US Gold futures finished pit trade higher in quiet trading. The market is refreshing from last week's strong price gains, but did tap a high Monday.

The London markets were closed for a holiday Monday, and traders and investors are awaiting Key central bank meetings, which helped keep the market place quiet.

Dec Gold last traded up 2.10 at 1,675.00 oz.

Spot Gold was last quoted + 1.80 at 1,673.00 oz.

Dec Comex Silver last traded + 0.421 at 31.13 oz.

Traders and investors are anxiously awaiting the US Federal Reserve's symposium at Jackson Hole, WY, later this week, which has Fed Chairman Bernanke speaking Friday.

Next week's monthly European Central Bank meeting occurs on 6 September. Anticipation is higher that both central banks will announce fresh monetary stimulus initiatives at these meetings. Either way, many markets will marching in place ahead of the Key events.

European stocks were lower overnight following a weak reading on the German Ifo index of business sentiment. German companies are becoming more downbeat regarding future growth prospects. Do not be surprised to see the European Union sovereign debt crisis move to the front burner of the market place in the coming weeks.

Asian stock markets were lower Monday following more weak economic data coming out of China. Profits at China's major industrial firms dropped 5.4% in July, on an annual basis.

HSBC downgraded its Y 2012 economic growth forecast for China from 8.4%, to 8.0%. China's National Bureau of Statistics also reported manufacturing declined by 2.7%, on an annualized basis, the 1st 7 months of this year.

The USD index was near steady Monday. The "Greenback Bears" still have the slight near-term technical advantage as a 5 wk-old downtrend line is in place on the daily bar chart.

Crude Oil prices were lower Monday on worries the US government may tap its Strategic Petroleum Reserves due to a hurricane shutting in production in the Gulf of Mexico.

Crude Oil Bulls still have the overall near-term technical advantage in here.

WTI Crude Oil 95.56 -0.59 (-0.61%)

The precious metals markets will continue to look closely at how these 2 Key outside markets trade daily.

Technically: Dec Gold futures prices closed near mid-range Monday and hit another fresh 4 month high. Bulls still have good upside near-term technical momentum following last week's strong gains.

Gold prices have been trending higher in a very choppy fashion since mid-May. The Gold market Bulls have the overall near-term technical advantage.

The Gold Bulls' next upside price breakout objective is to produce a close above psych resistance at 1,700.00.

Bears' next near-term downside price objective is closing prices below solid technical support at 1,633.30.

1st resistance is seen at 1,679.30 and then at 1,687.40.

1st support is seen at Monday's low of 1,668.50 and then at 1,660.00.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr. writes and publishes The Red Roadmaster's Technical Report on the US Major Market Indices, a weekly, highly-regarded financial market letter, read by opinion makers, business leaders and organizations around the world.

Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr has studied the global financial and stock markets since 1984, following a successful business career that included investment banking, and market and business analysis. He is a specialist in equities/commodities, and an accomplished chart reader who advises technicians with regard to Major Indices Resistance/Support Levels.