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(Kitco News) – World stock markets were mixed overnight. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward firmer openings when the New York day session begins.
Gold prices are firmer in pre-U.S.-session trading. Bulls are trying to keep prices from falling below the technically important $1,200.00 level.
Focus of the marketplace today is on Fed Chair Janet Yellen's testimony on U.S. monetary policy before a U.S. House of Representatives committee. As usual, markets and Fed watchers will try to glean from her remarks clues on the timing and nature of the next monetary policy action from the U.S. central bank. Many believe the Fed will continue on a path of gradually tightening monetary policy.
In overnight news, the Euro zone's May industrial output was reported at a five-year high, at up 1.3% from April and up 4.0% from the same time last year.
The key "outside markets" on Wednesday morning see Nymex crude oil futures firmer and trading just below $46.00 a barrel. Traders are expecting a bullish weekly U.S. storage report out later today. Reports today said Saudi Arabia in June produced more crude oil than its agreed-upon level to comply with an OPEC agreement. The oil market bears are in firm near-term technical control. Meantime, the U.S. dollar index is slightly higher early today. The greenback bears have the firm near-term technical advantage amid a price downtrend.
U.S. economic data due for release Wednesday includes the weekly MBA mortgage applications survey, the weekly DOE liquid energy stocks report and the Federal Reserve's beige book.