Euro tanks as Spain. Greece issues resurface

 

Renewed worries of a deepening eurozone debt crisis have sent the euro to a two-year low against the American dollar, and Precious Metals are following the former downwards.  Jeremy Stretch of CIBC said, “What began as a Spanish banking bailout looks to be moving rather quickly towards a possible sovereign bailout.  Overlay that with increasingly negative news on Greece and you get a fairly negative mix, so the path of least resistance for the euro is down.”  Spanish bond yields rose to the highest levels in the history of the euro.

The bad news out of Greece comes from reports that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will no longer provide additional financing for the country.  Greece could be broke by September if it does not receive additional aid from the IMF.  The problem is Greece not being able to (or simply refusing to) meet goals set by the Troika in order to receive aid.  German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said, “If there were delays, Greece must make up for them.”

“Dr. Doom” Nouriel Roubini believes that the U.S.A. economy is still on a downward slope.  After saying that rosy forecasts by economists are out of line, Roubini said, “In 2013 … as some tax cuts are allowed to expire, disposable income growth and consumption growth will slow.  The U.S. will then face not only the direct effects of a fiscal drag, but also its indirect effect on private spending.”

At 9 a.m. (EDT), the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:

  • Gold, $1,569.30, Down $15.20.
  • Silver, $26.86, Down $0.53.
  • Platinum, $1,392.90, Down $21.60.
  • Palladium, $565.40, Down $11.70.

 

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Roubini on 2012′s “Global Perfect Storm”

Precious Metals are trading mostly flat this morning, taking a cue from the euro.  The common currency has rebounded slightly since hitting a two-year low on Friday.  Adam Myers of Credit Agricole wrote, “The currency market mood is likely to turn more pessimistic this week as investors return their focus to fiscal-policy challenges.  In the wake of [Federal Reserve, Bank of England, and European Central Bank] announcements, there now appears little on the monetary-policy front to lift investor sentiments.”  Lately, Gold and Silver have largely followed the currency markets, moving inversely to the American dollar.

Two months ago, economist Nouriel Roubini said that four key items, if happening simultaneously, could create a “perfect storm” for the economy.  The four items – a slowdown in emerging markets, military conflict in Iran, the European debt crisis, and growth slowing in the U.S.A. – seem to be coming together now.  Roubini said, “Levitational force of policy easing can only temporarily lift asset prices as gravitational forces of weaker fundamentals dominate over time.”  Historically, Gold has reacted positively in times of economic uncertainty.

American stock futures are falling this morning due to news out of Japan and China.  In Japan, machinery orders experienced their largest fall in over ten years.  Mike Lenhoff of Brewin Dolphin Securities Ltd. said, “We’ve had a bit of a shocker out of Japan.  [The three-day losing streak for stocks] indicates a loss of momentum in the underlying global economy.”  Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said that downward pressure on the economy in the country is still “relatively large.”  As mentioned by Roubini, China is a key factor in the global economic recovery.

At 9 a.m. (EDT), the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:

  • Gold – $1,586.90 – Up $6.50.
  • Silver – $27.31 – Up $0.32.
  • Platinum – $1,443.00 – Down $6.50.
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EU shocker sends precious metals higher

Precious Metals prices moved noticeably higher in early morning trading as the dollar weakened against the euro on news of a European plan to lower eurozone member nations’ borrowing costs. Economist Vishnu Varathan said, “It still falls short of a concrete solution, but the removal of severe pessimism over what’s going to come out of the EU summit is driving markets higher.” Meanwhile, the news has led analyst Lynette Tan to offer a positive year end outlook for Gold. She said, “In the long run, we’re still bullish on Gold. It’s still likely to hit last year’s high of $1,920. The global economy is not doing well, and we expect safe haven demand to be back for Gold.”

