DT Magazine
MONEY
DAILY
Commentary on Stocks - Bonds - Gold - Silver - Crypto - Oil/Gas and more
HOMEPRICE GUIDESTOREBLOGSSPORTSBUSINESSWILD SIDECONTACTARCHIVES

Weekly Survey of Gold and Silver Prices

Single Ounce Silver Market Price Benchmark

Money Daily has been providing business and financial market news, views, and coverage on a nearly continuous basis since 2006. Complete archives are available at moneydaily.blogspot.com.

Untitled

PRIOR COVERAGE:

Untitled 4/14/24-4/20/2024
4/7/24-4/13/2024
3/31/24-4/6/2024
3/24/24-3/30/2024
3/17/24-3/23/2024
3/10/24-3/16/2024
3/3/24-3/9/2024
2/25/24-3/2/2024
2/18/24-2/24/2024
2/11/24-2/17/2024
2/4/24-2/10/2024
1/28/24-2/3/2024
1/21/24-1/27/2024
1/14/24-1/20/2024
1/7/24-1/13/2024
12/31/23-1/6/2024
12/24-12/30/2023
12/17-12/23/2023
12/10-12/16/2023
12/3-12/9/2023
11/26-12/2/2023
11/19-11/25/2023
11/12-11/18/2023
11/5-11/11/2023
10/29-11/4/2023
10/22-10/28/2023
10/15-10/21/2023
10/8-10/14/2023
10/1-10/7/2023
9/24-9/30/2023
9/17-9/23/2023
9/10-9/16/2023
9/3-9/9/2023
8/27-9/2/2023
8/20-8/26/2023
8/13-8/19/2023
8/6-8/12/2023
7/30-8/5/2023
7/23-7/29/2023
7/16-7/22/2023
7/9-7/15/2023
7/2-7/8/2023
6/25-7/1/2023
6/18-6/24/2023
6/11-6/17/2023
6/4-6/10/2023
5/28-6/3/2023
5/21-5/27/2023
5/14-5/20/2023
5/7-5/13/2023
4/30-5/6/2023
4/23-4/29/2023
4/16-4/22/2023
4/9-4/15/2023
4/2-4/8/2023
3/26-4/1/2023
3/19-3/25/2023
3/12-3/18/2023
3/5-3/11/2023
2/26-3/4/2023
2/18-2/25/2023
2/12-2/18/2023
2/5-2/11/2023
1/29-2/4/2023
1/22-1/28/2023
1/15-1/21/2023
1/8-1/14/2023
1/1-1/7/2023
12/25-12/31/2022
12/18-12/24/2022
12/11-12/17/2022
12/4-12/10/2022
11/27-12/3/2022
11/20-11/26/2022
11/13-11/19/2022
11/6-11/12/2022
10/30-11/5/2022
10/23-10/29/2022
10/16-10/22/2022
10/9-10/15/2022
10/2-10/8/2022
9/25-10/1/2022
9/18-9/24/2022
9/11-9/17/2022
9/4-9/10/2022
8/28-9/3/2022
8/21-8/27/2022
8/14-8/20/2022
8/7-8/13/2022
7/31-8/6/2022
7/24-7/30/2022
7/17-7/23/2022
7/10-7/16/2022
7/3-7/9/2022
6/26-7/2/2022
6/19-6/25/2022
6/12-6/18/2022
6/5-6/11/2022
5/29-6/4/2022
5/22-5/28/2022
5/15-5/21/2022
5/8-5/14/2022
5/1-5/7/2022
4/24-4/30/2022
4/17-4/23/2022
4/10-4/16/2022
4/3-4/9/2022
3/27-4/2/2022
3/20-3/26/2022
3/13-3/19/2022
3/6-3/12/2022
2/27-3/5/2022
2/20-26/2022
2/13-19/2022
2/6-12/2022
1/30-2/5/2022
1/23-29/2022
1/16-22/2022
1/9-15/2022
1/2-8/2022
12/19-25/2021
12/19-25/2021
12/12-18/2021
12/5-11/2021
11/28-12/4/2021
11/21-11/27/2021
11/14-11/20/2021
11/7-11/13/2021
10/31-11/6/2021
10/24-10/30/2021
10/17-10/23/2021
10/10-10/16/2021
9/26-10/2/2021
9/26-10/2/2021
9/19-9/25/2021
9/12-9/18/2021
9/5-9/11/2021
8/29-9/4/2021
8/22-8/28/2021
8/15-8/21/2021
8/8-8/14/2021
8/1-8/7/2021
7/25-7/31/2021
7/18-7/24/2021
7/11-7/17/2021
7/4-7/10/2021
6/27-7/3/2021
6/20-6/26/2021
6/13-6/19/2021
6/6-6/12/2021
5/30-6/5/2021
5/23-5/29/2021
5/16-5/22/2021
5/9-5/15/2021
5/2-5/8/2021
4/25-5/1/2021
4/18-4/24/2021
4/11-4/17/2021
4/4-4/10/2021
3/28-4/3/2021
3/21-27/2021
3/14-20/2021
3/7-13/2021
2/28-3/6/2021
2/21-2/27/2021
2/14-2/20/2021
2/7-2/13/2021
1/31-2/6/2021
1/24-1/30/2021
1/17-1/23/2021
1/10-1/16/2021
1/3-1/9/2021
12/27/20-1/2/2021
12/20-12/26/2020
12/13-12/19/2020
12/06-12/12/2020
11/29-12/05/2020
11/22-11/28/2020
11/15-11/21/2020
11/8-11/14/2020
11/1-11/7/2020
10/25-10/31/2020
10/18-10/24/2020
10/11-10/17/2020
10/4-10/10/2020
9/27-10/3/2020
9/20-9/26/2020
9/13-9/19/2020
9/6-9/12/2020
8/30-9/5/2020
8/23-8/29/2020
8/16-8/22/2020
8/9-8/15/2020
8/2-8/8/2020
7/27-8/1/2020
7/20-7/26/2020
7/13-7/19/2020
7/6-7/12/2020
6/29-7/5/2020
6/22-6/28/2020
6/15-6/21/2020
6/8-6/14/2020
6/1-6/7/2020
5/25-5/31/2020
5/18-5/24/2020
5/11-5/17/2020
5/4-5/10/2020
4/27-5/3/2020
4/20-4/26/2020
4/13-4/19/2020
4/6-4/12/2020
3/30-4/5/2020
3/23-3/29/2020
3/16-3/22/2020
March 14, 2020
March 13, 2020
March 12, 2020
March 11, 2020
March 10, 2020
March 9, 2020
March 5, 2020
March 1, 2020

