Gold & Silver Daily
"The Wednesday trading session turned out exactly as I expected"
 

¤ Yesterday In Gold & Silver

The gold price developed a slight positive bias early in Far East trading, topping out shortly after London opened on their Wednesday morning.  From that point it drifted quietly lower, before getting sold down five bucks beginning at the Comex open in New York.  Minutes before 2 p.m. EDT, the price was up about three bucks off its interim 8:50 a.m. EDT low---and at 2 p.m. on the dot, the "Buy the dollar index/hit the precious metals" button was pushed---and that was it for the day in all four precious metals, with gold [not surprisingly] getting hit the hardest.  The gold price finished about three bucks and change off its 3:35 p.m. EDT low tick.

The high and low were reported by the CME Group as $1,230.40 and $1,208.20 in the December contract.

Gold finished the Wednesday trading session at $1,211.60 spot, down $16.20 from Tuesday's close.  Net volume was 122,000 contracts, but considering the price action, that wasn't a lot---at least in my opinion.

As usual, silver got hit the moment that trading began at 6 p.m. EDT in New York on Tuesday evening---and it didn't do a thing until the 8:20 a.m. Comex open.  The subsequent rally attempt---and there were a number of them leading up until 2 p.m. EDT---all got dealt with in the usual manner.  Then at that point, the HFT traders and their algorithms showed up---and "Bob's your uncle!"

The high and lows were reported as $17.315 and $17.015 in the December contract.

Silver closed yesterday at $17.09 spot, down 10.5 cents from Tuesday.  Net volume was the same as Tuesday's at 28,000 contracts.

Platinum didn't do a lot during the Wednesday session, but met the same fate at 2 p.m. EDT as both gold and silver---and was closed down 8 bucks.

Palladium made numerous attempts to break above the $800 spot mark, but a willing seller was always at the ready to make sure it didn't happen.  The metal also got hit at 2 p.m.---and was only allowed to close up 2 dollars.  It would have obviously finished the trading session materially higher if allowed to do so.

The dollar index closed late Tuesday afternoon in New York at 85.41.  It traded virtually ruler flat until 9:15 a.m. EDT on Wednesday morning, before getting sold down to its 85.20 low at 10:30 a.m. EDT.  Then shortly before 2 p.m. the index blasted higher as 'The Button' got pushed, with its 86.03 high tick coming about 2:45 p.m. in New York.  It traded sideways after that, closing at 85.99, which was up 58 basis points on the day.

The gold stocks opened down---and were in the hole to the tune of a bit more than 2 percent by around 11 a.m. in New York.  From there they rallied back to unchanged by around 1:20 p.m.  Then they got clubbed on the Fed news---and barely recovered off their lows going into the close.  The HUI got creamed for 4.05%.

Ditto for the silver equities.  The managed to rally into positive territory off their 11 a.m. New York low, but really got hammered starting at 2 p.m., although they did recover off their absolute lows.  Not that it mattered much, as Nick Laird's Intraday Silver Sentiment Index got bombed for a 4.21% loss.

That's the third or fourth time this month that the shares have been hammered to the downside out of all proportion to the declines in the underlying metals themselves---and it's becoming obvious that these dramatic sell-offs don't involve free-market forces.

The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that there were no deliveries to report, which is not surprising since I mentioned in this space yesterday that the October deliveries for both gold and silver were done.

And barring any surprise deliveries in the next 48 hours, the October deliveries in gold were reported as 1,268 contracts---and in silver it was 774 contracts, which is very decent for what is not a 'normal' delivery month for silver.

The CME Preliminary Report for the Wednesday trading session showed that there were zero contracts in either gold or silver still open in the October delivery month---and just eye-balling the remaining open interest for November in these two metals, it's apparent that the November will be pretty quiet on the delivery front as well.  November, like October, is not normally a big delivery month for either gold or silver, but there's always room for a surprise.

First Notice Day for the November deliveries is Friday---and whatever they show, I'll have them in Saturday's column.

