Silver prices extended their massive gains on Friday, hitting a five-month high after the Federal Reserve sounded more cautious than expected in its last periodic meeting, while slashing the expected interest rate increases this year to just two from four before, which helped commodity prices and riskier assets across the globe.
Silver futures last traded at $16.12 an ounce, a five-month high, and up nine cents, or 0.57% on the day, but on the other hand, gold prices gave up ground on profit-taking, with the yellow metal's futures inching down two dollars, or 0.18% to hover around $1,262 an ounce, not far from one-week high at $1,270 an ounce.
Copper prices rose a similar wave, touching their highest in 4-1/2 months at $2.323 a pound, before last trading at $2.301, up half a percent on the day, with a session-low at $2.280, compared to the opening price of $2.288 an ounce.
Oil prices recorded small losses on profit-taking after surging to multi-month highs yesterday, with Brent crude futures falling 20 cents, or half a percentage point to trade at $41.32 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures dipped 13 cents, or 0.32% to hover around $40.07 a barrel.
Investors wait for a basket of data today, with Canada's core CPI expected to have risen a strong 0.5% m/m in February, adding to January's 0.3%, a good sign for inflation rates in Canada that would help the surging loonie keep its profits against the American dollar.
Also from Canada, retail sales are forecast to have grown 0.7% m/m in January, after plunging 2.2% in December, another indications the Canadian economy is recovering and on track for a good growth rate in the first quarter of this year.