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Modest gains for gold as stock markets still wobbly

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(Kitco News) - Gold prices are a bit higher in midday U.S. trading Tuesday. It's been a choppy, two-sided trading session. The yellow metal is supported by some safe-haven demand amid world energy supply concerns, but has also seen pressure from a higher U.S. dollar index and recently elevated bond yields. December gold futures were last up $5.20 at $1,761.20. December Comex silver was last down $0.095 at $22.57 an ounce.

The U.S. stock indexes are slightly up at midday but have also traded both sides of unchanged so far today. Traders and investors are still a bit nervous as mid-October nears. On the front burner today are concerns about energy supplies heading into the Northern Hemisphere's winter. Said Bloomberg in a morning email dispatch: Shortages of coal and natural gas heading into winter are expected to keep demand high. The latest pressure on energy supplies comes from record thermal coal prices in China as key mining regions are hit by flooding. The high cost of power is already feeding through to metal prices, with aluminum rising to the highest since July of 2008.

Rising inflation, due in part to the increasing energy prices, is also making the marketplace uneasy. U.S. inflation reports are due out Wednesday and Thursday mornings and will be closely scrutinized.

The troubled Chinese property Giant, Evergrande, reportedly missed another big debt payment and traders are increasingly worried about a contagion effect.

In other overnight news, Germany's closely watched ZEW economic conditions index for October was downbeat, showing a "current conditions" reading of 21.6 versus 31.9 in September.

The key outside markets today see the U.S. dollar index firmer and not far below its recent 12-month high. Nymex crude oil futures are near steady and trading around $80.50 a barrel. Meantime, the 10-year U.S. Treasury note yield is presently fetching 1.598%.   

Live 24 hours gold chart [Kitco Inc.]

Technically, December gold futures bears have the slight overall near-term technical advantage. Bulls' next upside price objective is to produce a close above solid resistance at $1,800.00. Bears' next near-term downside price objective is pushing futures prices below solid technical support at the September low of $1,721.10. First resistance is seen at today's high of $1,770.00 and then at last week's high of $1,782.40. First support is seen at this week's low of $1,749.90 and then at last week's low of $1,745.40. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 4.5

Live 24 hours silver chart [ Kitco Inc. ]

December silver futures bears have the firm overall near-term technical advantage. Silver bulls' next upside price objective is closing prices above solid technical resistance at $24.00 an ounce. The next downside price objective for the bears is closing prices below solid support at the September low of $21.41. First resistance is seen at $23.00 and then at last week's high of $23.22. Next support is seen at last week's low of $22.185 and then at $22.00. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 2.5.

December N.Y. copper closed down 275 points at 433.95 cents today. Prices closed near mid-range today and hit a three-week high early on. The copper bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage. Copper bulls' next upside price objective is pushing and closing prices above solid technical resistance at the September high of 447.15 cents. The next downside price objective for the bears is closing prices below solid technical support at 410.00 cents. First resistance is seen at today's high of 439.55 cents and then at 441.80 cents. First support is seen at today's low of 428.65 cents and then at this week's low of 425.55 cents. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.0.

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.