Gold prices weaken a bit after upbeat U.S. jobs report
(Kitco News) - Gold and silver prices are steady to slightly down in early U.S. futures trading Friday, pressured only mildly following a stronger-than-expected U.S. employment report for January. Losses are limited heading into an uncertain weekend on the coronavirus front. The safe-haven metals bulls have stabilized their markets late this week, despite rallies in global stock markets this week, led by the U.S. stock indexes that hit record highs. February gold futures were last down $1.20 an ounce at 1,568.90. March Comex silver prices were last down $0.083 at $17.74 an ounce.
The just-released U.S. employment situation report from the Labor Department showed the
key non-farm payrolls figure come in up 225,000. The number was forecast to come in at up around 160,000. A very strong ADP national employment report reading on Wednesday had some correctly reckoning Friday’s jobs report would be stronger than forecast.
Asian and European shares were weaker overnight as traders and investors have pushed the coronavirus outbreak in China back to near the front burner of the marketplace. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward lower openings when the New York day session begins. Traders can correctly argue many of the rallying stock indexes are on Friday just seeing some normal profit-taking pressure from recent gains that put some stock indexes at record highs earlier this week, including those in the U.S.
Still, the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread, with over 625 reported dead in China and over 31,000 afflicted in that country. President Trump and Chinese Premiere Xi Jing Ping discussed the matter in a telephone call late Thursday. China’s domestic economy is being impacted, as is the global economy, to a degree. There are also reports coming from China that the nation may invoke a disaster clause in its trade agreement with the U.S. that would allow China to purchase less than their January trade agreement stated. Look for safe-haven assets like gold, U.S. Treasuries, the Japanese yen and the U.S. dollar to perform better on Friday, heading into an uncertain weekend regarding the coronavirus situation.
The key outside markets today see crude oil prices weaker and trading around $50.50 a barrel. Meantime, the U.S. dollar index is firmer and hit a four-month high overnight.
Other U.S. economic data due for release Friday includes the monthly wholesale trade report, and consumer credit.
Technically, the gold bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage and have stabilized the market late this week. Bulls are working on restarting a nearly three-month-old price uptrend on the daily chart. Bulls’ next upside price objective is to produce a close in April futures above solid resistance at $1,600.00. Bears' next near-term downside price objective is pushing futures prices below solid technical support at $1,550.00. First resistance is seen at the overnight high of $1,573.60 and then at $1,580.00. First support is seen at $1,560.00 and then at Thursday’s low of $1,556.00. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.5
March silver futures bulls and bears are on a level overall near-term technical playing field amid recent choppy trading. However, a downtrend line is in place on the daily bar chart. Silver bulls' next upside price breakout objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at $18.00 an ounce. The next downside price breakout objective for the bears is closing prices below solid support at $17.00. First resistance is seen at $18.00 and then at this week’s high of $18.125. Next support is seen at this week’s low of $17.465 and then at the January low of $17.28. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 5.0.