Gold & Silver Daily
"The question still remains...are we done to the downside...or do JPMorgan et al still have more work to do?"
 

¤ Yesterday In Gold & Silver

The gold price did virtually nothing during Far East trading on Monday...and even the tiniest moves above $1,660 spot got sold off.  Then nothing happened during morning trading in London, either...but not-for-profit sellers showed up the moment the Comex opened...and gold was down over twelve bucks in about an hour.  From there it didn't do much, although it did recover a bit off its low of the day in the thinly-traded electronic market.

The high price tick...such as it was at around $1,663 spot...came shortly before 11:00 a.m. in Hong Kong...and the New York low [$1,641.50 spot] came a few minutes before 9:30 a.m. and the open of the equity markets.  The 5-year intraday price movement chart for gold shows that 9:30 a.m. Eastern is the time that gold hits its daily low in New York over the years...and yesterday was just typical.  I doubt very much that this is accidental.

Gold closed at $1,646.90 spot...down $9.90 on the day.  Net volume was fairly light...around 121,000 contracts.

It was very much the same story in silver...and the silver chart looks pretty much the same as the gold chart...with the high and low ticks coming at the same times as gold as well.  The rally that came after the 9:30 a.m. Eastern time low, got smacked down just before the 3:00 p.m. GMT London close, which was 11:00 a.m. in New York.

Silver's Hong Kong high was around $30.45 spot...and it's 9:30 a.m. New York low was recorded by Kitco at $29.75 spot.

Silver closed at $30.16 spot...down 2 cents from Friday's close.  Volume was around 39,500 contracts.

The dollar index opened at 80.49 on Sunday night in New York...and then rallied to its high, around 80.69, which occurred at 8:00 a.m. in London right on the button on their Monday morning.  It hung around that high until 8:00 a.m. in New York...and then down it went, with the low tick [80.12] coming moments before the close.  The dollar close at 80.17.

The dollar lost about 40 basis points during the New York session...but the not-for-profit seller at the Comex open made sure that there was no correlation between the dollar index and the gold price yesterday.

The gold stocks gapped down a bit over a percent at the open...and the two morning rally attempts didn't get far.  Then, in the last thirty minutes of trading, the stocks got sold down a bit more...and the HUI closed right on its low of the day, down 1.75%.

With the odd exception, the silver stocks all finished lower on the day as well...and some by quite a bit.  Nick Laird's Silver Sentiment Index closed down a healthy 2.06%.

(Click on image to enlarge)

The CME's Daily Delivery Report showed that only 4 gold contracts were posted for delivery tomorrow within the Comex-approved depositories.  As I've stated several times...January is not a regular delivery month for either gold or silver, so this lack of activity shouldn't be a surprise.

There was a smallish withdrawal out of GLD yesterday...43,259 troy ounces...and no reported changes in SLV.  However, very late last night, many hours after GLD had been updated, they did up date SLV...and that update showed that a very chunky 1,644,590 troy ounces were added.  Considering the monstrous engineered price decline in silver on Thursday and Friday of last week, this is an amazing turn of events.  The boys over at shortsqueeze.com will update their short positions in GLD and SLV in a couple of days...and they should be a sight to see...based on the 6.0 million ounces deposited during the reporting period.  However, yesterday's deposit won't be in that data.

Not surprisingly, it was a big sales day over at the U.S. Mint on Monday.  They sold 6,000 ounces of gold eagles...a very chunky 10,500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes...and an eye-watering 3,937,000 silver eagles.  I'm guessing it will be a record January for gold and silver bullion coins at the mint this month.

The Comex-approved depositories reported receiving only 8,846 troy ounces of silver on Friday...but shipped a chunky 1,022,991 ounce of the stuff out the door.  The link to that activity is here.

You may remember a story from very late last week where Dennis Gartman was trashing gold...as he just loves to do, every time the opportunity presents itself.  Well, reader Denis Roch sent me the following e-mail yesterday...and I thought it worth sharing..."If you want to see what Dennis Gartman has returned to those who invested in his Horizons Gartman ETF [HAG] have a look at HAG.TO.  It's down 20% since its inception in the 1st quarter of 2009." [Good work, Dennis.  Just think how much your investors would be ahead if you had invested in physical gold and silver instead... wink - Ed]

Here's a chart courtesy of Washington state reader S.A. that he 'borrowed' from somewhere...and it requires no further words of explanation, as the title says it all.

