Gold & Silver Daily
 

¤ Yesterday In Gold & Silver

Not unexpectedly, it was a 'nothing' sort of trading day as the December contract went off the board---and the gold price was kept safely confined under $1,200 spot---and it's current 50-day moving average, which is just over the $1,205 mark at the moment.

The high and low ticks aren't worth the effort to look up.

Gold finished the Wednesday session at $1,198.00 spot, down $3.20 from Tuesday's close.  Volume, net of roll-over activity was pretty decent at around 133,000 contracts, with the lion's share of that in the new front month which is February.  Gross volume was 208,000 contracts.

Silver traded in a 20 cent range all day long.  There was a 1 percent rally between the Comex open and the London p.m. gold fix, but that 'gain' disappeared by the 5:15 p.m. close of electronic trading.

Once again the highs and lows aren't worth the time to look up.

Silver finished the Wednesday trading session in New York at $16.54 spot, down 12.5 cents from Tuesday.  Net volume was decent as well at 37,500 contracts.

The platinum price traded very flat for all of the Wednesday trading session, but did manage to finish up four dollars on the day.  Palladium had a bit of a roller coaster ride---and manged to break above the $800 spot price mark a couple of times, closing right on the $800 spot mark, up ten bucks on the day.  Here are the charts.

The dollar index closed at 87.89 late on Tuesday afternoon in New York.  From there it didn't do much until a smallish rally materialized around 8:35 a.m. GMT in London.  The 88.03 high tick came around 10:20 a.m. in London---and then sold off to its 87.53 low tick minutes before 11 a.m. in New York.  From there it rallied handful of basis points into the close, finishing the Wednesday session at 87.68---down 21 basis points from Tuesday.  The chart pattern on Wednesday was almost a carbon copy of the chart pattern on Tuesday---and Monday.  Here's the 3-day dollar index chart so you can see for yourself.

The gold stocks opened down---and hit their low tick around 12:40 a.m. EST.  They rallied until 3:40---and from there got sold down into the close.  The HUI finished lower by 1.53%.

The silver equities followed an identical path, as Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 2.44%.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 3 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Friday.  These are brand new last-minute deliveries, as they didn't appear in yesterday's Preliminary Report from the CME, as the remaining deliveries for November were posted yesterday---and will be delivered on Friday as well.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Wednesday trading session showed that there's nothing left to deliver in the November contract, as everything has already been posted in the above Daily Delivery Report.  December o.i. in gold is way up there at 11,524 contracts---and silver's December open interest is 3,966 contracts.  Without doubt, these numbers will be revised considerably lower when this report is updated to its 'Final' version mid-morning EST on Friday.  First Day Notice numbers for 'Day 1' of the December delivery month will be posted on the CME's website on Friday evening EST sometime.

There was a withdrawal from GLD yesterday, as an authorized participant took out 67,265 troy ounces.  And as of 9:43 p.m. EST yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV.

There was no sales report from the U.S. Mint.

Here in Canada, the Royal Canadian Mint finally got around to posting its third quarter financial statements---and here is what they had to say about bullion sales for the July/September period on page 6 of that report.

"The volume of Gold Maple Leaf (GML) sales declined 29.7% to 137,000 ounces compared to 195,000 ounces in the same period in 2013. Sales of Silver Maple Leaf (SML) coins declined 19.4% to 5.4 million ounces from 6.7 million ounces in the same period last year."

"As in the second quarter of fiscal 2014, the decline in GML demand during July and August reflected the shift in investor sentiment as global economies appeared to be recovering. This reversed in early September with sombre economic news coming from Europe and China, and as geopolitical tensions in the Middle East caused the price of oil to drop."

It's a slam dunk that what happened to silver maple leaf sales in July and August is exactly what happened to silver eagles sales in the U.S. during the same time period.  "Mr. Big" buyer---Ted thinks JPMorgan---knew that silver prices were about to head lower [because they engineered it] so they stepped away from the table, only to return when deed had been done, saving millions for themselves---and screwing the RCM for the same amount.  [Jamie Dimon's daughter would be so proud!  See the Critical Reads section for that story.]

