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Wednesday, February 05, 2014
Gold edges up after private-sector jobs data
Feb. 5, 2014: Gold for April delivery rose $2.10, or 0.2%, to $1,253.30 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange. March silver added 34 cents, or 1.7%, to $19.76 an ounce.
Gold is “modestly rising after the under-whelming ADP employment number,” said Jeffrey Wright, managing director at H.C. Wainwright.
Last month the private sector added 175,000 jobs — the lowest result in five months — down from 227,000 in December, Automatic Data Processing Inc. reported.
“While not bad was less than anticipated, the ADP number puts a lot of pressure on the official U.S. employment number, another key indicator will be labor participation rates, released on Friday,” he said. “If this data point does not meet expectations, there is speculation the FOMC could examine the rate of ‘tapering’ or delay the next step down of $10 billion” to the Federal Reserve’s bond-buying program.
“Any delay or reduced impact of tapering would be a positive for gold in the coming weeks,” said Wright.
Still, some upbeat economic data caused gold to pare some of its earlier gains. The ISM services index rose to 54% in January, as expected, from 53% in December.
For now, David Govett of Marex Spectrum told clients to stay the course and that this isn’t a trending market.
“I am sure that at some point, it will break one way or the other and will catch most of us unawares, that is the way of the gold market,” he wrote. “But for the moment, stick with what works. Sell strength, buy weakness.”
Marshall Gittler, strategist at IronFX, said the market remains trendless from a technical perspective.
“I remain neutral on the precious metal, since a dip below the $1,235 support is needed to confirm that the advance [from Dec. 19 to Jan. 27] was just a retracement of the major downtrend,” he said, in a note. A violation, however, “of the previous high at $1,268 may turn the picture positive again. Both momentum studies lie near their neutral levels, confirming investors’ reluctance to choose the next trending direction of the metal.”
On Tuesday, gold prices closed 0.7% lower as the dollar edged higher and as stocks rose. Still, gold is up about nearly 5% this year after being down 28% last year, as the stock market continues to wobble its way through the early part of 2014.
Elsewhere in metals trading, April platinum PLJ4 +0.59% gained $7.10, or 0.5%, to $1,380.50 an ounce, while March palladium PAH4 +1.56% rose $11.50, or 1.6%, to $711.60 an ounce. High-grade copper HGH4 -0.08% added less than a penny to $3.20 a pound.