(Click on image to enlarge)

Here's a photo of that $230,000 gold shirt...and it's not just gold coloured, it's the real stuff.  It tips the scales at just over 3 kilos...7 pounds.  Scott Pluschau has a story about this in the 'Critical Reads' section just below.

Since it's a Tuesday column, I have lots for you to look at it...so read away.

 

¤ Critical Reads

U.S. Banks to Pay $8.5 Billion to Settle Foreclosure Flaws

Ten of the largest U.S. mortgage servicers will pay a combined $8.5 billion under an agreement that will end case-by-case reviews of foreclosure-abuse claims stemming from a 2011 deal with regulators.

Companies including JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc. must provide $5.2 billion in mortgage assistance and $3.3 billion in direct payments to wronged borrowers, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Federal Reserve said in a statement today. The banks were among 14 servicers ordered to hire independent consultants to help clean up foreclosure practices amid claims they improperly seized homes [robo-signing of foreclosure documents - Ed] in the wake of the subprime mortgage crisis.

“When we began the Independent Foreclosure Review, the OCC pledged to fix what was broken, identify who was harmed, and compensate them for that injury,” Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry said in a statement. “While today’s announcement represents a significant change in direction, it meets those original objectives by ensuring that consumers are the ones who will benefit, and that they will benefit more quickly and in a more direct manner.”

This Bloomberg story was posted on their website at noon Mountain Time yesterday...and the first person through the door with it yesterday was Manitoba reader Ulrike Marx.  The link is here.

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U.S. credit agency sues JP Morgan again

US federal regulators have launched a lawsuit against financial firm JP Morgan Chase & Co over the sale of risky mortgage securities that contributed to the collapse of three credit unions.

The National Credit Union Administration's (NCUA) lawsuit, filed on Friday, alleges that the country's largest bank misled US Central, Western Corporate and Southwest Corporate federal credit unions into buying $2.2b in risky mortgage securities that caused major financial losses.

The three unions became insolvent due to the losses and were placed in NCUA conservatorship, the agency said.

"The damage caused by the actions of firms like Washington Mutual has been extremely expensive to contain and repair," NCUA board chairman Debbie Matz said in a statement announcing the lawsuit. She added that "it's only right that the people who caused the damage be required to pick up that burden, as well."

This story showed up on the aljazeera.com Internet site on Saturday...and I thank Federico Schiavio for sending it along.  The link is here.

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Credit Suisse: 8 Key Indicators Suggest A Stock Market Selloff Is Near

Credit Suisse Global Equity Strategist Andrew Garthwaite and his team are taking a bit of stock market exposure off the table after the recent run-up in the S&P 500 over the past month.

Garthwaite warns clients in a new research note out this morning, "Many of our tactical indicators point to a consolidation phase in the equity markets, in the near-term."

In the note, Garthwaite highlights nine charts that show how, just as the stock market has taken a turn upward since mid-November, investor sentiment toward stocks has soared higher in that short amount of time.

This short item appeared on the businessinsider.com Internet site around noon Eastern Time yesterday...and it's courtesy of Roy Stephens.  The link is here.

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Bernanke Strikes First Yen Blow as Yield Gap Rises: Japan Credit

While Prime Minister Shinzo Abe piled pressure on the Bank of Japan to weaken the yen last week, the Federal Reserve struck the first blow against the currency.

A signal from Fed board members that they may end bond purchases in 2013 helped drive the yen to a 2 1/2 year low of 88.41 per dollar on Jan. 4, still 15 percent stronger than its decade average. The extra yield on 10-year Treasuries instead of similar-maturity Japanese government bonds reached 1.13 percentage points last week, the most in nine months and attracting funds into dollar assets.

 “With a possible pickup in the U.S. economy, the dollar is more likely to rise than the yen,” said Jun Kawakami, a market economist at Mizuho Securities Co., one of the 24 primary dealers obliged to bid at Japan’s debt sales. “While there’s a good chance that the Fed will reduce bond purchases as early as this year, there is absolutely no exit strategy in sight for the BOJ, creating a contrast between their policies."

This story was filed jointly from Singapore and Tokyo...and posted on the Bloomberg website very late on Sunday evening Mountain time, which would have been early afternoon on Monday in Tokyo.  I thank Marshall Angeles for this item...and the link is here.