Note in the second paragraph that the key words are "This reversed in early September..." and it's an excellent bet that JPMorgan had returned to the table and bought every SML that the mint hadn't sold up to that point.

Using silver eagles sales in the U.S. in the third quarter-to-date as a proxy for third quarter SML sales, it's safe to say that the RCM will have an excellent fourth quarter for silver maple leaf sales---and close to another record year.  However, if that is the case, we won't know about it until the mint files its year-end report, probably at the end of February, if not later.

There was no in/out activity in gold at the COMEX-approved depositories on Tuesday.  There was a bit of activity in silver, as 100,124 troy ounces were shipped out---and nothing was received.  The link to that action is here.

I have the usual number of stories for a mid-week column---and there is one absolute must read in here as well.

 

¤ Critical Reads

U.S. Stocks Seen at Second-Most Overbought Level Since 1871

Nosebleed, anyone? U.S. have hit the second most overbought level in history, according to Yahoo Finance contributor Dana Lyons, partner at J. Lyons Fund Management.

Lyons looked at the current level of the S&P Composite measured against its long-term monthly trend since records were available back to 1871.

“Suffice it to say, the stock market is extended. Can it stay extended? The past few years prove that it can,” Lyons said in a Tumblr column picked up on Yahoo Finance.

The one time stretch in which stocks were even more overbought than now was during the November 1998-July 2001 time period, according to Lyons’ calculations.

This article appeared on the moneynews.com Internet site at 6:22 a.m. EST on Wednesday---and today's first story is courtesy of West Virginia reader Elliot Simon.

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Dollar Bulls Amass Record $48 Billion Stake in Rally: Currencies

Among the hedge-fund crowd, no currency comes close to the dollar in terms of appeal.

Together with other large speculators, the lightly regulated pools of capital have pushed net bullish-dollar positions to a record $48 billion, data from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in Washington show. So convinced are they the greenback will extend its biggest rally since the global financial crisis that it’s now seen gaining against the euro, yen, pound and its five other major peers.

While the U.S. economy still isn’t growing as fast as it did before its 2007 plunge into the deepest contraction since the Great Depression, the outlook is more attractive when stacked against the increasing prospect of euro-area deflation, a Japanese recession and a China-led emerging-market slowdown. Bloomberg’s Dollar Spot Index has gained almost 10 percent since mid-year.

“The U.S. is still the cleanest shirt in the dirty laundry,” Jennifer Vail, the head of fixed income at Minneapolis-based U.S. Bank Wealth Management, which oversees $120 billion, said by phone on Nov. 20. “I don’t view it as a crowded trade, I view it as people piling into the dollar due to the potential for further economic growth.”

Long the dollar to the nuts---and maxed out on the short side in the 'Big 6' commodities.  The stage is set for an explosive reversal in all.  This Bloomberg article showed up on their Internet site at 11:20 a.m. MST on Wednesday---and I borrowed it from yesterday's edition of the King Report.

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Jamie Dimon's Daughter is Asking You For a Favor

After the smashing success of #AskJPMorgan comes this: "If you know any scams, crimes, or hazards that should be exposed or looked into, I want to hear from you!" - Laura Dimon

We know our readers will be delighted to help her, although one wonders: perhaps she should just call her dad?

This delightful bit of irony appeared on the Zero Hedge website at 9:41 p.m. EST last evening---and I thank Elliot Simon for bringing it to our attention.  It's worth a look.

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U.K. faces £34bn bill for black hole in E.U. budget

Auditors have identified a black hole in European Union budgets that could lead to extra demands for cash from the British taxpayer of up to £34 billion over the next six years.

David Cameron will be legally obliged to make up a share of a shortfall of £259 billion by 2020 with liabilities for the Treasury estimated at £33.7bn, calculated at the usual rate of Britain’s EU contributions.

The hole in E.U. spending has been identified by the European Court of Auditors and represents a political disaster for the Prime Minister who has made repeated pledges to bring down the amount Britain pays into Brussels budgets.

“The E.U.’s ability to just grab money from taxpayers whenever it wants is an outrage. It underlines what is structurally wrong with our relationship under the existing treaties," said Bernard Jenkin MP, the chairman of the House of Commons public administration select committee.