Nvidia (NVDA) Sends Dow, S&P to All-Time Highs; NASDAQ Just Misses; Markets Up 20% and More Since November

Friday, February 23, 2024, 9:04 am ET

Thursday's market action will surely be a tough act to follow. After a party like the one Wall Street threw for itself - sending the S&P and Dow Industrials to record highs at the open and piling on more throughout the session - one would expect the hangover to be pretty serious.

However, Wall Street is not your ordinary casino. Greater Fool theory may apply at this juncture, only because if stocks hadn't entered a manic phase already, they sure have now.

For perspective, any six-month chart should suffice. The Dow closed at 32,417.59 on October 27 of last year. Yesterday, the closing bell struck at 39,069.11, a gain of 20.52%.

The S&P, starting from the same date, was at 4,117.37. Thursday's close of 5,087.03 is a gain of 23.55%.

NASDAQ topped them both, starting its rally a day earlier, when it closed at 12,595.61. Yesterday's finish at 16,041.62 is not only just 16 points shy of its all-time closing high (11/19/2021, 16,057.44), the rally of less than four months amounts to a 27.36% gain.

Manic? Wait for Monday. Friday's trading might amount to something of an inverse dead cat bounce, fitting, with the inversion continuum that is the yield curve which has benefitted Wall Street stock jocks quite well.

There isn't much to add about Thursday's melt up that increased Nvidia's share price by 110 points, to 785.38, except that it's not quite over. NVDA is trading up another two percent in the pre-market and stock futures are rising into the open.

