Gold little changed after U.S. consumer confidence report
Gold prices were little changed on Tuesday, as price moves were muted amid light trading volume during a holiday-shortened week.
Gold for February delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange tacked on 70 cents, or 0.07%, to trade at $1,069.00 a troy ounce during U.S. morning hours. A day earlier, gold dipped $7.60, or 0.71%. The Conference Board said its index of consumer confidence rose to 96.5 this month from a reading of 92.6 in November, whose figure was revised from a previously reported 90.4. Analysts expected the index to rise to 93.8 in December.
Crude oil prices drop more than 1 percent as weak outlook prevails
Crude oil futures fell around half a dollar early on Wednesday as the market remained under pressure from slowing demand and high supplies, while forecasts that a cold snap in Europe and the United States would be short-lived also hurt prices.
Crude prices have plunged by two-thirds since mid-2014 as soaring output from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, Russia and the United States led to a global surplus of between half a million and 2 million barrels per day.
More recently, a slowing demand outlook, especially in Asia but also Europe, has started dragging on prices.
Front-month U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures (CLc1) were trading at $37.18 per barrel at 0140 GMT, down 69 cents or 1.82 percent from their last settlement. Brent futures (LCOc1) were down 47 cents, or 1.24 percent, to $37.32 a barrel.
Traders said the price falls were largely a result of a weak outlook for next year and the closing of 2015 trade books.