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Doug Noland: Issues 2013

“The Federal Reserve is heading in the wrong direction. What the central bank describes as ‘unconventional monetary policy’ is creating dangerous bubbles in asset markets that will lead to higher future inflation and is supporting the explosive growth of the national debt.”  Martin Feldstein, Wall Street Journal, January 3, 2013

I applaud Dr. Feldstein’s intentions, but the poor soul has a problem:  the marketplace is rather smitten with Bubbles and doesn’t these days have an inflation worry in the world.  Might as well be another Mayan prophesy.  Indeed, Feldstein’s warning today resonates about as well as my (repeated) warnings of Bubbles and bipolar outcome possibilities.  But here it goes, nonetheless:  the financial system, as we know it, is doomed on December 21, 2013.

In all seriousness, it is difficult to imagine a backdrop more poised for the extraordinary.  Bolstered by unprecedented global monetary radicalism, the global Bubble gathered important momentum in 2012.  This ensures that the dysfunctional “risk on, risk off” (“roro”) speculative dynamic turns only more unwieldy in 2013.  Policy measures guarantee that the historic “crowded trade” in international risk markets will only more forcefully crowd the manic crowd on one side of the crowded boat – or the other.   This implies fatter “tail risks” – with emphasis on the “s” – the plural – of left (Bubbles burst) and right (inflating Bubbles turn much more unwieldy) “tail” developments.

Doug Noland's weekly Credit Bubble Bulletin over at the prudentbear.com Internet site is always a must read for me.  I had no space for it in Saturday's column, so here it is now.  It's a bit on the long side, as most of Doug's essays have a tendency to be...and the link is here.

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Drought still grips Corn Belt -- dry winter adds to farmers' fears

The U.S. Corn Belt - the world's top grain region - is seeing another dry winter after the worst summer drought in half a century, reducing prospects for a bumper summer harvest that would help ease global food prices, crop and climate experts said.

"We are still concerned about getting the leftovers out of the way from the drought of 2012. At this time we would not anticipate a national corn yield above the trend," said Iowa State University climatologist Elwynn Taylor, who has studied crop production for decades. "Rather, we would expect a fourth consecutive year of below-trend crop, not as far below as in 2012 but still not up to par."

The 2012 drought locked two-thirds of the U.S. continental land mass in severe drought last summer, cutting production of the biggest crop, corn, by 27 percent from early season estimates.

This article, filed from Chicago, was posted on the nbcnews.com Internet site on Saturday...and I thank Casey Research's own Dennis Miller for sending it our way.  The link is here.

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Britain's Political Poltergeist: Cameron Succumbs to Growing Europhobia

Britain's right-wing conservative movement is making life difficult for Prime Minister David Cameron. The UK Independence Party wants to lead the country out of the EU, and its approval ratings are higher than ever. As the pressure mounts, Cameron has been at pains to outline a clear stance on Europe.

Nigel Farage is the kind of politician who apparently needs an opponent to bring out the best in him. Right now, that role is being played by a cushion. Sitting on a sofa in a London hotel lobby, Farage alternately slaps the cushion with the palm of his hand and punches it with his fist as he talks about how he intends to stir up British politics.

For months now, his proposals have put the government on the back foot -- and this has rapidly increased his party's popularity among voters. Recent surveys show UKIP polling around 15 percent, which would make it the third most important political force in the country, after the Conservatives and the center-left Labour Party, yet ahead of the Liberal Democrats.

This story showed up on the German website spiegel.de yesterday...and it's another article courtesy of Roy Stephens.  The link is here.

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Model Reformer in Trouble: Ireland Lobbies to Have Europe Share Banking Risk

Ireland's reform policies have been widely praised for helping it emerge from the crisis, but the truth is bleaker. If the government fails to get European taxpayers to assume some of the risk of its ailing banking sector, the country could soon require another bailout.

For over two years -- and to the delight of the Anglo-Saxon media -- the conservative leader has been trying to get European taxpayers to foot the enormous bill for bailing out Ireland's ailing banking sector. But, taking their cue from the Germans, the Europeans have so far balked at the idea.

Instead, Chancellor Merkel has been quick to praise the way Ireland has implemented economic reforms and used money from European bailout funds over the past few years to emerge from the crisis: Exports have risen, the country has regained its competitiveness, and it has even succeeded in getting private creditors to lend it some money.

Unfortunately, this gleaming façade obscures a rather dismal reality. Although Ireland's economy has stabilized, its debts continue to mount -- despite the fact that the country has been diligently fulfilling all of the demands made by the troika of lenders, which consists of the European Commission, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Central Bank (ECB). This year, Ireland's public debt is expected to increase to 122 percent of its annual gross domestic product (GDP) -- in other words, beyond the limit at which the IMF believes long-term debt sustainability can be achieved.

