Gold price near steady, awaiting next catalyst
(Kitco News) - Gold futures prices are trading near unchanged in subdued early U.S. action Thursday. Silver prices are slightly higher. The two precious metals markets have stabilized this week, with traders still looking for the next significant fundamental event to break prices out of their near-term trading ranges.April gold futures were last $1.20 at $1,843.90 and March Comex silver was last up $0.122 at $27.20 an ounce.
Global stock markets were mostly higher overnight. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward higher openings and near record highs when the New York day session begins. Declining Covid-19 infection rates in the U.S. amid ramped up vaccinations, as well as a new government pandemic relief package likely coming for Americans soon, have lifted trader and investor risk appetite recently.
The Chinese Lunar New Year holiday began today and markets in mainland China will be closed the next several days.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s speech to the Economic Club of New York Wednesday afternoon saw the central bank chief reiterate the Fed will maintain its highly accommodative monetary policy by keeping U.S. interest rates very low and continuing its bond-buying program (quantitative easing).
Meantime, the European Union Commission said Thursday the Euro zone economy is set to contract by 0.9% in the first quarter of this year, but then rebound in good fashion by the second half of the year. The more highly contagious strain of Covid-19 is expected to continue to constrict businesses and consumer activity in the Euro zone in the first quarter.
The key “outside markets” today see the U.S. dollar index trading slightly higher. Meantime, Nymex crude oil futures prices are weaker and trading around $58.30 a barrel. The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury note yield is currently fetching 1.135%.
U.S. economic data due for release Thursday includes weekly jobless claims report, expected to show new claims of 760,000 compared to 769,000 last week.
Technically, the February gold futures bears have the slight overall near-term technical advantage amid a four-week-old price downtrend still in place on the daily chart. Bulls’ next upside price objective is to produce a close in February futures above solid resistance at $1,878.80. Bears' next near-term downside price objective is pushing futures prices below solid technical support at the February low of $1,784.60. First resistance is seen at $1,850.00 and then at this week’s high of $1,856.60. First support is seen at $1,833.30 and then at $1,821.30. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 4.5
March silver futures bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. Silver bulls' next upside price objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at the February high of $30.35 an ounce. The next downside price objective for the bears is closing prices below solid support at $25.00. First resistance is seen at Wednesday’s high of $27.595 and then at this week’s high of $27.875. Next support is seen at the overnight low of $26.75 and then at $26.50. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.0.