Gold is up in early U.S. trading, buoyed by a weaker dollar. The rise in the yellow metal comes despite continued gains in shares and firmer yields, as cyclical forces seem to have taken hold.
The stock market is eagerly anticipating final passage of the GOP tax bill early this week, despite swirling doubts about the positive economic impact of the legislation and a certainty that the debt level is going to rise. Congress also needs to pass a budget agreement and address the debt ceiling this week, or face a partial government shutdown.
While the tax bill can get passed without any support from Democrats, the budget/debt ceiling agreement is going to require at least a little bipartisanship. The more likely scenario is that they kick-the-can yet again with another short-term deal.
Silver is back above $16, but remains comparatively soft. However, there is a growing recognition that silver is quite undervalued relative to gold. Kitco reported late last week that “both TD Securities and Bank of Montreal came out and said that they see silver prices pushing to $20 an ounce next year.”