Crude Oil, Gold Rise Ahead of US Jobs Report But Gains May Be Fleeting

Talking Points

  • Crude Oil Gains on Forecast for Stronger US Jobs Growth in Nov
  • Gold Lifted as Risk Appetite Recovers, Weighing on US Dollar

WTI Crude Oil (NY Close): $100.20 // -0.16 // -0.16%

All eyes are on the US Employment report, with expectations calling for the world's top economy to add 125,000 jobs in November. The outcome would mark an improvement from the 80,000 increase recorded in the previous month, and the pickup in European shares as well as S&P 500 stock index futures and the WTI contract ahead of its release seems to reflect that.

However, traders' chipper mood may not last long after the data crosses the wires. The pace of US employment growth has been relatively steady since the third quarter of 2010, averaging 127.5K jobs per month. A print in line or close to forecasts would thereby fall in line with the status quo, reinforcing what investors have already priced in.

With that in mind, it seems reasonable to suspect that after the event risk passes, traders will once again turn their attention to the festering Eurozone debt crisis. On this front, a return to risk aversion appears plausible as Wednesday's breakneck rally across sentiment-linked assets is at least partially unwound as traders reconsider the subtext of the multilateral swap rate cut that drove the advance.

Indeed, the action intimated that the world's monetary authorities were building a bulwark against a credit crunch that would likely break out in event that a large Eurozone member state defaulted. Their decision to do so implies a lack of confidence in the ability of the currency bloc's policymakers to definitively prevent such an outcome, and if they see the possibility that Europe fails as credible then investors ought to as well.

On the technical front, prices put in a bearish Harami candlestick pattern below support-turned-resistance at the bottom of a rising channel set from early October, hinting a reversal lower may be ahead. Initial support remains at 94.56. Near-term resistance is 103.35, the November 17 high.

Spot Gold (NY Close): $1744.82 // -1.55 // -0.09%

Gold prices are on the upswing heading into the opening bell on Wall Street as the recovery in risk appetite ahead of the US jobs report weighs on the safe-haven US Dollar and offers a de-facto lift to the yellow metal. A reversal would not be surprising in the aftermath of the release however if an in-line outcome refocuses investors back on Eurozone sovereign debt woes (see above).

Prices put in a Doji candlestick below resistance at 1746.08, the 14.6% Fibonacci extension, reflecting indecision and pointing to a possible reversal lower ahead. Near-term support lines up at 1711.13, the 23.6% level, a boundary reinforced by a rising trend line underpinning price action since late September. Alternatively, a break higher exposes the November 8 high at 1802.77.

Spot Silver (NY Close): $32.75 // -0.05 // -0.14%

As with gold, silver is looking for direction cues from the US Dollar, with prices ending higher as the greenback slumps amid a recovery in risk appetite. Prices are robbing through range resistance at 33.04, with a daily close above this barrier opening the door for an advance to 35.35. However, a Doji candle warns of indecision and hints that a reversal may materialize, which would be in line with our suspicion that risk aversion will return in the week-end as the spotlight turns back onto the Eurozone debt crisis. Near-term support is marked by a rising trend line set from late-September, now at 30.90.

--- Written by Ilya Spivak, Currency Strategist for

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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