Gold rebounds from Friday when to-be-expected profit taking took the yellow metal off historic highs. Gold edged higher early Monday, continuing to trade above $2,000 an ounce.
The U.S. passed 5 million cases of the coronavirus over the weekend, bolstering uncertainty about the duration of the pandemic and its economic impact. U.S. President Donald Trump on Saturday announced executive orders to extend stimulus payments to the unemployed and defer tax payments for the employed. Stimulus measures are typically seen as bullish for gold.
Gold futures climbed 2.2% last week to settle at $2,028.00 an ounce on Comex, though the December contract fell 2% Friday. It was the ninth consecutive weekly rally. Last week’s gains added to a surge of 10% in July. The December contract is currently up to $2,043.20, while the DG spot price is $2,034.00.
Silver futures rose 14% last week to settle at $27.54 an ounce on Comex, though the September contract tumbled 3% Friday. The most active contract soared 30% in July. The September contract for silver is currently up to $28.575, while the DG spot price is $28.52.
The virus known as COVID-19 has killed almost 730,000 people worldwide and sickened 19.8 million. About 26% of the cases — and 22% of the deaths — are in the U.S. The country has 5.04 million cases, more than any other nation.
Trump over the weekend signed four orders after White House staff and congressional Democrats failed to reach an agreement on a coronavirus-relief package. The orders extend unemployment assistance, albeit at a lower level; temporarily defer payroll taxes; provide some eviction protection; and include some student-loan relief.
Jobs data released Friday showed an unemployment rate of 10.2% in July, down from June but on par with the peak of the Great Recession more than a decade ago. The weekly initial jobless claims report Thursday showed that 1.186 million Americans filed new applications for unemployment benefits last week. The figure was the lowest weekly number since the coronavirus pandemic began in March but it was the 20th consecutive week of claims over 1 million.
Investors continued to flee to the yellow metal as a haven as the dollar was steady near a two-year low and tensions between the U.S. and China grew after Trump declared TikTok and WeChat national security threats last week.
In other markets, spot palladium increased 1.7% last week to $2,157.50 an ounce, though it fell 4.1% Friday. It rose 7% in July. Spot platinum advanced 5.8% last week to $960.40 an ounce, though it decreased 3% Friday. It gained 8.3% in July. Currently, DG spot price for platinum is up to $993.00 and palladium is higher at $2,234.60.
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