Previous PostColor Run/Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness Facebook Linkedin Aside from the impact of the storm, the underlying trend in hiring remains strong. Job gains in August and July were revised sharply higher, to show 87,000 more jobs were added. Employers have added a robust 190,000 jobs over the past three months.Last month, average hourly pay increased 2.8 percent from a year earlier, one tick below the year-over-year gain in August.That figure could rise in the coming months. With the unemployment rate so low, companies are facing intense pressure to boost pay to find the workers they need. Amazon responded on Tuesday by raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour.Consumers, business executives and most economists remain optimistic. Measures of consumer confidence are at or near their highest levels in 18 years. Retailers have begun scrambling to hire enough workers for what’s expected to be a robust holiday shopping season. A survey of service-sector firms, including banks, hotels and health care providers, found that they are expanding at their fastest pace in a decade.Americans have continued spending steadily and appear to be in generally stable financial shape. Households are saving nearly 7 percent of their incomes — more than twice the savings rate before the recession. That trend suggests that a brighter economic outlook hasn’t caused consumers to recklessly build up unsustainable debt.During the April-June quarter, the U.S. economy expanded at a 4.2 percent annual rate, the best in four years. Economists have forecast that growth reached a 3 percent to 3.5 percent annual rate in the July-September quarter.The economy does show some weak spots. Sales of existing homes have fallen over the past year. Increasingly expensive houses, higher mortgage rates and a shortage of properties for sale are slowing purchases. Auto sales have also slumped.Other threats loom, too. Borrowing costs for businesses and consumers are rising. Pointing to the economy’s health, the Federal Reserve last week raised the short-term interest rate it controls and predicted that it would continue to tighten credit into 2020 to manage growth and inflation. Over time, higher borrowing costs make auto loans, mortgages and corporate debt more expensive and can eventually slow the economy.But for now, anticipating stronger growth — and perhaps higher inflation — investors have dumped bonds and forced up their yields. The yield on the government’s 10-year Treasury note, a benchmark for mortgages and other loans, has touched its highest level in seven years.President Donald Trump’s trade fights could also weigh on the economy, though the effect on hiring won’t likely be felt until next year, economists say. The Trump administration has imposed tariffs on imported steel and aluminum as well as on roughly half of China’s imports to the United Sates. Most U.S. businesses will try to absorb the higher costs themselves, at least for now, economists say, and avoid layoffs.Still, should the tariffs remain fully in effect a year from now, roughly 300,000 jobs could be lost by then, according to estimates by Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics. Mail Twitter (AP)- The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 3.7 percent in September — the lowest level since December 1969 — while hiring slowed.Employers added just 134,000 jobs, the fewest in a year, the Labor Department said Friday. But that figure was likely lowered by Hurricane Florence.Florence struck North and South Carolina in the middle of September and closed thousands of businesses. A category that includes restaurants, hotels and casinos lost jobs for the first time since last September, when Hurricane Harvey exerted a similar effect. Home NewsWatch Consumer US unemployment rate falls to 49-year low of 3.7 percent ConsumerNewsWatch US unemployment rate falls to 49-year low of 3.7 percent By Daniella HankeyOct 05, 2018, 10:05 am 336 0 Tumblr Google+ Next PostPinnacle Mine idled, many jobs now at stake Pinterest Daniella Hankey
Facebook Next PostIndiana crackdown on opioids sparks more pharmacy robberies SportsSports News WVU Tech Shootout – Day 1 By Matt DigbyJun 23, 2017, 20:42 pm 1214 0 Linkedin Twitter Matt Digby Matt Digby is the Sports Director at WOAY-TV. He joined the station in January 2015 – right in the middle of Big Atlantic Classic Week. Read More Google+ Home Sports News Sports WVU Tech Shootout – Day 1 Pinterest Tumblr Previous PostOne Year Anniversary June 2016 Floods Beckley, WV (WOAY) – While high school basketball season officially begins later this year, multiple area teams are taking part in summer tournaments around the state.WVU Tech is holding a showcase this weekend in Beckley, inviting schools from not just Southern West Virginia, but other areas of the state.Among the scores from Friday’s games:Greater Beckley 57, Meadow Bridge 43Valley 39, Independence 17Nicholas County 60, Charleston Catholic 48South Charleston 57, Greater Beckley 43St. Albans 78, Midland Trail 33Van 48, Liberty 46Midland Trail 52, Hurricane 50South Charleston 58, Valley 49 Mail
