Gold Futures Settle Higher Ahead Of Jobs Data

Gold futures settled higher on Thursday, gaining for a second straight session after the dollar came off a multi-month high.

Rising concerns about the spread of the dreadful delta variant of the coronavirus infection also prompted investors to seek the safe haven commodity.

However, gains for the precious metal were just modest as the greenback recovered from the session’s lows and emerged into positive territory past noon.

The dollar index, which eased to 92.26 around mid-morning, recovered to 92.59 as the session progressed, gaining about 0.18%.

Gold futures for August ended up by $5.20 or about 0.3% at $1,776.80 an ounce.

Silver futures for September ended lower by $0.094 at $26.100 an ounce, while Copper futures for September settled at $4.2360 per pound, down $0.0530 from the previous close.

Data released by the Labor Department showed initial jobless claims slid to 364,000 in the week ended June 26th, a decrease of 51,000 from the previous week’s revised level of 415,000. Economist had expected jobless claims to dip to 393,000 from the 411,000 originally reported for the previous week.

With the bigger than expected decrease, jobless claims fell to their lowest level since hitting 256,000 in the week ended March 14, 2020.

Meanwhile, a separate report released by the Institute for Supply Management said its manufacturing PMI slipped to 60.6 in June from 61.2 in May. Economists had expected the index to edge down to 61.0.

The Commerce Department also released a report showing an unexpected decrease in construction spending in the month of May.

The Labor Department’s closely watched monthly employment report is due out on Friday. Economists currently expect the report to show employment jumped by 690,000 jobs in June after surging up by 559,000 jobs in May. The unemployment rate is expected to dip to 5.7% from 5.8%.

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