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Gold futures jump to 2-week high, copper slumps near 5-week low

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Shutterstock photo - - Gold prices traded at the highest level in almost two-weeks on Tuesday, but gains were likely to remain limited as investors remained on the sidelines amid a lack of fresh trading cues.

On the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, gold for August delivery rose to a session high of $1,263.70 a troy ounce, the most since May 28, before trimming gains to last trade at $1,261.20 during U.S. morning hours, up 0.58%, or $7.80.

Gold eased up 0.11%, or $1.40, on Monday to settle at $1,253.90. Prices were likely to find support at $1,241.20 an ounce, the low from June 5 and resistance at $1,267.50, the high from May 28.

Traders continued to digest the implications of last week's monetary easing move by the European Central Bank and U.S. jobs data which was largely in line with expectations.

The ECB cut the main refinancing rate in the euro area to a record low 0.15% last week and imposed negative deposit rates on commercial lenders, in a bid to stimulate lending to businesses. ECB President Mario Draghi also kept the option of quantitative easing on the table.

Meanwhile, the Department of Labor said last week that the U.S. economy added 217,000 jobs in May, just under expectations for jobs growth of 218,000, while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at a five-and-a-half year low of 6.3%.

The precious metal has been under heavy selling pressure recently as investors bet on strong economic growth in the U.S. during the second quarter, as the economy shakes off the effects of a weather-related slowdown over the winter.

Also on the Comex, silver for July delivery inched up 0.56%, or 10.7 cents, to trade at $19.17 a troy ounce, the highest since May 27.

Elsewhere in metals trading, copper for July delivery dipped 0.29%, or 0.9 cents, to trade at $3.035 a pound, as Chinese authorities continued to investigate whether companies used the same copper, aluminum and iron ore stocks as collateral for multiple loans.

Concerns about fraud in commodities markets spread to a second Chinese port of Penglai on Monday after authorities already began conducting a probe into allegations of fraud in the port of Qingdao last week.

Copper is used as collateral by companies and investors in China, in an effort to work around strict lending standards enforced by Beijing.

Meanwhile, official data released earlier showed that the annual rate of consumer price inflation in China ticked up to a four-month high of 2.5% in May while producer price inflation slowed.

China is the world's largest copper consumer, accounting for almost 40% of world consumption last year. offers an extensive set of professional tools for the financial markets.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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