Home NewsWatch Education W.Va. AG Issues Legal Opinion Regarding Education Bill Tumblr CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, fulfilling his duty to render a legal opinion sought by state Senate President Mitch Carmichael, issued an opinion Thursday regarding Senate Bill 451 and its compliance with the single-object mandate of the state Constitution.The opinion concludes Senate Bill 451 likely satisfies the constitutional requirement in question. The opinion addresses only the specific legal question raised by the Senate President, and neither considers nor takes a position on the merits of Senate Bill 451 as a matter of policy.“Senate Bill 451—at least in its current form—would likely pass constitutional scrutiny over the single-object test,” Attorney General Morrisey wrote. “The bill relates to the general subject area of education reform, and although its provisions may have attracted considerable public attention and are currently the subject of significant legislative debate, a reviewing court would likely conclude that Senate Bill 451’s provisions are fairly classified as relating to a single object, and that its title provides fair notice of the important issues at stake.”Read a copy of the opinion at http://bit.ly/2WyZ9Zv. EducationNewsWatchPolitical NewsState NewsTop Stories W.Va. AG Issues Legal Opinion Regarding Education Bill By Tyler BarkerJan 31, 2019, 16:28 pm 624 0 Twitter Google+ Linkedin Facebook Mail Next PostWinter Weather Advisories Issued For Our Area Previous PostBeckley Police Need Your Help Identifying A Man Pinterest Tyler Barker Tyler Barker is currently the Interim News Director and Digital Content Manager for WOAY-TV. I was promoted to this job in Mid-November. I still will fill in on weather from time to time. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter @wxtylerb. Have any news tips or weather questions? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
For a change, overnight activity in the Far East in both gold and silver showed some real signs of life.It was a very slow day in the gold world on Wednesday…and most of gold’s price movements, such as they were, were most likely currency related. Gold closed at $1,693.40 spot…down $2.80 from Tuesday. Volume, most of it of the high-frequency trading variety, was decent at around 113,000 contracts.Silver’s price pattern was similar…and the price briefly dipped below $32.00 spot before recovering as the dollar index headed south. Silver closed at $32.70 spot…down 9 cents on the day. Net volume was average…whatever that means these days…at around 33,000 contracts.All the ‘action’ yesterday was in the dollar index. It opened at 81.34 at 6:00 p.m. in New York on Tuesday night…and by 9:30 a.m. in London the next day, it had hit its zenith at around 81.65. From there it went into a decline that bottomed out at 81.14 shortly after 11:00 a.m. in New York. It recovered a hair from that low…closing at 81.20…down a whole 14 basis points when all was said and done.Both the gold and silver charts show this currency move pretty clearly.The gold stocks started in the red, but finally got into positive territory…and then mostly stayed there for the rest of the trading day. The HUI closed up 0.45%.The silver equities were mixed yesterday…and gave back a bit of their Monday and Tuesday gains, as Nick Laird’s Silver Sentiment Index closed down 0.45%.(Click on image to enlarge)For a change, the CME’s Daily Delivery Report was much more interesting. They reported that 16 gold and 485 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the Comex-approved depositories on Friday. Jefferies was the short/issuer de jour, posting 476 contracts…and it should come as no surprise to anyone that the big long/stopper was JPMorgan…with 253 contracts in its client account and 186 contracts in its proprietary [in house] account. The Issuers and Stoppers Report is definitely worth checking out…and the link is here.There were no reported changes in GLD yesterday…but after a big withdrawal from SLV on Tuesday, there was an even bigger addition on Wednesday, as an authorized participant[s] added 2,934,108 troy ounces.The U.S. Mint had another smallish sales report yesterday. They