Gold Unchanged as Markets Eye US Job Openings Report
Washington (Feb 10) Gold prices are unchanged on Tuesday, as the metal is trading at a spot price of $1239.31. In the US, today’s highlight is JOLTS Job Openings.
Greece may be one of the smaller members of the Eurozone, but it continues to command the attention of world markets, as the bailout crisis continues. After the new Greek government said it would not renew the EUR 240 billion bailout under the current terms, the ECB announcement that it will no longer accept Greek government bonds as collateral for ECB loans as of February 11. Greece wants a new deal that removes the harsh austerity steps required under the bailout. However, Germany and Greece’s international creditors do not want to rewrite the bailout agreement. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Angel Gurria, chairman of the OECD, will meet on Tuesday to try and narrow the gap between the parties. On Wednesday, EU finance ministers meet in Brussels, with the Greek crisis on top of the agenda.
US releases ended the week with a superb US Nonfarm Payrolls report for January. The key employment indicator improved to 257 thousand in January, up from 252 thousand a month earlier. This easily beat the estimate of 236 thousand. The Federal Reserve has been clear that the employment numbers will have to be strong before a rate hike kicks in, so the strong NFP reading has reinforced expectations for an interest rate in mid-2015, which would be a boost for the US dollar. We’ll get a look at additional US employment data later on Tuesday, with the release of JOLTS Job Openings. The markets are expecting the indicator’s recent upward trend to continue, with an estimate of 5.05 million.