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Gold $392 Silver $6.48 Saturday 31 July, 2am Sydney

"The inspiring and binding force in Australian life isn't tradition or nationalism or social revolution. It is quite a simple thing. Henry Lawson called it MATESHIP.... The spirit which makes men stick together. In Australia by sticking together, men have defied drought, bushfire and flood. In Tobruk they've scorned hardship, danger and death, because no digger would ever let his mates down. In Tobruk for the first time in this war the Germans were thrust back by a spirit that even tanks and dive-bombers could not conquer." -- Chester Wilmot, BBC war correspondent, 1941.

G'day. I reckon that just about sums up why we are, how we are, down here (and that we are miles from anywhere else). Your immediate family, your mates and their immediate family come first. Always. No ifs or buts. Finished. Thems the rules.

Gold was a little stronger prior to the GDP numbers. Silver was stronger again. Oil still sits upwards of $43. The number disappointed the general market. Interest rates fell and gold rose as did most other currencies, although gold was the best performer versus the dollar. Gold had plenty of offers ahead of $393 and more work required to break up at this stage. Silver was muted in its response and briefly traded through 6.50. Much of silver move occurred prior to the numbers. The Euro has given back all its gains, again. Gold is holding well and showing a little bit of "independence" by not just blindly following the dollar. Insignificant in the scheme of things but I am constantly looking for signs that gold is breaking away from the grip of dollar movements.

I suspect with the lack of follow through in the currencies that we may drift lower in gold, although I caution that it's the end of month and window dressing could buggar stuff around at 1:25pm. A close above $390 spot gold would be acceptable. Just throwing some thoughts around in here with a colleague and he is mindful that we may well trade a new high early next week, and then reverse through the recent range to $384. We may have already seen the up move although I'd like to see $393 spot trade today.

Base metals are all up today except Nickel. Spot Lead is up by over 5%.

The Amex Gold Bugs Index's (HUI) move higher was a touch disappointing on the day, although I suspect that sentiment will be somewhat more positive next week. A qualifier - as there are no serious data releases till very late in the week, there may be some strength in the dollar which could put some pressure on gold and equities . It appears that the market is looking for a stronger dollar especially noting the way the currencies traded today. They just need a good excuse.

I've got an early mark today and am out by 1pm NY time.... 20 year school reunion to attend... bloody hell, 20 years, I must be old!

I copped a few mails from Minyans across the globe asking how to get a copy of "Kokoda". Here is a link but I dunno if they ship internationally.

The author, Peter FitzSimons, went to PNG in 2002 and walked "the Track" as part of his "research".- "I was with 16 mates on the Kokoda Track itself, pushing hard from Ower's Corner to Kokoda in a little under six days and surviving, just, the hardest physical ordeal of my life. My respect for what had been achieved there by soldiers of the 39th Battalion, the 2/14th, 2/16th and others, now knew no bounds, and with every torturous step up the towering Maguli Ranges I swore I would never set foot there again..."... Every person that I know to have walked the Track says the same thing. It should be noted however that Fitzy is not your run-of-the-mill novelist or journo. He is a Wallaby (Australian National rugby team). He played professional rugby in France for 10 years, when referees were only on the field to ensure there were no weapons involved. Physical exertion and pain aren't exactly foreign to him. "The Track" is one of those things that you just "gotta do".

A few others asked how heavy my son is following the horse for gold deal. He is 2 and a bit yrs old. His grandfather rowed at the 1956 and 1964 Olympics and young Billy appears to have picked up those genes, luckily. Most I'll say is that he is about 25% MY weight.

Gotta fly, news from North Carolina....

Enjoy the rest of your day and the weekend......


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position in gold, silver, crude, euro

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