Friday was a real yawner as far as price action in gold was concerned and, once again there was little volume associated with it, either---and it followed the dollar index around for the most part. Once again, the high and low ticks aren't worth looking up.
Gold finished the Friday trading session at $1,280.80 spot, up $4.50 from Thursday's close, saved by a five dollar rally that started just before 11 a.m. EDT in New York. Net volume was only 87,000 contracts.
Silver spent most of Friday in positive territory but, like gold, got sold down to its low of the day a few minutes before London closed for the weekend, which was a few minutes before 11 a.m. EDT. The subsequent rally back into positive territory got met by the usual not-for-profit sellers---and silver was closed down on the day.
The low and high ticks were reported as $19.285 and $19.55 in the September contract.
Silver closed yesterday at $19.395 spot, down 2 cents from Thursday. Gross volume was heavy because of roll-overs out of the September contract, but it netted out at only 22,000 contracts.
The platinum price did even less---and finished Friday up two bucks.
Palladium was in positive territory all day long yesterday---and then caught a bid at the Comex open, with all of the gains in by 10 a.m. EDT. After that it traded flat, before getting sold off a couple of bucks just before the close of electronic trading. Palladium finished up seven dollars.
The dollar index closed late Thursday afternoon in New York at 82.16. It trade pretty flat in the early going in Far East trading before rolling over and hitting its 82.07 low about 2:40 p.m. Hong Kong time. It rallied from there, hitting its 82.45 high minutes before 11 a.m. EDT, which just happened to coincide with the low ticks for both gold and silver. From that point it sold off a bit and closed the Friday session at 82.31---up 15 basis points on the day.
The gold stocks headed lower right from the open---and hit their nadir minutes before 11 a.m. EDT when gold hit its low---and the dollar index hit its high. From there they rallied sharply back into positive territory, but couldn't hold even those tiny gains, despite the fact that gold closed in positive territory. The HUI finished down 0.30%.
The silver equities followed a very similar path---and Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed down 0.27%.
The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 100 gold and zero silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday. The only short/issuer was Morgan Stanley out of its in-house [proprietary] trading account. The two largest stoppers were Canada's Scotiabank with 71 contracts---and JPMorgan with 22 contracts for its client account once again. The link to yesterday's Issuers and Stoppers Report is here.
The CME's Preliminary Report for the Friday trading session showed that there are still 226 gold contracts open in August, from which you can subtract the 100 contracts shown above that are to be delivered on Tuesday.
And, for the first time this week, there was no sales report from the U.S. Mint.
Over at the Comex-approved depositories on Thursday, there was a deposit of 46,279 troy ounces of gold into Brink's Inc. Ted Butler pointed out that this was the same gold, to the ounce, that had been transferred out of the Manfra, Tordella & Brookes warehouse on Wednesday. So there was no net change in gold stocks over those two days, just inter-depository movement. The link to that activity is here.
It was a huge day in silver once again, as 1,899,945 troy ounces were reported received---and 785,557 troy ounces were shipped out. The bulk of the movements were at Brink's, Inc. and Canada's Scotiabank. The link to that action is here.
The Commitment of Traders Report, for positions held at the close of Comex trading on Tuesday, was more or less what I was expecting to see, as there was very decent improvement in the Commercial net short positions in both silver and gold---and I'm just going to hit the highlights.
In silver, the Commercial net short position declined by a chunky 6,343 contracts, or 31.7 million ounces. The Commercial net short position is now down to 186.9 million troy ounces.
The Big 4 traders reduced their net short position by 1,800 contracts, but the '5 through 8' traders increased their net short position by 1,500 contracts. Ted pegs JPMorgan's short-side corner in the Comex silver market at 17,500 contracts.
The big surprise for me was that the brain-dead/black-box technical fund traders in the 'Managed Money' category only reduced their long position by 575 contracts, although they jumped on the short side to the tune of 5,411 contracts. I was expecting much more long liquidation that that. Ted had the answer---and it amazed me---but that info is for his paying subscribers only.
As an aside to all of the above in silver, at the low at the end of May, the Commercial net short position in silver was only around 14,000 contracts, or 70 million ounces of silver. So you can see that we have miles to go to the downside in both contract [and price] terms if 'da boyz' really want to hammer the silver market like their quite capable of doing.
In gold, the Commercial net short position also declined by a bunch, to the tune of 13,025 Comex contracts, or 1.30 million troy ounces of paper gold.