Is the company really that good? Only time will tell. But, the upshot from Thursday's wild ride to the upside will become apparent in days and weeks just ahead. For all intents and purposes, the US stock market - and, to a lesser degree, most of the world's equity markets - are all at levels suggesting economic Nirvana, which everybody knows is not quite the case.

When stocks are priced to perfection in an imperfect world, one would expect at least some blowback, pushback, or give-back. There's been none of that for more than a quarter, and it doesn't appear to be ending any time soon.

At the Close, Thursday, February 22, 2024:
Dow: 39,069.11, +456.87 (+1.18%)
NASDAQ: 16,041.62, +460.72 (+2.96%)
S&P 500: 5,087.03, +105.23 (+2.11%)
NYSE Composite: 17,565.07, +182.37 (+1.05%)



Nothing Matters Except Nvidia (NVDA) As AI Chip Maker Blows Away 4Q Earnings Estimates

Thursday, February 21, 2024, 9:09 am ET

As of today, following Nvidia's (NVDA) blowout earnings report, you will be excused if you lose all perspective because it's apparent that nothing else matters except the success of one company.

Losing the war in Ukraine? Pshaw!

Tensions in the Middle East? Who cares?

Most of the non-western world ditching the dollar? Not a problem.

How high stocks go on Thursday, which is likely to be crowned Nvidia Day by the rabid promoters of AI and all tech, is not going to surprise anybody. After all, the S&P is only 48 points below the all-time high, which, if memory serves, was exactly one week ago. The Dow is less than 200 points away from record territory. That little downdraft from Friday lasted all of two sessions and six hours of a third. Wednesday saw the Dow and S&P indices in the red all day until the final seven minutes. Beginning at roughly 3:20 pm ET, a massive FOMO rally erased the lingering effects of the Fed minutes from the last FOMC meeting, at which a majority of participants expressed extreme caution on raising rates too soon, if at all.

Naw! Never mind, Nvidia's earnings are a'coming. Stocks shot up from near lows of the day, in what can be best described as premature exuberance, to steal a phrase. The NASDAQ, which was deep underwater, managed to close down a mere 50 points. It's probably going to set an all-time high today (11/19/2021, 16,057.44). It might, like the other two majors, open at an all-time high.

Nvidia! Yeah, man!

The extreme posture of the "markets", or, what used to be markets is close to being so stupid and illogical as to preclude comment. It's blow off top, clown world, and the age of delusion all rolled into one gigantic doobie that will be passed around trading desks until everybody's stoned into a catatonic state.

That's where we're at.

Sure, Nvidia blew away top-and-bottom-line expectations Wednesday after the bell and it's a fine company, but that doesn't mean all other companies are equally sound and poised for success. Not that any logic matters. With less than an hour to the opening bell, Nvidia is trending about 12-14% to the upside, translating into 80-90 points higher at the open, which would have it above its own all-time-high from last Wednesday (739.00).

A year ago, Nvidia was trading around 235. Today, its price will likely exceed 750. Nice gains. Congrats. Trailing earnings (including $4.77 on the latest quarter) amount to $12.47, producing a p/e of about 60, which, when all's said and done, isn't crazy. The company's earnings are growing at breakneck pace. That 16-cent dividend is likely to be something on the order of 80 cents in the near future, so, it's all good. Roll on.

Some other trades may happen today. Gold and silver are likely to be pounded hard, creating yet another buying opportunity for stackers and bugs. Elsewhere, the VIX is already down seven percent, the NIKKEI took the early opportunity to make an all-time high, putting on a gain of 2.19%, or +836.52, to close at a record of 39,098.68.

Oil is down, Germany's DAX (+1.52%) leads European stocks higher, the dollar is up against the euro, pound, and yen.

Stock futures are soaring. NASDAQ futures are up more than two percent (+355).

This should be a fun ride.

