By Michelle Smith — Exclusive to Silver Investing News
Silver's multi-week downtrend provided the bears with a technical advantage at th e beg i n n i ng of the week, but by Thursday, the bulls looked to be regaining some control. The silver market appears in need of direction and therefore remains vulnerable to macroeconomic news. China, set to release key data Thursday night, could very well determine the path that the metal travels.
As expected, last Friday's US monthly jobs report created buzz as it was generally considered to be a disappointment. The 120,000 jobs added fell short of analysts' predictions and marked the lowest rate in five months. Immediately following the release, there was talk of how significant this figure would likely be to the Federal Reserve, and with that came speculation as to whether quantitative easing would be put back on the table. Silver, which opened the week displaying weakness, strove for gains during the first day of trading. At times on Monday the metal traded at the highest levels seen since April 4. Most of the upward movement was believed to be a spillover from gold, which opened the week strongly in part due to gold protests in India ending, but some of the positive activity was attributed to renewed hope for stimulus. Silver, however, could not keep a grip on its initial gains, and the week's first New York closing spot price was $31.76. Throughout the week silver appeared to trade along with other industrial metals such as copper and platinum. When they showed weakness, silver often declined in suit, but when they climbed the white metal followed. On Tuesday, for example, the Dow and S&P 500 had a terrible day, but silver decoupled from equities and managed to close up at $31.84. Chinese data The market took notice of Chinese trade data, which showed that the nation's trade deficit increased by unexpected proportions. China, known for its surpluses, reported a $31.5 billion deficit for February. Given that imports were up, one may assume that this is positive news. However, according to Bloomberg Businessweek, this is China's largest deficit since 1989. For some, the trade data stoked concerns about the country's economic conditions. But, some analysts say the markets should not read too much into this data, especially since China celebrated the lunar new year in January and that is the nation's largest festive event.