sold 4,500 ounces of gold eagles…and another 125,000 silver eagles.It was another very busy day over at the Comex-approved depositories on Tuesday. They reported receiving 602,812 troy ounces of silver…and shipped 1,558,280 troy ounces out the door.While on the subject of the Comex-approved depositories, I noticed something different about the CME’s web page when I clicked on it early yesterday evening…but I didn’t investigate any further. It took an e-mail from Nick Laird very late last night that pointed out the difference. There’s a new depository added to the list. It’s called CNT Depository…and a Google search revealed this.I’ll be very interested in seeing how they fit into the grand scheme of things…and just how much metal they accumulate on behalf of their clientele. According to Nick, they reported receiving 631,389 troy ounces on Tuesday…the first day they showed up as a depository.In the same e-mail, Nick sent along this chart entitled “Comex Depository Warehouse Silver Stocks” that goes back about 41 years…and here it is.(Click on image to enlarge)I have the usual number of stories today…and I hope you have time to read the ones that interest you the most.It was a nothing sort of day in the precious metal markets yesterday…another day off the calendar as Ted Butler would say…so I’ll just move along to other things.Tomorrow we get the latest Commitment of Traders Report…and as you are already aware, I’m more than interested in what’s in it.For a change, overnight activity in the Far East in both gold and silver showed some real signs of life. After rallying a bit in early morning trading, a more substantial rally began around 2:30 p.m. Hong Kong time…and is continuing into early London trading as well. The rally in silver is even more impressive.However, the volume in gold is getting way up there…35,000 contracts. And silver’s volume is already an eye-watering 12,300 contracts as I hit the ‘send’ button at 5:13 a.m. Eastern time. The dollar index is comatose.These are not short covering rallies by any stretch of the imagination, but new long positions being established and, without doubt, it’s JPMorgan et al going short against all comers. Unfortunately none of this data will be in tomorrow’s COT report. We’ll have to wait until next Friday…and in the current environment, that’s a lifetime away.It remains to be seen whether these rallies continue in London…or get stepped on before New York opens, as the similar rallies that developed in both platinum and palladium earlier today, have already met that fate.Here are the current gold and silver charts as of 4:53 a.m. Eastern time. Avrupa Minerals Ltd. is a growth-oriented prospect generator focused on aggressive exploration for valuable mineral deposits in politically stable and prospective regions of Europe with a growing pipeline of prospects in Portugal, Kosovo and Germany.Company highlights:Alvalade Project JV with Antofagasta Minerals SA – Copper and Zinc on 1000 km2 project area in the Portuguese Pyrite Belt – 2012 exploration budget of US$ 2.5 million, all provided by Antofagasta, including 6000 meters of core drillingGold exploration in the Erzgebirge Mining District, Germany – 307 km2 exploration license in 1000+ year producing region of tin, tungsten, silver, base metals, and uranium – Increasingly favorable permitting and mining regulations, long mining culture, widespread known gold panning locationsCovas Tungsten JV with Blackheath Resources Inc. – 922,900 mt @ 0.78% WO3 (non NI 43-101 compliant) historic resource – Potential to increase the tungsten resource – New gold target on the projectStrong management including Paul Kuhn, CEO, previously involved with several discoveries around the world, and Mark T. Brown, Director, founder of Rare Element Resources Ltd.Low risk exploration strategyShare structure and cash on hand (12/31/2011):16.1 million shares outstanding; 23.7 million shares outstanding, fully diluted40% of shares held by insiders, family, friends, and long-term investorsApprox. C$ 500,000 cash on hand (consolidated Canada and Europe)Antofagasta has provided US$ 350,000 for all anticipated Alvalade JV expenses for Q1 2012.Please visit our website for more information. Sponsor Advertisement Considering the start to the Thursday trading session in both the Far East and London…it could be a wild one in New York today…and I’m looking forward to the 8:20 a.m. Eastern time Comex open with more than the usual amount of interest.Before hitting the ‘send’ button on today’s column, I want to bring this Casey Research offer to your attention ONE LAST TIME…as you’ve only got THREE DAYS LEFT TO ACT. As you probably already know, the