At the Close, Wednesday, February 21, 2024:
Dow: 38,612.24, +48.44 (+0.13%)
NASDAQ: 15,580.87, -49.91 (-0.32%)
S&P 500: 4,981.80, +6.29 (+0.13%)
NYSE Composite: 17,382.68, +42.51 (+0.25%)



Western Narrative Crumbling; Amazon to Replace Walgreen's on Dow; Bayer Slashes Dividend 95%

Wednesday, February 21, 2024, 9:33 am ET

Don't look up, there may be vultures circling. Maybe a few black swans as well.

Stocks nose-dived at the open Tuesday, extending losses from late Friday, the causes of which were explained in detail in Money Daily's Sunday Weekend Wrap (see below). The major indices escaped with brush burns as dip-buyers erased big losses on the Dow, S&P, and NASDAQ, which suffered the most.

There are more than a few cracks appearing in the establishment, globalist facade, not the least of which is the failure of leadership and denial of continued funding for the military adventurism in Ukraine, and, to a lesser degree, Israel, which has been internationally condemned for committing what most civilized people would call genocide in Gaza.

Beyond geo-politics, the all is well theme seems to be trending in the wrong direction.

Consider:
The Index of Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) fell for the 22nd straight month
Amazon is replacing Walgreen's on the Dow Industrials
Uber is replacing Jet Blue on the Dow Jones Transportation Average
Bayer is reducing its dividend by 95%
Nvidia stock has been roughed up the last two sessions

Let's examine why these developments may be important.

The LEI, issued by the Conference Board, looks at 10 indicators, including The S&P 500 index, a leading credit index, the interest-rate spread (10-year Treasury bond yield minus the federal funds rate), average weekly hours of manufacturing workers, new orders for consumer goods and materials, the ISM index of new orders, manufacturers' new orders for non-defense capital goods, excluding aircraft, weekly initial claims for unemployment, building permits for new private housing units.

While all of those measures usually aren't falling at the same time, a majority of them have been declining steadily enough to cause alarm by some portfolio managers, who may be hedging against a market downturn or selling off pieces.

Walgreens (WBA), which replaced aging (and slumping) General Electric (GE) on the Dow Industrials on June 26, 2018, hasn't been the greatest performer. The stock is down 68% in the past 5 years, while JetBlue’s stock has fallen 59% in the same time period. This isn't what the managers of the Dow Jones indices want to see, so they're pulling these under-performing stocks in favor of a pair they believe will boost the averages overall. The moves seem a little panicky, as it coincides with Walmart planning to conduct a 3-for-1 stock split on Feb. 26, 2024.

The board at the Dow may have missed the boat on Amazon (AMZN). The stock roared during the pandemic, making huge gains as Americans turned to deliveries for staples and consumer goods, hitting a high of 186 in July 2021, but the stock retreated after that, falling to a low of 84 in December 2022. It has recently rebounded to 167, which begs the question: are the globalists plotting another shut-down scenario via the mysterious "Disease X" that the WHO has been warning about for months? Researchers at Cornell University and the Wildlife Conservation Society urge humans not to disturb bats as a prevention strategy. Um, Okay.

Bayer, the German chemical and drug giant, plans to cut its dividend to nearly nothing. Bayer said it will offer investors only the legal minimum required under German law, paying out 11 euro cents ($0.12) per share for 2023, down from €2.40 last year. Problems stemming from litigation over the herbicide Roundup, which has been linked to cancer, started when the company bailed out Monsanto by acquiring it in 2018. Legal woes have put the company more than 38 billion euros in debt.

According to Goldman Sachs, Nvidia (NVDA) is now considered the most important stock on earth, and it is expected to post earnings per share of $4.59 on Wednesday after the close. The stock has been getting slammed the past two sessions, and is set to open about two percent lower. NVidia's recent slide coincides with declines on some of the other Magnificent 7 stocks.

These may seem like nothing out of the ordinary in terms of business flow, but issues for the globalists continue piling up, which may lead to market declines. These are just a few of the matters of concern to investors in the age of delusion and bubble economies.

Futures are trending lower approaching the opening bell, with Dow futures off 70, NASDAQ futures -94, and S&P futures lower by 11 points.