The 'Managed Money' technical funds did pretty much as I expected they might, as they sold 9,959 long contracts---and piled onto the short side to the tune of 3,263 contracts.
Ted says that JPMorgan actually increased its long potion by 2,500 contracts during the reporting week---and their long-side corner in the Comex gold market is back up to 17,500 contracts, which is exactly the same number of contracts they hold short in the Comex silver market.
Here's Nick Laird's "Days of World Production to Cover Comex Short Positions" for the Big 4 and Big 8 traders in the Comex futures market as of yesterday's COT Report.
I have a lot of stories today, including several that I've been saving for my Saturday column because of content or length issues.
The Federal Reserve should move cautiously in deciding when to raise interest rates given the U.S. labor market remains bruised from the Great Recession, Fed Chair Janet Yellen said on Friday amid calls from policy hawks for a near-term rate hike.
In a speech at the Fed's annual central bank conference, Yellen laid out in detail why she feels the unemployment rate alone is inadequate to evaluate the strength of the jobs market and why the central bank needs to step gingerly.
Her remarks were followed by a speech by the head of the European Central Bank, Mario Draghi, who said the ECB was ready to use all the tools at its disposal to lift euro zone inflation if it continued to drop. He said, however, that most factors that had weighed on prices appeared temporary.
Together, the comments from Yellen and Draghi underscored how both central banks were wrestling with the complexities of labor markets still-wracked by the 2007-2009 financial crisis.
This Reuters article, filed from Jackson Hole, Wyoming, showed up on their Internet site at 5:45 p.m. EDT on Friday afternoon---and today's first story is courtesy of Orlando, Florida reader Dennis Mong.
The U.S. is #1 once again---that'll teach the cynics.
That's all the words there are to this Zero Hedge piece from early yesterday evening---and the chart is definitely worth the trip. I thank reader M.A. for sending it along.
Thursday night it was SecDef Chuck Hagel who warned ISIS was a bigger threat to America than 9/11 and primed the narrative for the next round of defense-spending (and this deficit-boosting, QE-enabling money printing). Today it is Senate Armed Services Committee member Jim Inhofe who told Fox that "we're in the most dangerous position we've ever been in as a nation."
While that seems a little bit of stretch (oh and hasn't the Senator seen stocks?) he adds - rather ominously, "they're crazy out there and they're rapidly developing a method of blowing up a major U.S. city and people just can't believe that's happening." But then again, when have we ever needed to 'believe' anything anyway (especially without YouTube clips to prove it).
As I said yesterday, the U.S. is being primed for its next false flag operation, which will certainly top the one the powers-that-be pulled for 9/11. This commentary showed up on the Zero Hedge website at 2:19 p.m. EDT yesterday---and I thank reader 'David in California' for sending it around.
This first audio interview is with Craig Griffin over at ITM Trading---and it runs for 28:27 minutes---and was posted on the marketsanity.com Internet site on Wednesday. The interview covers terrorism-backed insider trading, gold's role as a currency---and exponential risk.
The second interview was posted on the Russia Today website on Thursday. It begins at the 4:55 minute mark and runs for a bit over 6 minutes. The link to that is here---and I thank Harold Jacobsen for sharing both of these with us.
Google probably already knows your age, your interests, and everything you've looked at online. But now, there's proof that Google knows where you are pretty much all of the time as well. And it's proof Google gave us!
Google's location tracking site shows exactly where you and your cell phone have been. It even conveniently breaks down the locations it shows by day, proving that not only is the tech giant aware of users' locations, but it's also keeping a detailed record.
All of this is either fine or incredibly creepy. Luckily, it's very easy to turn off the tracking ability on your phone. For Google to record data on your phone's location, you must have enabled both location reporting and location history.
Luckily, Google has provided step-by-step instructions for how to turn those off in case you're entirely creeped out. And if you're not, well, now you have Google to help you remember all those times you've gone down to the corner store for milk because it was the only thing open at 4 a.m.
This very interesting article appeared on the news.yahoo.com Internet site last Sunday---and for content reasons, had to wait for today's column. I thank Casey Research's own Doug Hornig for bringing it to my attention---and now to yours.
Argentina on Friday accused the U.S. judge who called the country's debt restructuring plan illegal of making "imperialist" comments against the South American nation.
