NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- It was a nothing day in both gold and silver on Wednesday---probably helped out by the big winter storm on the U.S. east coast yesterday. Volume was light---and the high and low ticks aren't worth looking up. However, some thoughtful soul showed up in the electronic market and sold the price down for a small loss on the day.
Gold closed at $1,236.80 spot, down $3.80 from Tuesday's closing price. Net volume was only 75,000 contracts.
It was precisely the same story in silver---and the attempt to rally above the $20 spot price mark at 1 p.m. Hong Kong time got turned back. After that it followed the gold price pattern exactly, including the tiny sell off after the Comex close. Silver finished the Tuesday session at $19.795 spot, which was down 7 cents on the day. Volume was a tiny 17,500 contracts. After some rather small down-up-down price action starting around 1 p.m. Hong Kong time, the platinum and palladium markets didn't do much either---finishing mostly unchanged. The dollar index opened the Wednesday trading day at 81.07---and then rallied a bit up to 81.19 just before the London open. It was all down hill to the 80.97 low of the day that came shortly before 9 a.m. in New York. But someone was there to catch that proverbial falling knife once again---and the index rallied to close back on its high of the day at 81.19---which was up 12 basis points from Tuesday's close. The gold stocks gapped down almost 2% at the open---and then headed lower from there, with most of the losses in by around 12:20 p.m. EST. After that, the index chopped sideways for the rest of the day. The HUI finished down 2.77%. It was more or less the same chart pattern in the silver equities---and Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 1.79%. The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 20 gold and 143 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Friday. In gold, JPMorgan was the issuer of all 20 contracts---and Canada's Bank of Nova Scotia stopped them all. In silver, it was Jefferies delivering 117 of those contracts---and JPMorgan [out of its proprietary trading account] provided the rest. Canada's Scotiabank stopped them all as well. The link to yesterday's Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. There was another withdrawal from GLD yesterday. This time an authorized participant redeemed GLD shares totaling 38,567 troy ounces. And as of 10:01 p.m. EST yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV. The U.S Mint had a smallish sales report yesterday. They sold 5,000 ounces of gold eagles---and 25,000 silver eagles. There was no in/out movement in gold at the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday. There wasn't much movement in silver, either---as 97,824 troy ounces were reported received---and 81,748 troy ounces were shipped out. The link to that activity is here. The Central Bank of the Russian Federation finally got around to updating their website for December---and for the first time in four months they added to their gold reserves. This time it was 700,000 troy ounces. Their total gold reserves that they're reporting on their website now totals 33.3 million troy ounces. For all of 2013 they added 2.5 million troy ounces to their 'reported' reserves---about 79.5 metric tonnes. It's estimated that Russia will produce about 240 metric tonnes of gold in 2013---so it appears that only a third of what they produced last year is going into their reported reserves. But as I've speculated before, there's a chance that the Russians may be learning from the Chinese---and not reporting all they're doing in this regard. Only time will tell if that's the case or not. Here's Nick Laird's wonderful chart showing the December addition. I have the usual number of stories for a weekday column and, as always, the final edit is all yours.