This story showed up on the telegraph.co.uk Internet site at 1:53 p.m. GMT yesterday---and I thank South African reader B.V. for sending it our way.

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MEPs endorse Juncker investment plan despite criticism

Most members of the European Parliament on Wednesday (26 November) endorsed Jean Claude Juncker's investment plan based on financial engineering, but critical voices said the scheme did not add up.

Juncker defended the scheme, which will use €8bn in "real" money from the E.U. budget and trigger an estimated €315bn in private and public investments over the next three years.

He described the plan variously as a "breath of fresh air" in the E.U. institutions, a "watering can" and "jump leads" - using little public money to attract more private investments by guaranteeing the riskiest parts of each project.

E.U. parliament chief Martin Schulz, a Social Democrat, was asked by journalists how he can endorse a scheme that very much resembles the "casino capitalism" that triggered the financial crisis. He said "we need this" because it will relaunch the economy.

This story appeared on the euobserver.com Internet site at 4:28 p.m. Europe time on their Wednesday afternoon---and I thank Roy Stephens for his first offering in today's column.

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Eurozone 'grinding to standstill', OECD warns

The eurozone is “grinding to a standstill” and now poses “a major risk to world growth”, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has warned in a report which urges the European Central Bank (ECB) to expand its stimulus programmes.

The stark warning is part of the biannual economic outlook report published on Tuesday (25 November) by the Paris-based think tank, whose members represent the world’s most advanced economies apart from China.

“Intensified monetary support is critical to growth”, said Catherine L. Mann, the OECD’s chief economist and author of the Economic Outlook.

The report calls on the ECB to “further expand its monetary support including through asset purchases [quantitative easing]”.

Melt the printing presses down, kiddies---as it ain't going to help.  This story put in an appearance on the euobserver.com Internet site at 9:29 a.m. Europe time yesterday morning---and it's the second contribution in a row from Roy Stephens.

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Lavrov: Controversy Around Mistral Deal Is France's Responsibility

France is responsible for the controversy around the delivery of two Mistral-class amphibious assault ships to the Russian navy, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.

French President Francois Hollande announced on Tuesday the suspension of a $1.6 billion deal with Russia in light of Moscow's alleged role in the Ukrainian conflict.

"I don't want to comment on that. These are France's problems, not ours," Lavrov told reporters in Russia's Black Sea resort of Sochi.

"We are protected by contract. If France fails to meet its contractual obligations, the litigation process will not take long, I think," Lavrov said.

This story, filed from Sochi, appeared on the sputniknews.com Internet site at 7:26 p.m. Moscow time yesterday evening---and it's the third article in a row from Roy Stephens.

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Shell hits passenger bus in Donetsk — DPR Interior Ministry

At least two people have been killed and six more injured on Tuesday when a shell hit a passenger bus in the Oktyabrsky district of Donetsk in east Ukraine, the Interior Ministry of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) reported.

“The incident happened not far from the Aurora cinema theater. A shell hit the bus No. 6,” the ministry said. “Two people died and six more were injured as a result."

On November 23, two gas pipelines have been set on fire by the Ukrainian military shelling of two districts of Ukraine’s eastern city of Donetsk, the capital of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), the Donetskgorgaz (Donetsk City Gas) gas distribution company reported on Monday. More than 5,000 city dwellers have been left without gas supply as a result of the artillery attack.

This news item was posted on the itar-tass.com Internet site at 11:49 a.m. Moscow time on their Tuesday morning---and once again I thank Roy Stephens for sending it.

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Ukraine court upholds nationalization of Russian pipeline

The Ukrainian Supreme Commercial Court of Appeal has upheld the nationalization of 1,433 kilometers of pipeline through the country which it says was illegally registered in the name of a subsidiary of Russia’s Transneft.

A spokesman for Transneft, Igor Demin, told TASS that the company intends to appeal the decision, and added that it will lead to a decline in the transit of product, and "the pipeline asset will turn into a pile of iron."

The nationalization primarily concerns the Samara of westerly direction pipeline, which is owned by part of Southwest Transnefteprodukt, a subsidiary of Transneft. The company also owns a part of the Grozny-Armavir-Trudovaya pipeline which is currently out of service.

