Gold was higher and silver lower heading into the weekend, with the much-anticipated second Greek national election in a month to be held on Sunday.
Spot gold was 0.22% higher as of 11:24 a.m., bid at $1,626.80 an ounce. The morning high reached $1,635.60, and the low $1,619, according to Kitco market data. The London afternoon reference price was fixed at $1,627.25, $13.75 an ounce higher than Thursday’s price fixing.
Spot silver was moving around the unchanged level in morning trading, bid at $28.64. The day’s high thus far was $28.98 and the low $28.45. The London a.m. reference price was fixed at $28.66, 22 cents lower than Thursday’s reference price.
The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary reading of consumer sentiment for June dropped sharply, to 74.1 from 79.3 in May, the weakest level since December’s 69.9 reading.
Industrial production fell unexpectedly in May, decreasing 0.1% from April, the initial reading of which was revised upwards to a 0.1% gain.
Having just cut the ratings of the Spanish government and 18 Spanish banks, Moody’s downgraded the long-term credit ratings of Dutch and Belgium banks ABN, ING, KBC, LeasePlan and Rabobank. The Netherlands “is affected by the ongoing euro-area debt crisis and regional economic weakness,” Moody’s said in a statement.
Central bankers are prepared to step in to stem another banking-system and economic crisis should the outcome of Greek elections this weekend lead to further deterioration in market conditions, a G20 officials told Reuters.
The Bank of England is taking an additional £100 billion ($155 billion) step to counter the effects of the worsening eurozone debt crisis. The BoE will start injecting the cheap funding into the banking system by executing a series of planned repurchase agreement auctions according to a schedule laid out in its Extended Collateral Term Repo Facility.
Gold bullion held above $1,620 an ounce, a 4% gain on the week, in London morning trading, BullionVault reported. “Our recent call suggesting that gold prices had room to rally was predicated more upon the prospect of further U.S. easing…[but] it is likely that some of the current weakness in U.S. economic data is linked in part to the ongoing deterioration in the European outlook,” BullionVault quoted a research note from French bank Natixis.
“We should stall near this week’s highs below $1,630, with all attention on Greece, and then the G20 summit next week,” added VTB Capital, London analyst Andrey Kryuchenkov.
Gold and silver trusts were showing gains heading into the weekend’s Greek elections.
Gold mining ETFs were down, while the Global X Silver Miners ETF was up on the day thus far.
The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDX) was down around 0.3%.
The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners ETF (NYSE:GDXJ) was around 0.3% lower.
The Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSE:SIL) was up around 0.35%.
Gold mining shares were turning in a mixed performance.
Agnico-Eagle Mines (NYSE:AEM) was down some 0.45%.
Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) was around 0.08% higher.
Eldorado Gold (NYSE:EGO) was up around 0.5%.
Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) was some 0.6% lower.
Kinross Gold Corp. USA (NYSE:KGC) was up around 1.5%.
Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) was showing losses of around 0.2%.
NovaGold Resources (NYSEAMEX:NG) was up some 0.3%.
Yamana Gold (USA) (NYSE:AUY) was around 1.55% lower.
Silver mining shares were showing losses to close out the week’s trading.
Coeur d’Alene Mines (NYSE:CDE) was down around 0.5%.
Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) was down around 1.7%.
Pan American Silver (NASDAQ:PAAS) was less than 0.1% lower.
Silver Wheaton (NYSE:SLW) was around 1% lower.
Silver Standard Resources (NASDAQ:SSRI) was down around 0.55%.
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.