Argentine Cabinet Chief Jorge Capitanich said U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa's choice of words were "unfortunate, incorrect and even, I would say, imperialist expressions".
Griesa on Thursday said a proposed law announced by Argentina's president this week would violate orders he imposed favoring creditors who refused to accept restructured bonds following the country's record 2002 default.
These three paragraphs are all there is to this brief Reuters story. It was filed from Buenos Aires at 7:21 a.m. EDT yesterday---and I thank West Virginia reader Elliot Simon for finding it for us.
France’s hopes of cutting its ballooning public deficit took a blow Thursday as new figures revealed that the country’s flagging economy remained at a standstill in the second quarter.
For the second quarter in a row, France’s gross domestic product saw zero growth in the three months to July, according to figures from national statistics office INSEE.
The figures prompted Finance Minister Michel Sapin to slash the government's forecast for growth in 2014 to "around 0.5 percent", compared with a previous projection of 1.0 percent.
This article appeared on the france24.com Internet site on Thursday sometime---and it's the first offering of the day from Roy Stephens.
Facebook has been given four weeks to respond to a class action, launched against it by an Austrian activist and supported by 60,000 users. The suit claims Facebook violated users' privacy, by cooperating with the NSA's PRISM program.
The class action initiated by Max Schrems, an Austrian lawyer, data privacy activist and founder of Europe vs. Facebook group has passed its first review in the Vienna Regional Court.
Facebook Ireland, which runs the social network’s activities outside the U.S. and Canada, has been given four weeks to respond to the action.
"The order is very likely on the way to Facebook. The first step in the legal procedure is hereby taken," said a statement by Europe vs. Facebook on Thursday.
This article appeared on the Russia Today website at 12:53 p.m. Moscow time on Friday---and I thank reader Harry Grant for sliding it into my in-box in the wee hours of this morning.
The farce is complete, although at least this time it didn't take Ukraine several hours to fabricate then unfabricate its plot line, because literally minutes after it accused Russia of invading, Ukraine's foreign minister said the convoy was "allowed" to avoid provocations.
He added that the rebel militants are using mortars on the convoy route and that it had taken all necessary steps to ensure cargo safety but that Russia wouldn't discuss security for the convoy.
Nonetheless it still accused Russia's convoy of breaking international law and said that convoy would go to separatists, not civilians, and called on its "international partners" (we suppose it means the CIA here, which apparently is feeding it this ridiculous script) to condemn the Russian convoy.
This Zero Hedge article put in an appearance on their website at 9:02 a.m. EDT on Friday morning---and I thank reader M.A. for sharing it with us.
Moscow has accused Kiev of placing political interests above humanism, adding that it is confident it made the right decision to order a convoy with Russian humanitarian aid to proceed to the conflict zone without waiting for further Ukrainian permission.
The Russian aid convoy on Friday finally reached Lugansk in eastern Ukraine, which has been devastated by repeated shelling. White Kamaz trucks delivered essentials such as food, water, medications, sleeping bags, and electric generators.
Twenty-four aid distribution centers have been set up in the city, 12 of which will open on Saturday morning, according to the administration of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Lugansk.
This article showed up on the Russia Today website at 7:49 a.m. Moscow time on their Friday morning which was ten minutes minutes before midnight in New York on Thursday night. It's the second contribution of the day from Roy Stephens.
The Russian military has moved artillery units manned by Russian personnel inside Ukrainian territory in recent days and was using them to fire at Ukrainian forces, NATO officials said on Friday.
The West has long accused Russia of supporting the separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, but this is the first time it has said it had evidence that the Russian military was operating in Ukrainian territory.
The Russian move represents a significant escalation of the Kremlin’s involvement in the fighting there and comes as a convoy of Russian trucks with humanitarian provisions has crossed into Ukrainian territory without Kiev’s permission.
The bulls hit out of the American press is beyond shameless. This piece of pure propaganda appeared on The New York Times website yesterday sometime---and I thank Roy Stephens for sending it.
The Ukrainian military authorities have failed to confirm their earlier claim that a Russian column, consisting of 1,200 military servicemen and 150 armored vehicles including tanks and Grad missile launchers, had entered the territory of Ukraine near Luhansk, Western mass media sources report.
"Muddled security officials in Ukraine were… forced to deny that a huge Russian military convoy had been deployed in the eastern rebel-run city of Luhansk. The strong rebuttal suggested an earlier claim about an invasion by Vladimir Putin's troops amounted to a crude propaganda move by the pro-Western Kiev government - or deep confusion in its own ranks," the Daily Mail emphasizes.
