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Tickers in this Article: UUP, GLD, IAU, SLV, SIL, GDX, GDXJ, PPLT, PALL
Ahead of Wednesday's European Central Bank meeting, gold snapped a two-day losing streak with a modest Tuesday gain. COMEX-gold for August delivery added $3, or 0.2%, to settle at $1,616.90 a troy ounce. While not the most noteworthy gain, gold did finish higher in the face of a stronger dollar as the PowerShares DB US Dollar Index Bullish (NYSE: UUP) closed higher on the session. Following an ugly May, there are signs investors are starting to wade back into the gold market. Sales of U.S. Mint gold coins more than doubled in May from April, as the U.S. Mint sold 53,000 troy ounces of gold American Eagle coins last month, up from 20,000 troy ounces sold in April, the Wall Street Journal reported. Data released earlier this week indicates that China is importing more gold from Hong Kong. China recently surpassed India as the world's top gold consumer.

The European Central Bank meeting on Wednesday could be a market-moving event for equities and precious metals alike. Those that are long riskier assets are no doubt hoping that the ECB will signal some willingness to engage in more quantitative easing. Those hopes, of course, carry over to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's congressional testimony on Thursday. Either or both of these events could lift or derail gold's near-term fortunes.

Gold ETFs were lethargic on the day as the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSE: GLD) and the iShares Gold Trust (NYSE: IAU) each lost a tenth of a percent. The iShares Silver Trust (NYSE: SLV) jumped 1%, a surprise gain on such a slow day, but remember, it was a slow day and SLV's volume was well below the daily average.

Gold futures still reside below $1,620 an ounce, a price area that is viewed as an important technical by gold traders. Should that area be dealt with on sufficient volume, it could be a sign that gold is poised to rally to another $30-$50 an ounce from there.

The ETFS Physical Platinum Shares (NYSE: PPLT) was a curious case today, adding half a percent on more than double the average daily turnover. The volume, not the gain, was the story with, PPLT. Regarding the ETFS Physical Palladium Shares (NYSE: PALL) the gain of 1.74% was the story because volume was weak.

It was another decent day for the miners as the Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSE: SIL) added 1.3%. The Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSE: GDX) also finished to the upside, though volume was slightly below average. The Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners (NYSE: GDXJ) continued its torrid pace with a gain of 2.7% on impressive volume.

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