Gold Price, Silver Firm after Mixed U.S. Jobs Report
By jturbin | February 2, 2013 7:37 AM EST
GOLD PRICE NEWS – The gold price swung between gains and losses on Friday as financial markets weighed the impact of a mixed U.S. employment report and other positive economic data. The spot price of gold traded in a range between $1,662 and $1,683 per ounce following the January non-farm payrolls report. This afternoon, the gold price traded higher by $4.15, or 0.3%, at $1,669.28 per ounce.
Gold prices initially reacted in a positive manner to the latest jobs data, jumping from near $1,664 to their intra-day high of $1,683 per ounce. However, the yellow metal later relinquished the majority of its gains as the U.S. dollar rallied following better than expected reports on the ISM Manufacturing Index and University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index..
As for the employment data, non-farm payrolls showed a gain last month of 157,000 – above the 165,000 consensus estimate among economists. The unemployment rate also ticked up to 7.9%, surpassing the 7.8% level at which economists were expecting it to remain.
While the headline figures were worse than expectations, revisions to the two prior months’ of data was quite encouraging. Employment gains in December of 2012 were revised upwards from 155,000 to 196,000 an in November of last year from 161,000 to 247,000.
Silver reacted more positively to the jobs report than did the price of gold, as it jumped by $0.47, or 1.5%, to $31.95 per ounce in afternoon trading. Gold and silver stocks turned higher as well, buoyed by a combination of strength in precious metals and the broader equity markets.
The Philadelphia Gold & Silver Index (XAU) added 1.4% to 151.74 while the S&P 500 Index rose by 1.1% to another new four-year high of 1,514.41. In addition, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) eclipsed the 14,000 level for the first time since October of 2007 and came within 1.3% of its all-time high of 14,198.10.
Among widely-traded gold and silver stocks, notable advancers included XAU components Anglogold Ashanti (AU), Newmont Mining (NEM), and Silver Wheaton (SLW). Shares of AU climbed by 4.3% to $29.23, NEM by 1.6% to $43.64, and SLW by 1.9% to $35.49.