Closing Gold & Silver Market Report – 8/19/2011
VICE PRESIDENT BIDEN REASSURES CHINA; BELGIUM ADDS TO “EURO BOND” PRESSURE
It’s another record for gold today as gold futures ended the day at $1,852.20, an increase of $30.20. With a number of macroeconomic reports indicating that the U.S. economy continues to be shaky, investors have continued to turn to gold as a safe haven, and some analysts have even predicted it could hit $2,000 by next week. Meanwhile, U.S. stock indexes ended the day by extending losses into a fourth week.
In a meeting with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on the second day of a nine-day visit to Asia, Vice President Joe Biden assured the Premier that China has “nothing to fear” over its U.S. Treasuries investments. Premier Wen also expressed confidence in the U.S.’s stability, stating that such stability is “…in the interest of the whole world.” With China being the largest foreign creditor for the U.S., the issue of China’s holdings in U.S. debt has been heavily discussed between Vice President Biden and Premier Wen. Vice President Biden also told the Chinese leader that U.S. Treasuries will be taken care of “…not merely because China owns 8 percent of them, but because the Americans own 85 percent.”
Belgium is adding to the pressure already being felt by Germany and France over the euro zone debt crisis. Didier Reynders, Belgium’s Finance Minister, joined those who are calling for the issuance of “euro bonds” as a way to reassure markets that are currently experiencing government bond and bank share selloffs from debtor countries. Resistance to the so-called euro bonds has been strong in Germany, and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly criticized the proposal as a “slippery slope” that could leave euro zone countries worse off than they were before.
Now that Standard & Poor’s has downgraded the U.S. credit rating to AA+, stocks of countries that currently hold AAA ratings (such as Germany, Canada, and Switzerland) are experiencing a rush from investors still fearful about the worldwide economy. In a statement from EPFR Global, managing director Brad Durham stated, “At least in the developed markets space, investors are heeding the old dictum that, in tough times, you invest in the creditor, not the debtor."
At 4:15 PM (CT), the APMEX precious metals spot prices were:
· Gold - $1,857.30 - Up $33.30
· Silver - $43.04 - Up $2.25
· Platinum - $1,880.10 - Up $32.40
· Palladium - $755.10 - Down $3.90