Gold has been hammering away the $1,690 mark for the last couple of trading sessions, but with no luck so far. Silver looks to be setting up for a move back over $32 and put in a stronger showing on Friday than either gold, platinum or palladium. This morning European stocks are edging towards two-year highs – a further sign of improving sentiment.
Last week saw further gains in gold relative to the Japanese yen, gold hitting Y149,588.2/oz; the highest price since the 1980 all-time nominal record of Y204,850. As WSJ reports, yen gold is up 4.2% since the start of the year and 10% since late November – when markets first started paying attention to reports that then prime-ministerial candidate Shinzo Abe was determined to force new yen-weakening measures on the Bank of Japan. As one commodity strategist quoted in the article notes, "the first product people think about when it comes to inflation is gold: it's a very obvious trade." The Japanese have not tended to be big gold buyers compared with others in Asia, but given the paltry return on cash savings they’re getting, this is changing.
Trader Dan provides a good update on the commodity price chart indicators, noting that last Thursday the Continuous Commodity Index again crept above its 50-day and 200-day moving averages, as seen in late November and mid-December. As the chart on his site shows, the CCI has been in a downtrend since last October. But with quiet in Europe, gains in US economic indicators and talk of massive money printing from the Bank of Japan, the broader environment is looking more and more constructive for commodities and precious metals.