A variety of headlines out last night and today have had the ultimate net effect of leaving the precious metals hovering around the unchanged closing level from yesterday.  News out of Russia indicates that Russian President Putin has agreed on the withdrawal of heavy artillery from the Crimea region and that a ceasefire will be in place starting on February 15th.  On the central bank front, the Bank of Japan stated that any extra stimulus would be “counterproductive for now” while the Swedish Central bank cut rates and pledged quantitative easing.  Retails sale in the US were soft and the USD index is down as a result.

Since failing three times to decisively break through $1,300 in mid-late January, gold has been on a one way trajectory lower.  This past Friday’s strong US jobs data and subsequent poor technical close for gold has caused traders to add to short positions this week.  Gold has held its 100 day moving average over the past two trading days but should this key level fail, $1,180 is the next major target.