Lower-than-expected readings on U.S. retail sales and wholesale prices, along with rising Italian and Spanish bond yields, were buoying gold and silver Wednesday morning.
Spot gold was up 0.71% higher as of 10:36 a.m., bid at $1,621.20 an ounce. The morning high reached $1,626.10, and the low $1,608.70, according to Kitco market data. The London afternoon reference price was fixed at $1,619.50, $16 an ounce higher than Tuesday’s price fixing.
Spot silver was showing a 0.28% gain, bid above $29 at $29.05 an ounce. The morning high as of time of writing was $29.26, with the low reaching $28.67. Wednesday’s reference price fix of $28.87 is 33 cents an ounce above Tuesday’s reference price.
Retail sales fell for a second straight month in May, shedding 0.2% from April, the Commerce Dept. reported. Auto sales helped support May retail sales. Excluding autos, sales were down 0.4%. Economists had expected them to be unchanged.
Wholesale prices also fell in May, with the Producer Price Index (PPI) falling 1%, the most since July 2009. May’s decline follows an April drop of 0.2%, according to the Labor Dept.’s report.
Italy paid the highest yield in six months to borrow for one year on private markets in a bond auction on Wednesday, while the yield on Italy’s benchmark 10-year bonds rose to 6.11%. The yield on Spain’s 10-year benchmark bond hit 6.68%. These are levels analysts say “are perilously high, and could potentially limit the countries’ access to private capital.” Factory output in the 17-member euro-currency bloc fell 0.8% in April from March, according to Eurostat.
G20 economic growth picked up in 1Q 2012, though the pace varied widely among the largest 20 economies in the world, the OECD reported. Growth in Australia, Germany, Japan, South Korea and Mexico were the main drivers, while the economies of other G20 members slowed or stabilized. More recent data indicate that the acceleration has not continued through 2Q, however.
Gold bullion was adding to yesterday’s 1.8% rally to reach $1,620 an ounce in London morning trading Wednesday, BullionVault reported. “If euro bond yields continue to escalate,” BullionVault quoted a gold dealer in Asia, “gold could remain [well] bid.”
Gold and silver trusts were headed higher in U.S. stock exchange trading.
Gold and silver mining ETFs were also showing gains in Wednesday morning trading.
The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDX) was up around 1%.
The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDXJ) was around 1.5% higher.
The Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSE:SIL) was up around 1.1%.
Gold mining shares were showing some very healthy morning gains.
Agnico-Eagle Mines (NYSE:AEM) was up some 2.7%.
Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) was more than 0.4% higher.
Eldorado Gold (NYSE:EGO) was up more than 1.2%.
Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) was some 2.8% higher.
Kinross Gold Corp. USA (NYSE:KGC) was up around 0.7%.
Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) was showing gains of around 0.85%.
NovaGold Resources (NYSEAMEX:NG) was surging higher, up some 5.75%.
Yamana Gold (USA) (NYSE:AUY) was around 2.5% higher.
Silver mining shares were gaining on the day thus far as well.
Coeur d’Alene Mines (NYSE:CDE) was up around 1.3%.
Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) was up between 0.8% and 1%.
Pan American Silver (NASDAQ:PAAS) was around 2.3% higher.
Silver Wheaton (NYSE:SLW) was around 0.1% higher.
Silver Standard Resources (NASDAQ:SSRI) was up nearly 0.9%.
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.