Ukraine and E.U. countries get Russian diesel fuel through these pipelines.

This brief story appeared on the Russia Today website at 4:13 p.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday afternoon, which was 8:13 a.m. New York time.  It's worth reading---and it's also courtesy of Roy Stephens.

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John Batchelor interviews Stephen F. Cohen on the Ukraine/Russia situation

As usual, very telling interpretive work over the Ukraine Crisis heating up. Cohen sees this as a

potential for war similar to the late 1950s. But the worry is that the sides are not talking, just reacting.

Russia is assuming that Washington wants war, and is preparing for it.

The propaganda war is currently being initiated by the European Leadership Network NATO lobby group, active hawks and active also in misinformation about Russian incursions into European territories.

The audio interview was posted on the johnbatchelor.com Internet site on Wednesday---and it runs for 39:44 minutes.  I thank reader Larry Galearis for sharing it with us.

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How to prevent the coming war: Sergei Glazyev

The hostilities in Donbass are a menace to Russia, Europe and the entire world. Failure to realize it may spark a regional war, and eventually a world one. The world media’s interpretation of that war as the Ukrainian authorities’ crusade against pro-Russian separatists for the sake of the country’s integrity is as superficial and senseless as the delusion that World War I resulted from the murder of an Austrian prince, and World War II, from the Nazis’ success in Germany’s parliamentary elections. The Russian mass media’s explanation of that war is only slightly meaningful – popular resistance in Donbass against a Nazi junta that grabbed power in Kiev in an anti-government coup.

In the meantime, without understanding the underlying causes and driving forces that keep the armed conflict going it is impossible to bring it to a halt. In this paper the Ukrainian crisis is scrutinized in the context of global economic changes that are breeding objective prerequisites for an escalation of military-political tensions in international relations. The analysis explains the motives of the main actors in the Ukrainian conflict and the technologies they employ. It also unveils the reasons why attempts to end the conflict have failed and prompts a forecast it may evolve into another world war. Avoiding that will be possible only by upsetting the cause-effect relationship between the persisting crimes, whose scale is growing in a geometric progression. Otherwise there will be no option left other than getting ready for a world war, in which many would like to see Russia as an enemy, a victim and a prize to win.

This long but absolute must read essay by Sergei Glazyev appeared on the anna-news.com Internet site last Friday afternoon Moscow time---and I thank Warsaw reader Wojtek Szala for sending it our way on Sunday, but it had to wait for today.  This is the most important article in today's column---precious metal-related or otherwise---so please give it the attention it deserves.  The bio on Sergei Glazyev is here.

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Russia won't get involved in geopolitical intrigues and conflicts - Putin

Russia threatens no one and will stay aloof from geopolitical intrigues, however strongly anyone may wish to pull the country into them, said Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, addressing a meeting on the development of the armed forces.

“We are not threatening anyone and are not planning to get involved in any geopolitical games, intrigues and especially conflicts, no matter who would want to pull us into them,” Putin said at a meeting with military chiefs in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Wednesday.

The president stressed the importance of ensuring the sovereignty and integrity of Russia and its allies. He also said that an “integrated approach and the unification of all public authorities is needed in solving issues concerning national defense.”

This very interesting article was posted on the Russia Today website at 2:55 p.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday afternoon.  It's also courtesy of Roy Stephens.

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Using terrorists for regime change in Syria is unacceptable - Lavrov

Moscow condemns efforts to overthrow Syria's political regime using terrorist groups in the region, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said.

"Russia condemns the use of extremist groups in efforts to change the regime [in Syria]," Lavrov said, at a news conference on Wednesday in Sochi, after meeting his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem.

The foreign minister called the US refusal to compromise with Syrian authorities "openly ideology-driven," saying that Syria's nuclear disarmament confirms the country's cooperation internationally.

Saying the fight against terrorism should be conducted without "double standards," the minister said strikes on the Islamic State forces without approval from Damascus violated international laws.

This story put in an appearance on the Russia Today Internet site at 4 p.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday afternoon---and the articles from Roy just keep on coming.

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OPEC heading for no output cut despite oil price plunge

OPEC Gulf oil producers will not propose an output cut on Thursday, reducing the likelihood of joint action by OPEC to prop up prices that have sunk by a third since June.