There was another withdrawal from GLD yesterday.  This time an authorized participant took out 38,450 troy ounces.  And as of 10:06 p.m. yesterday evening, there were no reported changes in SLV.

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

There was very big in/out movement in both gold and silver at the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday.  In gold, there was 22,505 troy ounces reported received---and 89,183 troy ounces shipped out.  The link to that activity is here.

In silver, there was 934,767 troy ounces received---and 343,435 ounces shipped out the door for parts unknown.  The link to that action is here.

Here's a nifty chart that Nick Laird sent our way last night---along with his comment that stated---"Support has now become resistance."  That's precisely right of course dear reader, but only if the Plunge Protection Team allows this chart pattern to stand.  The 'click to enlarge' feature works wonders here.

I don't have all that many stories for you today---and I hope there are at least a couple in here that interest you.

 

¤ Critical Reads

Fed ends QE3 and sends upbeat signals on economy

The Federal Reserve voted on Wednesday to end its bond-buying stimulus program commonly known as QE3 and sent several upbeat signals to markets that it was not worried about global weakness, low inflation or a wobble in financial markets.

In the statement, the Fed left unchanged its pledge that rates would remain near zero for a “considerable time.” But it qualified the statement, saying that if the economy improves faster than expected, than the first rate hike could come sooner than anticipated.

The statement also made a major change to the Fed’s view on labor markets. Instead of seeing “significant underutilization” in the labor market, which was in the September statement, the Fed now said that underutilization in labor resources “is gradually diminishing.”

This marketwatch.com article appeared on their website at 4:02 p.m. EDT yesterday---and today's first news item is courtesy of Casey Research's own Louis James.

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Greenspan Sees Turmoil as Q.E. Boost to Markets Unwinds

Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said he doesn’t think the Fed can unwind years of extraordinary stimulus without causing turmoil in financial markets.

“I don’t think it’s possible,” Greenspan said during an event today at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, responding to a question about the likely market impact of the Fed’s exit.

While the Fed’s bond-buying program has been a “terrific success” in boosting asset prices, it hasn’t galvanized effective demand in the real economy, Greenspan said.

This brief Bloomberg piece showed up on their Internet site at 8:35 a.m. Denver time yesterday morning---and I thank reader Ken Hurt for sharing it with us.

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And the Biggest Beneficiary of QE3 was...

Aside from the S&P 500 of course, which made billionaires out of millionaires (even if it failed to make billionaires into trillionaires this time around -  we will have to wait for QE4 or QE5 for that), some may wonder: who was the biggest beneficiary of QE3? It certainly wasn't the U.S. middle class, which has seen its real wages decline in 6 of the past 7 months, and its disposable income is back at levels not seen since the mid-1990s.

No, the biggest winner of QE3 is the same entity that we noted benefited the most from Q.E. over the past 6 years, and which even the WSJ realized was the primary beneficiary of the trillions in cash created out of thin air by the Fed, when in late September Hilsenrath wrote "Fed Rate Policies Aid Foreign Banks"...  something we first said back in 2011 with "Exclusive: The Fed's $600 Billion Stealth Bailout Of Foreign Banks Continues At The Expense Of The Domestic Economy, Or Explaining Where All The QE2 Money Went."

So yes, European banks: feel free to send your thank you cards to the Fed: without its $1.3 trillion cash injection who knows how many of you would have passed the ECB's "no deflation to model" most recent Stress Test.

A word of warning: let's all hope that now, with some $1.5 trillion in Fed cash on foreign (most insolvent European) bank balance sheet, or just about half of all Q.E. liquidity injections since the start of QE1, European banks are finally solvent. Or else, deflation, inflation, stagflation, hyperinflation, or what have you, the Fed will be storming right back in to bail out Europe's insolvent banks the U.S. middle class all over again.

This excellent article, along with two nifty charts, appeared on the Zero Hedge website at 3:18 p.m. EDT Wednesday afternoon.  It's worth reading---and I thank reader U.D. for sending it.

