The chart says it all - it is wonderful seeing some further relief at the gasoline pump!
Meanwhile, the general weakness in the overall commodity index continues with the Goldman Sachs Commodity Index registering a fresh 27 month low in today's session.
Has the blow off run in feeders finally come to an end? It is a bit premature to say but this particular market has seen what can only be properly described as a buying frenzy. Those looking to secure replacement animals have been pushing the panic button due to the shortage in supply but at these levels, and based on what the board is giving for next year's cattle prices, they are locking in large losses by paying these kinds of prices. That has not seemed to matter however. Maybe it now will. We'll see.
Looking at the chart of the commodity sector in general, and the chart of the strong Dollar, it strikes me as odd, and that is putting it mildly, to see these continued calls for a surge in the gold price from the usual gold perma bulls. Upon what basis do they make such a claim? With the yield on the Ten Year above the 2.5% level, with market participants talking more and more Fed rate hikes by the middle of next year, with sinking inflation expectations as determined by the TIPS spread, such calls for sharply higher gold seem to smell more of desperation than anything grounded in objective analysis.
The only thing currently supporting gold has been geopolitical concerns. Whether that be Ukraine, ISIS, Gaza and now, the upcoming Scottish independence referendum, which has some spooked because of the shift in the polls in favor of the move as the date draws near, such things have helped to prevent what I believe would otherwise have been a sharper drop in the price of the metal.
Also helping the metal somewhat has been general skittishness in the global equity markets over that self-same Scottish vote.
In spite of such things, gold has managed to drop through one support level after another on the price chart. It lost psychological support at the $1300 level last month, fell to $1280 from where it bounced but then promptly collapsed through $1280 in grand style. It then hovered around $1260 before losing that as well. Now it is having trouble at psychological support near $1250. If it fails here, it is set up for a test of major support near and just below the $1240 level. Failure there and I suspect we will see a test of the $1200 level. Remember, based on our relatively recent analysis of the COT Reports, a lot of hedge fund, old and now stale, long positions go underwater below $1240.
For bulls to have any hopes of mounting the "Gold will trade north of $2000 this year" - You know, another seemingly failed prediction by one of the self-proclaimed 'experts" - it will first have to regain the $1300 level with some gusto but more importantly, the $1320 level. Could it do that? Sure it could as anything is possible in these markets but for now the trend is lower and the bears are in charge.
Lastly, the grain markets are continuing to monitor the weather forecasts to ascertain whether or not it is going to be cold enough, for long enough, to do much damage to crops across the northern tier of the US growing regions. For now, it does not appear that any frost event will do that much damage but traders are staying alert for any sign that models could turn a bit colder. After this episode of cold for the next couple of days, it looks as if we are going to get a warm up and a return to more seasonal temperatures.
Also on the plate is an upcoming USDA report where we will get a look at what the agency is giving for yield and production numbers. A lot of private firms have already weighed in with their numbers but USDA is still the accepted authority.
"When misguided public opinion honors what is despicable and despises what is honorable, punishes virtue and rewards vice, encourages what is harmful and discourages what is useful, applauds falsehood and smothers truth under indifference or insult, a nation turns its back on progress and can be restored only by the terrible lessons of catastrophe." … Frederic Bastiat
Evil talks about tolerance only when it’s weak. When it gains the upper hand, its vanity always requires the destruction of the good and the innocent, because the example of good and innocent lives is an ongoing witness against it. So it always has been. So it always will be. And America has no special immunity to becoming an enemy of its own founding beliefs about human freedom, human dignity, the limited power of the state, and the sovereignty of God. – Archbishop Chaput
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