than usual liquidity, given the holidays, and overwhelming dollar pessimism that pushed price action.'"

"'In light of the tone of dollar weakness that has dominated recent trading sentiment, dollar bears appear to already be anticipating a weak non-farm payrolls report tomorrow,' she said."

"Late in New York, the dollar was quoted at 118.71 yen, compared with 118.68 yen late Wednesday. The British pound traded at $1.9706 vs. $1.9754. The dollar changed hands at 1.2149 Swiss francs, compared with 1.2196 francs."

"Timothy Mazanec, senior currency strategist at Investors Bank & Trust Co., said 'even if payrolls number is strong tomorrow, that doesn't change the outlook' for the U.S. economy and interest rates."

"'People are still going to speculate about when the Fed will cut rates and when the European Central Bank, the Bank of England and all the other central banks will be raising rates,' he said."

"Gold futures closed higher Thursday to tally a two-session win of almost $10 an ounce with traders unwilling to sell the precious metal ahead of the long Easter holiday. Gold for June delivery rose $2 to close at $679.40 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, its strongest closing level since Feb. 27. The contract is up $9.60, or 1.4%, from Tuesday's closing level."

"'Gold prices continued their ascent, albeit at a slower pace,' said Jon Nadler, analyst at Kitco Bullion Dealers. 'Market watchers now believe that gold received a new lease on life by virtue of its passing over previous resistance levels and a close above $672 per ounce.'"

"'At least on the surface, it appears that gold is executing a de-coupling from oil (content near $64 and rising prospect of $60 in the cards), the U.S. dollar (weak but not terminal by a long shot) and from geopolitics (the Iran drama basically came and went without being the primary catalyst for substantial movements in the price of gold),' Nadler said."

"'The return of fund interest to the market has finally allowed gold to clear the $668-$670 resistance area and should now look to propel the metal back toward the highs of February ($689) and potentially beyond,' said James Moore, metals analyst at"

"A slight weakness in crude failed to put pressure on gold. May crude fell Thursday, extending Wednesday's decline as traders unwound the risk premium built into prices during a 13-day standoff between the U.K. and Iran."

"Other metals prices closed higher Thursday. June palladium rose $2.25 to close at $356.40 an ounce, and the July contract for sister metal platinum added $7 to end at $1,265.90 an ounce. May silver rose 12 cents to close at $13.74 an ounce."

"'Although we expect to see this bull run extend considerably further in the months ahead, we feel that we are in the short-covering squeeze part of the rebound at the moment and that things may pull back once the shorts have covered,' William Adams, analyst at told clients. 'We do not think the environment is as bullish as it was this time last year and therefore we should be prepared for some volatile trading,' he said."

"Regular metals trading on the exchange will be closed Friday and reopen Monday following the Easter holiday."

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


US$ Weak On Economic Worries

MarketWatch reports on currencies. "The dollar fell against the euro and yen Wednesday after a report showed nonmanufacturing sectors of the U.S. economy expanded at a slower pace in March, fueling concerns about the outlook for the U.S. economy."

"'The drop in U.S. services ISM to a four-year low is offsetting any upside reaction from Iran's decision to free the 15 British sailors,' said Ashraf Laidi, chief foreign-exchange analyst at CMC Markets. 'The fact that the much touted services sector is now joining its manufacturing counterpart into slowdown mode raises questions about the prospects of a soft economic landing.'"

"Late in New York, the dollar was quoted at 118.68 yen, compared with 118.95 yen late Tuesday. The euro stood at $1.3369, compared with $1.3328. The British pound traded at $1.9754 vs. $1.9737. The dollar changed hands at 1.2196 Swiss francs, compared with 1.2222 francs."

"Also weighing on the dollar was an Automatic Data Processing employment survey showing U.S. private-sector nonfarm payrolls increased by about 106,000 in March. The ADP report 'suggests downside risk for the nonfarm-payrolls report,' said T. J. Marta, strategist at RBC Capital Markets."

"Elsewhere, the yen touched fresh five-week lows versus the dollar and euro on Wednesday before recovering as risk appetite was on the rise again amid easing tensions between the U.K. and Iran. See futures movers."

"Mitul Kotecha, foreign-exchange analyst at French bank Calyon, said as interest rates remain the dominant driver in the currencies market, 'there seems to be little that will dent this carry attraction over coming weeks, with market volatility remaining low and risk appetite high.'"

"Gold futures climbed Wednesday to close at a five-week high, underpinned by weakness in the dollar and physical demand, even as Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad triggered a decline in crude-oil prices by saying captured British sailors would be freed."