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David Stockman: Good Riddance to Q.E.— It Was Just Plain Financial Fraud

QE has finally come to an end, but public comprehension of the immense fraud it embodied has not even started. In round terms, this official counterfeiting spree amounted to $3.5 trillion— reflecting the difference between the Fed’s approximate $900 billion balance sheet when its “extraordinary policies” incepted at the time of the Lehman crisis and its $4.4 trillion of footings today. That’s a lot of something for nothing. It’s a grotesque amount of fraud.

The scam embedded in this monumental balance sheet expansion involved nothing so arcane as the circuitous manner by which new central bank reserves supplied to the banking system impact the private credit creation process. As is now evident, new credits issued by the Fed can result in the expansion of private credit to the extent that the money multiplier is operating or simply generate excess reserves which cycle back to the New York Fed if, as in the present instance, it is not.

But the fact that the new reserves generated during QE have cycled back to the Fed does not mitigate the fraud. The latter consists of the very act of buying these trillions of treasuries and GSE securities in the first place with fiat credits manufactured by the central bank. When the Fed does QE, its open market desk buys treasury notes and, in exchange, it simply deposits in dealer bank accounts new credits made out of thin air. As it happened, about $3.5 trillion of such fiat credits were conjured from nothing during the last 72 months.

All of these bonds had permitted Washington to command the use of real economic resources. That is, to consume goods and services it obtained directly in the form of payrolls, contractor services, military tanks and ammo, etc and, indirectly, in the form of the basket of goods and services typically acquired by recipients of government transfer payments. Stated differently, the goods and services purchased via monetizing $3.5 trillion of government debt embodied a prior act of production and supply. But the central bank exchanged them for an act of nothing.

This right-on-the-money commentary appeared on David's website yesterday sometime---and my thanks go out to Roy Stephens for finding it for us.  West Virginia reader Elliot Simon sent this moneynews.com story on the same issue headlined "Financial Times: Q.E. Might Be a 'toxic legacy' Poisoning America".  It's worth reading as well.

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Jim Rickards: "Central bankers are impotent"

Data coming out of the U.S. demonstrates lower mortgage yields and a surge in refinancings are adding to 4-year lows in gas prices to give consumers more disposable income. Jim says this isn’t as bullish as us what he thinks of the new data and also gives us his thoughts on divisions at the ECB.

The preamble to this must watch interview begins at the 4:20 minute mark of Russia Today's "Boom Bust" program---and it runs for a bit over eight minutes.  It was posted on the youtube.com Internet site on Monday sometime---and I thank reader Harold Jacobsen for bringing it to our attention.

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Mortgage Purchase Applications Plunge to 19-Year Low

Presented with little comment...because realistically what is there to say about a so-called 'housing recovery' when the volume of applications for home purchases is the lowest since August 1995. Keep believing that lower rates will support home prices... keep believing the Fed's Q.E. worked... or face facts, this is not your mother's housing market any more.

This short Zero Hedge story has three must see charts---and it was posted on their website at 11:03 a.m. EDT yesterday---and I thank reader 'David in California' for sending it along.

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Economic, Political Discontent Make for a U.S. Midterm Double Punch

A double punch of economic and political dissatisfaction marks public attitudes in the closing week of the 2014 midterm campaign – a dynamic that reflects poorly on the president’s performance, bolstering his Republican opponents.

The discontent in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll is palpable. Despite its fitful gains, seven in 10 Americans rate the nation’s economy negatively and just 28 percent say it’s getting better. In a now-customary result, 68 percent say the country’s seriously off on the wrong track.

There’s no respite politically. Six in 10 express little or no trust in the federal government to do what’s right. Fifty-three percent think its ability to deal with the country’s problems has worsened in the last few years; among likely voters that rises to 63 percent.

Views of the president’s performance suffer in kind. Barack Obama’s job approval rating, 43 percent overall, is virtually unchanged from his career-low 40 percent two weeks ago. A steady 51 percent disapprove, essentially the same all year. His ratings on the economy – still the country’s prime concern, albeit one of many – are similarly weak, a 10-point net negative score.

