Metals Stocks: Silver prices climb, leaving gold in the dust

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Silver futures climbed Monday, taking advantage of a rise in appetite for riskier assets while gold edged slightly lower as traders kept watch on Britain’s circuitous effort to leave the European Union and awaited developments in the U.S.-China trade fight.

December silver SIZ19, +0.01% was up 3.2 cents, or 0.2%, at $17.61 an ounce after trading as high as $17.895 during the session. Gold for December delivery on Comex GCZ19, -0.39%, meanwhile, traded $5, or 0.3%, lower at $1,489.10 an ounce.

Month to date, prices for most-active silver futures trade around 3.5% higher, while gold futures have climbed by just over 1%, according to FactSet data.

“Gold has been held back by the recent rally in the equity markets and selloff in bonds, reducing the appeal of the safe-haven metal — even if its longer-term bullish price structure points to potentially higher prices, eventually,” said Fawad Razaqzada, technical analyst at Forex.com, in a note.

“Silver, on the other, has benefited more from the positive sentiment towards risk,” he said, noting that it tends to be less prone than gold to selloffs when stocks rise.

That is due to silver’s role as an industrial metal as well as a precious metal, he said, noting that the white metal is still viewed as a haven. That means it could rally alongside gold if equities see a sustained selloff.

U.S. benchmark stock indexes traded broadly higher on Wall Street Monday. Over the weekend, China’s top trade negotiators, Vice Premier Liu He, described U.S.-China talks as having made “substantial progress.”

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson will attempt to bring his Brexit deal back to Parliament for a vote this week after lawmakers on Saturday forced him to ask the EU for another delay to the country’s departure from the bloc.

Adverse developments in the U.S.-China trade battle and in the Brexit drama have served to bolster gold’s haven appeal in past months.

Razaqzada, meanwhile, argued there were other factors that could lead to extended gains for silver, including a three-week pullback by the ICE U.S. Dollar Index DXY, +0.01%, a measure of the U.S. currency against a basket of six major rivals. A weaker dollar can be a positive for commodities priced in the currency by making them cheaper to users of other currencies.

In other metals trade, January platinum PLF20, -0.48%  was down 0.6% at $890.80 an ounce, while December palladium PAZ19, +0.36%  rose 0.2% to $1,720.20 an ounce.

December copper HGZ19, +0.42%  rose 0.3% at $2.643 a pound.

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