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Gold prices fell on Wednesday while extending yesterday’s drop as the U.S. dollar firmed on renewed fears of intensification in the war and worries over slowing global economic growth. Investors took cover in the greenback after Bloomberg reported that Washington is preparing to announce tariffs on all remaining Chinese imports by early December if talks next month between U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping fail to ease the trade war. A stronger dollar makes bullion more expensive for holders of other currencies. Spot gold was down 0.4 percent at $1,217 an ounce at the time of writing. Gold prices have gained about 6 percent since declining to $1,159.96 an ounce in mid-August, the lowest since January 2017. Choppy sessions in global equity markets last week pushed gold to $1,243.32, its highest since July 17on Friday. However, the yellow metal is still down about 10 percent from its April peak after investors turned to the dollar as a safe-haven as the U.S.-China trade war unfolded against a background of higher U.S. interest rates. Asia shares recouped early losses and crept higher as China made a fresh attempt to stabilise its stock markets, but the gains looked fragile. Holdings in SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange traded fund, rose 0.7 percent to 24.27 million ounces on Monday, the highest in nearly two months.


Oil prices climbed for the first time in three days on Wednesday, but rising supply and fears over the outlook for demand amid the U.S.-China trade war kept pressure on the market. Brent crude futures had gained 52 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $76.43 a barrel. They fell 1.8 percent on Tuesday, at one point touching their lowest since Aug. 24 at$75.09 a barrel. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures advanced 29 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $66.47 a barrel on Wednesday. They dropped 1.3 percent the day before, after hitting their weakest since Aug. 17 at $65.33 a barrel. Both crude benchmarks have fallen about $10 a barrel from four-year highs reached in the first week of October, and are on track to post their worst monthly performance since July 2016. Oil has been caught in the global financial market slump this month, with equities under pressure from the trade scrap between the world’s two largest economies. In a bearish signal, the American Petroleum Institute reported U.S. crude inventories rose 5.7 million barrels last week, more than analyst forecasts for a 4.1 million-barrel build. Investors will look to official government data on U.S. inventories due on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said high oil prices were hurting consumers and could dent fuel demand at a time of slowing global economic activity.


Zinc and copper prices fell in Shanghai on Wednesday after data showed that China’s manufacturing sector grew at its weakest pace in more than two years, dampening the outlook for demand in the world’s top metals consumer. Amid rising headwinds from the Sino-U.S. trade row, China’s official Purchasing Managers’ Index dropped to 50.2 in October from 50.8 in September, only slightly above the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction. The latest reading suggests a further slowing in the world’s second-biggest economy and could prompt more policy support from Beijing on top of a raft of recent initiatives. s China’s yuan approaches the 7 to the dollar barrier, investors are betting authorities will eventually let the currency fall beyond the historic level. Yet they are just as confident that China won’t allow the kind of capitulation seen in past market meltdowns. The most-traded December zinc on the Shanghai Futures Exchange was down 1.8 percent at 21,545 yuan ($3,093) a tonne. Copper dropped 1.4 percent to 49,160 yuan. Three-month copper on the London Metal Exchange was up 0.1 percent at $6,039 a tonne and zinc was flat at $2,549. Asian stocks pulled away from 20-month lows to eke out small gains, thanks to a rebound on Wall Street. The dollar hovered near 16-month highs versus a basket of its major rivals

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