This story about Ireland's financial woes falls into the must read category...and it's Roy's second offering in a row from the spiegel.de website yesterday.  The link is here.

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Spain Drains Pension Fund In Borrowing Spree

“Spain has been quietly tapping the country’s richest piggy bank, the Social Security Reserve Fund, as a buyer of last resort for Spanish, raising questions about the fund’s role as guarantor of future pension payouts.

Now the scarcely noticed borrowing spree, carried out amid a prolonged economic crisis, is about to end, because there is little left to take. At least 90% of the €65 billion ($85.7 billion) fund has been invested in increasingly risky Spanish debt, according to official figures, and the government has begun withdrawing cash for emergency payments.

Although the trend has drawn little public attention or controversy, it has become a matter of concern for the relatively few independent financial analysts who study the fund, which is used to guarantee future payments of pensions. They say the government will soon have one less recourse to finance itself as it faces another year of recession and painful austerity measures to close a big budget deficit.”

This Wall Street Journal story that reader Norbert Wangnick sent me on Saturday, was subscriber protected, so I found it posted in the clear over at the Zero Hedge website...and the link is here.

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Italy bans card payments in Vatican over money laundering

The Bank of Italy suspended all bank card payments on Vatican territory from the start of the year and ordered Deutsche Bank Italia, which manages electronic payments for the world’s smallest country, to turn off its systems.

Italian newspapers reported that the action was taken after officials at the Italian central bank became worried that the Vatican was not prepared to implement new anti-money laundering rules.

The suspension of card services means that the Vatican museum, along with the territory’s pharmacy and post office, have all been unable to transfer money and accept payments.

Well, dear reader, if you really knew what went on inside the Vatican and it's banking system over the last century or so...it would probably make Jamie Dimon and JPMorgan Chase look like the patron saints of finance.  This story was posted on the telegraph.co.uk Internet site last Thursday...and I thank Marshall Angeles for sending it.  The link is here.

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Banks Win 4-Year Delay as Basel Liquidity Rule Watered Down

Global central bank chiefs gave lenders four more years to meet international liquidity requirements and watered down the measures in a bid to stave off another credit crunch.

Banks won the delay to fully meet the so-called liquidity coverage ratio, or LCR, following a deal struck by regulatory chiefs meeting yesterday in Basel, Switzerland. They’ll be able to pick from a longer list of approved assets including equities and securitized mortgage debt as they seek to build up buffers of liquidity for use in a financial crisis.

Bank shares soared after the decision to overhaul the proposed ratio, which top officials such as European Central Bank President Mario Draghi argued would choke interbank lending and make it harder for authorities to implement monetary policies. Lenders have warned that the measure might force them to cut back loans to businesses and households.

The Bloomberg story was posted on their Internet site early yesterday morning Mountain Time...and jointly filed from Geneva and Brussels.  I thank Ulrike Marx for sharing it with us...and the link is here.

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China blazes trail for 'clean' nuclear power from thorium

The Chinese are running away with thorium energy, sharpening a global race for the prize of clean, cheap, and safe nuclear power. Good luck to them. They may do us all a favour. 

Princeling Jiang Mianheng, son of former leader Jiang Zemin, is spearheading a project for China's National Academy of Sciences with a start-up budget of $350m.

He has already recruited 140 PhD scientists, working full-time on thorium power at the Shanghai Institute of Nuclear and Applied Physics. He will have 750 staff by 2015.

The aim is to break free of the archaic pressurized-water reactors fueled by uranium -- originally designed for US submarines in the 1950s -- opting instead for new generation of thorium reactors that produce far less toxic waste and cannot blow their top like Fukushima.

This is the Holy Grail of nuclear energy...and whoever cracks this nut first, if it's possible, will change the world forever literally overnight.  This Ambrose Evans-Pritchard commentary was posted on The Telegraph's website late on Sunday evening GMT...and it's Roy Stephens' final offering in today's column, for which I thank him.  The link is here.

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Indian man buys $230,000 solid gold shirt as 'investment'

India has long had a love affair with gold. But one businessman there is so infatuated with the precious metal, he dropped about $230,000 on solid gold shirt.

More than two dozen goldsmiths toiled for 15 days for lender Datta Phuge, who custom ordered the seven-pound top to wear for New Year's festivities, according to the Pune Mirror. The shirt is crafted from 14,000 22-karat gold rings linked together and comes with six Swarovski crystal buttons and a belt also made of gold.