This article was posted on the abcnews.go.com Internet site at 7:00 a.m. EDT on Tuesday morning---and it's something I found in yesterday's edition of the King Report.

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Tax evasion targeted in pact signed by 51 countries

Finance ministers and tax chiefs from 51 countries signed an agreement on Wednesday to automatically swap tax information beginning in 2017.

Canada was not among the first 51 countries to agree to the effort to end tax evasion, but said it would be among 35 more countries joining the agreement in 2018. The first signatories will have to invest more over the next two years to prepare their tax departments.

“We expect this will provide tax authorities across the world with the details of billions of pounds of assets held overseas,” U.K. Finance Minister George Osborne said as countries signed the agreement in Berlin.

“Under the agreement a wide range of information will be exchanged on offshore accounts, including account balances, interest payments and beneficial ownership, and this will greatly increase the ability of governments to clamp down on tax evaders and to ensure that what they owe, they pay," he said.

This article appeared on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation website at 3:41 p.m. EDT on Wednesday---and it's courtesy of reader 'h c'.

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U.K. faces 'debt time bomb' from ageing population

Britain's ageing population has created a "debt time bomb" that can only be defused through a combination of significant spending cuts, faster increases in the state pension age and ending universal free healthcare, according to a respected think-tank.

The Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) warned that the Government would need to slash public spending by a quarter in order to get Britain's debt mountain down to sustainable levels.

In a set of radical proposals, the IEA called on the Government to end "unhelpful" policies such as the "triple lock guarantee" that ensures the state pension increases by the higher of inflation, average earnings or a minimum of 2.5pc every year.

"Politicians must wake up to the size of the debt time bomb in the UK. Older generations have voted themselves benefits that will indebt future generations, meaning crippling tax hikes for our children and grandchildren," said Philip Booth, editorial director at the IEA.

A not unfamiliar 'baby boomer' problem in all Western countries these days.  This article showed up on the telegraph.co.uk Internet site at 5 a.m. GMT yesterday morning---and it's the second offering in a row from reader 'h c'.

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Take your mortgage to the grave, older U.K. borrowers told

Older home owners will be told to take mortgages for life or leave their homes under plans to tackle Britain's interest-only mortgage crisis.

Several major banks will propose "lifetime" contracts to borrowers in their 50s and 60s who face a shortfall when their mortgage ends, The Telegraph understands.

The lenders will allow customers to repay just the interest on their debts until they die, at which point the properties will be sold and a large chunk of the proceeds passed to the bank.

"Lenders are trying to keep people in their homes, rather than repossess them, and these new deals will ensure the bank still owns most of the house when they die."

How morbid!  You couldn't make this stuff up.  This is another story from The Telegraph---and this one was posted there at 10 p.m. GMT on Tuesday evening.  It's the final offering of the day from reader 'h c', for which I thank him.

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France to hand over first Mistral helicopter carrier on Nov 14 -- Russia

France may hand over the first of two Mistral helicopter carriers to Russia on November 14, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said. He announced that Moscow had received an invitation to take delivery at France’s Saint-Nazaire shipyards.

“Rosoboronexport [Russia’s state owned arms exporter] has received an invitation to arrive in Saint-Nazaire on November 14, where 360 Russian sailors and 60 specialist trainers are already,” Rogozin said.

On that day, Vladivostok – the first of two Mistral-class helicopter carrier ships – should be handed over to Russia. The Deputy PM also assumed the second carrier, the Sevastopol, would also be in dock.

“We act from the fact that France must protect its own reputation as a reliable partner, including on issues of military cooperation," he said. France has always stressed that for them this would be “the litmus test of their national pride and sovereignty,” the Deputy PM added.

This Russia Today news item put in an appearance on their Internet site at 5:18 p.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday afternoon, which was 10:18 a.m. EDT in New York.  I thank Roy Stephens for sending it.