September 7th Casey Research/Sprott Inc. Summit: Navigating the Politicized Economy, will be held in Carlsbad, CA. If you’re not registered to attend, you may want to purchase the complete audio collection (available in a 20-CD set and/or MP3 downloads) to listen to at home.The faculty presenting includes David Walker, former US Comptroller General, Dr. Lacy Hunt, former Senior Economist, Dallas Fed; Executive VP, HIMCO, Don Coxe, Global Strategy Advisor, BMO Financial Group, David Webb, hedge fund phenomenon, Origin Investments, AB, Dr. Thomas M. Barnett, former Senior Advisor, Office of the Secretary of Defense, G. Edward Griffin, author, The Creature from Jekyll Island, Bob Hoye, Chief Financial Strategist, Institutional Advisors, Peter Schweizer, Hoover Institute, author of Throw Them All Out, Doug Casey, contrarian speculator, Eric Sprott, Chairman, Sprott Asset Management, and 18 other financial luminaries.These are top-drawer speakers…and the ladies at Casey Research in Stowe, Vermont are telling me if you order before the summit ends on September 9th, you’ll save $100. To learn more about the 28 financial experts and what they are presenting, please click here…and it doesn’t cost a dime to look!See you on Friday…Saturday west of the International Date Line.
Emission systems. Demand for platinum in autocatalysts dropped by 1% in 2012, mostly due to lower vehicle production in Europe and lower market share of diesel engines. However, emission-system demand from Japan and India is expected to increase, and diesel-emission controls recently introduced in Beijing will also support industrial demand for both metals. Auto sales in China rose a whopping 19.5% in the first two months of the year and are 6.5% higher in the US than a year ago. Platinum is a precious metal, as is palladium, though to a lesser degree. However, like silver, both are also industrial metals. Unlike silver, it’s their industrial use that is the primary price driver for both platinum and palladium – and that use is undergoing a fundamental shift. The largest source of demand for platinum and palladium is the automotive industry, for use in autocatalysts. In turn, the fortunes of the auto industry are sensitive to the health of the world’s major economies. We’ve been bearish on platinum-group metals for years, primarily because we weren’t convinced a healthy – much less roaring – world economy could be sustained when so many governments continue spending beyond their means. We reconsidered the market last year, when strikes in South Africa – home to 75% of global platinum production and 95% of known reserves – threatened supplies. But as we wrote last December, the strikes ended without great impact on long-term supply. Since then, however, the fundamentals of this market have changed. Others may disagree with our economic outlook, which is still bearish, but it’s due to supply issues – not demand – that our interest is now drawn to these metals, and particularly to palladium. Here’s a look at global supply against auto-industry demand for both metals. Demand. Autocatalytic demand rose by 7% in 2012, as palladium can be easily substituted for platinum in emission-control systems for gas-powered motors (but not diesel-powered ones), such as are favored in China and India. In fact, several experts we consulted were more bullish on palladium than platinum due to this “substitution factor” – and China just mandated catalytic systems for all cars in the country. Palladium investment demand was positive last year, though palladium jewelry has yet to gain traction in China, one of the world’s biggest jewelry markets. Total jewelry demand for palladium was 11% lower in 2012. However, we expect a greater shift to palladium in the expanding Asian automotive market, which in turn will boost palladium prices. The fundamental drivers of the palladium market are similar to those for platinum, which makes the palladium market an equally attractive investment. If this all weren’t bad enough, most companies’ production costs are now above current platinum and palladium prices. This can only be solved one way: higher metals prices. Bottom Line The supply disruptions in South Africa combined with secondary factors have led to deficits in both metals that won’t be erased overnight. Such imbalances, together with mainstream expectations of global economic growth, create a favorable environment for PGM price appreciation. This much seems like a safe bet. There is, however, a great deal of speculative upside in the not-inconceivable case of South Africa going off the rails in a major way. Massive – not marginal – supply disruptions in the world’s main source of