Gold and silver futures each advanced on Friday and for the week. Silver performed best for both, and scored its first weekly increase in five weeks. Gold, meanwhile, barely eked out its weekly gain.
Gold for December delivery on Friday rose $9.60, or 0.7%, to settle at $1,326.70 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange.
"Traders are bidding up gold because they think the jobs number isn’t strong enough to justify two rate hikes this year," Bloomberg News quoted Phil Streible, a senior market strategist at RJO Futures in Chicago.
Labor Department data showed employers created 151,000 jobs last month, which was below the reported expectations by 20,000 to 30,000 jobs, and well under July’s gain of 275,000 jobs.
"If there was a chance for a rate increase at the September FOMC meeting, the employment number would have needed to be north of 250,000," MarketWatch quoted Mark Watkins, regional investment manager at U.S. Bank’s Private Client Group.
Gold futures this week edged up 80 cents, or less than 0.1%, after falling 1.5% last week. As recently as Wednesday, they ended at a more than two-month low. The yellow metal is now $266.50, or 25.1%, higher than its final settlement in 2015 at $1,060.20 an ounce.
In looking ahead to next week, Kitco News offers the following forecasts via their Wall Street vs. Main Street survey:
"Thirteen analysts and traders took part in the weekly Kitco News Wall Street survey, of which eight participants, or 62%, called for higher gold prices. Last week, nearly half of the experts surveyed were expecting lower gold prices. This week, only two voters, or 15%, are bearish, while three, or 23%, are neutral.
Meanwhile, 1,091 Main Street participants voted on this week’s online survey. A total of 626 respondents, or 57%, said they were bullish for the week ahead, while 311, or 29%, were bearish. The neutral votes totaled 154, or 14%."
Elsewhere, silver for December delivery jumped 42.3 cents, or 2.2%, to settle at $19.366 an ounce. Silver futures surged 3.8% this week after successive weekly losses of 2.6%; 0.6%; 2%; and 3.5%. Silver continues to maintain, handily, its status as the best performer among precious metals this year, up 40.3%.
In PGM futures on Friday and for the week:
October platinum gained $13.30, or 1.3%, to $1,062.20 an ounce, trimming its weekly decline to 1.4%
- Palladium for December delivery turned up $11.85, or 1.8%, to $673.55 an ounce, reducing its loss on the week to 2.9%.
Both metals are higher on the year so far with gains of 18.9% for platinum and 19.8% for palladium.
London Precious Metals Prices
London precious metals prices climbed on Friday, mostly modestly, and were mixed on the week. In comparing their levels from Thursday PM to Friday PM:
- Gold gained $15.20, or 1.2%, to $1,324.70 an ounce.
- Silver added 10 cents, or 0.5%, to $18.75 an ounce.
- Platinum rose $9, or 0.9%, to $1,052 an ounce.
- Palladium added $4, or 0.6%, to $670 an ounce.
London gold and silver prices each edged up about 0.4% this week, while platinum declined 2.3% and palladium fell 2.9%.
US Mint Bullion Coin Sales in 2016
U.S. Mint bullion coins posted stronger sales compared to a week earlier. In week-over-week comparisons:
Gold coins advanced 23,000 ounces after climbing 12,000 ounces last week. This week’s splits include 20,500 ounces in American Gold Eagles compared to 9,500 ounces previously and 2,500 ounces in American Gold Buffalo to match the previous week.
Silver coin sales advanced 552,500 ounces after rising by 432,500 ounces previously. The weekly splits include 410,000 ounces in American Silver Eagles compared to 430,000 ounces previously and 142,500 ounces in America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins compared to 2,500 ounces previously. The U.S. Mint on Monday started taking orders for the second to last five ounce issue for this year, the coin emblematic of Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota.
Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. Mint bullion products with columns listing the number of bullion coins sold during varying periods Products with an asterisk (*) are no longer available.
|US Mint Bullion Sales (# of coins)|
|Friday Sales||Last Week||This Week||Aug Sales||Sept Sales||2016 Sales|
|$100 American Eagle 1 Oz Platinum Coins*||0||1,000||0||1,000||0||20,000|
|$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||6,000||17,500||50,000||5,000||491,000|
|$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins||0||1,000||1,000||3,000||1,000||52,000|
|$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins||0||2,000||0||4,000||0||100,000|
|$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins||0||15,000||25,000||60,000||15,000||630,000|
|$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins||0||2,500||1,500||9,000||1,000||132,500|
|$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins||0||430,000||410,000||1,280,000||140,000||29,040,500|
|2016 Shawnee 5 Oz Silver Coins*||0||0||0||0||0||105,000|
|2016 Cumberland Gap 5 Oz Silver Coins*||0||0||0||0||0||75,000|
|2016 Harpers Ferry 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||500||1,000||1,900||0||36,100|
|2016 Theodore Roosevelt 5 Oz Silver Coins||0||500||27,500||27,500||0||27,500|