TODAY’S COMEX GOLD SIGNAL
INTERNATIONAL COMEX NEWS
- Gold prices hovered above fresh seven-month lows Friday, as a weaker dollar failed to lift sentiment, while other metals steadied as trade war concerns eased. Gold futures for August delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell by $5.30, or 0.43%, to $1,241.30 a troy ounce. Gold prices resumed their decline and remained on track for their lowest settlement in nearly two weeks as easing trade-war concerns offset the dollar’s retreat against its rivals from a two-week high.
- WTI crude oil prices settled higher Friday, but posted steep losses for the week, as traders eased bets on a global supply shortage in the wake of resuming crude flows from Libya and expectations the decline in Iranian exports would be less severe than anticipated. On the New York Mercantile Exchange crude futures for August delivery rose 1.00% to settle at $71.01 a barrel, while on London’s Intercontinental Exchange, Brent rose 1.5% to trade at $75.56 a barrel.
- The brewing trade war between China and the U.S. is claiming commodity markets as one of its first victims. The Bloomberg Commodities Index, a measure of 26 raw materials, lost 3 percent this week, the most since February. The losses stand out in a week when other risk assets, like emerging-market stocks, were in the green. Soybeans have been hardest hit, with pricing falling to the lowest in a decade as China’s duties on U.S. supplies took effect.
- The U.S. Department of Commerce on Friday lifted a ban on U.S. companies selling goods to ZTE Corp (HK:0763), allowing China’s second-largest telecommunications equipment maker to resume business. The Commerce Department removed the ban shortly after ZTE deposited $400 million in a U.S. bank escrow account as part of a settlement reached last month. The settlement also included a $1 billion penalty that ZTE paid to the U.S. Treasury in June.
- While investors say they are wary of the broader real estate industry in a rising interest rate environment, some are still bullish on sectors such as self storage and manufactured homes. Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) are typically seen as a defensive investment bet as their large dividend payouts offset slow but predictable growth. The S&P 500 real estate index <.SPLRCR> has outperformed in the last six months with a 5.8 percent climb compared with the broader S&P 500’s (SPX) 0.4 percent advance.
- The Federal Reserve on Friday pointed to “solid” U.S. economic growth during the first half of the year in its semiannual report to Congress, where it also reiterated that it expected to continue to raise interest rates gradually. It is the Fed’s second submission to lawmakers since Chairman Jerome Powell took the helm of the Fed in early February. He is scheduled to answer questions on it before lawmakers on Tuesday and Wednesday.