Gold Holds Steady While Silver Climbs Higher

Wall St. Cheat Sheet

On Monday, gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) futures for April delivery slipped $1.50 to settle at $1,774.90 per ounce, while silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) futures gained 19 cents to close at $35.57.

The U.S. dollar (NYSE:UUP) edged higher as the euro declined ahead of this week’s Long Term Refinancing Operation.  On Wednesday, the European Central Bank will offer banks more unlimited cheap three year loans.  The first LTRO program was launched in December, which equaled 489 billion euros.

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Various sources believe the second LTRO to range from 100 billion euros to more than 1 trillion euros.  A recent poll by Reuters shows that economists believe banks will take 492 billion euros from the ECB, similar to the offering in December.  Another survey by Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) places the amount in the 500-750 billion euro range.  “I don’t expect this operation can solve all the problems, but hopefully it will take us past the worst point of the crisis,” said Riccardo Barbieri, chief European economist at Mizuho International in London.

In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) edged .19 percent lower, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) gained .23 percent.  Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) and Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) declined nearly .50 percent.  Meanwhile, First Majestic Silver (NYSE:AG) and Silvercorp Metals Inc. (NYSE:SVM) declined almost 1 percent.

Shares of Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) declined 1.4 percent before the closing bell.  Chief Executive Officer Richard O’Brien is confident Peru will approve the miner’s $4.8 billion Conga project.  The project is part of Newmont’s goal of increasing annual gold production from 5 million ounces to 7 million ounces by 2017.

Investor Insight: Will Another Round of LTRO Send Gold and Silver Higher?

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To contact the reporter on this story: Eric McWhinnie at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com