The controversial information came from Lt.-Gen. Igor Voronchenko, the head of the Ukrainian Anti Terrorist Operation (ATO) in Luhansk and was immediately "confirmed" by Dmitry Tymchuk, a Ukrainian military analyst.
"Unfortunately, we can confirm the fact that the column of Russian military equipment broke through to Luhansk to back up the local militants," wrote Tymchuk on his Facebook page on August 19. The military analyst, however, failed to explain how the column remained undetected by the Ukrainian forces while breaking through ATO's blockade line.
The Russian invasion hoax had been instantly disseminated via the mainstream Ukrainian media and had rapidly spread across the Internet.
This commentary appeared on the RIA Novosti website at 12:29 p.m. Moscow time yesterday---and it's another contribution from Roy Stephens.
The United States on Friday demanded Russia "immediately" withdraw an aid convoy of vehicles from Ukraine and warned of further international sanctions if Moscow did not respect Kiev's sovereignty.
Russia sent dozens of aid trucks into rebel-held eastern Ukraine earlier on Friday without Kiev’s approval, saying its patience had worn out with the Ukrainian government’s stalling tactics.
"Russia must remove its vehicles and its personnel from the territory of Ukraine immediately. Failure to do so will result in additional costs and isolation," Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters.
The United Nations Security Council was to hold emergency consultations on the convoy Friday at the request of Lithuania.
This story was posted on the france24.com Internet site yesterday sometime---and once again I thank Roy Stephens for sending it.
By blocking the U.N. Security Council statement on the ceasefire in Ukraine, Washington has demonstrated that it wants to see further escalation of the Ukrainian conflict, the Russian Foreign Ministry said Friday.
“If the U.S. opposes an absolutely non-confrontational, reconciliatory text, there can be no doubts that Washington intends to have the armed confrontation in Ukraine continued. It could be seen only as an attempt to ‘undermine’ the humanitarian mission,” the ministry said in a statement.
Moscow believes that such policy is hypocritical, the ministry added.
"Cynical disregard for the fate of civilians and 'couldn't care less' attitude toward the international humanitarian law when it comes to geopolitical interests, becomes the core of the policy of the United States and its European satellites regarding Ukrainian," the statement read.
This is another RIA Novosti story from yesterday. It was posted on their website at 7:06 p.m. Moscow time yesterday evening, which was 11:06 a.m. EDT. Once again I thank Roy Stephens for sending it our way.
Russia has sent a humanitarian convoy to the east of Ukraine, considering that it has received official authorization of Kiev government, Russian Ambassador to the U.N. Vitaly Churkin said.
The corresponding note was received on August 12, Churkin said, noting that the humanitarian aid to Syria was delivered without the consent of the authorities of the country.
"If we are talking about respect for sovereignty, we have received a formal agreement from them [the Ukrainian authorities]. We have discussed this issue with them, and if they decided to cheat, then it's their problem," Churkin told Russian reporters after the closed meeting of the UN Security Council on Ukraine on Friday.
The note that gave consent for the passage of the humanitarian convoy through the Ukrainian border was received on 12 August, Churkin said.
This news item appeared on the RIA Novosti website at 2:20 a.m. Moscow time on their Saturday morning---and the contributions from Roy just keep on coming.
Ukraine needs to purchase additional five billion cubic meters of gas from Russia for the forthcoming winter season, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said Friday.
“Can Ukraine now survive without Russian gas? No, it can’t. How much Russian gas do we need to buy? About 5 billion cubic meters,” he said in an interview with Ukrainian TV channels.
He said that three-party gas talks, involving Ukraine, Russia and the European Union, are scheduled to take place next month.
“I hope there will be some final stage to these talks,” he said.
But where is the money coming from to pay for the gas that the Ukraine has already used, let alone this new amount? A question with no answer at the moment. This article appeared on the RIA Novosti website at 7:24 p.m. Moscow time on their Friday evening---and it's courtesy of Roy Stephens once again.
Russian energy company Rosneft said Friday it signed an agreement to acquire a stake in a Norwegian drilling company in exchange for drilling rigs.
Rosneft signed a framework agreement with North Atlantic Drilling Ltd.
