Precious metals ended the week having made gains, making this the second consecutive week where that has happened. Still, the gains made by metals were not overly significant. Compared to last week, this one was fairly light as far as economic data is concerned. What is largely considered to be the biggest news story of the week came in the form of the US President-elect’s first major press conference since he won the general election all the way back in the beginning of November. Apart from that, there were some small pieces of economic data released as well as some commentary from members of the Federal Reserve.
As we look ahead to the week to come, there isn’t all that much on the slate. There will be some light economic data dealt, but the majority of the world will simply be gearing up for Donald Trump being sworn into office. Though not much on the Trump front is expected to take place next week, the following few weeks might bring about an entirely different story. No one knows what to expect, and that much is helping lend some support to safe-haven metals.
Donald Trump Press Conference Determined to Be a Miss
The biggest story of the week came in the form of a Donald Trump press conference; the first time he has spoken publicly since the November election. Investors the world over were interested in this press conference because people were hoping that Trump would divulge some information as to what his fiscal and economic plans were. Unfortunately, the press conference that unfolded was far from the one most people were expecting.
There was very little in the way of fresh information released, and the things that were discussed remained as vague as ever. The border wall that Donald Trump has promised to erect was mentioned, but apart from insisting that Mexico would pay for it, there wasn’t much else to speak of. As a result, safe-haven gold and silver were given a boost. The reason for this is due to the fact that Trump is still very much viewed as a wildcard.
Hawkish Fed Commentary
Earlier this week, the president of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve bank commented on the current economic situation in the US by saying that if things continue the way they have been, there is likely to be a total of at least 3 more interest rate hikes this year. This is something that does not lend itself to precious metals spot values. With that much being said, both gold and silver were able to withstand this hawkish commentary.
Weekly Jobless Claims Rise Slightly
In other news this week, we received the latest reading on weekly jobless claims from the US Department of Labor. According to the Department of Labor last week saw first-time claims for unemployment benefits rise by 10,000 to bring the new seasonally-adjusted average to 247,000.
We are now edging in on 100 consecutive weeks where the seasonally-adjusted average number of unemployment claims has been below the 300,000 mark. This is, however, not very good for precious metals. The longer the employment situation in the US remains upbeat and positive the case for further interest rate hikes will only grow stronger. Still, seeing as the week was overly positive for precious metals yet again, it seems as though upbeat employment data is not, alone, going to be enough to push metals downward. Between the ongoing and growing safe-haven demand and the fact that bargain-hunters are out in full force, spot values are being propped up to some extent. Whether that continues into next week or not remains to be seen.
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