Los Angeles CA, July 16 (Tangible Investments) - by James O’Dell - Gold and Silver extended losses on Tuesday, with Gold easing $13.30 or 1.02 percent to close at $1,293.85 ounce, on a stronger dollar and plunging crude oil prices that hit two month lows below $100 a barrel, pressuring the metals. Silver dipped $0.22 or 1.05 percent to close at $20.71 an ounce, while the Gold/Silver ratio, the measure of the number of Silver ounces needed to buy an ounce of Gold, inched up to 62.47.
Fed Chair Janet Yellen's announcement in her semi-annual testimony to the Senate Banking Committee on Tuesday, that the U.S. central bank could boost rates earlier or faster if hiring and wages should accelerate in an unexpected way, also added pressure to the metals. Yellen said in her testimony that “A high degree of monetary policy accommodation remains appropriate,” and added that “Although the economy continues to improve, the recovery is not yet complete.”
Meanwhile, geopolitical concerns across the globe continue to bolster the yellow metal, beginning with Iraq, where ISIS rebels, who continue to press on towards taking down Baghdad, are now in possession of “upwards of 52 155mm M198 howitzers” with sophisticated GPS targeting capabilities, according to BusinessInsider.
The conflict in Ukraine enters its fourth month on news that at least 11 civilians were killed on Tuesday in the rebel held town of Snizhne when an apartment building was hit by shelling. Both government forces and pro-Russian insurgents are denying responsibility.
In Israel, thousands of Palestinians fled their homes on Wednesday in Gaza City, not knowing whether their homes would still be standing when they return, after Israel airdropped leaflets warning people to leave the area under threat of another looming bombing attack. The Palestinian death toll in nine days has climbed to 204, with 1,450 wounded, say Palestinian health officials. There has been one Israeli killed and several wounded since the air strikes began on July 8.
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