/Gold inches higher as virus spike hits vaccine optimism

Gold inches higher as virus spike hits vaccine optimism

Gold edged up on Tuesday, as investors weighed optimism over prospects for a Covid-19 vaccine against a surge in infections and possible restrictive measures to combat the pandemic that risk derailing a swift global economic recovery.

Spot gold rose 0.1 per cent to $ 1,778.76 per ounce by 0049 GMT, while U.S. gold futures were little changed at $ 1,780.50. Some Americans could begin receiving coronavirus vaccinations before Christmas, a top government official said on Monday.

Moderna Inc sought U.S. emergency authorization for its Covid-19 vaccine after a late-stage study showed it was 94.1 per cent effective, with no serious safety concerns.

New Covid-19 cases topped 1.1 million in the United States last week and the number of patients in hospital hit a record on Sunday, with California weighing fresh curbs, such as stay-at-home orders.

The recovery outlook was also dimmed after data on Monday showed contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes fell for a second straight month in October, while activity at factories in the Midwest and Texas slowed in November.

U.S. President-elect Joe Biden named former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen as treasury secretary nominee, while Arizona and Wisconsin completed state vote confirmations undermining President Donald Trump’s electoral dispute.

The European Union is likely to launch contingency measures this week, if it is unable to reach agreement by then with Britain on a trade deal, a senior EU diplomat said on Monday.

Falling costs to roll forward U.S. gold futures contracts suggest the market is moving closer to normal trading after turmoil caused by Covid-19 raised investors’ overheads, curbed activity and funnelled massive profits to investment banks.

Silver gained 0.2 per cent to $ 22.64 per ounce, while platinum rose 0.4 per cent to $ 968.78 and palladium was down 0.1 per cent at $ 2,370.63.

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Markets-Economic Times