Gold Ends At 2-Month Low On Upbeat U.S. Data
Philadelphia (Aug 21) Gold futures slipped for a fifth day to end at a two-month low on Wednesday, giving rise to fears of an early tightening of the monetary policy after a slew of upbeat economic data out of the U.S. with initial claims for unemployment benefits declining more than expected and existing home sales also rising beyond expectations.
Gold was under pressure after minutes of the Federal Reserve's most recent policy meeting hinted at fierce debate over when to raise U.S. interest rates. Some members preferred hike in rates sooner than forecast thanks to improvements in the job market and risks associated with ultra-easy monetary policy.
A batch of upbeat economic data from the U.S. earlier today showed existing home sales unexpectedly rose to a ten-month high in July, and a Labor Department report indicated jobless claims to have dropped more than expected in the week ended August 16.
Meanwhile, a Conference Board report showed a bigger than expected increase of its index of leading U.S. economic indicators in July, suggesting the economy is gaining traction.
As well, the closely watched regional manufacturing activity from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia unexpectedly grew at an accelerated rate in August, with index of activity in the sector reaching a three-year high.