Despite all that should be hurting gold, the precious metal has traded flat for the month. Is that a bullish sign?» Read More
The stock market continued to grind higher on Thursday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average higher for the 10th-consecutive session and the S&P 500 index within striking distance of its all-time closing high, as investors cheered a better-than-expected weekly jobless claims report.
(Read More: Jobless Claims Slip While Producers Paying More)
Peanut butter and jelly. Bert and Ernie. And gasoline and crude oil.
Some things just belong together.
But lately, that last pair have split up, at least in the short-term. Over the past month, crude oil has dropped while gasoline has rallied.
(Read More: Dollar Strength Blamed for Crude Oil Reversal)
Brent crude dropped below a key $109 a barrel level on Wednesday, following news of a rise in U.S. stockpiles and the release of some mildly bearish government data, but some traders blamed crude's reversal mostly on U.S. dollar's strength.
By midday, the U.S. Dollar index rose by 0.41 percent. In turn, Brent crude fell 88 cents to $108.79 a barrel, after swinging between a high of $109.80 and a low of $109.32 earlier in the session. U.S. oil rose 18 cents to $92.72, gaining for a fifth day in the longest daily winning streak since mid-December.
(Read More: Brent Falls Anew After US Inventory Jump)
Where is the price of gold headed?
The precious metal got a much anticipated boost over major resistance on Tuesday. Concerns and comments out of Germany help gold push through the $1,585 to $1,588 wall, bringing it to a high of $1,597.6 that it reached Tuesday morning.
(Read More: Gold Edges Up Toward $1,600 on Eurozone Concerns)
Although oil marched toward $111 a barrel on Tuesday, its highest level in nearly two weeks, some professional traders doubt it will continue to climb.
While a slightly weaker U.S. dollar may have lured some investors, pro trader Anthony Grisanti argued it has more to do with the technicals. In the last few sessions, oil has found support at $90 a barrel, he noted. Between a glut in oil supplies and a sluggish global economy, he doesn't think crude will push much higher than current levels.
(Read More: Brent Crude Climbs Toward $111)
Gold had a rare banner day in trading markets on Tuesday, as a combination of short covering and hopes for more central bank easing sent the yellow metal to a two week high. Still, traders aren't sure what's next for bullion, which has taken a battering since the start of 2013.
(Read More: Gold Jumps, Fueled by ECB Bond Buying Hopes)
The price of spot gold hit an intraday high of $1,597, up as much as 1.2 percent, its highest level since February 28. Spot gold managed to break above the $1,560 and $1,585 range in which had been confined since the start of March. U.S. gold for April delivery were up one percent at $1,596.
Gold rose above $1,590 an ounce on Tuesday, gaining nearly one percent following comments by an European Central Bank official that euro zone inflation pressures are abating, which was viewed as an indication of continued monetary easing.
(Read More: CNBC Explains Inflation)
Accommodative monetary policies favor gold as low interest rates encourage investors to put money into the non-interest-bearing assets.
If you've looked a chart of crude oil lately, you might have noticed an odd pattern. The price swings have gotten less and less violent, and the range that crude has traded in has been steadily contracting.
(Read More: Oil Slips Under $110 on Weak Chinese Data)
So why does this matter?
Jeff Kilburg of KKM Financials calls this pattern "coiling," which is just what it sounds like: a sign that the chart is storing up energy which it will soon expend. "When future ranges coil like this," Kilburg explains, "they break out in a violent fashion."
Both industrial production and retail sales in China for the January and February period missed expectations. In addition, inflation rose in February, igniting worries of potential monetary tightening.
(Read More: Tokyo, Sydney Hit Highs; China Slips on Data)
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