Posted on March 16, 2017
Gold Spot Price Open: $1,204
Gold Spot Price Close: $1,229
Change in Gold Spot Price: +$25
Silver Spot Price Open: $16.98
Silver Spot Price Close: $17.29
Change in Silver Spot Price: +$0.31
Gold and silver continued to move forward on Thursday, spurred mostly by a much less hawkish than expected Federal Reserve. When all was said and done on Thursday, gold ended up adding 25 dollars while silver moved upward by more than 30 cents. Platinum and palladium were also up on the day, however platinum added just a few dollars while palladium added a dollar or two more than 5.
As is always the case, investors tuned into the weekly jobless claims data that was dealt today. Because much of the focus is still being placed on the FOMC and their decision to raise rates, there was not all that much reaction to the jobless claims figures. Officially, the Department of Labor announced that last week saw 2,000 fewer first-time claims for unemployment benefits than the week before.
This brought the seasonally-adjusted average number of claims down to 241,000. Considering expectations were for the seasonally-adjusted average to be right around 240,000, this data did not come as too much of a surprise to anyone.
As for the 4-week moving average of weekly claims, that figure was up by about 750. All things considered, we did not witness much of a change across the US employment landscape from last week to this week.
After falling steadily over the past two weeks, it seems as though precious metals have bottomed out and are in the process of rebounding. As it stands, outside markets have gotten increasingly bullish in recent days. For one, the US Dollar is backing down after recent gains while crude oil prices are bouncing back. As a result, we have been seeing a lot of short-covering in futures markets while simultaneously seeing bargain-hunting boost physical purchases of precious metals.
Also helping the precious metals market is the fact that the Fed was not quite as hawkish as most people were expecting. While some people might be led to believe that a rate hike would drive prices downward, that is something that took place over the past two weeks. Having been completely priced in, the actual rate hike announcement did not have too much of an impact on gold and silver spot values.
What did impact spot values was the relatively soft tone taken by the FOMC in the meeting’s wake. A lot of folks were anticipating that the Fed would come out firing, expressing their commitment to hiking rates as early and as often as they can through the end of the year, but that much did not come to fruition. Instead, we were greeted with the same cautionary Fed we have come to know. Though there was allusion that further rate hikes are coming—some of which may come in the near future—there was no heated rhetoric where the Fed committed to at least 4 more rate hikes. A lot still needs to be sorted out before the Fed can say with any amount of confidence exactly how many more rate hikes are going to happen this year.
Particularly, a lot of the question marks surrounding President Trump’s policies need to be answered, and there is no saying when this will happen.
All things considered, Thursday was a fairly quiet day, but it did see precious metals continue along the upward path that was started yesterday. As we look ahead to the final day of the week, there is not much in the way of economic data expected to be dealt, so it will be interesting to see if precious metals spot values can continue to appreciate to finish the week with large gains.