both metals would send their prices through the roof. You get this speculative potential “for free” when you bet on the more conservative projections that call for rising prices regardless. While we wait for our gold positions to rebound, an investment in platinum and palladium could be very profitable. How to invest? You can learn which company is our #1 pick for this space with a risk-free trial subscription to BIG GOLD. Note: our longer-term outlook remains in place: most G7 economies are not fundamentally sound and continue to print money. Gold is still our priority asset class, so we don’t recommend that investors replace their gold holdings with platinum and palladium investment vehicles. This PGM trend is simply an addition to and diversification of our current investment strategy. Recycling. This important source of supply is falling in reaction to lower metals prices. It is estimated that recycling fell by 11% in 2012. Investment. Although it represents just 6% of total demand for the metal, investor demand nonetheless grew 6.5% last year, adding to pressure on supplies. Given these factors – primarily the first one – a supply deficit stretching into 2014 seems almost certain. Until South Africa can resolve its labor and power issues, pressure on platinum supply will remain, producing a favorable environment for rising prices. Palladium Palladium, platinum’s “little brother,” also faces a market imbalance. In 2012, the deficit totaled 915,000 ounces, the highest level since 2001. Supply. Russia is the second-largest producer of palladium, and some analysts report that rumors of its stockpile being close to depletion are true. Recycling is also falling, and production disruptions in South Africa – the largest producer of palladium – are the same as outlined for platinum. Overall supply of the metal is falling. Jewelry. Worldwide demand for platinum jewelry rose last year, with strong demand coming from China and growth in India, and is mainly the consequence of lower prices. Jewelry accounts for 30% of total platinum demand. Approximately 55% of platinum and the bulk of palladium supply was used in catalytic systems last year. The shrinking supply that’s under way with both metals is obvious, and palladium is approaching a supply/demand crunch. Here’s what’s going on… Platinum The fall in platinum supply has been so great that it moved from a surplus in 2011 to a deficit in 2012, with Johnson Matthey estimating that deficit to hit 400,000 ounces, the highest level since 2003. Why the shift? Labor strife and power outages. The mining industry in South Africa is, frankly, a mess. Labor strikes continue to haunt the platinum mining companies. The largest mining union in South Africa, AMCU, recently refused to sign a collective bargaining agreement on worker compensation, and CNBC is predicting a massive strike. Amplats, the world’s largest platinum producer, is threatening to cut 14,000 jobs and mothball two operating mines due to various issues. Meanwhile, power outages, a longstanding problem, continue unresolved; they have already forced the closure of some mines and are widely expected to cause further cuts in production. As a result, supply from mining is expected to decline another 10% this year.
As you also already know, supply/demand fundamentals mean nothing It was a volatile trading session for gold yesterday, but it all happened within a very tight price range—and appeared to center around the $1,200 price mark. The high tick came at exactly 9 a.m. Hong Kong time on their Tuesday morning—and the low tick came at the London afternoon gold fix—and the subsequent rally got hammered flat during the next two hours of trading. Then, starting a minute or so after 12 o’clock noon in New York, the gold price rallied back towards the $1,200 spot price mark—and made it shortly after the COMEX trading session ended. From there, the price traded basically flat into the close. The CME Group recorded the high and low ticks as $1,204.40 and $1,190.00 in the April contracts. Gold finished the Tuesday session in New York at $1,201.30 spot, down 50 cents from Monday’s close. Net volume checked in around 105,000 contracts—about the same daily volume it has been for last five trading days or so. Not surprisingly, the gold stocks hit their high at the same time as the metal itself, which was shortly before 11 a.m. EST. From there they chopped lower—and never got a sniff of positive territory after that, even though the gold price recovered to virtually unchanged. The HUI closed down 0.56 percent—and as you can tell, there was a problem with the main data feed—and the chart is not “all there” so to speak. Nick Laird’s