Gold prices drifted lower on Tuesday as the dollar firmed on safe-haven appeal, and treasury yields climbed up after data showed a contraction in manufacturing activity in Asia, Europe and the U.S.
The dollar index surged to 102.43 this morning, and despite easing a bit to 102.32, remains firm with a gain of about 0.5%.
Gold futures for December ended down $30.40 at $1,978.80 an ounce.
Silver futures for September ended lower by $0.646 at $24.326 an ounce, while Copper futures for September settled at $3.9085 per pound, losing $0.0995.
In U.S. economic news, a report released by the Institute for Supply Management showed U.S. manufacturing activity contracted for the ninth consecutive month in July.
The ISM said its manufacturing PMI crept up to 46.4 in July from 46.0 in June, but a reading below 50 continues to indicate contraction. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 46.8.
The Commerce Department also released a report showing construction spending rose by slightly less than expected in the month of June.
A separate report released by the Labor Department showed job openings edged down 9.58 million in June from 9.62 million in May.
The HCOB Eurozone Manufacturing PMI fell to 42.7 in July from 43.4 in the previous month, marking the lowest in three years.
The British manufacturing downturn deepened in July as output, new orders and employment all fell at faster rates amid market weakness, both domestically and internationally, survey results from S&P Global revealed Tuesday.
The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index, or PMI, dropped to a seven-month low of 45.3 in July from 46.5 in May. The flash estimate was 45.0.
The manufacturing sector in China fell into contraction territory in July, the latest survey from Caixin revealed on Tuesday with a manufacturing PMI score of 49.2. That’s down from 50.5 in June and it moves beneath the boom-or-bust line of 50 that separates expansion from contraction.
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