Gold and silver, after opening up this week in impressive fashion, have both calmed down a bit today after recent gains. Silver in particular is suffering from a corrective pullback after the metal was able to add more than 50 cents for two consecutive days. Now, silver’s spot value is hovering near $17 and is looking better now than it has in the previous two months.
Generally speaking, investors are becoming interested in precious metals simply because they are unsure what direction other markets will head in. It is generally agreed that crude oil’s value will continue to plummet, and with this recently hurting stocks, it is easy to see why so many investors are ditching their shares in search of safe-haven precious metals. As the week plays out, it will be interesting to see if gold and silver can retain or possibly even build upon these gains, or if a corrective pullback is in the cards.
Poor Retail Sales Report Affects Dollar, Stocks Negatively
For yet another day, stocks in the US and around the world suffered due to the combination of falling oil prices and a poor retail sales report from the United States. Though crude oil is not falling at a very rapid pace, the black gold is still hovering around a 6-year low and this is enough to doom most energy stocks. So far this week, energy shares have led the dive and are a major contributing factor to overall stock market losses.
According to a report released earlier in the day, retail sales in December fell by almost a whole percentage point on an annualized basis. This was shocking considering most were expecting retail sales to increase as a result of the holiday season. Because of this, the US Dollar backed off from recent highs today. Generally speaking, however, the USD is still performing extremely well through the first few weeks of 2015. Against the Euro particularly, the greenback is near a decade-high and is expected to continue performing well as the European Union is reportedly on the verge of receiving even more easy money.
With the European Central Bank expected to meet for their monthly meeting on the 22nd of this month, you can bet that investors will be paying close attention to anything and everything said. As it stands, however, most investors are convinced that we will hear some news regarding a bond-buying program being introduced to the region in the near future. If this does prove to be the case, the Euro very well might lose even more value throughout this year.