"This deal will allow Rosneft to acquire new capabilities in the sphere of oilfield services, by engaging the best professionals, with unique expertise in operations in harsh climate conditions," Rosneft Chief Executive Officer Igor Sechin said in a statement Friday.
Rosneft was the target of sanctions imposed by Western powers in response to Russia's stance on crises in Ukraine. Sechin himself was sanctioned by the U.S. government.
This UPI news item, filed from Moscow, appeared on their Internet site at 10:07 a.m. yesterday, but the time zone it was filed from wasn't stated, so EDT must be assumed.
Russia’s Liberal Democratic Party will press for depriving President Barack Obama of the Nobel Peace Prize on the grounds that the U.S. leader is disgracing the award by organizing wars instead of fighting for peace.
The statement, posted on the party’s website, quotes its leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky as saying that the fact that the Peace Prize was given to Obama in 2009 caused bewilderment from the very beginning – the award went to the man who had occupied his post for less than a year and had not claimed any real achievements.
“Usually the Nobel Peace Prize is handed to people who fought for peace for 20, 30, 40 or 50 years, who did prison time. This man has not moved a finger. And in recent years he has organized wars. Ukraine is in flames, the Mideast is troubled, and there are problems in Afghanistan. Throughout his term in power – not a single peacekeeping operation; we see only death, aggression and refugees. The Peace Prize should be recalled immediately to avoid disgracing of the award!” Zhirinovsky stated.
The Russian politician added that he himself had worked in the Peace Committee and previously the whole world had been proud of Nobel laureates. He noted that giving the Peace Prize to Obama “had done huge damage” but the mistake could still be corrected.
He would be exactly right about that, dear reader. This article put in an appearance on the Russia Today website at 9:01 a.m. Moscow time yesterday---and I thank Roy Stephens once again.
Thanks to the superb work of the Russian Team, it is my huge pleasure to present you with one of the most interesting interviews about the war in the Ukraine and the global struggle for the future of the planet and the views of one of the best informed men in Russia: Sergei Glaziev.
Glaziev is an advisor to President Putin and a close friend. I personally believe that the western media is either wrong or deliberately lying when then say that Dugin is Putin's ideological mentor. I am not sure that Putin has - or needs - any kind of mentor, but over the years I have found that Glaziev seems to say out loud what Putin does not, but seems to be acting on.
Glaziev, who was born in the Ukraine and who is an economic himself, has a superb understanding of the behind-the-scenes power plays in the Ukraine and in Russia. This man really *knows* what is going on. Furthermore, he is one of the leading "Eurasian Sovereignists" and he is therefore absolutely hated by the pro-U.S. circles in Russia. He is equally hated in the USA who put him on their recent sanctions list for no other reason then the fact that they don't like what he has to say.
I cut and paste the above three paragraphs of introduction from the vineyardsaker.blogspot.ca website, which is what you will read when you click on this article. The interview is in Russian, so if you need to read the English subtitles to what he is saying, you have to click on the little 'cc' icon at the bottom of the youtube.com video that's imbedded in this story. The video interview runs for 15:34 minutes---and is, without question, the most important 'story' in today's column. It's a must watch from start to finish---and should be of special interest to any serious student of the New Great Game, which has now begun in earnest---and that Sergei talks about at length.
The story, is of course, courtesy of Roy Stephens. He sent it to me on Wednesday, but because of length and content reasons, it had to wait for my Saturday column.
1. Can Europe afford a Russia trade war?: E.U. Observer 2. Serbia ready to start dairy deliveries to Russia in 2-3 weeks: Russia Today 3. Peach protest: Spanish farmers burn E.U. flag in anger over Russia sanctions war: Russia Today 4. Russia food ban protest: Spanish farmers dump potatoes outside supermarket: Russia Today
[I thank Roy Stephens for digging up all these stories on our behalf]
New President al-Sisi announces the US$4-billion, 72-kilometre waterway whose construction will be carried out by the country’s armed forces.
The announcement by Egypt that it will build a new waterway parallel to the Suez Canal is aimed not just to keep pace with growing international trends but also to boost revenue in a country that has been forced to become the world’s largest wheat importer to feed its 84 million people.
And, at the same time it is designed to tell the world that while other Arab states are plunged in chaos and violence, the nation from which the term “pharaonic” was coined to describe mammoth public works, is resolved “to build,” international relations pundits told the Herald.
Revenue from the new project is expected to reach US$13.5 billion by 2023 versus the current US$5 billion from its 145-year-old predecessor.
