Silver prices are moving slightly lower today as weaker crude oil likely weighs on the precious metals. Stocks are weaker today, as well, while the dollar index is stronger.
Given the light trading volumes seen during this holiday shortened week, this type of choppy price action comes as no surprise. That being said, a recent report by the LBMA stated that trading volume in gold and silver was strong last month and this heavier volume could likely be attributed to weaker prices.
Silver and gold may simply chop relatively sideways until investors return from holiday breaks. The beginning of Q1, however, could potentially become interesting. After months of speculation about the Fed and the potential for a 2015 rate hike, that news is now old news and investors will turn their attention elsewhere. The focus for investors heading into the new year will likely be concerns over global growth, crude oil prices and the pace of further interest rate hikes by the Fed.
While stocks were sharply higher yesterday, the equities market is seeing a little bit of selling today as ongoing concerns over China and the global economy take a toll on investor sentiment. This notion was further bolstered by recent commentary from IMF Head Christine Lagarde in which she stated that economic growth in 2016 would be “disappointing.”
Concerns over global growth could potentially bode well for silver and gold. While stocks have returned to near-record high levels, the market has not yet put in a fresh, new high. As the new year gets under way, investors may begin to think twice about stocks and could begin to look for alternatives in which to put capital to work.
From a technical perspective, the silver market continues to look quite weak. While the market has not made a new, significant low in light of the first rate hike in nearly a decade; the possibility of a fresh leg lower remains. Of course, whether such a move comes to fruition will likely depend on the global economy, overall risk appetite, crude oil prices and the dollar.
Unfortunately for the precious metals bulls, there is a whole lot of crude oil on the market and a run towards $20 per barrel could be a possibility. While anything is possible, it is difficult to imagine any significant rallies in silver while oil remains under this degree of pressure.