Precious metals futures settled higher in their start to the new trading week on Monday. Gold and silver closed at more than three-week highs.
Gold for June delivery tacked on $14.20, or 1.1%, to end at $1,258 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement was the highest since March 17 when gold closed at $1,265 an ounce. Gains on Monday were attributed to weakness in the U.S. dollar.
"The theme has been the notable weakness in the dollar coming from the expectation that the Fed will not raise rates in April," Bloomberg News quoted David Meger, the director of metals trading at High Ridge Futures in Chicago. "The Fed certainly seems to be a little bit more hesitant moving forward than previously thought."
Gold prices ranged from a low of $1,241.60 to a high of $1,256.10. They moved up 1.7% last week, registering a second straight weekly gain.
Silver for May delivery surged 59.2 cents, or 3.9%, to close at $15.976 an ounce. The settlement was also the highest since March 17, when silver ended at $16.033 an ounce. Silver prices traded between $15.37 and $15.99. The advanced 2.3% last week.
In other precious metals futures on Monday:
July platinum gained $22.40, or 2.3%, to $990.80 an ounce, ranging from $967.30 to $994.60.
- Palladium for June delivery settled up $6.85, or 1.3%, to $545.50 an ounce, trading between $540.40 and $553.60.
The two precious metals were mixed last week with platinum gaining 1.4% and palladium falling 4%.
London Precious Metals Prices
In comparing earlier fixed London gold and silver prices from Friday PM to Monday PM:
- Gold added $15.25, or 1.2%, to $1,254.75 an ounce.
- Silver added 40 cents, or 2.6%, to $15.56 an ounce.
LBMA platinum and palladium prices are available on the LBMA’s website with a delay of midnight.
Last week, gold gained 2.1%; silver and palladium registered losses of 1.4% and 3.9%; and platinum was unchanged.
US Mint Bullion Sales in 2016
The U.S. Mint did not publish bullion sales gains on Monday. Earlier in the day, the agency announced that it is limiting sales of American Silver Eagles this week to 1,036,000 coins, which includes 36,000 coins left over from last week’s allocation of 1,042,500 coins. The Silver Eagle’s cumulative sales total for this year is at 15,964,000 coins, or 23.6% higher than through the same time in record year 2015.
Below is a sales breakdown of United States Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods of time.
|US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Monday Sales||Last Week||Mar Sales||Apr Sales||2016 Sales|
|$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||17,500||29,000||18,500||204,000|
|$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins||0||1,000||1,000||1,000||31,000|
|$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins||0||2,000||4,000||2,000||54,000|
|$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins||0||20,000||75,000||20,000||340,000|
|$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||6,000||7,000||6,000||66,000|
|$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins||0||1,006,500||4,106,000||1,121,500||15,964,000|
|2016 Shawnee 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||0||0||0||105,000|
It will be interesting to see how the special 2016-W 30th anniversary edge-lettered ASE Proof & Unc. Burnished version coins will impact sales of the regular bullion version ASE coins. Of course, they are marketed to different sectors of the market ( investment versus collectible) but there is some crossover as many collectors purchase the bullion versions to have graded at the third-party services or purchase the bullion versions already graded & slabbed from dealers.