"The GCC reached a consensus," Saudi Arabian Oil MinisterAli al-Naimi told reporters, referring to the Gulf Cooperation Council which includes Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates. "We are very confident that OPEC will have a unified position."

"The power of convincing will prevail tomorrow ... I am confident that OPEC is capable of taking a very unified position," Naimi added.

A Gulf OPEC delegate told Reuters the GCC had reached a consensus not to cut oil output. Three OPEC delegates separately told Reuters they believed OPEC was unlikely to take any action when the 12-member organisation meets on Thursday after Russia said it would not cut output in tandem.

This Reuters article, filed from Vienna, was posted on their website at 3:18 p.m. EST yesterday afternoon---and it's the first contribution of the day from Manitoba reader U.M.

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U.S. pressing Chinese and Arab banks to sanction Russia – head of VTB bank

The U.S. is putting pressure on Chinese and Arab banks, forbidding them to work with Russian sanctioned companies, says Andrey Kostin, head of Russia's second biggest lender VTB.

"We have information on Arab countries, China, and others that US officials come, gather the heads of banks and say: "We will punish everyone who is under Russian sanctions," said Kostin, after a meeting organized by the Stuttgart Chamber of Commerce in Germany.

"We need to take this into account. Nobody wants to become BNP Paribas”, he said, meaning the large French bank that was fined $9 billion for violating US sanctions against Cuba, Iran and Sudan.

However, Kostin believes Chinese credit organizations will provide financing for projects that interest them.

This news item appeared on the Russia Today website at 2:36 p.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday afternoon was 6:36 a.m. yesterday morning EST.  It's anther contribution from Roy Stephens.

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BoJ chief watching impact of falling yen after additional easing

Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda said Tuesday the central bank is closely watching the impact of the yen’s sharp fall against other major currencies following the bank’s additional monetary easing announced last month.

Speaking to a meeting of business leaders in Nagoya, Kuroda said the weakening currency could negatively affect the economy through rising prices of imports, which place a disproportionate burden on smaller companies and households, although positive aspects include improved earnings for firms operating internationally.

The impact “differs from one economic entity to another,” he said. “We will carefully watch (the environment), including effects on the real economy.”

Kuroda also expressed his hope that companies benefiting from the yen’s depreciation, which has been prompted by the BoJ’s ultra-loose monetary policy, will help spur the economy by boosting wages or increasing business investment.

As Bill King said in his column yesterday---"The above story validates reports that Kuroda is uncoupling from Abe on concern that Abenomics is not working---and is instead harming large segments of Japan’s economy."  As indicated, I found this Japan Times story embedded in yesterday's edition of the King Report.

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Gold “Price” Spikes to $1,467.50/oz on Computer Glitch?

Gold spiked higher in many price feeds overnight and was $270 higher or more than 22% higher to $1,467.50/oz at one stage in what appears to have been some form of computer glitch.

There was speculation that the price spike which came while the COMEX was closed for 30 minutes was due to a series of charting errors or misprints, a bad price feed or a computer glitch. Another example of how technology is a great enabler but can also be a great disabler.

Despite a very bullish backdrop of the Swiss gold referendum on Sunday, gold repatriation movements in Europe, Russian central bank gold buying and very robust Indian and Chinese demand, there was no breaking news that would justify such a dramatic uptick in gold.

The “usual suspects” were a fat finger trade by a large hedge fund or bank. This was quickly discounted as the price moved higher in a series of trades over a period of minutes rather than in one or two trades.

This very interesting commentary by Mark O'Byrne appeared on the goldcore.com Internet site on Wednesday---and it's worth skimming.

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HSBC, Goldman rigged platinum and palladium prices for years, suit says

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and HSBC Holdings Plc were sued in New York over claims they conspired for eight years to manipulate prices for the precious metals platinum and palladium in what plaintiffs’ lawyers say is the first such class-action lawsuit in the U.S.

Standard Bank Group Ltd. and a metals unit of BASF SE, the world’s largest chemical company, were also sued. The four companies used inside information about client purchases and sale orders to profit from price movements for the metals used in products ranging from jewelry to cars, according to a complaint filed yesterday in Manhattan federal court.

