Precious metals advanced in very thin, post-Christmas trading Thursday. U.S. markets were closed for the holiday and open for just a half-day on Christmas Eve. Most European markets remained closed through Thursday.
Gold for February delivery added $9, or 0.7%, to finish at $1,212.30 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold ranged from $1,200.50 to $1,215.40.
"Gold prices ended the U.S. day session modestly higher on more short covering in subdued trading Thursday. It was a holiday atmosphere that still sees many traders and investors absent," said Jim Wyckoff, a senior analyst at Kitco Inc, in a daily note.
"The strength in equities markets worldwide has ‘sucked all the air out of the room’ for other investment asset classes. This situation cannot go on indefinitely, but that is presently of little comfort to the bulls in other asset classes," added Wyckoff.
In other precious metals futures on Thursday:
Silver for March delivery surged 43.2 cents, or 2.2%, to $19.92 an ounce, ranging from $19.42 to $20.03.
April platinum rallied $27.20, or 2%, to $1,363.80 an ounce, trading between $1,337.80 and $1,387.50.
- Palladium for March delivery turned up $5.30, or 0.8%, to $700.75 an ounce, ranging from $694.50 to $709.40.
Gains in platinum were attributed to bargain-hunting and speculation of stronger global growth and resulting demand, according to some analysts.
"There’s a deficit in platinum, and people probably have just realized how cheap it is," Dominic Schnider, the head of commodity research at UBS AG’s wealth-management unit in Singapore, said in a telephone interview according to Bloomberg News. "Unlike gold, platinum benefits from a global economic recovery."
London Fix Precious Metals
UK markets have been closed since Tuesday morning. Those AM precious fixings were:
- Gold at $1,196.50 an ounce,
- Silver at $19.40 an ounce,
- Platinum at $1,327 an ounce, and
- Palladium at $696 an ounce
US Mint Bullion Sales in December
U.S. Mint sales for $50 Gold Eagles advanced 4,000. The bullion coins at 56,000 ounces for the month are the strongest since sales of 57,000 ounces in June.
Listed below are United States Mint bullion sales by day, for the week so far, for the month through Dec. 26, and the year-to-date.
|American Eagle and Buffalo Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Thursday Sales||Last Week||Week-To-Date Sales||December Sales||YTD Sales|
|$50 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins||4,000||6,500||17,000||53,500||743,500|
|$25 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins||0||0||0||0||58,000|
|$10 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins||0||0||0||4,000||122,000|
|$5 American Eagle Gold Bullion Coins||0||0||0||15,000||535,000|
|$50 American Buffalo Gold Bullion Coins||0||1,500||0||7,000||239,000|
|White Mountain 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins||Sold Out*||35,000|
|Perry’s Victory 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins||30,000|
|Great Basin 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins||30,000|
|Fort McHenry 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins||30,000|
|Mount Rushmore 5 oz. Silver Bullion Coins||35,000|
|American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins||42,675,000|
*The United States will release 2014 American Silver Eagles on Jan. 13, 2014 and it is expected to release the first 2014 America the Beautiful Silver Bullion Coin on Jan. 27, 2014.