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Deutsche Bank Replaces Executives as Legal Expenses Soar

Deutsche Bank AG, Germany’s biggest lender, is replacing its finance and legal chiefs as mounting litigation expenses wiped out quarterly profit and the firm begins talks to settle probes into alleged market rigging.

The bank swung to a net loss in the three months through September after setting aside 894 million euros ($1.1 billion) for litigation, the Frankfurt-based company said yesterday. It named Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s Marcus Schenck to succeed Stefan Krause as chief financial officer and promoted Christian Sewing to the board to oversee the firm’s legal affairs.

“The number and level of executives being replaced point to a house-clean,” said Mark Williams, a former bank examiner for the Federal Reserve and now a lecturer at Boston University’s School of Management. “This type of regime change creates instability and you would only do it if you think it will restore stability.”

“The problems are much deeper than what we see” at Deutsche Bank, said Tom Kirchmaier, a fellow in the Financial Markets Group at the London School of Economics. “Why didn’t they promote someone from the inside for the CFO role? It’s puzzling. It would have been a natural choice.”

I posted a story about this in yesterday's column, but this Bloomberg piece, filed from Frankfurt at 5:01 p.m. MDT yesterday afternoon, is far more in depth---and I thank Elliot Simon for finding it for us.

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Russia calls U.N. agency's conflict zone risk proposals 'superficial'

Russia, which the United States has accused of backing Ukrainian rebels who shot down a Malaysian airliner in July, called new proposals from the United Nations aviation body on mitigating risks over conflict zones rushed and "superficial", according to a document obtained by Reuters.

The  International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) launched a task force in July to look at ways to better share information about risks above conflict zones. The task force has laid out 12 proposals, seen by Reuters and confirmed by sources at the Montreal-based agency.

The Russian submission to the ICAO Council, which was also signed by Bolivia, says the agency "practically has lost" its role in investigating the downing of Malaysian Airlines MH17 and criticized a pilot program to share intelligence.

It said the agency’s pursuit of a centralized intelligence sharing mechanism was outside its mandate, and could lead to false information being given to pilots.

This Reuters article, co-filed from Montreal and Toronto, appeared on their website at 4:12 p.m. EDT on Wednesday afternoon---and it's another contribution from Roy Stephens.

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Rosneft "Radical" Sanctions Retaliation Proposal Sends Russian Bonds, Currency Plunging

10-year Russian bond yields have broken above 10%, trading at the highest yields since 2009 as the Ruble plunges once again to fresh record lows against the dollar. These significant moves come on the heels of two notable headlines overnight.

First, German exports to Russia slumped 26.3% YoY in August (down a stunning 16.6% year-to-date with vehicle exports plunging 27.7%) as sanctions batter bilateral trade. Secondly, Rosneft has proposed what is being described as "radical" reactions to the West's sanctions, which the Kremlin has (for now) denied.

This Zero Hedge piece was posted on their website at 10:06 a.m. yesterday morning---and it's the second offering of the day from reader 'David in California'.  It's worth reading.

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#62: Russia jumps record 30 places in ‘Doing Business’ ranking

Russia is now ranked 62nd in the World Bank’s new 2014 Doing Business report, which measures the ease of doing business in 189 countries worldwide. The country climbed 30 positions from 92nd spot in 2013.

Russia is ahead of Moldova in 63rd place and behind Greece in 61st.

Singapore, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Denmark, and South Korea are the top five countries in terms of ease of doing business in this year’s report.

The 189 economies are evaluated on how close their business regulations compare to the best global practices, with a higher score for a more efficient business climate and stronger legal institutions.

This news item appeared on the Russia Today website at 10:44 a.m. Moscow time on their Wednesday morning---and it's the final offering of the day from Roy Stephens, for which I thank him.