Modern Settings LLC, a jeweler that buys precious metals and derivatives set on their prices, claims the companies “were privy to and shared confidential, non-public information about client purchase and sale orders that allowed them to glean information about the direction” of prices.

Similar lawsuits have been filed this year in Manhattan accusing banks of rigging the benchmark price for gold. Authorities around the world are examining the gold market for signs of wrongdoing.

This Bloomberg article, filed from New York, showed up on their website at 12:22 p.m. Denver time yesterday afternoon.  The first reader through the door with this story yesterday was Elliot Simon, but I borrowed the headline from a GATA release.

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Le Pen calls for audit of French gold reserves

Demands for gold reserve accountability have been rising in Europe – is this something that could spread around the world for those nations who own gold in vaults in countries other than their own – or indeed supposedly held even in their own countries? 

We have seen Germany requesting repatriation of around half of its gold reserves, mostly held in the US, the recent return of some of its foreign held gold to The Netherlands, the Swiss referendum on the return of much of the nation’s gold and the raising of its reserve levels to 20% of its foreign reserves, and now the latest is a request to M. Christian Noyer, the Governor of the Bank of France, for that nation’s gold reserves to be comprehensively audited. 

The request has come in the form of an open letter from the French right wing Front National opposition leader, Marine Le Pen. In it she requests that: 

"This comprehensive audit should contain: A complete inventory of the physical gold amounting to 2,435 tonnes currently displayed and their quality (serial number, purity, bars 'Good Delivery' ...), conducted by an independent French body (to be defined). This inventory, under supervision of a bailiff, must indicate the country in which the gold reserves are stored in France or abroad."

Lawrie Williams comments on the Le Pen's call for an audit of France's gold---and it's worth reading.  It was posted on the mineweb.com Internet site yesterday.

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Curbing central banks is the point of the Swiss Gold Initiative

Restricting the power of banks is the point, say the bugs. "It is about time that the power of central banks is contained and regulated. The Swiss gold initiative, while not ideal, would be a starting point," said Marc Faber, editor of the Gloom, Boom, Doom Report, a newsletter.

Swiss voters are likely to reject a November 30 referendum to force the Swiss National Bank to hold 20% of its reserves in gold, but you can't crush a gold bug.

Die-hard gold fans -- known as "gold bugs" -- aren't discouraged by the impending rejection of the Swiss people for their favorite metal. The Swiss National Bank and the major Swiss political parties are against the measure. On Sunday SNB president Thomas Jordan said the referendum would restrict the flexibility of the bank to respond to crises.

Restricting the power of banks is the point, say the bugs.

"It is about time that the power of central banks is contained and regulated. The Swiss gold initiative, while not ideal, would be a starting point," said Marc Faber, editor of The Gloom, Boom, Doom Report, a newsletter.

This gold-related story showed up on theguardian.com Internet site at 1:00 p.m. GMT yesterday afternoon---and I found it on the gata.org Internet site.  The actual headline reads "Ron Paul and other gold bugs keep fingers crossed for Swiss vote that could add $50 to price of gold".

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Mike Maloney: A message to the People of Switzerland

This 4:06 minute video clip is in English, of course, but it does have Swiss subtitles---and I urge you to pass it along to any Swiss readers you may know that are able to vote on this issue on Sunday.

It's not often that the citizens of a country can stick it directly to their central bank, but the Swiss have been offered this gift on a golden platter---and I hope they do what's necessary.

It was posted on the hiddensecretsofmoney.com Internet site early this week---and it's worth your time.

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Mumbai gold premiums slip but India's November imports could exceed 100 tonnes again

Gold premiums in Mumbai have dropped after the start of the Indian wedding season but November imports could well exceed 100 tonnes for the third month running, according to early indications.

Spot gold has staged a small recovery in recent sessions and physical demand in Asia is showing signs of improvement, despite premiums in India falling after buying for the annual wedding season died down.

Imports in November could be far higher than this year’s monthly average – imports in the first half of November were around 102 tonnes, Commerzbank said on Wednesday, citing reports from the Indian media. The country imported around 150 tonnes in October.

High imports could also reflect buying ahead of a possible tightening of import restrictions by Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to tackle the country’s ballooning current account deficit (CAD).

