Gold (NYSE:GLD) futures continued to rise Wednesday, closing at their highest price in two weeks, gaining nearly $47 an ounce in the last two days. Gold for August Delivery gained 1.1% today, rising to $1,529.20 an ounce on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYSE:NYX), only five dollars and change off its record high of $1,534.50 on June 22.
Yesterday gold futures jumped over $30 an ounce after Moody’s downgraded Portugal and previously allayed investor fears over Europe’s debt issues were reawakened. China’s own debt woes are also giving gold futures a boost after the People’s Bank of China raised lending and deposit rates by 0.25%., the third increase this year.
According to Adrian Ash, head of research at BullionVault.com, gold futures usually drop off in May until September when India’s festive demand returns, pushing up prices, followed by China’s (NYSE:FXI) New Year gold buying. But with prices already high this summer, they stand only to rise as the summer comes to an end.
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While Europe is the focus of economic fears driving gold (NYSE:GLD) buying, investors will also be paying attention to U.S. jobs data this week, including the Labor Department’s weekly unemployment benefits filings due out Thursday, and joblessness and growth figures for nonfarm payrolls in June, due out Friday. Today’s news from the Institute for Supply Management that the U.S. services-sector index fell 1.3% in June to 53.3% is partly responsible for today’s gains.