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Hugo Salinas Price: The Fall in International Reserve Assets

Something important has happened since August 15, this year. I have been following  global central bank "international reserve assets" (excluding gold)  as tallied by Bloomberg, for the past 18 years, and I have seen them increase steadily over the whole of that time.  My source has been Doug Noland's "Credit Bubble Bulletin" over at www.prudentbear.com.

In September of last year, I wrote an article, "The Stalling Growth of International Reserves" published on my website, www.plata.com.mx

Now the quite extraordinary news is that International Reserve Assets are not just stalling, they are actually going into reverse.

Of course repricing gold would fix the International Reserves situation at once, dear reader---and that may be in the cards at some point.  This brief article put in an appearance on the plata.com.mx website yesterday---and I found it embedded in a GATA release.  It's worth the 90 seconds of time it will take to read it.

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Lawrence Williams: The new London gold ‘fix’ – the battle has commenced

By virtue of having already developed benchmark setting software for the other principally traded precious metals one might assume that the Thomson Reuters/CME and LME proposals might be the front runners. 

However from a purely competition aspect the prospect of the organisation which runs the principal US gold trading market in COMEX (the CME) also setting the London benchmark price smacks of an almost monopolistic opportunity which might stand against it – although it obviously didn’t in the case of silver. 

The selection of CME might also generate apoplectic opposition from the North American gold investment community, indeed from gold bugs everywhere, given that they see the CME’s COMEX market as being uncontrollably rigged by some major banks through the use of gold futures (utilising vast paper gold transactions, hugely in excess of the amounts of physical gold available) to control (manipulate) physical market pricing.

This commentary by Lawrie appeared on the mineweb.com Internet site on Wednesday sometime---and I found it all by myself.

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Greenspan: The Price of Gold Will Rise

Q: "Why do central banks (still) own gold?"

Greenspan: “This is a fascinating question.”  He did not answer the question, but he did point out: “Gold has always been accepted without reference to any other guarantee.”

While Greenspan did not want to comment on current policy, he was willing to give a forecast on the price of gold, at least in a Greenspanesque way.

Q:  Where will the price of gold be in 5 years?” 

Greenspan: “Higher.” 

Q: How much?” 

Greenspan: “Measurably.

It's a safe bet, considering Greenspan's ability at understatement---"measurably" means it will rise by a lot.  This commentary, which falls into the must read category, was posted on the merkinvestments.com Internet site on Wednesday---and the first reader through the door with the story was Ken Hurt.  Zero Hedge put its own spin on this in an article headlined "Alan Greenspan: Q.E. Failed To Help The Economy, The Unwind Will Be Painful, "Buy Gold".  Reader 'David in California' sent that one our way.

Read more...

 

¤ The Funnies

Here are two of the latest photos from yesterday of the lava flow encroaching on Pāhoa Village on Hawai'i's 'Big Island'.  The 'click to enlarge' feature really helps here.











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Drilling Intersects 102 Meters of 1.97 gpt Gold at Columbus Gold’s Paul Isnard Gold Project; Drilling Confirms Depth Extension of Gold Mineralization

Columbus Gold Corporation (CGT: TSX-V) (“Columbus Gold”) is pleased to announce results of the initial five (5) core drill holes at its Paul Isnard gold project in French Guiana. The holes confirm depth extension of gold mineralization below shallow holes drilled on the 43-101 compliant 1.9 million ounce Montagne d’Or inferred gold deposit at Paul Isnard in the 1990’s and support the current program of resource expansion through offsetting open-ended gold mineralization indicated by the earlier holes.

Robert Giustra, CEO of Columbus Gold, commented: “These drill results validate Columbus Gold’s approach to adding ounces with a lower-risk drilling program designed to infill and to extend the mineralized zones to 200 m vertical depth from surface; a depth amenable to open pit mining.” 

Fourteen (14) holes have been completed (assays pending) by Columbus Gold in the current program and drilling is progressing at the rate of about 3,000 meters per month with one drill-rig on a 24 hour basis. Columbus Gold plans to accelerate the current program by engaging a second drill-rig as soon as one can be obtained. 

