Metals fluctuate; Gold is still biased to the downside

Gold declined sharply yesterday after the downbeat growth report from the euro-area region, where markets extended the losses during last session after investors tended to avert as much risk as possible and headed towards the low yielding U.S. dollar for risk aversion, the thing that brought huge losses to other currencies and commodities, leaving investors with no choice but liquidating gold positions in order to cover the widely-spread losses.

Gold fluctuated heavily today to currently add 0.04% or $0.75 per ounce to $1675.08 per ounce after the opening of $1674.33 per ounce. The metal set the highest at $1678.82 and the lowest at $1672.13 per oucnce.

Speculation forces also stopped demanding silver as pessimism dominated the market and the strengthening U.S. dollar forced negative pressures on metals in general. In addition, platinum and palladium reversed to the downside on downbeat growth outlook and projections, noting that earlier this week China cut growth target to 7.5% in 2012, the lowest in eight years.

Today, metals are fluctuating heavily as volatility is dominating the market, where after the huge losses seen yesterday markets rebounded slightly in attempts to correct some of the downside movement seen yesterday; however, we still expect metals to remain weak and biased to the downside unless cheerful news generated optimism in the market and supported metals to regain positive demand and momentum.

Moreover, eyes will still be focused on the Greek debt swap deal with the private sector, where a deal should be reached on Thursday, while some kind of improvement was seen today after Societe Generale, UniCredit and Assicurazioni Generali all agreed to participate in the Greek debt-swap deal, joining several other firms already committed to the campaign that aims at helping Greece to avert a financial collapse.

The Greek government expressed that 75% of the total bondholders must participate in the campaign in order for the Greek law to force other holders to participate in the swap-deal.

The concentration after then will be focused on the ADP employment change report from the world's largest economy, with expectations the U.S. private sector could have added 215 thousand jobs, following the previous addition of 170 thousand jobs seen in January.

Among other precious metals, silver shed so far 0.08% or $0.03 per ounce to $32.92 per ounce, compared with the opening level of $32.95 per ounce. The metal recorded a high of $32.99 and a low of $32.79 per ounce.

Platinum added 0.53% or $8.50 per ounce to $1623.50, compared with the opening of $1615.00 per ounce, recording the highest at $1627.25 and the lowest at $1610.00 per ounce.

Palladium also added today 1.18% or $7.85 per ounce after the opening of $667.50 per ounce, recording the highest at $677.50 and the lowest at $666.00 and is currently hovering around 672.38 per ounce.