"Gold for June delivery rose $7.70 to close at $677.40 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It climbed to $681 earlier, its strongest intraday level since March 1."

"'The current rise in the gold price is overdue, but overhead resistance got in the way,' said Julian Phillips, an analyst at 'It is now out of the way so the jump is happening now."

"'This is caused not solely by the situation in Iran but a combination of factors,' he said. 'The factors include the fall in the dollar and expectations for more declines, oil prices holding above $60 a barrel, strong physical demand for gold at just under $660 and overall 'global uncertainty,' especially in the Middle East, he said."

"Indeed, 'there has been an aggressive shorting campaign to keep gold below $666,' said Peter Grandich, editor of the Grandich Letter. But 'like all previous capping exercises, this one is failing also thanks to an incredibly strong physical market.'"

"Neal Ryan, director of economic research at Blanchard said 'it's the physical supply side of the market in London that's been influencing prices so much the last few weeks.'"

"'Gold sales have been swamping the market the last three weeks...and the price has held up considerably well and even increased under that pressure,' he said. 'I think what we've seen today is the end of that selling pressure.' So, 'we're going to see prices jump up and challenge the May '06 high in 2-3 weeks in my opinion,' he said."

"Other metals prices climbed along with gold, though palladium was a lone loser, with its June contract closing down $1.60 at $354.15 an ounce. May silver rose 19 cents to end at $13.62 an ounce and July platinum rose $6.60 to close at $1,258.90 an ounce."

Tuesday, April 03, 2007


Gold "Range-Bound"

The Associated Press reports on currencies. "The dollar strengthened against most major currencies Tuesday as the yen fell on expectations that Japanese investors will resume selling the currency in the new fiscal year. The dollar bought 118.88 yen in late New York trading, up from 117.79 yen late Monday."

"The 13-nation euro traded at $1.3331, down from $1.3364, while the British pound fell to $1.9746 from $1.9782."

"Yen-funded carry trades are picking up again after unwinding throughout March, and some expect the currency to lose more steam as investors buy up foreign bonds in Japan's new fiscal year, which began April 1, said David Gilmore, a partner at Foreign Exchange Analytics."

"In other trading, the dollar bought 1.2221 Swiss francs, rising from 1.2148 late Monday, and 1.1591 Canadian dollars, up from 1.1562."

From MarketWatch. "June gold declined by $1.80 to close at $669.70 an ounce in New York, after reaching a high of $673.20 as traders remained focused on developments surrounding standoff between Iran and the U.K.."

"'For the moment, dips are still being viewed as a good buying opportunity, a theme likely to continue as we approach the wedding/monsoon season in India,' said James Moore, a metals analyst at In a note to clients, he called 'encouraging' the emergence of technical support around the $656 chart line."

"However, 'with the market still largely long, there remains the risk of a deeper correction short-term,' Moore said."

"On Monday, June gold had closed at $671.50, up $2.50, after trading as low as $661.70."

"Movements in the price of crude oil also filtered into metals trading. Crude for May delivery closed 2% lower with tensions between Iran and the U.K. easing slightly."

"May silver climbed 8 cents to close at $13.43 an ounce, while June palladium added $2.05 to end at $355.75 an ounce and July platinum rose $3.30 to close at $1,252.30 an ounce."

From Reuters. "Spot gold rose to $667.50 an ounce, its highest for the session, before easing to $664.20/665.20 by 3:35 p.m. EDT, compared with $664.50/665.00 in New York late on Monday."

"'We are range-bound ahead of Easter. The market is long and new buyers are reluctant to enter into the market until we break through some resistance levels, which in my mind would be $670,' said David Holmes, director of precious metals sales at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein."

"Many analysts were not convinced that buying interest was enough to take prices up through $670 and toward the psychologically important $700 area."

From RIA Novosti. "Russia's gold and foreign currency reserves could stop growing by 2010-2011, the Central Bank first deputy head said Tuesday. 'By 2010-2011, the gold and currency reserves will stop growing,' Alexei Ulyukayev said."

"Ulyukayev said capital inflow would not compensate for a decline in trade surplus starting from 2008. The growth of gold and currency reserves will slow down by $30-$40 billion in 2007, year-on-year, he said, adding that the trend would persist in 2008."

"'Consequently, the Central Bank should buy less foreign currency on the domestic market,' Ulyukayev said adding that this was the best way to reduce the growth of money supply, which the Central Bank expects to be 33%, against 50% in 2006."

