NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- After getting sold down about five bucks or so in the early going in Far East trading on their Wednesday, the gold price bottomed out just after 12 o'clock noon Hong Kong time. From there it rallied very slowly and quietly until the noon silver fix was in, in London. Then the rally picked up a little bit more steam, but came to an end around 12:30 p.m. in New York. After that it got sold back down to about unchanged on the day.
The CME recorded the low and high ticks at $1,283.90 and $1,296.60 in the April contract.
Gold closed in New York yesterday at $1,291.80 spot---up 90 cents. Volume, net of February and March, was 122,000 contracts---which is a number higher than I like to see based on the price action.The silver price hit its low of the day at the same time as gold did in Hong Kong. From there it chopped sideways until about 10 a.m. GMT in London. Then a decent rally began that got cut off at the knees at, or shortly after, the noon London silver fix. Another rally began around 9:45 a.m. in New York---and that ran into a willing seller at exactly 10:30 a.m. EST---and once Comex trading finished for the day, the silver price got sold back to precisely unchanged. The low and high were reported as $20.08 and $20.39 in the March contract. Silver finished the day at $20.24 spot, exactly where it closed on Tuesday. Net volume was 33,000 contracts---and it's obvious to me that JPMorgan et al had to throw a decent amount of Comex paper at the silver price during the New York session to get it to behave. And closing it exactly on its Tuesday closing price as well, is simply too cute for words. Platinum and palladium fared far better than the other two precious metals, but just eye-balling the charts, it's hard for me to believe that the price action was totally free market, if you get my drift. But maybe I'm looking for black bears in dark rooms that aren't there. You can make up your own mind. Here are the charts. The dollar index closed on Tuesday afternoon in New York at 80.62---and then didn't do much until shortly before noon Hong Kong time. From there it got sold down to its 80.50 low of the day, before spiking up to its 80.83 high by 12:30 p.m GMT in London. For the rest of the day it quietly sold off, finishing the Wednesday session at 80.70---up 8 basis points. Just for fun, here's the one-year dollar index so you can get an idea of where we stand at the moment compared to the action during the last 12 months. The gold stocks opened in the green, but headed lower immediately---and by the end of the trading day on Wednesday, they closed down 2.77%---giving back a large chunk of what they gained on Tuesday. It was pretty much the same story in the silver stocks, as they followed a similar path to the gold stocks---and Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down a chunky 3.00%---giving back virtually all of their gains from Tuesday as well. The CME's Daily Delivery Report showed that 63 gold and zero silver contracts were posted for delivery on Friday within the Comex-approved depositories. Canada's Bank of Nova Scotia was the short/issuer on 59 contracts---and HSBC USA and Barclays were the two largest long/stoppers with 41 and 18 contracts apiece. The link to yesterday's Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. According to the CME's Wednesday preliminary report, which was posted on their website in the wee hours of this morning EST, there are about 1,000 gold contracts still open in the February delivery month---but only 11 silver contracts. There were no reported changes in GLD yesterday---and as of 9:13 p.m. EST yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV. The U.S. Mint had nothing to say for itself on Wednesday, either. There was little in/out activity in either gold or silver at the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday. In gold, 5,075 troy ounces were received---and 20,125 troy ounces were shipped out. In silver, nothing was reported received, but 23,096 troy ounces were shipped out. Because of the lack of activity, I won't bother with links to the depositories today. I have the usual number of stories for a mid-week column---and I hope you can find the time to read the ones you like.