At the Close, Tuesday, February 20, 2024:
Dow: 38,563.80, -64.19 (-0.17%)
NASDAQ: 15,630.78, -144.87 (-0.92%)
S&P 500: 4,975.51, -30.06 (-0.60%)
NYSE Composite: 17,340.17, -69.13 (-0.40%)



WEEKEND WRAP: Stocks, Bonds Take a Breather Amid Economic Realities; Gold Lower, Silver Higher; Oil at Three-Month High

Sunday, February 18, 2024, 11:05 am ET

With earnings season winding down, events and data outside of fundamental stock analysis began to take effect over the course of the week, beginning with surprising January CPI data and ending with weak retail sales and a major Russian victory in Ukraine accompanied by inaction by congress on war funding and other appropriations to avert a March 1 shutdown of some government agencies.

Beyond knee-jerk dip-buying and Magnificent 7 slavishness, whatever framework traders are employing as strategies experienced a fundamental shift. Both stocks and bonds were whipsawed ending the week on a sour note, a rarity heading into a three-day weekend (Presidents Day, Monday).


Stocks

What eventually proved to kill the week for the major indices was not just the January CPI and PPI reports (Tuesday and Friday, respectively), though they played an integral part in diminishing prospects for the Fed's FOMC to consider rate cuts any time soon and soured the "free money" contingent, or regular options expiry, but Friday afternoon's trifecta of events triggered a cascade of selling, 0DTE put buying and call selling and general mayhem right around 2:30 pm ET.

First, refusal by the House of Representatives to take up the Senate's hastily-concocted Ukraine/Israel/Taiwan military spending bill and inaction on any spending bills that would avert a partial government shutdown on March 1st sent chills down the spines of the feckless Wall Street trading cabal.

"You are not going to get another continuing resolution out of our conference," said Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN), in an interview on Bloomberg Television. The House then went into recess, ostensibly to return on February 28, just two days before the shutdown deadline.

Second, Margin calls were made. How many, and to whom, are subject to speculation, but, margin calls always go out at 2:30 pm ET and generally cause a scramble for funds from the parties on the receiving end.

Third, and perhaps most importantly, word was drifting out of Ukraine that Avdiivka, the highly-fortified town that was a major staging area for military assaults into Donetsk, had fallen, after months of combat, into Russian hands and some 2-3,000 Ukrainian soldiers were completely surrounded, many running for their lives as Russian forces overwhelmed the area.

Stocks had been heading higher after a dip at the open. Even the NASDAQ, which was deep in the red most of the session, nearly made it back to unchanged. All of that changed mid-afternoon, as stocks fell off a cliff.

The descent was initially quick and brutal. After a brief stabilizing period, severe selling extended through the close, with the indices ending near session lows.

Thus, the rally that began in late October and produced gains on the Dow, S&P, and NASDAQ in 14 of 15 weeks previously, came to an abrupt end. While the majors will sport losses for the week, they are not large, though the significance of events leading to a Friday afternoon market collapse is large.

Underscoring Friday's market demise is the undeniable circumstance that the neocon narrative has been struck a death blow. Inflation has surely not been put down, the US economy reliant on consumer spending, is flat-lining, and funding for Ukraine, Israel, and any other military adventurism is dead on arrival in the House. Ukraine may have just lost not just a major front-line battle, but Avdiivka may prove to be a major turning point in the entire war. Russian forces are advancing across a 1,000-mile front, "flooding the zone" with additional forces and weaponry while Ukraine is quickly running out of artillery shells, equipment, and manpower. Funding for the war effort has been stalled since September with no end in sight.

Russia is at the very start of a new offensive which could arrive - with military forces converging from the north, south, and east - in Kiev by summer, if not sooner. Ukraine's forces are demoralized and on the run. Many reports of desertions are beginning to make the rounds. Meanwhile, President Zelensky is in Munich for a pan-European security conference which will come to little avail. Most EU leadership realizes that the situation is out of hand, the war is lost, and are seeking ways to exit gracefully. The US, UK, EU, and NATO have managed to deplete their military stockpiles, cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers and displaced millions of people in the process. The failure of leadership is serious and Wall Street, dependent upon the "all good" narrative supplied by the government and media, has taken notice.

