- Gold prices still waiting for Fed-speak to offer direction cues
- Crude oil prices bounce as traders eye Algiers OPEC meeting
- API inventory figures may not generate lasting follow-through
Gold prices continue to tread water as traders wait for fresh fodder to drive Fed monetary policy speculation. This week’s opening round of Fed-speak failed to stoke lasting momentum. Dallas Fed President Kaplan struck a balanced tone while Governor Tarullo did not opine on near-term monetary policy trends.
Comments from Vice Chair Fischer are on tap ahead but it seems unlikely that a talk titled “Why Study Economics?” to be delivered at Howard University will offer significant insights. This means the metal may have wait for Wednesday’s comments from Chair Yellen as well as four regional branch Presidents (Bullard, Evans, Mester and George) for meaningful direction cues.
Crude oil prices recovered, erasing most of Friday’s downswing. The absence of a singular, readily identifiable catalyst suggests the move reflects protective pre-positioning as traders look to rebalance away from strongly directional exposure before the outcome of this week’s OPEC meeting is revealed. Cartel members are meeting on the sidelines of the International Energy Forum (IEF) in Algiers.
Markets have speculated that the gathering may produce an accord to freeze or reduce output levels. This seems unlikely however. Iran and Saudi Arabia are probably unwilling to meet each other half-way on much of anything while the two are engaged on opposite sides of at least two proxy wars (in Syria and Yemen). Libya, Nigeria and Iraq are eager to restore output disrupted by regional conflicts.
On balance, hints that the path of least resistance leads lower for the WTI benchmark in the days ahead. API weekly inventory data may make a splash in the coming 24 hours but lasting follow-through could prove difficult to come as traders await clear-cut guidance from Algiers before committing to a firm bias.
GOLD TECHNICAL ANALYSIS – Gold prices are marking time falling trend line resistance in play since early July (now at 1345.42). A daily close above this threshold exposes a double top at 1367.15. Alternatively, a reversal below the 23.6% Fibonacci retracement at 1333.62 opens the door for another test of support in the 1303.62-08.00 area (May 2 high, 38.2% level).
CRUDE OIL TECHNICAL ANALYSIS – Crude oil prices are struggling to find lasting follow-through after testing monthly resistance. A daily close above the 46.02-31 area (23.6% Fibonacci expansion, trend line) targets the September 8 high at 47.72. Alternatively, a turn below the 38.2% level at 44.20 exposes the 42.73-43.02 region (50% Fib, September 1 low).
— Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for DailyFX.com
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