This gold-related news item was something I found on the bulliondesk.com Internet site.  It was posted there at 1:28 p.m. GMT yesterday afternoon.

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IIMA and World Gold Council set up India Gold Policy Centre

The centre is aimed towards conducting cutting-edge research on all aspects of the Indian gold industry.

The objective of the ‘India Gold Policy Centre’ is to develop insights into how the significant stocks of gold that India owns that can be used to advance growth, employment, social inclusion and the economic wealth of the nation. It aims to conduct research that has a practical application and that the industry and all stakeholders can use, leading to the development of an effective gold ecosystem in the country.

“As part of the initiative taken by IIMA to connect more closely with practice, and in line with our vision to contribute and reach out to industry, the Gold Centre will provide innovative solutions and insights for the gold industry through cutting-edge research. The research is intended to study the growth and development of the gold industry in India and globally,” said Ashish Nanda, Director, IIMA.

Commenting on the collaboration, Somasundaram PR, Managing Director, India, World Gold Council said,”It is estimated that India holds around 22,000 tonnes of gold valued at over a trillion US dollars. This historic asset can be used to enhance the nation’s prosperity by putting it to work for the economy, creating jobs, developing skills, generating exports and revenues. To develop gold’s potential, we need to understand gold’s role in the Indian economy, through high quality data, insights and research.”

Another scheme to talk Indians out of their physical gold holdings---all with the help of the World Gold Council.  This article appeared on the indianexpress.com Internet site at 3:01 p.m. IST on their Wednesday afternoon---and it's another story courtesy of reader U.M.

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Lawrence Williams: SGE figures – do they really equate to Chinese gold demand?

We have been quoting Shanghai Gold Exchange (SGE) withdrawal figures as the definitive indicator of Chinese gold demand. Last year, gold researcher Koos Jansen published a series of three articles on his website – ingoldwetrust.ch – demonstrating that as far as the Chinese are concerned the country’s gold demand is equal to gold withdrawals from the SGE. For the first of these articles see Shanghai Gold Exchange Physical Delivery Equals Chinese Demand.

The SGE rules suggest that once gold is taken out of the exchange it cannot be returned to it, but more of this later as U.S. precious metals analyst, Jeff Christian suggests this may not actually be the case.

Data from the World Gold Council (WGC), which is supplied by Thomson Reuters GFMS, comes up with the substantially lower figure for total Chinese gold demand of only 1,066 tonnes for 2013 and its Gold Demand Trends reports suggest a similar disparity between its and the SGE figures so far for 2014. This will be the data primarily used by gold analysts around the world, although a few are beginning to question it – including, obviously, Jansen.

Jeff Christian has contacted us with his views on why even CPM group’s analysis comes up with a lower overall demand figure than the SGE. Jeff is something of a bête noire for the gold investment community, as he disagrees strongly on whether there is manipulation of the gold market, but his consultancy is hugely respected within the industry and there is no doubt he firmly believes the data it puts out.

Bête noire is a wonderful choice of words---and I know that Lawrie picked it carefully.  Another good word is quisling, as he is strong with the dark side of The Force.  In my fifteen years of following the precious metals, I have never heard a kind word spoken of this man, nor a voice raised in his support.   But, in all fairness, you should read this commentary---and make up your own mind.  It was posted on the mineweb.com Internet site yesterday--and it's the final offering of the day from Manitoba reader U.M., for which I thank her.

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¤ The Funnies

Here's the latest photo from the Hawai'ian Volcano Observatory, along with their comments.

Although the down slope portion of the June 27th lava flow, near Pāhoa, is inactive, breakouts persist up slope near the ground crack system and well site. The lava has advanced a short distance down slope towards the north (towards the right side of the image), following the west margin of the existing June 27th lava flow. The currently active breakout is visible as the light colored area, while the older portions of the June 27th flow appear darker.  [The 'click to enlarge' feature works wonder here.]









Uranium Energy Corp. (NYSE MKT: UEC) is pleased to announce that the final authorization has been granted for production at its Goliad ISR Project in South Texas.  As announced in previous press releases, the Company received all of the required authorizations from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, including an Aquifer Exemption which has now been granted concurrence from EPA Region 6.

