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
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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.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.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.

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