Fool's Gold Report: Copper, Palladium Rise As Gold, Silver Ease

Gains in the stock market and in the U.S. dollar held back gold and silver today, but positive economic news supported industrial metals copper and palladium. Find out why mining stocks outperformed bullion today.

Jan 15, 2014 at 6:55PM

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

Another positive day in the stock market contributed to another down day for most precious metals, with a $3 drop in spot gold prices to $1,242 per ounce corresponding to a 0.2% decline in SPDR Gold (NYSEMKT:GLD). Silver's equally minor nickel-per-ounce drop to $20.20 sent iShares Silver (NYSEMKT:SLV) down 0.1%, but positive moves in palladium and copper hinted at the underlying strength in the economy and the potential for rising demand in industrial metals. Platinum fell $1 to $1,425, but palladium gained $4 to $741.

Gold And Silver

Image sources: Wikimedia Commons; Creative Commons/Armin Kubelbeck.

Interestingly, gold and silver largely shrugged off some minor signs of inflationary pressure, with today's report on the Producer Price Index showing a rise of 0.4%. Even with the gains, though, longer-term inflation seems in check, with year-over-year gains of 1.2% for the overall index and 1.4% for the core rate excluding food and energy. Without much higher inflation rates, investors are unlikely to start worrying enough to use gold as an inflation hedge.

But the good news on the day came from the copper market, which rose to nearly $3.35 per pound today. Solid signs of manufacturing strength pointed to greater demand for copper, and that helped lift shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold (NYSE:FCX) by 1.4% and Southern Copper (NYSE:SCCO) by 0.9%. If China continues to see economic growth prospects pick up, then greater demand for copper could translate into even more price gains for the metal.

More generally, mining stocks outperformed bullion, with the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF rising 1.3%. In particular, Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) rose 1.4% as major investor Oldfield Partners called for Anthony Munk, son of founder Peter Munk, to leave the board of directors. Investors are seeing signs of activist moves as positive for stocks generally, signaling a desire to shore up their strength in anticipation of a turnaround in the metals markets. Whether that bounce comes in the short run or not remains to be seen, but after the huge hit that mining stocks have suffered, even the hint of respite is drawing some positive responses from investors.

Profit from what's under the ground
Mining stocks haven't done well lately, but record oil and natural gas production is revolutionizing the United States' energy position and exposing strong stock plays as historic amounts of capital expenditures are flooding the industry. The Motley Fool is offering a comprehensive look at three energy companies set to soar during this transformation in the energy industry. To find out which three companies are spreading their wings, check out the special free report, "3 Stocks for the American Energy Bonanza." Don't miss out on this timely opportunity; click here to access your report -- it's absolutely free. 

Fool contributor Dan Caplinger owns shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold. You can follow him on Twitter: @DanCaplinger. The Motley Fool owns shares of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.

Compare Brokers