HUI chart looked the same, or I would have posted that in lieu of. By the way, if you’re not up on your Grand Canyon statistics, I found this excellent Reader’s Digest version of the whole place linked here. The dollar index closed late on Monday afternoon in New York at 94.55—and continued on with the rally that it was currently in. That rally developed even more momentum starting about 3 p.m. Hong Kong time, which was an hour before the London open. The 94.86 high tick came at the 10:30 a.m. GMT London a.m. gold fix—and then the index chopped lower in a very wide range, closing at 94.47—which was down 8 basis points from Monday’s close. Here’s the 5-minute gold chart courtesy of Brad Robertson—and as you can tell, almost all yesterday’s volume occurred between the London afternoon gold fix—and 11:45 a.m. EST. Before and after, there was there was virtually no volume worth mentioning. Don’t forget to add two hours for EST—and the ‘click to enlarge’ feature really helps with this chart. Platinum’s chart was a mini version of both the gold and silver charts. Platinum closed at $1,163 spot, up two bucks on the day. The silver chart looked very similar, with the high tick coming in morning trading in Hong Kong. But the low tick of the day came a few moments after 12 o’clock noon in New York. From there it chopped quietly higher and, like gold, closed almost unchanged. The high and lows were reported as $16.04 and $16.455 in the March contract. Silver closed yesterday at $16.31 spot, down a penny. Net volume was only 16,000 contracts, but gross volume was, not surprisingly, very high as traders continue to roll out of the March contract and into future months. The silver equities spiked well into positive territory, but fell back to unchanged as the not-for-profit sellers took the price to its noon low tick. From there they traded in a tight range either side of unchanged, closing down 0.06 percent. The CME Daily Delivery Report showed that 266 gold and 9 silver contracts were posted for delivery within the COMEX-approved depositories on Thursday. The big short/issuer sitting in the bushes until the last day turned out to be none other than HSBC USA with 255 contracts. JPMorgan stopped 261 contracts in its client account. The nine contracts in silver were issued by Jefferies and stopped by Canada’s Scotiabank. The link to yesterday’s Issuers and Stoppers Report is here. The CME’s Preliminary Report for the Tuesday trading session showed that February open interest was unchanged from Monday at 362 contracts minus, of course, the 266 contracts posted for delivery tomorrow. The remaining gold contracts for February delivery will be posted in tomorrow’s column. In silver, there are still 12 contracts outstanding, minus the 9 posted above. The remaining 3 will be in tomorrow’s Preliminary report. There were no reported changes in GLD—and as of 9:46 p.m. EST yesterday evening, there were no changes in SLV, either. The U.S. Mint had another sales report. They sold 1,500 troy ounces of gold eagles—500 one-ounce 24K gold buffaloes—and another 253,500 silver eagles. There was very little gold activity over at the COMEX-approved depositories on Monday, as only 643.000 troy ounces were reported received—and 128.600 were shipped out. That’s 20 kilobars and 4 kilobars respectively. As always, it was a pretty big day in silver, as 886,249 troy ounces were shipped in, but only 20,180 were shipped out the door. The link to the silver activity is here. Once again I have a very decent number of stories for you today—and I hope you find some in here that are of interest to you. Even though the headline number of the total commercial net short position [in silver in last Friday’s COT Report] has declined by nearly 14,000 contracts since January 27, the concentrated net short position of the eight largest shorts has hardly budged—and remains over 65,000 contracts. This is still a manipulative position on its face since it represents more than 325 million ounces and 40% of world annual production, an amount unequalled among all commodities. Reviewing the dismal earnings reports by those companies that mine silver, I have uncovered not a one holding any of the 325 million oz held short by the 8 crooked COMEX shorts. Excepting JPMorgan, I doubt any of the other seven big shorts own much real silver, even though the concentrated short position represents more than 30% of all the silver bullion in the world. This is simply preposterous and illegal. