Gold surged Thursday, closing at a four-month high and extending its winning streak to five straight sessions.
Gold for February delivery soared $30.30, or 2.5%, to end at $1,264.80 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement price was the highest since gold ended at $1,267.30 an ounce on Sept. 5.
Gold rallied after Switzerland’s central bank unexpectedly abandoned its three-year cap on the franc, triggering turmoil in the currency market.
"The Swiss National Bank’s decision caught the market a little off footing, and gold gained as a safe-haven buy," Bloomberg News quoted Frank McGhee, the head dealer at Alliance Financial LLC in Chicago. "The Swiss are giving up on the euro at the end of a long and painful run."
Gold prices ranged from $1,226.10 to $1,267.20. They are 4% higher on the week.
Silver for March delivery rebounded 11 cents, or 0.7%, to close at $17.10 an ounce. The precious metal traded between $16.71 and $17.24 after prices slipped 17 cents on Wednesday. That loss was the first in four sessions. Silver has gained nearly 4.2% since Friday.
In rounding out the precious metals complex:
April platinum advanced $23.80, or 1.9%, to $1,262.80 an ounce, ranging from $1,230 and $1,267.30.
Palladium for March delivery declined $14.30, or 1.8%, to $766.35 an ounce, trading between $765.20 and $790.
London Fix Precious Metals
Earlier fixed London precious metals were mixed. In comparing London bullion Fix prices from Wednesday PM to Thursday PM:
- Gold added $24, 1.9%, to $1,259 an ounce,
- Silver surged 48 cents, or 2.9%, to $17.12 an ounce,
- Platinum rose $16, or 1.3%, to $1,258 an ounce, and
- Palladium declined $15, or 1.9%, to $780 an ounce.
US Mint Bullion Coin Sales in January
United States Mint gold sales climbed by 1,000 ounces in American Eagle gold coins and 1,000 ounces in American Buffalo gold coins. The gains add to already impressive totals since the 2015-dated gold coins launched on Jan. 5.
American Gold Eagle sales at 70,000 ounces for the month so far are the highest since January 2014 sales of 91,500 ounces and American Gold Buffalo sales at 29,000 ounces are the most since January 2014 sales of 41,500 ounces.
2015 American Silver Eagles were released three days ago. No advances were reported by the Mint on Thursday but their previous gains stack to 3,701,500, the highest for a month since October sales of 5.79 million.
Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold on Thursday, last week, this week so far, in December, last year, and the year to date. Coins with an asterisk (*) have sold out for 2014.
|American Eagle and Buffalo Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Thursday Sales||Last Week||Current Week||December Sales||2014 Sales||January / 2015 Sales|
|$100 American Platinum Eagle Bullion Coins*||0||0||0||0||16,900||0|
|$50 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||1,000||26,000||20,000||13,000||415,500||46,000|
|$25 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||13,000||3,000||0||46,000||16,000|
|$10 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||24,000||6,000||6,000||118,000||30,000|
|$5 American Eagle Bullion Gold Coins||0||65,000||20,000||35,000||565,000||85,000|
|$50 American Buffalo Bullion Gold Coins||1,000||18,500||10,500||4,500||177,500||29,000|
|$1 American Eagle Silver Bullion Coins||0||0||3,701,500||2.459M||44.006M||3,701,500|
|Great Smoky Mountains National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins*||0||0||0||0||33,000||0|
|Shenandoah National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins||0||0||0||1,100||24,400||0|
|Arches National Park 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins*||0||0||0||0||22,000||0|
|Great Sand Dunes 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins*||0||0||0||4,000||21,900||0|
|Everglades 5 Oz Silver Bullion Coins*||0||0||0||7,000||34,000||0|