Amir Adnani, President and CEO, stated, “We are very pleased to have received this final authorization for initiating production at Goliad. Our geological and engineering teams have worked diligently toward achieving this major milestone and are to be truly commended. We are grateful to the EPA for its thorough reviews and for issuing this final concurrence. The Company’s near-term plan is to complete construction at the first production area at Goliad and to greatly increase the throughput of uranium at our centralized Hobson processing plant.” Please contact Investor Relations with questions or to request additional information, info@uraniumenergy.com.

 

¤ The Wrap

There was a sharp increase in the short positions of SLV and GLD as of November 14, following a number of recent declines in the short positions. The short position in SLV expanded by 2.6 million shares to nearly 17.5 million shares (oz).

You may recall that both silver and gold staged impressive and high volume reversals upward on Friday, November 14. On that day, the volume in SLV was the highest in months and it would be expected that there was net investor buying which would have necessitated a hefty deposit of metal into the trust. There was a 2.4 million oz deposit some days later, but it still felt to me that more metal was “owed” to the trust. The only other alternative was that many shares were sold short on Nov 14 because the metal wasn’t available for deposit. The difference this time is that I don’t think it was JPMorgan doing the shorting in SLV, since relevant COT data covering the same period shows JPM as a buyer. If I’m correct, this increase in shorting in SLV is constructive since it doesn’t appear to be connected to the big shorts. - Silver analyst Ted Butler: 26 November 2014

I wasn't expecting much in the way of price action yesterday---and that's more or less what we got.  Volume was pretty high, as the last of the traders rolled out of the December contract, although there might be some spill-over today from overseas markets---and we await First Notice Day tomorrow.

With the exception of palladium, the precious metals are all below their respective 50-day moving averages---and in the case of both silver and gold, just below them.  Copper set a new intraday low price tick yesterday for this move down, but did not close there.  West Texas Intermediate painted a double bottom---and it will be interesting to see what happens with the price after the OPEC meeting today.

Here are the 6-month charts for the 'Big 6' commodities.

And as I write this paragraph, the London open is about ten minutes away.  I was expecting the precious metals to trade quietly in the Far East on their Thursday, as the U.S. was closed today, but that certainly hasn't been the case.  So far, gold has an down/up/down intraday move of a percent---and a similar move in silver is closer to 3 percent.  The same moves are apparent in platinum and palladium---particularly palladium.

Gold volume, net of December, is already an astounding 47,000 contracts---and net open interest in silver is just over 8,000 contracts.  The dollar index is down about 10 basis points---and it's price movements during the Far East trading session up to this point have been irrelevant.

It beats the hell out of me as to what might be going on under the hood at the moment---so we'll just have to await further developments.

Ted Butler informed me that there won't be a Commitment of Traders Report tomorrow, so I won't have that to talk about in my Saturday column.  It comes out on Monday.

And as I fire this out the door at 5:50 a.m. EST this morning, I note that things have settled down quite a bit.  The current lows in all four precious metals came about 12:45 p.m. Hong Kong time---and their subsequent rallies ended about 3 p.m. before getting rolled over.  There was no price action around the 10:30 GMT London a.m. gold fix---and the metals aren't doing much at the moment, although they're still all down from Wednesday's closes in New York.  Net gold volume is now north of 55,000 contracts---and silver's net volume is just under the 10,000 contract mark.

At the moment, gold is down ten bucks, silver's down almost two bits---platinum is down ten dollars as well---but palladium is back to within 3 bucks of yesterday's New York close.

The dollar index, which had been down to 87.53 around 3:15 p.m. Hong Kong time, has rallied sharply---and was up a bit over 30 basis points off that low, to 87.86 minutes after 9 a.m. GMT---and hasn't done much since.  It's currently up 15 basis points.

I must admit that I'm not sure what to make of the price action in Far East trading.  Maybe it was 'da boyz' last swing for the fences, as this is the last trading day of the week---and the month.  Then again, maybe its nothing.

With New York closed, I can't imagine there will be big price activity after London trading ends today, but I'm not about to presume anything at this point.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my American readers once again---and I'll see you here tomorrow.

Ed Steer