Phuge said he considers the shirt “an investment which will keep appreciating.”

“People buy cars and go on holidays abroad,” he told the Mirror. “For me, gold is the ultimate passion. That is the reason I have spent a whopping amount of money on the shirt.”

This article appeared on the latimes.com Internet site on Saturday...and there's also a 1:15 minute embedded video as well, but unless you're fluent in Punjabi, you won't understand a word.  But you don't really need words in this video.  Scott Pluschau sent me this story on Saturday...and the link is here.

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India to choke gold imports from Thailand

A sharp increase in the import duty of gold in India, almost to the tune of 10% in 2012, has seen a flood of cheap gold jewellery imports from Thailand. Realising how gold crazy Indians have been getting their hands on the precious metal surreptitiously, India's finance ministry is all set to choke off that channel.

Gold jewellery is to be removed from the list of items allowed to be imported from Thailand at concessional duty, under the bilateral treaty the country enjoys with India. Officials claim the lower import duty has undermined the government's move to get Indians to stay away from gold.

Though there was a little import of gold jewellery from Thailand prior to this, the magnitude jumped up significantly with India's import duty hike last year.

The free trade agreement with Thailand, signed in 2004, provides for a concessional 1% duty on the import of gold jewellery. Though the Indian government knew of this `loophole', it decided to turn a blind eye - until now.

This article, filed from Mumbai yesterday, is definitely worth reading...and it's Ulrike Marx's final story in today's column.  It's posted on the mineweb.com Internet site...and the link is here.

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Peter Grandich explains why he's sticking with gold

In a special Sunday-night review, market analyst and mining company consultant Peter Grandich explains why he's sticking with gold rather than bonds and U.S. dollars.

I found this item in a GATA release yesterday.  It's posted over at Peter's website...grandich.com...and the link is here.

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Kyle Bass: Why You Should Own Physical Precious Metals

This 2:07 minute youtube.com video clip was only posted recently...but it came from a much longer interview from a couple of years back, which I posted in this column at the time.

But this little sound bite on its own is a must view just as a quick refresher...as Kyle has it exactly right...and he's got a few things to say about the Comex/Crimex as well. I thank Brad Robertson for sending it our way...and the link is here.

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Jeff Clark: Dear 2013...What Will Gold Do This Year?

As we turn the calendar over, there are probably two dominant questions on the minds of most precious-metals investors: Will gold and silver have a better year than the last two? And will gold stocks finally break out of their funk?

2012 was an interesting year for our favorite metal. On one hand, gold was up only single-digit percentages for the second consecutive year: 8.3%, after rising just 9.1% in 2011. It was also outperformed by the S&P 500 Index, though this was the first time since 2004 and only the third since 1999. On the other hand, the price has now risen 12 consecutive years, overshadowing most other bull markets in modern history.

Gold stocks as a group were down for the second consecutive year. GDX (Gold Miners ETF) fell 9.8%, after dropping 16.3% in 2011. GDXJ (Junior Gold Miners ETF) lost 19.9% last year, after sinking 38% in 2011.

Ouch!  It's not like we need reminding.  Anyway, here's Jeff Clark's take on what gold will do this year...and his commentary was contained in yesterday's edition of the Casey Daily Dispatch.  Louis James' 3-paragraph introduction is worth the read as well...and the link is here.

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Bill Gross: Fed Claims to Own Billions in Fort Knox Gold; "With Nothing in the Vault to Back it Up---Amazing!"

Bill Gross, founder of Pimco, the world’s largest bond fund with over $1.92 trillion under management, penned a new piece entitled, “Money for Nothin’ Writing Checks for Free.” In his editorial, he called attention to the near $10 trillion explosion in global central bank money issuance since 2006, and the impending doom historically associated with a “money for nothing” monetary policy.

His conclusion: The whole charade will soon hit a brick wall. 

Of particular interest were his comments on gold, commodities, and the “Fort Knox Fairy Tale“…i.e.. Fed gold certificate claims on Fort Knox bullion holdings which may or may not actually exist.

The salient points about gold from Bill's note to clients is contained in this short commentary posted over at bullmarketthinking.com...and I thank Chris Jansel for sending it to me in the wee hours of this morning.  It's worth reading...and the link is here.