Please visit our website for more information about the project.


 
 

¤ The Wrap

When small men begin to cast big shadows, it means that the sun is about to set. -- Lin Yutang

Well, I'm sad to say that the Wednesday trading session turned out exactly as I expected it would, although I was hoping beyond hope that it might be different this time---but it wasn't.

But what should not be lost in this is the continuing engineered price declines in both gold and silver---and after 'da boyz' and their algorithms got through with both metals yesterday, there's only 20 or so dollars to go to get back to the October 6 low in gold.

But, as Ted Butler always points out, it's not the price, rather it's the number of long gold contracts that JPMorgan et al can get the Managed Money traders to puke up---and how deeply they can guide these same technical funds onto the short side of the gold market.  So how 'low' the price goes, will be a direction function of that process.

Here are the 6-month charts for both gold and silver.

Ted says that with silver, the Managed Money is all 'locked and loaded' with a record short position.  It's possible they may have added to their short position yesterday, but there's no way of knowing, because Wednesday's price action occurred a day after the cut-off for tomorrow's Commitment of Traders Report.  So we'll have to wait until the COT Report on November 7, which is a lifetime away at the moment.

And as I type this paragraph, the London open is about 50 minutes away.  I note that the two tiny rally attempts that occurred in gold---one shortly after trading began in New York yesterday evening---and the one that came shortly after 9 a.m. Hong Kong time, were both sold down.  But the real sell-off began around 1 p.m. Hong Kong time as the HFT boyz leaned on the price---and gold is now at a new low for this move down, and it probably won't be the low of the day.  Gold volume is already north of 32,000 contracts, which is very heavy for this time of morning---and 99 percent of it is in the current front month, which is December, so it's not normal trading volume.

Silver's tiny rally attempt in morning trading in the Far East on their Thursday met with the same fate as gold---and 'da boyz' really put the boots to the price shortly before 2 p.m. Hong Kong time.  The silver price is now knocking on the door of its old low set back on Friday, October 3.  Gold volume is just north of 12,000 contracts at the moment, which is also pretty big for this time of day.

After trading flat for most of the Far East session, platinum also met the same fate starting shortly before 1 p.m. Hong Kong time.  Palladium got hit shortly after trading began at 6 p.m. in New York last night---and has been allowed to trade flat since then.

The dollar index has been in rally mode almost since the open yesterday evening---and at the moment it's up 25 basis points.  But if you believe that these engineered price declines are a result of the 'strength' in the dollar index, do I have a bridge for you!  However, that's what the so-called experts will use as a reason for the decline in all precious metals.

I'd like to think that this is the last swing for the fences by JPMorgan et al, but it's just not possible to tell at the moment.  I think some comfort should be drawn from Greenspan's use of the world "measurable" because it confirms that there is an end game which, as I've said many times over the years, will certainly result in a re-pricing of not just the precious metals, but all commodities in general.  The only thing we don't know is the timing.  But looking at the current set-up in the Comex futures market, never have the stars been so favourably aligned---and that was Ted's opinion in his mid-week commentary yesterday, which was headlined "Resolution is Dead Ahead".

So we wait some more.

And as I hit the send button on today's column at 5:15 a.m. EDT, London has been open just over an hour---and as the charts below show, JPMorgan et al---along with their HFT buddies---are still at it.  Gold hit another new low---and is trading just above the $1,200 mark at the moment.  Silver was down almost 40 cents at its low tick that came about 8:30 a.m. GMT.  Platinum is barely off its low---and palladium is still trading flat after its sell-off in early Far East trading.

Gold volume is north of 48,000 contracts at the moment---and silver's volume is way up there as well at 17,000 contracts.  The dollar index is now up 38 basis points.

The powers-that-be certainly aren't wasting any time in this leg down of the current engineered price decline---and based on what I see at the moment, it could be a wild and woolly day once Comex trading begins at 8:20 a.m. EDT this morning---if not sooner.

So hang onto your hats---and I'll see you here tomorrow.