Gold and silver were heading south Friday morning as European leaders agreed to new fiscal discipline and to accelerate funding for a banking firewall.
Spot gold was down 0.36%, having traded as high as $1,715.50 and as low as $1,703.60. The London morning reference price was fixed at $1,714.50, $6.50 per ounce lower than Thursday’s afternoon reference price, according to Kitco market data.
Spot silver was showing a 1.94% loss, bid at $34.82 per ounce with an ask price of $34.92. The morning high as of time of writing was $35.12 and the low was $34.51. Friday’s reference price was set at $35.21 in the London a.m., 65 cents per ounce above Thursday’s reference price.
Looking to reassure financial markets, EU leaders meeting for a summit in Brussels signed on to a new fiscal agreement and agreed to accelerate payments into the European Stability Mechanism, a permanent banking system firewall. Set to launch in July, they pledged to make the first two installments to the 500 billion euro ESM this year. The decision about the timing of an additional three installments — as well as whether to include 250 billion euros still remaining in the ESM’s predecessor, the European Financial Stability Facility — will be made in March, according to a Bloomberg report.
Looming on the horizon is the completion of Greece’s debt swap with private government bondholders, which entails them signing up for an exchange of debt securities that will see them book losses of as much as 70% on their existing holdings. EU finance ministers will hold a teleconference on March 9 to review the outcome of the operation.
The price of gold bullion was drifting lower, trading around $1,708 per ounce in London morning trading Friday, according to BullionVault’s London Gold Market report.
“Another move below $1690 will have the market refocusing back toward $1,500,” according to Scotia Mocatta’s technical analysis team.
Turning to U.S. stock exchange trading, gold trusts were trading flatly, but the iShares Silver Trust (NYSE:SLV) was lower.
- The SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE:GLD) was moving marginally higher.
- The iShares Gold Trust (NYSE:IAU) was unchanged.
- The iShares Silver Trust was down around 1.4%.
Gold mining ETFs were showing losses Friday morning.
- The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDX) was down around 1.2%.
- The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDXJ) was showing losses around 0.7%.
- The Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSE:SIL) was down nearly 1.4%.
Gold mining shares also were moving lower.
- Agnico-Eagle Mines (NYSE:AEM) was showing losses around 1.15%.
- Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) was down around 0.5%.
- Eldorado Gold (NYSE:EGO) was down about 1.6%.
- Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) was less than 0.1% lower.
- Kinross Gold (NYSE:KGC) was down nearly 1.8%.
- Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) was down around 0.8%.
- NovaGold Resources (AMEX:NG) was unchanged.
- Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) was down some 1.9%.
Silver mining shares heading lower as well to close out the week.
- Coeur d’Alene Mines (NYSE:CDE) was moving lower, down around 1.75%.
- Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) was down 0.2%.
- Pan American Silver (NASDAQ:PAAS) was showing losses of 1.3%.
- Silver Wheaton (NYSE:SLW) was down nearly 2.3%.
- Silver Standard Resources (NASDAQ:SSRI) was showing losses of more than 1%.
As of this writing, Andrew Burger did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. Adrian Ash of BullionVault contributed to this report.