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 21 February 2015 I’m not sure what, if anything should be read into yesterday’s gold price action because, once again, there wasn’t a lot of volume—and there was little net volume in silver, although roll-over activity was very high, of course. But, whatever action there was will be in Friday’s Commitment of Traders Report, as yesterday at the close of COMEX trading was the cut-off. Here are the 6-month charts for all four precious metals updated with Tuesday’s price/volume action. Freegold Ventures Limited is a North American gold exploration company with three gold projects in Alaska. Current projects include Golden Summit, Vinasale and Rob. Both Vinasale and Golden Summit host NI 43-101 Compliant Resource Calculations. An updated NI 43-101 resource was calculated on Golden Summit in October 2012 and using 0.3 g/t cutoff the current resource is 73,580,000 tonnes grading 0.67 g/t Au for total of 1,576,000 contained ounces in the indicated category, and 223,300,000 tonnes grading 0.62 g/t Au for a total of 4,437,000 contained ounces in the inferred category. In addition to the Golden Summit Project the Vinasale also hosts a NI 43-101 resource calculation which was updated in March 2013. Indicated resources are 3.41 million tonnes averaging 1.48 g/t Au for 162,000 ounces, and Inferred resources are 53.25 million tonnes averaging 1.05 g/t Au for 1,799,000 ounces of gold utilizing a cutoff value of 0.5 grams/tonne (g/t) as a possible open pit cutoff. Please send us an email for more information, email@example.com These photos were taken on Day 2 at Grand Canyon—January 11. It’s not raining or snowing—and cloud base has lifted by a couple of hundred feet and is more well defined. You can’t see the North Rim, which is about 10 miles/16 kilometers away, because it’s about 1,000 feet/330 meters higher than than the South Rim, so it’s buried in cloud/fog. These are just general canyon shots along the trail. You’ll need to use the ‘click to enlarge’ feature to see the people in photo #2—and that gives you some idea of scale. I cropped the last photo in order to enhance the sense of danger, which is all too real. There’s nothing below her but air for many thousands of feet. Palladium, as usual, was trading in a world all its own, closing at $792 spot, up another 7 dollars from Monday’s close—and heading back to the $800 spot mark. Will it be allowed to get there? And as I write this paragraph, the London open is about forty-five minutes away—and there certainly has been some rather interesting price activity in Far East trading on their Wednesday. I’m guessing that the Chinese New Year holiday has come to an end—and that traders are back at their desks over there. Right out of the chute at 6 p.m. EST yesterday evening, all four precious metals powered higher, particularly silver, which I thought very unusual. Depending on which metal you’re looking at, the fun ended by 9 or 10 a.m. Hong Kong time—but started again with somewhat less enthusiasm in early afternoon trading. Gold volume is very chunky at 25,000 contracts net, so this rally obviously ran into ferocious opposition by JPMorgan et al—but silver’s net volume is only 2,870 contracts. Gross volume is north of 10,500 contracts, so roll-over activity is already way up there, as the large traders have to be out by the end of COMEX trading today—and the rest of the traders tomorrow. Thinking about that silver rally last night I’m wondering if it involved a decent amount of short covering, as the net volume is very light. But there’s no way of knowing for sure, because all the price/volume activity occurred after the cut-off for the COT Report on Friday—and by the time the next report is available, this trading action will be buried. And as I send this off to Stowe, Vermont at 4:50 a.m. EST, I note that the tiny rallies in all four precious metals in early afternoon trading in the Far East, ended at 3 p.m. Hong Kong time, which was an hour before the London open. And, with the exception of palladium, which is knocking on the $800 price door once again, the other three precious metals are heading quietly lower, but on such light volume, the price trend hardly matters. Net gold volume is up to a bit over 31,000 contracts, an increase of only 6,000 contracts from two and a half hours ago—and silver’s net volume is only 3,340 contracts, up only 500 contracts in the same time period. There’s nothing going on—and nothing to see at the moment. The dollar index is now down 32 basis points—and coming awfully close to the 94.00 level once more. It will be interesting to see if “gentle hands” put in an appearance once again. That’s all I have for today which, once again, is more than enough—and I look forward to the rest of Wednesday’s trading activity with more than the usual amount of interest. See you tomorrow.