Friday, August 23: Today In Gold And Silver

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Gold hit its low just before 8 a.m. Tokyo time on their Thursday morning, as the high-frequency traders did their thing, dropping the gold price over ten bucks in just minutes, and then the gold price spent the rest of the day crawling higher.  The high tick in New York [$1,382.90 spot] came a few minutes after the London p.m. gold fix.  From there it got sold down a bit more than ten dollars, but beginning around 3:30 p.m. EDT, the gold price rallied a bit into the close.

Gold finished the New York trading session at $1,376.10 spot, up $9.30 from Wednesday's close.  Volume, net of August and September, was 155,000 contracts, with 25 percent of that occurring before the 10:30 a.m. BST London a.m. gold fix.  Thursday volume in gold was only 5,000 contracts less than Wednesday's volume.

It was virtually the same story in silver in  Far East trading, and the 9 a.m. price spike in London got dealt with the same in the same manner as the price spike in gold that occurred at the same moment.  And, also like gold, the high of the day came shortly after the 3 p.m. BST London p.m. gold fix, which was 10 a.m. in New York.  Kitco recorded that as $23.46 spot.  Silver had another intraday move of over a dollar.

After that, the silver price followed the gold price like a shadow.

Silver closed at $23.185 spot, up 29.5 cents on the day and, as usual, well of its high.   Net volume was surprisingly low at a hair over 30,000 contracts, down substantially from Wednesday's volume.

Platinum and palladium hit their respective lows very early in Far East trading on their Thursday as well, and the platinum price never looked back from there.  The rally in palladium was somewhat more subdued.  Here are the charts.

The dollar index closed on Wednesday afternoon in New York at 81.38 and then rallied up to the 81.50 level shortly before noon in Hong Kong.  And except for brief spike up to about 81.72 in morning trading in London, the index traded around 81.50 for the entire day, closing at 81.48, up 10 basis points.

The gold shares gapped up a bit at the open and stayed in positive territory for the rest of the day, as the HUI closed up 1.39%.

The silver stocks did marginally better, as Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 1.65%.

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The CME's Daily Delivery Report showed that 36 gold and 1 silver contract were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Monday.  Of the 36 gold contracts posted for delivery by the short/issuers, JPMorgan Chase gobbled up 32 of them in its in-house [proprietary] trading account.  The link to yesterday's Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.

As of 9:54 p.m. EDT yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in either GLD or SLV.

Over at Switzerland's Zürcher Kantonalbank, they updated their precious metal ETFs for Friday, August 16.  They showed a small decline of 13,028 troy ounces in their gold ETF.  But their silver ETF went in the other direction, adding 349,800 troy ounces.

Joshua Gibbons, the Guru of the SLV Silver Bar List, updated his website with SLV's bar movements for the week ending on Wednesday, August 21.  This, in part, is what he had to say:  "Analysis of the 21 August bar list and comparison to the previous week's list: 1,841,572.6 troy ounces were removed (all from Brinks London), 6,052,114.7 ounces was added (3.6M oz. to JPM New York, 2.3M oz. to Brinks London), no bars had a serial number change.

The bars removed were from: Solar Applied Materials (0.8M oz.), Russian State Refineries (0.4M oz.), Henan Yuguang (0.2M oz.), and seven others.  The bars added were from: Johnson Matthey U.S. (3.4M oz.), Korea Zinc (1.2M oz.), Solar Applied Materials (0.4M oz.), and 16 others."  The link to his website is here.

The U.S. Mint had another sales report yesterday, all of it in gold.  They sold 2,000 ounces of gold eagles and 2,500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes.

Over at the Comex-approved depositories on Wednesday, they reported receiving 50,549 troy ounces of gold and shipped out 19,449 ounces.  The link to that activity is here.

In silver, these same depositories reported receiving only 9,988 troy ounces, but shipped 608,916 ounces of the stuff out the door for parts unknown.  The link to that action is here.

I don't have that many stories for you today, as it was a pretty slow news day on Thursday, but I hope you can find a few in here that interest you.

¤ The Wrap

Even if it were desirable, America is not strong enough to police the world by force. If that attempt is made, the blessings of liberty will be replaced by coercion and tyranny at home. We cannot practice might and force abroad and retain freedom at home. - Nebraska Congressman (1952) Howard Buffett, Warren's wiser daddy.

Thursday was just another day where the precious metals had to dig themselves out of the price hole dug for them in Far East trading.  And even though both gold and silver gained back all of their Wednesday loses, plus a bit more, their respective shares didn't benefit in a like manner.

Looking at the six-month gold and silver price charts, it appears that we are in another one of these holding patterns that we've seen so often in the past, and where we go from here price-wise is anyone's guess.  But if JPMorgan Chase wants to take prices lower from here, there's no one to stop them.  Silver is overbought as well, and that may be all the excuse they need.  Here are the charts.

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Today at 3:30 p.m. EDT we get the latest Commitment of Traders Report for positions held as of the 1:30 p.m. EDT Comex close on Tuesday, and as Ted Butler has already pointed out, it probably won't make for happy reading.  I would suspect that JPMorgan sold a bunch more long positions in gold, along with going ever more short in silver, in order to prevent the rallies in both these metals from getting out of hand.

Not much happened in Far East trading on their Friday, and not much is happening now that London has been open for a bit more than two hours.  As of 5:15 a.m. EDT, three of the four precious metals are trading basically unchanged, and silver is down about 10 cents. Volumes in both metals are very low, at least compared to yesterday at this time, and the dollar index is flat.

Since today is Friday, nothing would surprise me during the New York trading session, so I'll be ready for anything when I check the charts after I get up later this morning.

Enjoy your weekend, or what's left of it if you live west of the International Date Line, and I'll 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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