Wednesday, May 20: Today in Gold and Silver

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The gold price was under choppy selling pressure up until ten minutes after the COMEX open in New York yesterday morning---and at that point the HFT boyz and their algorithms went to work, with most of the damage done by around 10:35 a.m. EDT.  The gold price traded flat after that, but the absolute low tick was a quick down/up spike minutes before 11:30 a.m.

The high and low tick were reported by the CME Group as $1,225.50 and $1,205.10 in the June contract.

Gold closed in New York on Tuesday at $1,208.00 spot, down $17.80 from Monday's close.  Net volume was 149,000 contracts, but I was expecting more than that.

Here's the 5-minute gold tick chart courtesy of Brad Robertson.  The two big volume spikes occurred when 'da boyz' spun their algorithms, or spoofed the market.  The dark gray line is midnight EDT---and don't to forget to add two hours for EDT, as this charts is MST.  The ' click to enlarge' feature works wonders.

The silver price was already down by 30 cents when the HFT boyz spun their algorithms at 10:20 a.m. EDT---and in less than fifteen minutes had shaved another 55 cents off the price.  Once the low was in, the price crept higher into the close.

The high and low ticks were recorded as $17.735 and $16.87 in the July contract, an intraday move of over 4 percent.

Silver closed yesterday at $17.07 spot, down 61 cents from Monday.  Net volume was very decent at 55,500 contracts.

Platinum also got its head handed to it starting just after 12 o'clock noon in London---and when JPMorgan et al were done with it in COMEX trading, the price was down 27 bucks to $1,148 spot.

Palladium turned in a mini version of what happened in the platinum market, as it closed at $773 spot, down 12 dollars from Monday.

The dollar index closed late on Monday afternoon in New York at 94.16---and began to show signs of life to the upside around 2 p.m. in Hong Kong trading.  But the real rally began minutes before the London open, with most of the gains coming shortly before 9 a.m. EDT---and then did next to nothing after that.

You should carefully note that the dollar index had posted virtually all of its gains before "da boyz" and their HFT buddies put in an appearance in New York.

Here once again is the 6-month rally in the U.S. Dollar index chart complete with yesterday's 'action'.

The gold stocks gapped down---and quietly chopped lower for the remainder of the day, as the HUI closed on its absolute low tick, down 4.08 percent---giving up almost half its 2015 gains in the process.

The silver stocks fared little better---and their rally attempts after the morning silver price take-down didn't amount to much.  The silver equities closed on their absolute low ticks as well.   Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 3.91 percent.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 8 gold and 1 lonely silver contract were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Thursday.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Tuesday trading session showed that gold open interest in May dropped by 2 contracts to 139 contracts remaining.  Not surprisingly, silver o.i. for May took a 127 contract hit after the yesterday's delivery notices were filled today.  Silver open interest is down to 297 contracts.

There were no changes in GLD yesterday---and as of 9:30 p.m. EDT yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV either.

There was no sales report from the U.S. Mint.

There wasn't much activity in gold at the COMEX-approved depositories on Monday.  There was 34,370 troy ounces reported received over at HSBC USA---and nothing was shipped out.

It as much busier in silver, as 963,879 troy ounces were shipped in---but only 17,298 ounces were shipped out the door.  Most of the 'in' activity as at Canada's Scotiabank and Brink's Inc.  The link to that action is here.

Over at the gold kilobar depositories in Hong Kong on their Monday, they received 3,000 kilobars---and shipped out 3,218 kilobars.  All of the activity was at Brink's, Inc.---and the link to that is here.

I don't have a lot of stories today---and after the treasure trove I had in Tuesday's column, that's quite all right by me.

¤ The Wrap

Recently, a bit of attention has been placed on my speculation about JPMorgan acquiring hundreds of millions of ounces of silver over the past four years. More seem to think my speculation is on the mark from what I can tell, but some observers disagree, often demanding concrete and incontrovertible proof about my claims.  However, if unquestioned proof was available, there would be no speculation necessary on my part and everyone would have seen what JPMorgan was up to.

