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(Kitco News) – World stock markets were steady to narrowly mixed in overnight trading. U.S.
stock indexes are pointed toward near-steady openings when the New York day session begins. Major focal points of market watchers this week are the Federal Reserve's FOMC minutes released on Wednesday afternoon and an OPEC meeting that begins Thursday.
Gold prices are slightly up Monday. The recent depreciation of the U.S. dollar has been bullish for the precious metals.
In overnight news, the Paris-based OECD think tank reported the world's developed countries had slower economic growth in the first quarter of this year. However, the growth pace of these countries is expected to increase significantly in the second quarter.
The key outside markets on Monday morning find the U.S. dollar index slightly lower and hitting another six-month low overnight. The dollar index bears remain in firm near-term technical control. Meantime, Nymex crude oil futures prices are higher and hit a four-week high overnight. Oil prices have trended solidly higher recently, to suggest sideways, or sideways-to-higher, price action in the near term. Thursday's OPEC meeting is expected to see the cartel continue its lower production quotas that were implemented last fall.
U.S. economic data due for release Monday includes the Chicago Fed national activity index, and the ISM semi-annual business and economic forecast. President Trump's full fiscal year 2018 budget is due out sometime this week. The U.S. economic data pace picks up strongly as this week progresses.