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Positive labor market data taking its toll on gold prices; weekly jobless claims fall to new pandemic low

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(Kitco News) - The gold market is seeing further sellling pressure as a wave of positive labor market data hits the marketplace. Less than 400,000 America workers applied for first-time unemployment benefits last week, falling to a new post pandemic low.

Weekly jobless claims have risen less than expected for the fifth consecutive week. Thursday the U.S. Labor Department said that weekly jobless claims fell by 20,000 o 385,000, down from the previous week’s revised estimate of 406,000 claims.

“This is the lowest level for initial claims since March 14, 2020 when it was 256,000,” the report said.

The latest labor market data was better than expected as consensus forecasts looking for claims to rise to 400,000. Ahead of the latest weekly employment data, private payroll processing company ADP said that the U.S. economy created 978,000 jobs last month, significantly beating expectations.

Positive labor market data is taking its toll on the gold market. August gold futures last traded at $1,888.90 an ounce, down roughly 1% on the day.

The four-week moving average for new claims – often viewed as a more reliable measure of the labor market since it flattens week-to-week volatility – fell to 428,000 down by 30,500 claims from the previous week.

“This is the lowest level for this average since March 14, 2020 when it was 225,500,” the report said.

Meanwhile, continuing jobless claims, which represent the number of people already receiving benefits, were at 3.771 million during the week ending May 22, an increase of 169,000 from the previous week’s revised level.

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