The key feature for JPMorgan or anyone accumulating hundreds of millions ounces of silver at extremely depressed prices would be to do so without the public knowledge and the reaction that would cause silver prices to rise before the accumulation was complete. Is there any reason to think that JPMorgan could pull off what I claim they pulled off if everyone was aware of it from the get-go?  As it is, I have fully admitted that it took me years to figure out what this crooked bank was up to. To those that claim what I suggest is impossible, how about an alternative explanation for why we just had a massive withdrawal of metal from SLV on strongly surging prices and trading volume? - Silver analyst Ted Butler: 16 May 2015

This is getting tiresome, but it's not like you weren't warned well in advance.

As I said in my Saturday column---" Excuse me for thinking this, but the price action of the last couple of days has all the hallmarks of a top [hopefully temporary] in these rallies.  In addition to the cooling-off in the precious metal prices themselves, their associated equities have not exactly been roaring to the upside.  The charts below look toppy to me, as does the HUI."

Well, JPMorgan et al, along with their HFT buddies and their algorithms did to the precious metals yesterday what the monster rally in the U.S. dollar index couldn't.  The rally in the dollar index was pretty much done by the time the spoofing started on the COMEX in New York.  Yesterday's price action, like the price action on Monday, is just more proof that what the dollar index is doing is mostly irrelevant to gold and silver price.  It's 100 percent COMEX paper affair at all times---and at the end of June, JPMorgan et al get to add zinc to the list of metals they will control.

Here's the 6-month charts for all four precious metals, so you can see the hatchet jobs for yourself.

As you can tell from the above charts, the gold price is now back below its 200-day moving average---and although silver traded below that same average on Tuesday, it did not close below it.  Both platinum and palladium are back at their respective 50-day moving averages.

Now we're back to where we were two months ago.  How low in price and number of contracts are JPMorgan et al from another low where they've got the Managed Money traders minimum long and maximum short?  Will this engineered price decline be death by a thousand cuts, or will they take the proverbial axe to it like they did yesterday?

Of course the precious metal market could power higher at any time regardless of "all of the above"---and if it does, it will only happen if "da boyz" are instructed to allow it to happen.

At the moment, it's the same old, same old---and the miners just sit there knowing full well what's going on, and do nothing.  I'm sure that there are special favours going out to all and sundry at The World Gold Council, The Silver Institute, Gold Field Mineral Services and CPM Group for keeping the miners under control.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is about fifteen minutes away.  After trading more or less flat through most of the Far East session on their Wednesday, gold and silver prices began to roll over starting around 1:45 p.m. Hong Kong time, just as the dollar index---which had also been trading ruler flat all night long---began to head higher.  Gold is down about three dollars---and silver is down 12 cents.

Net gold volume is already very decent at 18,500 contracts, with virtually all of that of the HFT variety.  Silver's net volume is a hair over 4,500 contracts---and all of its volume is in the current front month as well.

Platinum and palladium, which had been trading a few dollars higher through most of the Far East session are now respectively, down and flat on the day.  And with the London open now four minutes away, the dollar index is up 41 basis points.

Yesterday at the close of the COMEX trading session was the cut-off for this Friday's Commitment of Traders Report---and because of the wild up/down price action during the reporting week, it will be impossible to tell whether all of yesterday's price/volume data will be in it.  As is most often the case, not all the data on a high-volume day like yesterday, gets reported in a timely manner.  I know that Ted Butler will have something to say about it in his mid-week commentary this afternoon EDT---and I'll be interested to see if he's prepared to put his marker down on this.

And as I send today's effort out the door at 5:15 a.m. EDT, I see that the dollar rally has rolled over---and the index is only up 18 basis points at the moment.  All four precious metals hit their current respective lows shortly before the London open.  Both gold and silver are back to about unchanged on the day---and platinum and palladium are up 4 and 9 dollars respectively.

Gold's net volume is a bit over 28,000 contracts---and silver's net volume is around 6,700 contracts.  Most of the volume is in their respective current front months, so it's mostly of the HFT variety.

I have no idea what to expect as the remainder of the Wednesday trading session unfolds, but as is almost always the case, what "da boyz" do during the COMEX trading session in New York is what matters.  And despite the fact that Jim Rickards said that the "price management scheme in gold and silver is now so obvious that JPMorgan et al should be embarrassed about it," they obviously aren't---and are still hard at it.

That's all I have for today---and I'll see you here tomorrow.

Ed Steer

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