Friday's drop and the week as a whole manifested a microcosm of the larger economic, political, and social conditions. They do not look good.

Earnings season is nearly done. The bulk of major companies have already reported, with mixed to slightly positive results. While the majority of companies are making profits, many of them are either short of revenue expectations or failing to deliver results better than year-ago comparisons. Inflation can only be blamed for so much. Neglect on a massive scale, trickling down from the federal government into corporate C-suites, is a more appropriate scapegoat. The US and Europe have fallen into disrepair thanks to decades of deceit and corruption. At the end, the piper always gets paid.

The few important companies reporting this week include the following. Attention will be drawn to Nvidia's report, Wednesday after the close:

Monday (markets closed, Presidents Day): Transocean (RIG)

Tuesday: Walmart (WMT), Home Depot (HD), Barclays (BCS), Toll Brothers (TOL), Caesars Entertainment (CZR), Teladoc Health ((TDOC)

Wednesday: Analog Devices (ADI), WIX (WIX), HSBC (HSBC), Marathon Oil (MRO), Etsy (ETSY), Rivian (RIVN), and NVidia (NVDA)

Thursday: Moderna (MRNA), Newmont (NEM), Wayfair (W), First Majestic (AG), Intuit (INTU), Marcado Libre (MRLI), Carvana (CVNA)

Friday: Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD)


Treasury Yield Curve Rates

Date 1 Mo 2 Mo 3 Mo 4 Mo 6 Mo 1 Yr
01/12/2024 5.55 5.47 5.45 5.37 5.16 4.65
01/19/2024 5.54 5.47 5.45 5.39 5.21 4.84
01/26/2024 5.54 5.45 5.44 5.39 5.19 4.78
02/02/2024 5.49 5.51 5.43 5.42 5.22 4.81
02/09/2024 5.49 5.51 5.44 5.43 5.26 4.86
02/16/2024 5.48 5.51 5.44 5.45 5.31 4.98

Date 2 Yr 3 Yr 5 Yr 7 Yr 10 Yr 20 Yr 30 Yr
01/12/2024 4.14 3.92 3.84 3.91 3.96 4.32 4.20
01/19/2024 4.39 4.18 4.08 4.12 4.15 4.47 4.36
01/26/2024 4.34 4.15 4.04 4.10 4.15 4.49 4.38
02/02/2024 4.36 4.14 3.99 4.02 4.03 4.33 4.22
02/09/2024 4.48 4.25 4.14 4.17 4.17 4.48 4.37
02/16/2024 4.64 4.43 4.29 4.31 4.30 4.58 4.45

Spreads diverged, with 2s-10s remaining with the recent range, down 3 basis points to -34, though the full spectrum (30-days-30-years) spread rose a somewhat significant 14 basis points, from -117 to -103, a potential signal for the normalizing crowd, as the 30-30 spread is the highest (negative numbers) since December 1, 2023. This does not augur well for stocks, as the spreads relationship is favorable for stocks when they are moving to further inverted (more negative) positions, as evidenced since late October.

The market correctly perceives normalization of the yield curve largely negative for stocks and the economy, as it implies some combination of higher rates on longer maturities, and lower rates at the short end. Given the Fed's reluctance to lower the federal funds target rate, the current outlook appears to favor the 10s, 20s and 30s above five percent, as was the case at the peak in October of last year (10s, 4.98%; 20s, 5.30%; 30s, 5.11%, 10/19/23).

Exercising some deft YCC (Yield Curve Control) via primary dealers and other resources, the Fed managed to squeeze yields lower, sparking the stock and bond rally that closed out the year and extended to the current time frame. This has the Fed and markets in a somewhat precarious position. Moving towards more extreme inversion of the yield curve would likely result in a renewal of inflation, which is on nobody's want list. Stock enthusiasts want some kind of movement, preferably by cutting short rates, but that doesn't appear to be likely before June.

A downdraft, evidenced by Friday's stock slide, may be developing at a faster pace than markets and traders expect.

