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(Kitco News) - Asian and European stock markets were lower Friday, on the back of sharp losses in the crude oil futures market seen on Thursday. Global markets fell despite U.S. stock indexes posting record highs Thursday. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward slightly lower openings when the New York day session begins.
Gold prices are posting good gains in pre-U.S. day session trading. A weaker U.S. dollar index Friday is helping out the gold market bulls. Also, there is a bit of risk aversion in the marketplace heading into a long U.S. holiday weekend. News that President Donald Trump's son-in-law is being investigated by the FBI regarding Russia's involvement in the U.S. presidential election is also adding some uncertainty to the marketplace.
The focal point of the U.S. trading session will be the second estimate of first-quarter gross domestic product. First-quarter GDP is expected to come in at up 0.8% versus the initial estimate of up 0.7%. A miss to the downside could prompt the Federal Reserve to rethink its monetary policy strategy, which is presently to initiate more slight interest rate increases this year.
The other key outside market on Friday sees Nymex crude oil futures prices a bit firmer on a corrective bounce from the sharp losses posted Thursday. The oil market bears have gained some near-term technical strength to begin to suggest the market put in a near-term top this week.
Other U.S. economic data due for release Friday includes durable goods orders and the University of Michigan consumer sentiment survey is also released.