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Neils Christensen

Gold Could Fall Next Week On Yellen, Tentative Greece Deal

By Neils Christensen of Kitco News
Friday February 20, 2015 2:45 PM

(Kitco News) - Gold prices could see some more pressure in the near-term as the market ends the week in negative territory.

According to some analysts, last-minute reports of a potential agreement between Greece and its European creditors caused gold prices to end in negative territory for the fifth consecutive week. However no official announce has been made; a press conference is scheduled for 3 p.m. EST.

Comex gold futures settled Friday’s session at $1,204.90 an ounce, down $22.60 or 1.84% for the week.

Silver prices significantly underperformed the yellow metal; Comex March silver futures settled Friday at $16.381 an ounce, down 94.4 cents or 5.45% on the week.

Darin Newsom, senior analyst at Telvent DTN, said Friday’s close will set tone for next week and the key will be to see if $1,199.60 an ounce will hold as support.

Newsom added that the close near the weekly lows means there is a bearish sentiment in the marketplace, which could ultimately lead to a break of initial support.

Jamie Saettele, currency strategist at DailyFX, said that he is expecting gold prices to continue to move lower in the short-term. He said the break below $1,235 on Feb. 10 created renewed bearish momentum. He added if $1,199.80 doesn’t hold as support, then there is a good chance the price will test support at $1,172.

“If we do test $1,172 then I think we could see a pretty good bounce but we have to get back to, I would say, $1,240 to shift the market’s outlook,” he said.

Avi Gilburt, independent trader at elliottwavetrader.net, said that he has been expecting this latest drop after the rally at the start of the year. He added that in the near-term, prices could retest November lows.

“I have been clear all along that the lows are not in [for silver and gold,” he said. “However I’m wondering if we are going to get one more shakeout before we test the ultimate lows.”

James Steel, commodity analyst at HSBC, said one risk he sees for the gold market next week will be the lack of demand from China, which has been an important pillar of support for the gold market.

However, Steel added that there is potential for gold to hold around the $1,200 level.

“When that level was broken Wednesday, it didn’t set off a rash of sell stops, so I don’t know if there is much lying under the market until we get a bit lower,” he said.

With so much attention on the Federal Reserve and U.S. interest rates, analysts said an important event for the gold market will be Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s biannual testimony in front of congress. Her testimony starts Tuesday before the Senate Committee on Banking Housing and Urban Affairs. The next day she testifies before the House Committee on Financial Services.

Economists at Nomura said, in a research note published Friday, that the minutes from the January Federal Open Market Committee Meeting raised more questions about future rate hikes.

“The apparent disagreements among FOMC participants heighten the importance of Chair Yellen’s Congressional testimony…,” they said.

However, Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank, said that he is not expecting Yellen to reveal anything new about the central bank’s monetary policy and future rate hikes.

“The Federal Reserve is at a critical point right now and I don’t think she is going to want to stick her neck out,” he said. “I think she wants to keep the boat as steady as possible.”

For that reason, Hansen said that he is not expecting to see any strong moves in the U.S. dollar that will impact gold prices.

Steel agreed, saying that the euro has been in a trading in a range against the U.S. dollar and as long as that holds any currency impact on gold will be minimal in the short-term.

However, Hansen said investors should pay attention to the U.S. bond market as rising yields could drag gold lower next week. He added that lower yields support the gold market because it lowers the yellow metal’s opportunity costs.

Along with Yellen’s testimony, the data cupboard will be packed with top tier data, potentially adding volatility to the gold market. The reports economists will be watching include home sales data, consumer confidence, more regional manufacturing data, and consumer price inflation.

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By Neils Christensen of Kitco News; nchristensen@kitco.com
Follow Neils Christensen @neils_C


Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in precious metal products, commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.
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