Gold edged 20 cents higher Thursday, the smallest of successive and mostly modest daily gains since Friday.
US inflation tamed further last month, a factor that first pressured and then later supported gold, opined analysts. The US Labor Department reported Thursday morning that consumer prices declined 0.3% in May for the biggest fall since December 2008. The news was said to offer the Fed added freedom, increasing the odds for another round of monetary stimulus.
"The perception of low price inflation, and even the possibility of deflation that this number hints at, gives the Fed tremendous breathing room for quantitative easing," MarketWatch quoted Brien Lundin, editor of Gold Newsletter. "A slowing economy gives the Fed a valid excuse for QE3. But a slowing economy combined with a sniff of deflation almost compels them to act."
"While the knee-jerk reaction to today’s CPI number was to sell gold, it actually sets the table for a very powerful rally in the metal, should this data prompt the Fed to launch QE3," he said.
Gold prices for August delivery closed at $1,619.60 an ounce on the Comex in New York. Prices on the day traded between $1,610.40 and $1,629.00.
In other precious metals closings on Thursday:
Silver prices for July delivery fell 53.4 cents, or 1.9%, to $28.407 an ounce. Silver ranged from an intraday low of $28.150 to a high of $29.075.
Platinum prices for July delivery settled to $1,487.60 an ounce, rising $20.80 or 1.4%. Platinum traded between $1,458.00 and $1,493.10.
- Palladium prices for September delivery advanced $11.60, or 1.9%, to $634.90 an ounce, ranging from $617.80 to $639.95.
London Precious Metal
Precious metals in London were mixed on the day. When comparing the latest London PM fixings:
- Gold declined $6.00, or 0.4%, to $1,613.50 an ounce,
- Silver added a penny to $28.88 an ounce,
- Platinum surged higher by $25.00, or 1.7%, to $1,485.00 an ounce, and
- Palladium dipped 50.0 cents, or 0.1%, to $624.50 an ounce
Sales of U.S. Mint Bullion Coins
Sales of U.S. Mint bullion coins were limited Thursday to the American Silver Eagle. The 99.9% fine silver coin rose 40,000, marking eight straight daily increases.
The following are the latest daily, June and year-to-date bullion coin sales totals as published by the U.S. Mint.
|Sales of US Mint American Eagle and Buffalo Bullion Coins|
|Daily Gains||June Gains||YTD 2012|
|American Gold Eagle Coins (1 oz.)||0||17,500||247,500|
|American Gold Eagle Coins (1/2 oz.)||0||1,000||55,000|
|American Gold Eagle Coins (1/4 oz.)||0||0||46,000|
|American Gold Eagle Coins (1/10 oz.)||0||5,000||155,000|
|American Gold Buffalo Coins (1 oz.)||0||3,500||68,500|
|American Silver Eagle Coins||40,000||1,161,500||15,695,500|
|Sales of America the Beautiful 5 Oz. Bullion Silver Coins|
|Daily Gains||June Gains||All-Time Total|
|2012 El Yunque National Forest 5 oz. Bullion Silver Coins||0||2,500||7,900|
|2011 Olympic National Park 5 oz. Bullion Silver Coins||0||0||85,200|
|2011 Vicksburg National Military Park 5 oz. Bullion Silver Coins||0||200||38,600|
|2011 Chickasaw Park 5 oz. Bullion Silver Coins||0||0||28,900|
U.S. Mint figures above are in coin totals, not the amount of ounces sold.