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Gold prices are firmer in pre-U.S.-day-session trading. The gold bulls remain in firm technical control, to suggest more sideways-to-higher price action in the near term.
The major economic data point of the week is Thursday's European Central Bank monetary policy meeting, including a press conference from ECB President Mario Draghi after the meeting. Traders and investors are wondering if the ECB will announce a scaling back of its years-long bond-buying program, called quantitative easing. However, most do not expect the ECB to make any monetary policy changes at this meeting. However, Draghi could provide clues on the matter at his press conference. The Euro currency could become volatile in FOREX trading, in the wake of the ECB meeting and Draghi's press conference.
In overnight news, the Euro zone revised second-quarter gross domestic product report showed a 0.6% rise from the first quarter and was up 2.3%, year-on-year. The annual number was the highest growth rate for the Euro zone since the first quarter of 2011.
China's central bank on Thursday fixed the country's currency, the yuan, at its highest level against the U.S. dollar in 16 months, reports said.
Malaysia's central bank left its monetary policy unchanged Thursday, as expected.
The key outside markets on Thursday morning see the U.S. dollar index lower and not far above the recent 15-month low. Meantime, Nymex crude oil futures are also weaker.
U.S. economic data due for release Thursday includes the weekly jobless claims report, revised productivity and costs, the IBD/TIPP economic optimism index, and the weekly DOE liquid energy stocks report.