Silver prices consolidated higher Wednesday ahead of a deluge of economic reports that could give investors a clearer picture of the health of the US economy.
Silver for December delivery edged up 3 cents or 0.2% to $19.00 a troy ounce at 7:45 am ET. The futures price consolidated near the midpoint of the daily range of $18.85 and $19.18.
Meanwhile, gold prices also edged up slightly after a five-day slump. The December futures contract edged up $2.2% or 0.2% to $1,325.90 a troy ounce.
Gold’s premium over silver reached a daily high of 69.96, according to Kitco. The gold/silver ratio settled at 69.84 the previous day.
After climbing to more than one-week highs, the US dollar dipped lower against a basket of currencies Wednesday. The dollar index dipped 0.1% to 95.50.
In economic data, UK unemployment claims rose slightly in August, the Office for National Statistics reported. A total of 2,400 Britons sought unemployment benefits last month. The claimant count rate declined the previous month.
UK unemployment was unchanged at 4.9% in the three months through July. Average earnings including bonuses rose at a faster 2.3% annual pace in the May-July period.
The Bank of England (BOE) is expected to keep interest rates unchanged in its upcoming policy meeting on Thursday.
The United States will release a series of economic reports over the next two days that could give investors their final clues about the performance of the economy before the Federal Reserve’s meeting next week.
On Thursday the Commerce Department will report on retail sales for the month of August. Separately, the Department of Labor will release latest figures on factory-gate prices and weekly jobless claims. The Federal Reserve will round out the day with its monthly report on industrial production and capacity utilization.
On Friday, the Labor Department will release consumer inflation data, which will be closely monitored by the financial markets.
The Fed kicks off its two-day meeting next Tuesday and will deliver its rate decision the following day.