Gold and Silver Hold Steady After Employment Report

On Friday, gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) futures for June delivery, the most active contract, dipped $3.40 to close at $1,464.20 per ounce, while silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) futures for July increased 18 cents to finish at $24.01.

Both precious metals posted a positive week, despite a better-than-expected employment report. The U.S. economy added 165,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate declined to 7.5 percent, according to the Labor Department. It is the lowest unemployment rate since December 2008. The payroll numbers for the previous two months were also revised higher.

However, about 11.7 million people are still unemployed. The U-6 unemployment rate, which includes everyone in the headline rate, plus people who are either employed part-time but prefer a full-time position, or want work but have stopped looking, edged slightly higher to 13.9 percent. The labor force participation rate, which is the percentage of working-age persons in an economy who are employed or unemployed, remains at its lowest level since 1979.

In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) dipped 0.05 percent, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) increased almost 1 percent. Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) and Goldcorp (NYSE:GG) gained about 0.25 percent. Silver miner Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL) jumped more than 4 percent.

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Disclosure: Long EXK, AG, HL, PHYS