Eurozone leaders came together and hammered out a surprising compromise plan to help member nations. There are still issues to be worked out, but going from “no hope” to at least a road map of a plan on which everyone agrees has been a boost to global markets. The biggest shock of all was Germany’s agreement to a majority of the provisions. Banker Holger Schmieding said, “The summit result offers no ‘silver bullet’ to solve the euro crisis once and for all. … It is another attempt to buy some extra time for the underlying fiscal repair and structural reforms to show results. All in all, there is some progress.” However, strategist Charles Diebel stated what many investors are probably thinking: “It is one step on a very long road. But we don’t have any details, and arguably the detail is where the risk lies, because the market will start to pick holes in it, as we’ve seen previously.”

At 9:03 a.m. (EDT), the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:

  • Gold, $1,598.50, Up $46.60.
  • Silver, $27.73, Up $1.38.
  • Platinum, $1,428.00, Up $40.20.
  • Palladium, $580.00, Up $15.10.
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European summit not looking good; dollar rising

Precious metals prices are weathering the blows of investors concerns over the eurozone debt crisis. The concerns ahead of the European Union summit, has influenced investors and even world markets. The rupee continues to struggle, which has curbed the primary gold-investing nation of India’s normal buying. Analyst Robin Bahr said, “There’s no semblance of a safe-haven at the moment but as the price goes lower that bid does come back as you maybe get some renewed investor interest – sovereign wealth funds and central banks looking to nibble away and even some physical buying.”

The concerns now are growing, as concerns over Germany’s own economic issues mount. As executive and consumer sentiment fell from 90.5 in May to 89.9, the lowest for Germany since late 2009 and unemployment is on the rise. The issue is that now core member nations, not just secondary nations, are affected by the growing debt crisis. Economist Christoph Weil said, “Germany won’t be able to disconnect from the euro-region developments… The second quarter will show an economic contraction and there are no signs of improvement for the following three months. Whether the situation stabilizes afterward hinges decisively on the euro crisis and latest developments are no real reason for optimism.”

The pressure continues to build for German Chancellor Angela Merkel within the European Union as she continues to be attacked on all sides from nations that find her intransigence off-putting. However, it is not just her partner nations, but she is even pressured globally. The issue is that as unpopular as her beliefs are in the EU, they are quite popular with the German people. Billionaire George Soros feels her position is a bit myopic. He said, “Merkel has realized that the euro is not working, but she cannot change the narrative she has created because that narrative has caught the imagination of the German public, and the German public has accepted it.”

At 9:00 a.m. (EDT) – the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:

  • Gold – $1,570.10 – Down $9.90.
  • Silver – $26.96 – Down $0.11.
  • Platinum – $1,402.30 – Down $9.50.
  • Palladium – $577.00 – Down $3.80.
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Eurozone worries mount; precious metals on the move

Early morning precious metals prices have been fairly volatile on eurozone debt fears and the escalation of violence and rhetoric involving Syria. Analyst Robin Bhar said, “Gold is capped on the upside by disappointment post-Fed, while on the downside, we have some bargain hunting, and a bit of physical buying into the troughs… We are stuck in a fairly small range here, in the 1570-1600 area, certainly until the weekend when we will get to hear more on how the euro zone will be (tackled).”

The eurozone debt issues continue to escalate after the announcement of a fifth eurozone nation applying for aid. Although Cyprus, the fifth nation seeking aid, is a much smaller “hit”, the combined impact of rising Italian and Spanish yields, Greek resolution, and monetary bailout has European leadership at a crucial crossroads. A summit has been put together to overcome some hurdles the European Union is now facing. Basically the whole of Europe is interested in a single treasury and euro bond, except Germany, but Germany is, at this point, the only truly solvent nation and facing their own issues in being the benchmark, if you will, as production and consumer sentiment in Germany has slid over the last couple of months. Chairman Jim O’Neill said, “The euro crisis is in some ways mind-bogglingly simple to solve … because it isn’t economics, it’s politics… If Angela Merkel and her colleagues stood there together with the rest of the euro area … and if they behaved as a true union this crisis would be finished this weekend.”

At 9:00 a.m. (EDT) – the APMEX Precious Metals spot prices were:

  • Gold – $1,579.80 – Down $9.10.
  • Silver – $27.30 – Down $0.33.
  • Platinum – $1,436.10 – Down $5.30.
  • Palladium – $602.50 – Down $5.80.
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