Gold has posted considerable gains in the Tuesday session. In North American trade, the spot price for an ounce of gold is $1344.33, down 0.72% on the day. In economic news, CB Consumer Confidence dropped to 127.7, missing the forecast of 131.2 points. As well, the Richmond Manufacturing Index dropped sharply to 15 points, well off the estimate of 23 points. On Wednesday, the US releases Final GDP and Pending Home Sales.
The tariff dispute between the US and China has shaken up global stock markets and also caused volatility in gold prices. As a safe-haven commodity, gold prices jumped 1.8% last week, buoyed by President Trump’s dramatic announcement that he was imposing stiff tariffs on up to $60 billion in Chinese imports. China vowed to retaliate and slap imports on a range of US products. This move came on the heels of a blanket US tariff on steel imports. Although Trump backtracked and exempted Canada, Mexico and other countries from the steel tariffs, the threat of a global trading war has unnerved investors. This week, however, China was singing a more conciliatory tune, saying it would apply to the World Trade Organization to overturn the tariffs. The US has imposed the tariffs under a national security provision, but China has argued that the move is a trade barrier with the intent of protecting domestic producers. Although the dispute has not been resolved, the Chinese move has eased tensions and restored investor risk appetite, in the hope that both the US and China will climb down from their trees and reach some agreement instead of imposing tariffs on each other. This sentiment has boosted the stock markets while sending gold prices lower.