Gold Weaker Amid Somewhat Less Risk Aversion
New York (July 25) Gold prices are modestly lower in early U.S. trading Thursday, as there is less risk aversion in the market place this mid-week, as evidenced by moves to record or multi-year highs in the U.S. stock indexes. Still, the geopolitical events recently have just not disappeared and are still keeping gold market bears very tentative. August Comex gold was last down $5.80 at $1,298.90 an ounce. Spot gold was last quoted down $6.10 at $1,298.50. December Comex silver last traded down $0.114 at $20.94 an ounce.
Geopolitics is still in play in the market place Thursday. Unsettling to traders and investors are reports just out that an Air Algerie jetliner with 110 passengers on board went missing after take-off. The Russia-Ukraine situation is still in crisis mode, as two Ukrainian military jets were shot down Wednesday. Meantime, the Israel-Hamas fighting is also near the front burner of the market place as many airlines are prohibiting their jets from landing in Tel Aviv, Israel. Gold, the U.S. dollar index and U.S. Treasuries have seen safe-haven demand due to the heightened geopolitical tensions the past week or so.
The much-anticipated HSBC preliminary China Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose to 52.0 in July compared to a final reading of 50.7 in June. The July number is a 1.5-year high. A PMI reading above 50.0 suggests expansion. Asian equities were boosted on the upbeat China PMI data. Meantime, the European Union’s composite PMI rose to 54.0 in July from 52.8 in June, for the highest reading in over three years. This news helped to boost European stock markets Thursday. This key economic data coming out of China and the EU suggest the world’s major economies are picking up some steam. The PMI data from the EU and China are also bullish underlying factors for the raw commodity sector.
U.S. economic data due for release Thursday includes the weekly jobless claims report, the U.S. flash manufacturing PMI, new residential sales and the Kansas City Fed manufacturing survey.