Business News Asia
Gold futures gained on Friday (July 22), reaching the highest level since July 13 and rising this week after a five-week decline. The key factors were the depreciation of the dollar and the fact that investors bought gold as a safe haven after the U.S. published weak economic data.
- Gold futures rose $14, or 0.82%, to $1,727.4 an ounce. This was the highest close since July 13 and a gain of 1.4% for the week after five straight weeks of declines.
- Silver was down 10.2 cents, or 0.54%, at $18.617 an ounce.
- The platinum contract was up $8.5, or 0.99%, at $867.2 an ounce.
- The palladium futures were up $142.10, or 7.6%, at $2,018.80 an ounce.
A weakening of the dollar supported gold futures. The dollar index against the six major currencies in a basket of currencies fell 0.17% to 106.7300. A weaker dollar makes gold contracts cheaper for holders of other currencies.
Weak economic data released on Friday also boosted safe-haven buying in gold futures. S&P Global reported Friday that the preliminary U.S. composite purchasing managers’ index (PMI), which includes manufacturing and services, fell to 47.5 in July, the lowest level in 26 months, from 52.3 in June.
The PMI index is below 50, indicating that the US business sector is contracting. This was the first contraction in more than two years, or since June 2020.
Meanwhile, the manufacturing sector posted its first decline in more than two years, driven by a slowdown in new orders and employment, while business confidence hit its lowest level since September 2020.
The preliminary manufacturing PMI was 52.3, a 24-month low, down from 52.7 in June, and the preliminary services PMI was 47.0, a 26-month low, down from 52.7 the previous month.
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Saturday, July 23, 2022