Compiled 12/09/11 6:00 AM (CT) Statistics: London Gold Fix $1,712.00 -$27.00 LME Copper Stocks 386,075 tons -1,325 tons Shanghai Deliverable stocks were 72,712 tons +15,057 tons GOLD MARKET FUNDAMENTALS: (6:00 AM CST) The gold market started the early Friday morning US trade just above the prior session's lows and roughly $41 an ounce below this week's highs. In other words, the gold market initially seemed to fear the outcome of the EU summit. While the EU has indicated they will implement even more austerity ahead and attempt a fiscal union, the trade so far hasn't seen enough details on the debt backstop plan to fully discount the prospect of further debt contagion issues. The gold market might have been somewhat undermined by softer Chinese inflation news overnight and perhaps gold was also pressured as a result of lingering Chinese slowing concerns. However, some economists and analysts think that the overnight data from China will prompt the PBOC to move away from a tightening posture and back toward a growth posture and that could eventually lend some support to gold prices. Without the EU centric focus this morning, gold might have benefited from news that African Barrick announced they will miss their 2011 gold output target because of power issues, especially since that news comes in the wake of news that overall South African gold production showed a year over year production decline in the latest monthly figures that were released earlier this week. In fact, the gold market also saw signs that a Russian gold miner was moving to reduce its gold production guidance and that would be supportive of gold prices if the trade wasn't obsessed with the EU and the demand side of the equation. Given the EU summit focus this morning, scheduled US data like the Trade balance and consumer sentiment figures might simply be pushed to the back burner today. In the end, many traders think today will eventually be a very critical pivot point for gold, with the trade embracing either a risk on, or risk off view in the wake of the summit package. Comex Gold Stocks were unchanged at 11.298 million ounces. Gold stocks have declined 11 of the last 20 days. OUTSIDE MARKET DEVELOPMENTS: (6:00 AM CST) While equity markets in Asia were generally lower during overnight trading, stock indices in Europe are slightly higher this morning. Early indications are that the US markets will open with moderate gains later on today. The US Dollar is slightly weaker against most of the major currencies this morning. Japanese GDP during the third quarter was up 1.4%, higher than market forecasts. Chinese CPI during November was up 4.2% year-on-year, lower than expectations. The German Trade surplus during October was 12.6 billion Euros, lower than projections. Major US economic numbers to be released this morning include the US October International Trade Balance at 7:30 AM, and a private survey of Consumer Sentiment just before 9:00 AM.