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TheStreet Open House

Tuesday, December 17: Today in Gold and Silver

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The gold price didn't do a lot for most of the trading day in the Far East on their Monday, but shortly after 3 p.m. Hong Kong time, the price began to sag a bit, hitting its low of the day shortly before 10 a.m. in London.

From there it rallied until noon GMT, and the chopped sideways until at, or just after, the London p.m. gold fix.  The rally that began at that point made it to its high of the day around 12:15 p.m. in New York.  The rally got capped at that point---and from there sold off quietly into the 4 p.m. close of the equity markets before trading sideways into the 5:15 p.m. EST electronic close.

The low and high ticks were recorded by the CME as $1,227.20 and $1,251.70 in the February contract.

Gold closed the Monday session at $1,240.70 spot, obviously well of its high.  Net volume was 126,000 contracts.  If yesterday's rally was short covering, my guess is that it ran into resistance from the usual suspects.

The silver price chart looked similar to the gold price chart, except for the fact that the rally in silver that began shortly after the 11 a.m EST London close, was far more substantial than the rally in gold that took place at the same time.

The high for silver came at the same time as the high for gold---at 12:15 p.m. in New York.  After that, silver got sold back down below the $20 spot price mark again, giving up over half of its gains by the close..

The low and high tick in silver was $19.445 and $20.29 in the March contract.

Silver closed at $19.965 spot, up 28.5 cents from Friday's close.  Net volume was very decent at 39,500 contracts.

Platinum was under some selling pressure on Monday, and it's low came at the London p.m. gold fix as well.  The price recovered a bit into the close, but still finished down on the day by a few dollars.  Palladium didn't do much, but spiked down to its low an hour before platinum and then recovered to finish unchanged.  Here are the charts.

I had a Christmas/social function to attend last night, so that's why the Kitco charts posted above aren't updated as of midnight EST.

The dollar index closed late Friday afternoon in New York at 80.18---and began to head lower almost as soon as trading began at 6 p.m. EST in New York on Sunday evening.  The low tick of 79.94 came shortly before 12:30 p.m. GMT in London, but it appeared that there was someone there to catch a falling knife---and the dollar rallied almost back to unchanged by the close, finishing the Monday trading session at 80.11---down seven basis points.  Here's the two-day chart that includes the Sunday night open in New York.

The gold stocks pretty much mirrored the price action in the metal itself---and the HUI finished up 0.89%.

The price action in the silver equities was somewhat similar, but the shares topped out just before the silver price hit its high.  From there they chopped a bit lower into the close.  Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 1.18%.

The CME's Daily Delivery Report showed that 526 gold and 15 silver contracts were posted for delivery tomorrow within the Comex-approved depositories.  In gold, the only short/issuer worth mentioning was Canada's Bank of Nova Scotia with 491 contracts---and it nearly goes without saying that the only long/stopper of note was JPMorgan Chase with 509 contracts in it's in-house [proprietary] trading account.

In silver, the 15 contracts were stopped by JPMorgan and Canada's Bank of Nova Scotia.  The 10 contracts that JPM is taking delivery of, were in its in-house [proprietary] trading account as usual.

The link to yesterday's Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.

GLD took another big hit yesterday as an authorized participant withdrew 279,724 troy ounces---and as of 7:46 p.m. EST yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV.

Even though yesterday was Monday, a day when the U.S. Mint usually has a sales report, nothing was reported sold on their website.

Over at the Comex-approved depositories on Friday, it was a fairly busy day for gold, as 96,286 troy ounces were reported received---but only 1,993 troy ounces were shipped out.  And, for the fourth day in a row, JPMorgan Chase took precisely two metric tonnes of kilobars into its eligible account---2,000 one kilogram gold bars.  The link to that activity is here.

It was busy in silver as well, as 600,148 troy ounces were reported shipped in, and 205,649 troy ounces were shipped out.  The big receipt went into Brink's, Inc.  The link to that action is here.

Since it's Tuesday, I have a fair number of stories for you today---and I'll leave the final edit up to you.

¤ The Wrap

As was the case in August, JPMorgan appears to be starting to move much of the gold it has taken delivery of into its own Comex-approved warehouse, which is logical as why pay someone else for storage when you have your own facility. With more than 2,000 contracts still open in the December delivery month, unless JPMorgan starts selling those contracts, the bank looks set to take even more for delivery. I have to laugh (thru the tears) that while the regulators pass the much-ballyhooed Volcker Rule, which seeks to ban speculative proprietary trading by banks and take deep bows for their action, JPMorgan appears to be mashing a cream pie in the regulators’ face with their proprietary trading in Comex gold and silver. - Silver analyst Ted Butler: 14 December 2013

I'm not too sure what to read into yesterday's price action in both gold and silver.  It appeared to be short covering, but if that's what it was, then the rallies caused by this action by the mega-short technical funds was met head on by JPMorgan et al.  But whatever did happen will appear in Friday's Commitment of Traders Report.

While I'm on that subject----today, at the 1:30 p.m. EST close of Comex trading, is the cut-off for that report---so I'll be very interested in seeing how the price action unfolds as the trading progresses in New York later this  morning.

Other than that, the only other news worthy of mentioning is this week's FOMC meeting, which starts today.  One never knows how the precious metals will "react"---or be allowed to react---but we'll find out as the next two days progress.

In Far East trading on their Tuesday, not much happened until shortly before 2 p.m. Hong Kong time, when all four precious metals rallied noticeably.  That state of affairs wasn't allowed to last very long, as within an hour of the London open, all four were back below their respective Monday closing prices in New York.  Volumes, which had been reasonably light earlier, are now back to average for this time of day, so it's obvious that "da boyz" had to throw a lot of paper at those budding rallies to make them go away.

And after bouncing off the 80.00 mark at the 8 a.m. GMT London open, the dollar index has rallied back to almost unchanged as I hit the send button on today's column at 5:15 a.m. EST.

That's it for today---and I'm off to bed.

See you here tomorrow.

This is an abbreviated version of Ed Steer's Gold & Silver Daily Sign-up to have to the complete market review delivered to your email inbox each morning for free.

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