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Gold slightly up ahead of ECB meeting Thurs.

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(Kitco News) - Gold prices are trading modestly higher in midday U.S. action Wednesday, in a choppy, two-sided session. Traders are basically on hold at mid-week, awaiting central bank meetings that are just over the horizon. December gold futures were last up $2.20 an ounce at 1,501.40. December Comex silver prices were last down $0.031 at $18.16 an ounce.

Generally, there remains low risk aversion in the world marketplace at mid-week, which is bearish for the safe-haven metals. China has made a positive overture to the U.S. regarding trade when it said it will exempt certain U.S. products from tariffs for one year. This week the U.S.-China trade tensions have appeared to ratchet down a notch.

Focus is turning to the monetary policy meeting of the European Central Bank on Thursday, at which time the ECB is expected to only very slightly cut interest rates, pushing them further into negative territory. The Federal Reserve meets next week and is expected to cut U.S. interest rates by 0.25%.

The key “outside markets” today see Nymex crude oil prices lower and trading just below $56.00 a barrel. Thursday sees a meeting of the OPEC oil cartel. Oil prices have rallied recently on ideas OPEC nations will continue to constrict their spigots. The U.S. dollar index is solidly higher in midday U.S. trading today.

Live 24 hours gold chart [Kitco Inc.]

Technically, December gold futures prices closed near mid-range on a mild corrective bounce after hitting a four-week low on Tuesday. The bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage but need to show some more power soon to keep alive a three-month-old uptrend in place on the daily bar chart. Gold bulls' next upside near-term price breakout objective is to produce a close above solid technical resistance at the September high of $1,566.20. Bears' next near-term downside price breakout objective is pushing prices below solid technical support at $1,475.00. First resistance is seen at Tuesday’s high of $1,509.10 and then at $1,520.00. First support is seen at this week’s low of $1,492.10 and then at $1,485.00. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.5

Live 24 hours silver chart [ Kitco Inc. ]

December silver futures prices closed near mid-range. The silver bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. A three-month-old uptrend is still in place on the daily bar chart, but the bulls need to show fresh power soon to keep it alive. Silver bulls’ next upside price breakout objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at $19.00 an ounce. The next downside price breakout objective for the bears is closing prices below solid support at $17.50. First resistance is seen at this week’s high of $18.40 and then at $18.58. Next support is seen at this week’s low of $17.855 and then at $17.75. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.5.

December N.Y. copper closed down 155 points at 261.30 cents today. Prices closed nearer the session low. The copper bears have the overall near-term technical advantage. However, recent gains suggest this market has put in a bottom. A bull flag has formed on the daily bar chart. Copper bulls' next upside price objective is pushing and closing prices above solid technical resistance at 275.00 cents. The next downside price objective for the bears is closing prices below solid technical support at the September low of 248.20 cents. First resistance is seen last week’s high of 264.90 cents and then at 267.50 cents. First support is seen at today’s low of 260.05 cents and then at 258.75 cents. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 3.0.

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 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.