This very interesting news story appeared on the buenosairesherald.com Internet site way back on August 11. Reader M.A. sent it to me last Sunday---and for obvious reasons it had to wait for today's column.
Azerbaijan said it signed a memorandum of understanding to broaden energy ties in the Iranian oil and natural gas sector.
The State Oil Co. of the Azerbaijan Republic said its delegates have spent the last three days in Iran visiting with ministers and representatives from the energy sector.
SOCAR said it reviewed interests expressed by Iran's Khazar Exploration and Production Co. to work on oil and gas issues ranging from production to transportation of reserves between the two Caspian nations.
"The event ended with signing of a memorandum of understanding between Iran's Khazar Exploration & Production Co. and SOCAR," the Azeri company said Thursday.
This story, filed from Tehran, appeared on the upi.com Internet site at 10:33 a.m. EDT[?] on Friday---and I thank Roy Stephens once again for bringing it to our attention.
After two decades courting Western investors and political allies, Mongolia is refocusing on foreign ties closer to home seeking to revive its economy.
China’s President Xi Jinping is scheduled to arrive tomorrow in the country landlocked between his nation and Russia, as Mongolia’s economic woes mount. Growth is the weakest in four years, foreign investment has plummeted, inflation is rising and the currency has plunged to a record low.
Xi’s trip to the mineral-rich nation, the first by a Chinese president in 11 years, comes ahead of the expected visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin about two weeks later. As analysts anticipate deals or negotiations from energy to infrastructure, the visits signal a pivot to Russia and China as a prolonged spat with Rio Tinto Group over Mongolia’s biggest ever investment has cooled foreign interest in the nation.
“The timing is critical,” said Peter Morrow, partner at NovaTerra LLC, which advises on projects including energy, from Ulaanbaatar. “Both China and Russia are keenly interested in Mongolia’s resources, and both know that the country is going through a rough economic patch.”
This very interesting article, co-filed from Tokyo---and Ulaanbaatar in Mongolia, appeared on their Internet site at 9:55 p.m. on Tuesday evening Denver time---and is another news item that had to wait for today column. My thanks go out to reader Harold Wiener for bringing it to our attention---and it's definitely worth reading.
If you can't make it to Venice, Istanbul, and Macao this summer, you can experience them via stunning aerial views thanks to drone videographers (and the internet). These forward-thinking photographers travel the world with their remote-controlled flying cameras and capture the world as only a small helicopter with advanced video skills could.
Drones get a bad rap in the press for their more nefarious talents, such as launching military airstrikes in remote places, but they have become more and more common in architecture and urban photography. First-person view, as it is sometimes called, involves cameras mounted on an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or radio-controlled aircraft. Perhaps the leader in this art form for architecture is Iwan Baan and his famous aerial shots.
The moment I played the London video clip out of this group posted in this article, I realized that what I was looking at was not only going to revolutionize aerial photography, but all of video photography. It was stunning. I hope you have a good time here, as I had fun---and was totally blown away. You will be too. It was posted on the architizer.com Internet site on Monday---and is something else that had to wait for today's column. I thank Roy Stephens for sharing it with us.
Former presidential adviser and Plunge Protection Team member Philippa Malmgren tells King World News that governments have an interest in suppressing the price of gold and silver and in otherwise blocking the exits from currency devaluation as official inflation figures begin to be exposed as lies.
This interview was posted on the King World News website yesterday---and I thank Chris Powell for wordsmithing the above paragraph of introduction.
The journalistic establishment's refusal to engage in an honest and candid discussion of gold's place in the international financial system was ridiculed brilliantly in an editorial in The New York Sun on Friday, which targeted New York Times columnist Paul Krugman particularly.
"Put a piece of specie next to Mr. Krugman and he shrivels up and like Superman on a slab from Krypton," the Sun writes, "It wouldn't surprise us were Mr. Krugman to keep his Nobel 'gold medal' in a lead-lined case, lest he get woozy when he walks past it. He calls for analysis? Analyze this: During Bretton Woods, under which the dollar was fixed at a 35th of an ounce of gold, unemployment averaged 4.7 percent. Since then it has averaged above 6 percent. Is that related to the fiat nature of money?"
This editorial was posted on The New York Sun's website---and I found it on the gata.org Internet site. Once again I thank Chris Powell for writing the above paragraph of introduction.