Spreads:

2s-10s
9/15/2023: -69
9/22/2023: -66
9/29/2023: -44
10/06/2023: -30
10/13/2023: -41
10/20/2023: -14
10/27/2023: -15
11/03/2023: -26
11/10/2023: -43
11/17/2023: -44
11/24/2023: -45
12/01/2023: -34
12/08/2023: -48
12/15/2023: -53
12/22/2023: -41
12/29/2023: -35
1/5/2024: -35
1/12/2024: -18
1/19/2024: -24
1/26/2024: -19
2/2/2024: -33
2/9: -31
2/16: -34

Full Spectrum (30-days - 30-years)
9/15/2023: -109
9/22/2023: -99
9/29/2023: -82
10/06/2023: -64
10/13/2023: -82
10/20/2023: -47
10/27/2023: -54
11/03/2023: -76
11/10/2023: -80
11/17/2023: -93
11/24/2023: -95
12/01/2023: -105
12/08/2023: -123
12/15/2023: -154
12/22/2023: -149
12/29/2023: -157
1/5/2024: -133
1/12/2024: -135
1/19/2024: -118
1/26/2024: -116
2/2/2024: -127
2/9: -117
2/16: -103


Oil/Gas

WTI closed out the week at $78.24, the highest closing price since November 6th, 2023. That's up from $76.55 per barrel the week prior. The price movement didn't seem to be related to anything geo-political or even supply-related, though oil bulls will likely view this as a positive development.

The latest data suggest oil supply is ample, while demand for gasoline and distillates is rising, which is being proven out by higher gas prices at the pump.

According to gasbuddy.com, the national average for a gallon of unleaded regular gas at the pump rose ten cents during the week, to $3.29.

The Northeast and the West coast remain the highest price locations. Even with the lowest price in the nation, Oklahoma ($2.76), was up just 12 cents. The regional shift from low prices predominant in the Southeast, now reside in the Midwest.

Wyoming has taken the #2 spot for lowest price, at $2.80, which is 11 cents higher than last week. A cluster of states from Tennessee and Alabama west through Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, and New Mexico, and north through Nebraska, South and North Dakota are registering prices between $2.84 (Mississippi) to $2.97 (Tennessee and Alabama). Florida, representing the national average at $3.29, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia all exceeded $3.00 two weeks ago and continue higher. South Carolina, normally one of the lowest in the country, is sitting at $3.01, the lowest of coastal states.

California ($4.64) remains the only state on the mainland with prices above $4.00, as Washington, the next highest, stabilized at $3.89. Next is Nevada at $3.85, followed by Oregon ($3.56), and Arizona ($3.36). Idaho and Utah are sub-$3.00.

In the Northeast, Pennsylvania ($3.56, up 12 cents) remained the place for the most expensive fuel, as Maryland ($3.38)took the #2 spot away from New York ($3.28). $3.00+ gas spreads from Maine west to Minnesota. Illinois bumped 15 cents higher, to $3.50. Michigan is at $3.20, Indiana, $3.29, Ohio, $3.30, up 14 cents.


Bitcoin

This week: $51,639.00
Last week: $48,129.90
2 weeks ago: $42,850.00
6 months ago: $26,048.80
One year ago: $24,650.20

Bitcoin continued to post gains, thanks mostly to inflows to the various ETFs launched last month. The rising price of the imaginary currency proves there's no lack of liquidity or speculation.

It bears watching Bitcoin to gauge whether it is a proxy for fun money seeking yield or something deeper, as in capital flight. Schrodinger's Cat meets Gresham's Law?


