Compiled 01/05/12 6:00 AM (CT) Statistics: London Gold Fix $1,614.50 +$11.50 LME Copper Stocks 368,400 tons -750 GOLD MARKET FUNDAMENTALS: (6:00 AM CST) Of late the gold market seems to have diverged with the rest of the metals complex and some traders think that is the result of rising US/Iranian tensions. Clearly gold has seen its classic physical commodity market track altered of late and at times gold also seems to be discounting action in the currency markets. With Iran suggesting they will retaliate in the event that new sanctions harm their economy and with the new sanctions supposedly designed to target Iranian oil sales, there would seem to be a good chance that fully enforced sanctions will indeed impact the Iranian economy. With the EU agreeing to the new sanctions yesterday and portions of the energy complex soaring yesterday, it did appear as if gold was at times tethering itself to oil prices. However, gold seemed to be happy with the French auction results this morning and many gold bulls are hopeful that favorable US economic data later this morning, will also benefit their case. In an interesting twist gold seems to be tracking some flight to quality themes but at the same time the market also seems to need positive numbers just to sustain the mostly positive price track of the last four trading sessions. Comex Gold Stocks were 11.462 million ounces down 8,179 ounces. Gold stocks have declined 11 of the last 20 days. OUTSIDE MARKET DEVELOPMENTS: (6:00 AM CST) Equity markets in Asia were stronger overnight but they did fade into their closes. European stocks this morning were generally weaker, while US equity markets were positing moderate losses to start the Thursday US trading session. The US Dollar has started out higher against the euro and it was also strong against the rest of the currencies. Overnight the market saw generally favorable Euro zone economic readings and it would seem like the French debt auction was carried out without too much overall anxiety. In looking ahead, the markets will see a series of private employment readings, a private layoff report, weekly claims figures from the US and an ISM Non Manufacturing data point. Also due out during the session today are more private chain store sales readings for the month of December. In general, market expectations seem to expect positive economic data flows from the US this morning.