GOLD PRICE NEWS – The gold price inched higher Monday morning amid a relatively quiet start to the week for financial markets. The spot price of gold rose by as much as $6.17, or 0.4%, to $1,737.94 per ounce as it built on it recent gains. Last week the gold price snapped a four-week losing streak by climbing 3.2%, its best such stretch since late August. Furthermore, the price of gold is now higher by 1.0% in November and by 11.1% on a year-to-date basis.
Silver lagged the gold price this morning, as it dipped $0.08, or 0.3%, to $32.52 per ounce. However, gold’s sister precious metal also ended a four-week losing skid last week with a 5.3% jump – its best performance since early September. Thus far in November, silver has risen by 0.7% and is now up by 17.3% this year.
Gold stocks were mixed on Monday despite moderate strength in the price of gold and the broader equity markets. The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (GDX) oscillated between gains and losses near $50.67 per share, while the S&P 500 Index added 0.3% to 1,384.32. Last week, the GDX advanced by 1.8% – following four straight weekly declines as well – for its best performance since mid-September.
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Notable gold stocks in positive territory this morning included GDX components Agnico-Eagle Mines (AEM) and AngloGold Ashanti (AU) – which rose by 0.3% to $55.80 and by 0.6% to $33.59 per share, respectively. Alternatively, Barrick Gold (ABX) fell by 0.4% to $35.94 while Kinross Gold (KGC) slid by 1.3% to $10.18 per share.
Last week’s rebound in gold prices was fueled in part by Barack Obama’s successful re-election as U.S. President. Following Obama’s victory over Mitt Romney, several economists argued that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and his fellow doves at the U.S. central bank can now continue to implement their unprecedented levels of accommodative monetary policy for the next four years.
With the election over, the focus quickly shifted to the looming fiscal cliff situation in the U.S., which put pressure on cyclical commodities and stocks last week and drove investors into safe havens such as gold and the U.S. dollar.
Commenting on the recent strength in the yellow metal, Eugen Weinberg – global head of commodities research at Commerzbank – contended that “The gold price is up because of a combination of the outlook for an expansionary U.S. monetary policy and fears over the ‘fiscal cliff’.”
Looking ahead to this week, the U.S. economic calendar contains several data points likely to serve as catalysts for the price of gold and the financial markets as a whole. Although today and tomorrow’s schedule is quiet, reports on Retail Sales and the Producer Price Index (PPI) – a key measure of inflation – will be announced on Wednesday. In addition, the latest Fed minutes will be released on Wednesday afternoon, which will provide the markets with more details on last month’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) – another critical inflation gauge – will be announced on Thursday, along with Weekly Jobless Claims and, the Empire Manufacturing Index and the Philadelphia Fed Index. The week will then conclude on Friday with a report on Industrial Production.