Precious Metals

Gold:Silver Ratio: 86.26; last week: 89.93

Per COMEX continuous contracts:

Gold price 1/19: $2,031.80
Gold price 1/26: $2,037.10
Gold price 2/2: $2,057.10
Gold price 2/9: $2,038.70
Gold price 2/16: $2,025.50

Silver price 1/19: $22.75
Silver price 1/26: $22.90
Silver price 2/2: $22.79
Silver price 2/9: $22.67
Silver price 2/16: $23.48

Gold maintained a price above $2,000 for 62 consecutive days (since December 14, 2023) on the COMEX continuous contract until it fell below that level briefly on Wednesday, though it recovered sharply the remainder of the week. Silver was lower early on, especially on Tuesday after the release of January CPI numbers. Conversely, the equally-discouraging PPI release Friday, sent silver significantly higher (+2.28%) while gold experienced a rather pedestrian gain of just more than one half percent. The result was gold down for the week and silver up for just the first time in the past three weeks.

Silver's sudden surge on Friday may have had less to do with outside economics than internal calculations. The gold:silver ratio had been pushing toward 90 for most of the year thus far. The re-calibration sent the ratio closer to 85, which is still bordering on the absurd, suggesting that buying interest in silver was sufficiently piqued to ratchet up the price.

Over on eBay, the opposite was seen, with prices for both metals lower in comparison to the prior week. These mixed signals confound not only those who trade regularly on the COMEX (bullion banks and other price riggers), but casual buyers and regular stackers as well. At least for the crowd in accumulation mode, the prices are reasonable, with premiums coming down.

In what's nothing more than a guessing game, silver's spike may be an opening for shorts to take gold lower, though getting it below $2,000 may prove to be a heavy pull.

Here are the most recent prices for common one ounce gold and silver items sold on eBay (numismatics excluded, free shipping included):

Item/Price Low High Average Median
1 oz silver coin: 30.00 49.00 35.65 34.99
1 oz silver bar: 27.00 42.95 34.37 33.46
1 oz gold coin: 2,083.51 2,151.00 2,115.05 2,119.15
1 oz gold bar: 2,083.60 2,157.72 2,105.08 2,099.71

The Single Ounce Silver Market Price Benchmark (SOSMPB) fell further this week, to $34.62, a loss of 64 cents from the February 11 price of $35.26 per troy ounce.


WEEKEND WRAP

Fluid is probably the best way to describe the various fluctuations in markets this past week. Looking out towards March, earnings have been insufficient to move stocks much higher since the Dow and S&P achieved all-time highs. It appears that stocks are struggling to maintain momentum in the face of heightened international insecurity.

War may be good for an economy if one is on the winning side. As prospects other than victory rise, the economic effect may not be so rosy. That's what the US and its allies are facing. Europe is fast becoming a basket case of dysfunction and the United States, with its diminished manufacturing capacity is poised to follow.

Capacity utilization for the industrial sector moved down 0.2 percentage points in January to 78.5%, which was 1.1 points below its long-run (1972–2023) average. Such a decline cannot be blamed on weather, climate change, or any other outside influence. Eventually, the reality of the situation becomes apparent to all.

At the Close, Friday, February 16, 2024:
Dow: 38,627.99, -145.13 (-0.37%)
NASDAQ: 15,775.65, -130.52 (-0.82%)
S&P 500: 5,005.57, -24.16 (-0.48%)
NYSE Composite: 17,409.30, -25.63 (-0.15%)

For the Week:
Dow: -43.70 (-0.11%)
NASDAQ: -215.01 (-1.34%)
S&P 500: -21.04 (-0.42%)
NYSE Composite: +133.43 (+0.77%)
Dow Transports: -586.31 (-3.62%)


Disclaimer: Information disseminated on this site should not be construed as investment advice. Downtown Magazine Inc., Money Daily and it's owners, affiliates and/or employees are not investment advisors and do not offer specific investment advice. All investments have risk. You should consult a professional investment advisor or stock broker or use your individual judgement when making investment decisions. By viewing this site, you hold harmless Downtown Magazine Inc., Money Daily, its owners, affiliates and employees against any and all liability. Copyright 2024, Downtown Magazine Inc., all rights reserved.

Untitled

All information relating to the content of magazines presented in the Collectible Magazine Back Issue Price Guide has been independently sourced from published works and is protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America. All pages on this web site, including descriptions and details are copyright 1999-2024 Downtown Magazine Inc., Collectible Magazine Back Issue Price Guide. All rights reserved.

Untitled