As always unafraid of controversy, the New Orleans Investment Conference in October will feature a debate on whether central banks manipulate the gold market, with GATA's secretary/treasurer Chris Powell arguing in the affirmative---and Casey Research founder Doug Casey arguing in the negative.
The debate will be moderated by money manager, financial commentator, and fellow conference speaker Adrian Day.
The rest of this GATA release from yesterday falls into the must read category.
Sprott Asset Management's Rick Rule told financial letter writer Jay Taylor this week that he doesn't want to believe in conspiracies to manipulate the gold market but is "very impressed by the amount of data" GATA has collected.
Rule said the heavy selling of gold and silver at illiquid times in the market suggests attempts to drive prices down. If the LIBOR interest rate could be manipulated, Rule added, it would be much easier to manipulate the gold and silver markets, which are much smaller.
The interview with Rule is, at this moment, the third item on the audio page of Taylor's Internet site, jaytaylormedia.com---and Rick's comments on gold market manipulation begin at the 16:20 mark. This is definitely worth your time as well, dear reader. The pattern for Rick's tin-foil hat is at the millinery on Savile Row at this very moment.
In a major blow to the Indian bullion industry, the Finance Ministry has ruled out easing its curbs on gold imports any time soon. India's retail sector has been seeking the softening of import duty for some time now.
Finance Secretary Arvind Mayaram told a media gathering on Thursday, during an industry and government meeting organised by industry chamber Assocham, that the government would consider easing the norms at some time in the future, when it was more comfortable with the current account deficit (CAD) situation and could start earning more from other exports.
Though CAD had fallen significantly in 2013-14, India's apex bank RBI has noted that potential risks could emanate from both domestic and global factors.
He made it clear that India could not afford 1,000 tonnes of gold import at a bill of $55 billion any more.
This gold-related news item, filed from Mumbai, showed up on the mineweb.com Internet site yesterday--and it's definitely worth reading.
China's planned global gold exchange has signed up more members than targeted, as foreign banks and trading houses seek direct access to the world's top physical gold consumer and to test out reforms allowing them to trade commodities in the yuan currency.
The strong response from foreign players will boost efforts by China -- also the world's biggest producer of gold -- to gain pricing power over the metal and to challenge the dominance of London and New York in trading.
This Reuters article, filed from Singapore, showed up on their website at 3:20 p.m. IST on their Friday afternoon---and it's anther gold-related news item I found on the gata.org Internet site.
While everyone is staring at gold, one surprising precious metal is trouncing it: palladium.
The metal is up 22 percent this year, and earlier this week, it made 13-year highs as it broke above $900 per troy ounce. Gold, meanwhile, is only up 5 percent in 2014.
And according to David Seaburg, head of equity sales trading at Cowen & Co., the palladium run isn’t over just yet.
“Depletion of the Russian inventory has been a big issue,” said Seaburg. That country is the world’s largest palladium producer.
And Russia could make it an even bigger issue if the choose to do so---and they just might, as I said before, if push really becomes shove. This article appeared on the finance.yahoo.com Internet site at 5:23 p.m. EDT on Thursday afternoon---and I thank Elliot Simon for digging it up on our behalf.
The Allard Pierson Museum of Amsterdam has reported that it has decided not to return the exhibits which were on display at the exhibition "Crimea: a golden island in the Black Sea" either to Ukraine or to Russia for the time being.
In a statement, the museum said that it planned to wait for a legal investigation into the problem to be completed before taking further steps. “This matter [of to whom the treasure should be returned, to Kiev or to Crimea] is both unique and complex. The Allard Pierson Museum felt it was important to investigate the matter thoroughly and find a solution.” “The Allard Pierson Museum will abide by a ruling by a qualified judge or arbitrator, or further agreement between parties,” the museum adds.
The exhibition opened at the Allard Pierson Museum of the archeological museum at Amsterdam University in early February. It featured collections from five museums - one in Kiev and four in Crimea - and displayed over 500 archeological finds that included artifacts of Scythian gold, a ceremonial helmet, precious stones, swords, armor, and ancient Greek and Scythians household items
This amazing ITAR-TASS article, posted on the Russia Beyond the Headlines website on Friday Moscow time---and I thank Roy Stephens for his final offering in today's column. It's definitely worth reading.
