In palladium, 3 or less U.S. banks were short 8,932 Comex futures contracts [they hold zero long positions]. That’s a decline of 794 Comex contracts from the January BPR. Also in palladium, at least 13 non-U.S. banks were short 2,484 Comex contracts, which is only an increase of 2% from the January BPR, which is immaterial. Here are Nick’s charts for palladium. Here’s the New York Spot Gold [Bid] chart, so you can see the Comex price action in far more detail—especially the shenanigans at 8:30 a.m. EST. And despite silver’s anemic price performance, the silver stocks turned in a wonderful performance—rallying strongly at the open—and then more quietly after the 11 a.m. EST London close. Nick Laird’s Intraday Silver Sentiment Index closed up 3.51%. Sponsor Advertisement I have a decent number of stories for you today—and I hope you have enough time over what’s left of your weekend to read the ones that interest you the most. It also seems clear to me that the reason JPMorgan is not abandoning gold and silver is because the bank holds such a dominant and controlling market share in every aspect of gold and silver that it can’t depart without severely disrupting these markets. JPMorgan has grown to be such an integral factor in gold and silver pricing that its departure would necessarily create a price upheaval that will be welcomed by gold and silver investors. In fact, I believe JPMorgan (and the Feds) recognize this and that is why JPM has amassed such a large long position in COMEX gold and in physical silver; so that the inevitable price violence works for one last time in the bank’s favor. When that day of upheaval will come is impossible to know, although it must be closer than ever before. In the interim, we must be prepared for whatever the COMEX and JPMorgan throw at gold and silver investors. In that sense, today’s [Wednesday] early price rig to the upside must be treated as both a fake-out designed to end at some point in induced selling; as well as a first step to the coming price violence to the upside. – Silver analyst Ted Butler: 05 February 2014 Today’s pop “blast from the past” is thanks to Casey Research’s own Doug Hornig. I received an e-mail from him on Sunday, admonishing me for a glaring oversight—and this is what he had to say: “I’m shocked you didn’t honor Pete Seeger this past weekend in your blast from the past.” I’d heard the story about his passing on the CBC News here in Edmonton, but then forgot all about it when I wrote last Saturday’s column. It took the proverbial two by four across the side of the head from Doug to remind me of that oversight. Here’s a tune he wrote back in the late 1950s that was a smash hit for the folk rock band The Byrds back in 1965—and I remember it all too well. So should you. The link is here. Today’s classical ‘blast from the past’ is the longish violin concerto by Sir Edward Elgar. The work is being performed by the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra a month from now—and I already have tickets. This concerto took many years to grow on me—but is certainly in my ‘Top 5’ list of violin concertos now. If you love this piece as I do—and have a spare 54 minutes—the link to the youtube.com video is here. Nigel Kennedy does the honours with the BBC Concert Orchestra at The Proms. I met Nigel and heard him play when he was just getting started—and the ESO could afford his fee. He was a different breed of cat back then—and he’s even more so now, as the first 30 seconds of this video makes abundantly clear. But the crowds love him—and rightfully so, although he’s not my favourite violinist. If you note the Kitco gold chart at the top of the page, you’ll see the same price pattern every day for the last three days. That extends all the way back to the first of the week, except you can’t see it on this chart. It was obviously the same pattern once again on Friday, as all four precious metals rallied into the Comex open, only to get smashed by JPMorgan et al shortly after. My comments regarding Stevie Wonder still apply. Ted and I got into a discussion yesterday after we’d both had a look at the COT Report, the Bank Participation Report—and the stunning in/out movements in silver at the Comex-approved depositories so far this year—along with the goings-on inside the SLV ETF. All this frantic movement in silver, and to a lesser extent, gold—has to mean something—and can’t continue like this forever. It appears that something may be afoot. It’s out in public view with all the numbers were looking at, but it doesn’t tell us precisely what’s going on under the hood. I would appear that we may be looking at the final death throes of the precious metal price management scheme—and only the exact timing is unknown. I know that Ted will have much more to say about this in his column to paying subscriber later today. To top it off, I’ve always been wondering why “da boyz” have been so in-you-face obvious about containing the rise in precious metal prices lately—especially during the New York session. That goes for the share action as well, especially what I’ve observed during the first four trading days of this past week. It’s still my opinion that the powers that be in this world own every single solitary gold and silver mining stock that has been sold by the public during the last two and a half to three years—and that the float out there is not particularly large. Ted thinks that they’ve been doing that with the physical metal [especially silver] as well—and I totally agree. It appears that “da boyz” want as few public investors as possible on board when this thing finally flies. The only thing left in JPMorgan’s way is their big 14,000 Comex contract short-side corner in silver. For years Ted Butler and I have been discussing the possibility that the record long positions held by the raptors [the Commercial traders other than the Big 8] may be the ticket out of JPM’s short position, as I’m sure that it would be easy to arrange that enough raptor long positions get sold to JPMorgan to cover them—and it could happen quickly—within hours under the right pricing conditions. This is all speculation on my part, but I can’t shake the feeling that long before the 2014 calendar is out, we’ll be looking at precious metal prices that we only dreamed about. That’s the happy part. As I and others have stated in the past, the world that exists when precious metal prices are that high may leave a lot to be desired so, to a certain extent, we should be careful what we wish for. However, after all we’ve been through since May 1, 2011—I’ll be happy to take that chance—and I suspect you feel the same way. That’s it for the day—and the week. See you on Tuesday. The price action in silver was similar to gold’s, but not as volatile—and the price moment at the jobs numbers release is barely noticeable on the Kitco chart below. The CME recorded the low and high ticks as $19.755 and $20.09 in the March contract. Silver closed on Friday in New York at an even $20.00 spot, which was up 5.5 cents from Thursday. Net volume was 33,500 contracts. 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