GOLD & SILVER PRICES CONTINUE TO FEEL PRESSURE – FALL FOR SECOND STRAIGHT WEEK
Gold fell for a second straight week amid easing tensions in Ukraine. Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen’s congressional testimony included dovish comments, but last week’s continuation of tapering and the situation in Ukraine pressured the Gold price.
Gold started the week higher as Ukraine moved closer to war, according to some analysts. Saxo Bank’s head of research Ole Hansen said, “Gold is trading near the highest in three weeks as Ukraine once again attracts some safe-haven demand and the dollar continues to trade on the weak side. The weakness following Friday’s strong U.S. jobs report was quickly reversed and the subsequent rally of $30 may have given the bulls back some of the confidence that has been missing for the past few weeks.”
That didn’t last, however, as Tuesday saw the stock market pull back from record highs. "It's hard to be bearish, but it's difficult to be bullish at all-time highs; I'd probably be more inclined to put money on the down side rather than on new highs, at least for the next few weeks," Andrew Wilkinson, chief market analyst at Interactive Brokers, said. The CBOE Volatility Index, a measure of investor uncertainty, rose 2.3 percent. Also factoring in was a report that the U.S. economy shrank in the first quarter of 2014, which was the first time in three years.
Comments made by Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen hinted towards a stronger U.S. economy, along with reports of talks aimed at ending the Ukraine-Russia conflict, have provided pressure to the metals. Tyler Richey, an analyst for the 7:00’s Report, which offers daily market commentary, said, “It is apparent that the Gold market had priced in and expected Chair Yellen to be ‘dovish’ and when she was not, we saw some speculative longs unwind.”
Thursday, geopolitical tensions helped buoy the yellow metal despite mild gains of Dow Jones equity shares. “Safe-haven buying has dominated jittery Gold trading since early April amid a lack of other drivers,” VTB Capital analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov said. The crisis in Ukraine has been the central driver of Gold as tensions have escalated to full scale violence between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian loyalists. Gold was up more than seven percent this year even as the Federal Reserve cut monthly stimulus measures nearly in half. The slow-down in quantitative easing measures bodes well for the U.S. dollar but has not been enough to drive Precious Metals much lower following last year’s drop.
Friday’s results were mostly flat, and Mitsubishi analyst Jonathan Butler said, “With a lack of any particular news on the economic front, and with the tensions in Ukraine having declined from the elevated levels we've seen recently, the market is searching for direction, stuck in a range either side of $1,300 [per ounce]”.
At 5 p.m. (ET), the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:
- Gold, $1,291.90, Up $2.20.
- Silver, $19.24, Up $0.05.
- Platinum, $1,432.90, Down $5.20.
- Palladium, $802.50, Down $2.50.
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