Today's first photo is of our neighbour's 5-month old cat, Luna. Because it's too young to be boarded at a kennel, we volunteered to look after it while they were on vacation for two weeks. What a hellion she turned out to be! Climbing drapes and speakers became her spécialité de la maison---and to get her to sit still long enough for a photo was challenge in itself. Pure black cats do not photograph well, because there's just no contrast, but the sidelight from the kitchen window helped in this circumstance. We were oh, so happy to return her to her owners.
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I’ve been mentioning COMEX copper more frequently this year because it has become quite clear that copper prices have been involved in the same manipulative scam as is true in COMEX silver and gold. It’s the same story in copper that exists in silver and gold, namely a rigging of prices by the commercials to induce technical fund buying and selling. Copper price movement has had nothing to do with real world copper supply and demand fundamentals and everything to do with the collusive commercials tricking the technical funds in COMEX dealings.
Clearly, all blame for this outrageous and illegal copper manipulation must be placed on the CME and the CFTC (and probably JPMorgan). What makes the copper manipulation particularly egregious is that the market is so large, with annual mine production worth upwards of $130 billion, and because it wouldn’t seem probable that the manipulation exists for some of the reasons given for the silver and gold manipulations, namely to protect the dollar or some such effect.
Thus, it would appear likely that it’s just a game of the collusive commercials stealing from the technical funds for pure avarice, promoted by the CME and protected by the CFTC. The scam is as simple and straight forward in copper as it is in silver and gold, namely, the commercials rig prices higher and lower through important moving averages to sucker the technical funds in and out of massive positions. - Silver analyst Ted Butler: 20 August 2014
Today's classical 'blast from the past' is the waltz form Act 1 of Tchaikovsy's 1875/6 ballet, Swan Lake, Op. 20. The Philadelphia Orchestra does the honours---and Riccardo Muti conducts. The tempo is a little faster than I'm used to, or like, but I'm running late this morning---and I just don't have the time to look for another version. The link is here.
There's not much to talk about regarding yesterday's price action in either gold or silver. It was almost like JPMorgan et al decided to take the day off. Except for roll-over action, volume wasn't particularly high once again.
Here are the 6-month charts for both gold and silver---and there's not much change from Thursday.
As I said in Friday's wrap, it's still my opinion that gold and silver prices haven't seen their lows for this move down as of yet. That was confirmed in my conversation with Ted Butler yesterday. I asked him how far along we were in the silver liquidation process---and his answer was not encouraging.
He said that as of yesterday's Commitment of Traders Report, the technical funds were still 23,000 Comex contracts higher than we were at the absolute low at the end of May. To get back to the contract low at the end of May, these long contracts would have to disappear---and that could happen in two ways, which is a combination of long liquidation and new shorting that add up to that number of contracts. What the silver price would be at that point is anyone's guess, but it would be considerably lower than it is right now. The same situation exists in gold, although I'm not sure of the number of contracts, because I didn't ask. Maybe Ted will mention it in his weekly review which will be posted for his paying subscribers later today.
Of course, there's always the chance that JPMorgan et al aren't going to target those lows again during this particular engineered price decline, but the possibility exists, so I thought you should know about it.
Nothing has changed in the economic, financial or political world since last Saturday. The American and European militaries---and their associated governments---are still attempting to provoke Russia into armed intervention in the Ukraine. Of course Putin is way too smart for that. Since the lies they---and the whores in the Western press---are telling, are no longer working, we'll just have to wait and see what happens, because the West will continue to hammer away at the Russians, as they are still itching for war. All we can do is wait for the next shoe to drop. I'm thinking a 'false flag' operation of some kind.
Of course the powers-that-be could also drop another 9/11-type event on us sometime in the future---and as I said in the comments in one of the Critical Reads---there will probably be several simultaneously in various parts of the world, as the forces of Mordor, along with the bought and paid for press, are now becoming more brazen with each passing day, as the Nazgûl have been given free rein on Planet Earth.
There are four trading days left in August---and I'm not sure what to expect. One would think that JPMorgan et al will push their advantage through options and futures expiry early next week, as that's what I would be doing if I were them. But they were nowhere to be seen yesterday. However, I don't have a criminal mind---and who knows what they've been instructed to do. Because even though they're doing the dirty work, it's my opinion that they aren't calling the shots.
So we'll have to see what next week's trading action brings---and I'll be watching the 6 p.m. EDT Globex open on Sunday evening with great interest.
Enjoy what's left of your weekend---and I'll see you on Tuesday.