Monday, April 02, 2007


Trade "Continues To Weigh On US$"

Bloomberg reports on currencies. "The dollar was little changed against the euro and the yen after an industry report showed slower U.S. factory growth last month while a gauge of prices manufacturers pay rose more than economists forecast. The evidence of accelerating inflation suggests the Federal Reserve will be more likely to keep borrowing costs at a six-year high, reducing pressure on the dollar."

"The dollar fell to $1.3366 against the euro at 4:11 p.m. in New York, from $1.3354 on March 30. The U.S. currency was unchanged at 117.83 yen."

"'I don't think the report will have a big impact on the dollar,' said Christian Dupont, a senior currency trader in Montreal at Societe Generale SA. 'The weaker ISM number simply gave some dollar bears an excuse to sell the dollar. The sentiment surrounding the dollar has been negative.'"

"The dollar fell against the euro and the yen last week after the U.S. added tariffs on imports from China and on speculation mounting tension in the Mideast will increase geopolitical risks. 'The news about levies on imports from China will continue to weigh on the dollar,' said Scott Schultz, a currency trader in New York at Brown Brothers Harriman & Co. 'Protectionism is not good for trade flow and is negative for the dollar.'"

From MarketWatch. "Gold futures climbed Monday to close at their highest level in three trading sessions, taking a turn higher as some traders viewed developments in the stand-off between Iran and the U.K. as taking a slight turn for the worst."

"Gold for April delivery climbed $2.70 to close at $665.70 an ounce on the New York Mercantile Exchange, reversing from an earlier dip to $657. Although April remains the front-month contract for futures, most of the trading volume has moved to the June contract, which closed at $671.50, up $2.50, after trading as low as $661.70 earlier."

"'Geopolitics should not be ignored as the pendulum could swing from diplomacy to confrontation over a single word or nuance,' said Jon Nadler, an analyst at"

"Overall, gold's price action 'screams physical selling (or leasing) in the London market which means the gold is coming out of central bank vaults,' said Neal Ryan, director of economic research at Blanchard. 'There is no other explanation for this type of price activity.'"

"'Oil has been up and down all morning and gold prices [hadn't] reacted to oil price fluctuations until the London market closed,' he said. May crude closed slightly higher Monday."

"Juxtaposed against this uncertain backdrop, gold's earlier weakness came as a bit perplexing to some analysts. 'There is no clear reason, with the dollar down, oil prices volatile (but still holding over $65), no resolution to the U.K./Iran standoff now going into it's second full week and only bullish news entering the market from a demand standpoint, that precious metals should be falling,' said Ryan."

"And looking further ahead, 'we are now moving into what is traditionally the strongest period for physical demand, with the start of the monsoon/wedding season later in the month,' said James Moore, metals analyst at"

"Most other metals prices moved lower. May silver lost 0.7%, or 10 cents, to close at $13.35 an ounce. July platinum fell $5.80 to end at $1,249 an ounce and June palladium skidded $3.55 to close at $353.70 an ounce."

The Asia Sentinel. "Amid the myriad booms and bubbles the asset world has witnessed in recent months, one stands out, at least for originality: Vietnam. It is awash in more money than it can handle."

"In mid-March, a thousand portfolio investors, investment bankers and fund managers crowded into Hanoi’s Melia Hotel for an investment conference that coincided with a flurry of announcements about new funds being formed to invest in Asia’s latest miracle economy."

"Here was the successor to China of the past decade, Thailand-Malaysia of the 1985-1995 era, Taiwan and Korea of 1975-1985 and Japan during the post-1965 boom. Vietnam is the latest to fly in the Asian geese formation."

"New markets are particularly prone to speculative excesses and Vietnam is no exception. This has been a money-and-momentum driven market with scant regard for such niceties as price-to-earnings or price-to-book ratios. They are there for quick profits and an improvement on the modest yields of bank deposits."

"The estimated $2 to 3 billion of new foreign portfolio money waiting in the wings is a huge amount for this market to absorb. It may not seem so big relative to a $16bn market capitalization but it is huge relative both to the free float of those listed and bearing in mind that foreign holdings for some counters, mainly banks, are close to their limits (30 percent in the case of banks)."

"As the banking system is largely state-owned it may not be in danger of the kind of meltdown suffered in many countries during the Asian financial crisis of 1997-1998. However, credit has almost certainly been growing too fast even for an economy with 13 percent nominal growth and still in the process of monetization."

"In short, Vietnam has probably not done enough during this period of easy money to reduce risk by increasing its forex reserves. So it will need to be on guard so that today’s inflow excesses do not become tomorrow’s outflow flood and drain those reserves."

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