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Eric Sprott's Market Insights

This 15:14 minute audio interview hosted by John Budden is posted over at his website.  I haven't had the opportunity to listen to it yet, as it just arrived in my inbox now...but I will later...and I'd bet it's worth listening to.  This is also courtesy of Chris Jansel...and the link is here.

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Alasdair Macleod: The economics of gold and silver in 2013

The New Year should see some major changes in how gold and silver are regarded in the West, if it becomes obvious that confidence in government-issued money as a medium of exchange might be misplaced. This concern is for the moment essentially limited to economists of the Austrian School.

Whether they are right or wrong only time will tell; but it is worth considering their basic argument, which goes something like this. The role of money in a transaction is to act as the objective element, which is the way people automatically think: hence an item or an asset costs so-many-dollars; if the price changes, it is normally assumed it is the value of the item or asset that has altered, not the purchasing power of the money. The moment ordinary people become alive instead to the possibility that prices are rising because the value of money is falling, the currency is doomed.

This awakening to currency debasement is a gradual process, and so far the only people who really appreciate the danger faced by fiat currencies are that small group who follow Austrian economics. But in 2013 more and more people are likely to suspect it. The underlying reason is central banks are issuing money at an alarming rate. They are doing this for a purpose: governments cannot raise enough money without central banks printing it, and if the rate of issuance became restricted, interest rates will rise and general debt liquidation will ensue.

This short commentary by Alasdair was posted on the goldmoney.com Internet site on Sunday...and I thank Elliot Simon for pointing it out.  It's worth reading...and the link is here.

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Why Platinum Coin Opponents Are All Wrong

This morning, Joe Weisenthal and I took our message in favor of minting a trillion-dollar platinum coin to "Bloomberg Surveillance," where we were met with the usual shock and horror from hosts Tom Keene and Sara Eisen. Platinum coin opponents are so distressed that one, Republican Representative Greg Walden, has said he will introduce legislation to ban the coin, citing my post from last week as a dangerous instigation.

Walden, Keene and Eisen are all wrong. Here are my responses to the most common objections we are getting to the platinum coin proposal, in increasing order of persuasiveness.

Something tells me aren't in Kansas anymore, Toto!  This story was posted on the Bloomberg Internet site mid-morning Mountain Time...and I thank Washington state reader S.A. for our final story in today's column.  The link is here.

Read more...

 

¤ The Funnies

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¤ The Wrap

To imagine that the Fed can "ease up" or "stop" their purchasing of US Government debt paper in current circumstances is ludicrous. The only way they could do that would be if the US government actually started to do something concrete about the size of their deficits. And there is NO sign whatsoever of that happening. Nor is this conundrum confined to the US. All over the world, central bankers and governments alike are talking feverishly about "putting up with" a potentially higher level of price inflation in order to keep economies "growing". They know much better than most other people that the only thing "growing" in global economies is debt. They also know that if that debt is going to maintain the facade of being a financial "asset", somebody is going to have to keep buying it. There is nobody with pockets deep enough to keep buying it - except the central banks. - Bill Buckler...Gold This Week...05 January 2013

Except for the counterintuitive sell-offs at the Comex open this morning, neither gold nor silver did very much on Monday...although it's almost impossible to tell what they might have done, given the opportunity...and a falling dollar index.

It's also impossible to tell what prices will do from here.  And the question still remains...are we done to the downside...or do JPMorgan et al still have more work to do?  I don't know...and neither does anyone else.

Today at the close of Comex trading is the cut-off for this Friday's Commitment of Traders Report and, with that report, we'll find out just how many short positions "da boyz" were able to cover in that engineered price smash on Thursday and Friday of last week.

Not much happened in Far East trading...and the two tiny rallies in both metals early in the Hong Kong trading session didn't amount to much...or weren't allowed to amount to much...and all is quiet during the first thirty minutes of London trading as well. But as I hit the 'send' button at 5:05 a.m. Eastern time, there are some signs of life, as gold is up about seven bucks and silver is up fifteen cents.  Volumes are already very decent...and the dollar index is flat.

Before heading out the door today, I thought I'd leave you with Bill Buckler's take on this new platinum coin being discussed in the U.S.  This is what he had to say..."The “platinum scheme” may not come to fruition. That is not the point. The point is that the very fact that it is being discussed in reputable financial media in the U.S. is proof that money is being pulled out from under the “markets” at a speed and with a brazen arrogance never before approached." - The Privateer...06 January 2013

Enjoy your Tuesday...and I'll see you here tomorrow.