Precious metals have become a volatile battleground between shorter term investors exiting from long positions in response to a stronger dollar and improving economic conditions in many parts of the world on the one hand, and longer term investors who remain interested in these metals due to the fact that major trade, current account, savings, debt, and currency market imbalances remain unaddressed by governments.

Liquidations by the shorter term investors have pushed prices lower, while the longer term investors have been heavy buyers in response to the lower prices.

Precious metals may rise from last week's low levels this week, perhaps into the ranges seen in the second week of March.

Slightly longer term, gold and silver prices could fall back to make new short-term lows in the first half of April.

Petroleum prices may follow a similar price pattern, albeit for different reasons.

Demand for oil has been healthy, and is moving into a period of seasonal strength coupled with rising cyclical demand. Prices could show a great deal of volatility as investors exit these markets while longer term investors continue to add to their positions.