Precious metals futures ended mixed Friday and sharply lower on the week. Gold fell for a second straight week, after scoring six straight weekly wins, and ended at a more than seven-week low. Silver, meanwhile, declined for third week in a row and posted its lowest close this year.
Gold for June delivery dipped $1.70, or 0.1%, to finish at $1,226.90 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. The settlement is the lowest since March 15.
Jobs data pressured prices Friday, opined analysts.
"The U.S. employment (data) was stronger than expected," Reuters quoted ABN Amro analyst Georgette Boele. "This only put gold prices slightly under pressure, because the U.S. dollar didn’t rally."
U.S. jobs rebounded in April to 211,000 after rising by only 79,000 in March, the Labor Department reported Friday. The unemployment rate fell to 4.4%, near a 10-year low.
Gold futures traded 3.3% lower this week — their biggest weekly loss since November, after sliding 1.6% last week. They are 6.5% higher on the year to date. In looking ahead to next week, Kitco News offers the following forecasts via their Wall Street vs. Main Street survey:
"This week, 19 traders and analysts took part in a Wall Street survey. Seven voters, or 37%, see gold prices rising by next Friday. Nine, or 47%, see lower prices, while three voters, or 16%, are either neutral or expect sideways trading.
Meanwhile, 1,570 Kitco readers submitted votes in an online Main Street poll. A total of 756 voters, or 48%, are bullish. Another 639, or 41%, say that gold will fall, while 175, or 11%, are neutral."
Falling for a nine consecutive session, silver futures for July delivery shed 2.9 cents, or 0.2%, to close at $16.274 an ounce. The settlement is the weakest since Dec. 30.
Silver futures tumbled 5.7% this week after drops of 3.3% last week and 3.5% the week before then. The precious metal’s gain on the year retreated to 1.8%.
In PGM futures on Friday and for the week:
July platinum added $2.50, or 0.3%, to $910.20 an ounce, but sank 4.1% on the week.
- Palladium for June delivery advanced $12.40, or 1.6%, to $813.05 an ounce, trimming its weekly loss to 1.7%.
Both metals are higher so far this year — slightly for platinum at 0.5% and solidly for palladium at 19%.
London Precious Metals Prices
London precious metals prices also ended mixed on Friday and lower on the week. In comparing their levels from Thursday PM to Friday PM:
- Gold edged down 40 cents, or less than 0.1%, to $1,228.05 an ounce.
- Silver declined 23 cents, or 1.4%, to $16.27 an ounce.
- Platinum rose $12, or 1.3%, to $909 an ounce.
- Palladium added $13, or 1.6%, to $809 an ounce.
Their losses for the week totaled 3% for gold, 6.5% for silver, 3.9% for platinum and 1.8% for palladium.
US Mint Bullion Sales in 2017
U.S. Mint bullion products registered sustained to stronger weekly results with sales of gold coins slow but the same as a week earlier and sales of silver coins the highest in six weeks. In week-over-week comparisons:
Gold coins advanced by 3,000 ounces, matching last week’s totals exactly with splits of 2,000 ounces in American Gold Eagles and 1,000 ounces in American Gold Buffalos.
Silver coins moved up by 534,500 ounces — their best week since the one ended March 24, compared to 242,000 ounces previously. Splits include 530,000 ounces in American Silver Eagles versus 235,000 ounces previously and 4,500 ounces in ATB 5-ounce silver bullion coins compared to 7,000 ounces previously.
Below is a sales breakdown of U.S. bullion products with columns listing the number of 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 / May||April Sales||2017 Sales|
|$100 American Eagle 1 Oz Platinum Coin||0||0||0||0||20,000|
|$50 American Eagle 1 Oz Gold Coin||0||1,000||2,000||3,500||129,000|
|$25 American Eagle 1/2 Oz Gold Coin||0||0||0||0||25,000|
|$10 American Eagle 1/4 Oz Gold Coin||0||0||0||2,000||46,000|
|$5 American Eagle 1/10 Oz Gold Coin||0||10,000||0||20,000||210,000|
|$50 American Buffalo 1 Oz Gold Coin||0||1,000||1,000||3,500||60,000|
|$1 American Eagle 1 Oz Silver Coin||0||235,000||530,000||835,000||9,322,500|
|2017 Effigy Mounds 5 Oz Silver Coin||0||0||100||900||20,700|
|2017 Frederick Douglass 5 Oz Silver Coin||0||1,400||800||17,600||18,400|