Gold Ends Week Near 3-Month Low; US Mint Silver Sales Highest in 2-1/2 Months

one-ounce gold, sqare bars
Precious metals futures posted weekly losses that ranged from 1% for palladium to 4.7% for palladium

Gold futures closed at a nearly three-month low Friday, marking their seventh loss in eight sessions and their first weekly decline in three weeks.

Gold for December delivery on Friday lost $7.80, or 0.6%, to settle at $1,310.20 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement is the lowest since June 23 when gold ended at $1,263.10 an ounce. The day’s decline was attributed to a quicker-than-expected rise in U.S. inflation, which boosted the dollar on higher bets of a Fed rate hike this year.

"Dollar strength is the headwind," Reuters quoted Rob Haworth, senior investment strategist for U.S. Bank Wealth management in Seattle. "Today [Friday] you’ve got enough in the inflation data to increase odds of a Fed rate increase."

Consumer prices rose 0.2% in August compared to the expected 0.1% increase, and the rate of annual inflation climbed 1.1%. The core rate moved up 2.3% compared to a year earlier, the Labor Department reported.

Gold futures shed 1.8% this week after prior two weekly gains of 0.6% and 0.1%. They are now $250, or 23.6%, higher than the 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:

"The results of Kitco’s professional survey reflect significant uncertainty in the marketplace with most analysts unsure on gold’s short-term move. This week, 13 analysts and traders took part in the survey; of which 38% expect prices to move higher next week. The remaining participants — split evenly at 31% — see lower or sideways trading.  

Despite a close race, Main Street appears to be a little more optimistic on gold next week based on the 1,251 votes tallied. A total of 591 voters, or 48%, are bullish on the metal next week while 530 voters, or 42%, and 130 participants, or 10%, are bearish and neutral, respectively."

Also lower for the seventh time in eight sessions, silver for December delivery fell 17.9 cents, or 0.9%, to close at $18.862 an ounce. The settlement is the weakest since Aug. 31.

Silver futures lost 2.6% this week after edging up less than 0.1% last week. They soared 3.8% the week before then. The precious metal is $5.06, or 36.7%, higher than its final 2015 settlement of $13.803 an ounce.

In PGM futures on Friday and for the week:

  • October platinum settled down $16.20, or 1.6%, to $1,017.60 an ounce, for a 4.7% weekly loss.

  • Palladium for December delivery surged $15.80, or 2.4%, to $672.40 an ounce, but still declined 1% from its price of a week earlier.

Year to date, platinum is up 13.9% while palladium is 19.6% higher.

London Precious Metals Prices

London precious metals prices ended mostly lower on Friday, and they all declined on the week. In comparing their levels from Thursday PM to Friday PM:

  • Gold shed $2.45, or 0.2%, to $1,308.35 an ounce.
  • Silver dropped a nickel, or 0.3%, to $18.91 an ounce.
  • Platinum declined $16, or 1.6%, to $1,015 an ounce.
  • Palladium was unchanged at $656 an ounce.

Their weekly losses totaled 1.7% for gold, 2.6% for silver, 5.4% for platinum and 3.2% for palladium.

US Mint Bullion Coin Sales in 2016

U.S. Mint bullion products posted stronger gains this week with gold sales the highest since the week ended Aug. 11 and silver sales the best since the week ended July 1. In week-over-week comparisons:

  • Gold coins advanced 25,000 ounces after climbing 22,000 ounces last week. This week’s splits include 22,000 ounces in American Gold Eagles compared to 18,500 ounces previously and 3,000 ounces in American Gold Buffalo compared to 3,500 ounces previously.

  • Silver coin sales advanced 745,000 ounces after rising by 177,500 ounces previously. The weekly splits include 740,000 ounces in American Silver Eagles compared to 170,000 ounces previously and 5,000 ounces in America the Beautiful Five Ounce Silver Uncirculated Coins compared to 7,500 ounces previously.

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 0 0 1,000 0 20,000
$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coins 8,500 14,500 18,500 50,000 38,000 524,000
$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coins 1,000 1,000 2,000 3,000 4,000 55,000
$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coins 2,000 6,000 4,000 4,000 10,000 110,000
$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coins 10,000 20,000 15,000 60,000 50,000 665,000
$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coins 1,500 3,500 3,000 9,000 7,500 139,000
$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coins 100,000 170,000 740,000 1,280,000 1,050,000 29,950,500
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 0 0 1,900 0 36,100
2016 Theodore Roosevelt 5 Oz Silver Coins 0 1,500 1,000 27,500 2,500 30,000


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Danny Morano

What’s the deal with Platinum? One of the rarest metals and at one time, the highest priced precious metal? It seems to be an afterthought but the low price is allowing those who couldn’t normally afford it to now acquire it. I know that last year when it hit the lowest price in years, along with Gold and especially Silver, I bought literally buckets full. Especially Canadian coins and bars. Especially Pamp-Suisse and Scotiabank. And, the New Platinum Orchestra coins and others.
I’m interested in your opinion how it will do in 2017.
Regards, Danny

Seth Riesling

Danny –

From my research & reading, we are supposed to have a platinum shortage towards the end of this year. Of course, about 90 percent of platinum mines are in South Africa & Russia so if they have a mine workers labor strike like in past that will raise the price. Anytime platinum is below gold you almost can’t go wrong buying some in bullion form.
All the platinum mined in history to this day would only fill the average American house living room from floor to ceiling! It is really rare!

Good luck Danny!


Danny Morano

Yes, I have heard this many times from many people. With all it’s use over the years, it’s hard to believe. As for a possible miner strike, I think it would be counterproductive. I think people would grab what they can before the price rises and then just stop buying it and sell what they have for a profit, driving the price back down. Time will tell if I’m right. A vicous circle that will only hurt the third world miners.


Platinum has tremendous upside, but it also has tremendous downside. This precious metal has not proven itself as stable as gold, not meaning that it wont in the future. Nothing ventured, nothing gained I always say.