Both gold and silver are going to be finishing the week having made nice gains thanks to some downbeat economic news from Europe as well as some mixed US economic data. All in all, this first week of March trading resulted in the deliverance of a multitude of economic reports that had their impact on global markets. For gold and silver, the nature of the global economy in conjunction with the tone of these reports resulted in gains being made just about every day. With some market experts pointing towards a possible resurgence on the part of commodities, gold and silver may be gaining momentum at just the right time.
Looking ahead to the weeks to come, the focus of investors the world over is on a few different happenings. For one, next week’s European Central Bank meeting will be hawked over by investors who are expecting the region’s quantitative easing policies to be expanded after some shaky inflation data. In addition to that, the Federal Reserve of the United States is but a few weeks away from their March meeting, and investors want to know what the future holds for interest rates.
US Employment Data Streams In
For a majority of the week, investors the world over were contending with all sorts of employment data from the United States. To paint a picture for you, employment data from the United States has been so important recently because the employment sector of the US economy is one of the few that is still showing signs of strength. If the employment sector begins to lag, the little confidence investors have with regard to the US economy very well might be wiped away.
The employment data stream began on Wednesday with the release of the ADP private-sector employment report. According to the well-known payment processor, just about 190,000 new private-sector jobs were created during February. This figure was not overly upbeat nor was it disappointing.
A day later, on Thursday, we were dealt a second consecutive weekly jobless claims report that saw the number of first-time unemployment benefit applications tick upward. This report’s saving grace, however, was the fact that the 4-week moving average of unemployment claims moved downward. The 4-week moving average is typically weighted more heavily than the week-by-week jobless claims data, so this report ended up being more positive than anything else.
Finally, on Friday, the Department of Labor released its non-farm payrolls report for the month of February. Being that the midweek ADP report showed anything but robust employment growth, investors were not expecting Friday’s report to be much better. To the surprise of almost everyone, it was announced that the US economy added more than 240,000 jobs last month. This was far better than expectations and worked to support the belief that interest rates may still have room to be raised sooner rather than later. Now, the attention of the marketplace turns to the FOMC, which is scheduled to hold their monthly meeting in just a few weeks.
Next week will bring about the European Central Bank’s policy meeting and many people are anticipating that Mario Draghi and Co. will announce the expansion of easy money policies. People have been talking about the possibility of easy money being expanded for some time now, but after this week’s surprisingly downbeat consumer prices report, that increase to easy money may come about sooner rather than later. Though we may not see as much economic data stream in next week, the European Central Bank meeting will consume the marketplace’s attention. In addition to this, it will be interesting to see if the momentum gained by gold and silver this week can be sustained.