Gold recovered from a three-session losing streak Friday, trimming its weekly loss to 0.5% and ending above $1,300 an ounce after dropping from the key level on Thursday.
In lighter trading Friday, gold for August delivery picked up $12.50, or 1%, to settle at $1,303.30 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
"With the news flow coming out Russia and Ukraine and you don’t know what’s going to happen in Iraq, traders are buying gold as they don’t want to get too exposed to geopolitical risks going into the weekend," Reuters quoted Robert Haworth, senior investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management’s Private Client Reserve.
Gold prices have advanced $101, or 8.4%, since ending 2013 at $1,202.30 an ounce.
Participants in the latest Kitco News survey are bearish about gold prices next week. Fourteen expect prices to fall, 4 see prices higher, and 4 see prices trading sideways or unchanged.
"The technical breakdown despite the situation in Gaza and the Ukraine is really laying waste to the safe haven/political theory," Kitco quoted Sterling Smith, futures specialist with Citi Institutional Client Group. "Traders should be wary of markets that behave poorly when they should behave well or at least in a stable manner."
Kitco gold survey results last week were mixed with expectation splits of 11 up, 9 down and 5 sideways or neutral.
Silver, Platinum and Palladium Futures
Silver for September delivery advanced 22 cents, or 1.1%, to close at $20.64 an ounce. Silver prices declined 1.2% on the week but they are 6.5% higher on the year to date.
In rounding out the precious metals complex:
October platinum gained $4.90, or 0.3%, to $1,478.60 an ounce, falling 0.8% on the week.
- Palladium for September rose $8.85, or 1%, to $879.80 an ounce, dipping 0.2% from a week ago.
For the year so far, platinum is ahead 7.6% and palladium is up 22.5%.
London Fix Precious Metals
London precious metals fixings were mixed on Friday and dropped on the week. When comparing the London bullion fix prices from Thursday PM to Friday PM:
- Gold inched up $2, or 0.2%, to $1,294.75 an ounce,
- Silver plunged 38 cents, or 1.8%, to $20.46 an ounce,
- Platinum gained $4, or 0.3%, to $1,473 an ounce, and
- Palladium moved up $7, or 0.8%, to $876 an ounce
Weekly losses accumulated to 1% for gold, 2.3% for silver, 1.6% for platinum and 0.6% for palladium.
US Mint Bullion Sales in July
United States Mint bullion coins divided from a week ago with sales 62.1% lower for gold coins but 3.8% higher for silver coins. Silver coin sales have advanced for two straight weeks. In the latest week-over-week comparisons:
Gold coin sales climbed 5,500 ounces after advancing 14,500 ounces last week. Splits were 4,000 ounces in American Gold Eagles versus 13,000 ounces previously and 1,500 ounces in American Gold Buffalos after 1,500 ounces previously.
American Silver Eagles rose 615,000 after the past nine smaller-than-typical weekly gains of 590,000; 360,000; 395,000; 447,000; 580,000; 675,000; 670,000; 300,000; and 426,500. Until several weeks ago, sales this year were on a record annual pace.
America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Bullion Coins added 500 coins, or 2,500 ounces, after gaining 1,000 coins, or 5,000 ounces, during the prior week.
- Sales of American Platinum Eagles were flat for a sixth straight week. The coins are now in their 17th full week of release after a five-year hiatus.
Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold on Friday, last week, this week, last month, the month to date, and the year to date.
|American Eagle and Buffalo Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Friday Sales||Sales Last Week||Current Sales Week||June Sales||July Sales||YTD Sales|
|$100 American Platinum Eagle Bullion Coins||0||0||0||700||0||12,900|
|$50 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||10,500||3,000||43,000||24,500||223,000|
|$25 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||0||0||2,000||0||27,000|
|$10 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||4,000||2,000||4,000||6,000||78,000|
|$5 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||15,000||5,000||35,000||25,000||385,000|
|$50 American Buffalo Bullion Gold Coins||1,000||1,500||1,500||16,000||5,500||117,000|
|$1 American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins||0||590,000||615,000||2,692,000||1,640,000||25,768,500|
|Great Smoky Mountains National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins||0||0||500||2,000||500||29,500|
|Shenandoah National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins||0||0||0||900||0||20,000|
|Arches National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins||0||1,000||0||18,500||1,500||20,000|