Gold rose Friday nearly 2 percent after the head of the U.S. central bank, in a closely analyzed speech, declined to signal more money printing as a way energize the U.S. economy.
Gold for December delivery, the most actively traded contract on the CME Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, climbed $34.10 to settle at $1,793 per ounce. In electronic trading after the end of floor trading, gold continued rising. For the week, however, gold declined 5 percent.
Silver for September delivery, the most actively traded contract, also rose, adding 21 cents to close the week at $40.95, a drop for the week of 5.5 percent.
Ben Bernanke, speaking at a Jackson Hole, Wyo., symposium, declined to so much as hint that the Federal Reserve will launch a third round of Treasury note buying to stimulate the economy, which is sputtering along at a roughly one percent growth rate. But he left the door open to taking possible action later, perhaps in the fall.
It is interesting that the meeting in September has been extended by a day -- perhaps this is where we will get definitive policy action from the Fed?, Tom Paterson, chief economist for GoldMadeSimple.com, wrote in a note. It seems the Fed is in 'wait and see mode' -- but after today's 1 percent GDP print in the U.S. more monetary easing is on its way, just not today.
It is still unclear what form that monetary stimulus will take, but it would seem that the best bet is that the Fed will announce (possibly in September?) a target price for the middle of the yield curve (7-10 year), which although technically different from 'quantative easing' will amount to the same thing, that is more money printing.
Gold reacted to the speech by selling off all the way to $1,700 but since recovered all the way to $1,780. After the recent impressive run up in gold over the past seven weeks it would be very healthy for gold to consolidate around the $1,770-$1,780 area before attempting to go higher.
In short, more money printing is on the way (with resultant higher gold prices), just not today.