Gold Prices Climb $9.50, While Silver Pops $1.17 (GLD, SLV)

On Friday, gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) futures for February delivery increased $9.50 to settle at $1,664 per ounce, while silver (NYSEARCA:SLV) futures surged $1.17 to settle at $31.65.

European banks must submit their recapitalization plans to regulators by Friday, the deadline set by the European Banking Authority as part of efforts to strengthen banks’ core capital reserves by a combined 115 billion euros.

Investor Insight: Inflation Concerns Remain as Gold and Silver Climb Higher.

European institutions must raise their core Tier 1 capital ratios, which determine a bank’s ability to weather financial shocks, to 9 percent by June 2012. Banks must provide authorities with guidance on how they expect to raise the extra cash by the end of today. The plans will be reviewed by the EBA, which has the power to veto any recapitalization strategies, in early February.  Thirty-one European banks were found to have a combined 115 billion-euro shortfall in December stress tests conducting by the EBA. The worst offenders were Spanish, German, and Italian banks.

In afternoon trading, the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSEARCA:GLD) increased .27 percent, while the iShares Silver Trust (NYSEARCA:SLV) jumped 3.6 percent.  Gold miners (NYSEARCA:GDX) such as Barrick Gold (NYSE:ABX) declined more than 1 percent, while Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY) edged .07 percent higher.  Silver miners (NYSEARCA:SIL) First Majestic (NYSE:AG) and Endeavour Silver (NYSE:EXK) increased 1.6 percent and .22 percent, respectively.

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To contact the reporter on this story: Eric McWhinnie at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at