(Kitco News) - Comex gold and silver futures prices ended the U.S. day session higher Wednesday. The key "outside markets" were fully bullish for the precious metals Wednesday, as crude oil prices were sharply higher while the U.S. dollar index was solidly lower. There was also some safe-haven investment demand for gold and silver due to the violent riots occurring in Athens Greece. August gold last traded up $10.50 an ounce at $1,510.70. Spot gold last traded up $8.30 an ounce at $1,511.00. July Comex silver last traded up $1.132 at $34.77 an ounce.

The Greek parliament did pass austerity measures Wednesday, which was expected by the market place, but there was serious rioting and violence in the streets of Athens. That prompted some market uncertainty and led to safe-haven demand for gold and silver. European Union, International Monetary Fund and Greek officials last week agreed upon a rescue plan for Greece, and that plan and austerity measures had to be approved by the Greek parliament before the aid plan goes into effect. The individual measures of the austerity plan will be voted on Thursday, but Wednesday's vote was seen as more critical by the market place.

While the European Union debt crisis has received a "band-aid" this week, the overall situation is dire and likely to continue to be a drag on the EU and the Euro currency. The overall EU debt crisis is an underlying bullish factor for the gold market.

Crude oil prices traded sharply higher Wednesday on the better risk appetite in the market place, due to the Greek parliament passage of the austerity measures, and following a bullish weekly DOE liquid energy storage report. Crude oil bulls have gained some fresh upside near-term technical momentum as prices moved above $95.00 a barrel on Wednesday. If crude can continue to recover from this week's six-month low that would also be a bullish underlying factor for the metals.

The U.S. dollar index traded solidly lower Wednesday as the greenback bulls are fading again, as the Euro currency rallied on the affirmative Greek parliament vote. The greenback could benefit from any serious escalation in the Greek unrest. However, the U.S. dollar index remains in an overall technically bearish posture, which is another underlying bullish factor for gold and silver. 

The London P.M. gold fixing was $1,504.25 versus the previous P.M. fixing of $1,499.00.

Technically, August gold futures prices closed nearer the session high Wednesday and saw short covering and bargain-hunting besides the safe-haven buying interest. Gold bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage and are now regaining upside technical momentum. Bulls' next near-term upside technical objective is to produce a close above strong technical resistance at $1,530.00. Bears' next near-term downside price objective is closing prices below solid technical support at this week's low of $1,490.80. First resistance is seen at Wednesday's high of $1,513.80 and then at $1,520.00. First support is seen at $1,500.00 and then at Tuesday's low of $1,495.50. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.5.

July silver futures prices closed near the session high Wednesday on short covering and bargain-hunting. While prices are still in a four-week-old downtrend on the daily bar chart, the bulls did regain some fresh upside near-term technical momentum Wednesday. The next downside price breakout objective for the bears is closing prices below solid technical support at this week's low of $33.38. Bulls' next upside price objective is producing a close above solid technical resistance at last week's high of $36.77 an ounce. First resistance is seen at $35.00 and then at $35.42. Next support is seen at $34.50 and then at $34.00. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 5.5.

July N.Y. copper closed up 1,160 points 420.80 cents Wednesday. Prices closed near the session high and hit a fresh seven-week high. The key "outside markets" were in a fully bullish posture for copper Wednesday, as the U.S. dollar index was lower and crude oil prices were sharply higher. Copper prices today saw a bullish upside "breakout" from a trading range to provide the bulls with fresh upside technical momentum. A four-week-old downtrend on the daily bar chart was soundly negated today. Copper bulls' next upside breakout objective is pushing and closing prices above solid technical resistance at 430.00 cents. The next downside price breakout objective for the bears is closing prices below major psychological support at 400.00 cents. First resistance is seen at Wednesday's high of 421.90 cents and then at 425.00 cents. First support is seen at 418.30 cents and then at 415.00 cents. Wyckoff's Market Rating: 6.0.

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By Jim Wyckoff contributing to Kitco News; jwyckoff@kitco.com

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