CNBC/Anjali Sundaram
Yelp data shows 60% of business closures due to the coronavirus pandemic are now permanent

Yelp on Wednesday released its latest Economic Average Report, revealing business closures across the U.S. are increasing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic’s economic toll.

As of Aug, 31, 163,735 businesses have indicated on Yelp that they have closed. That’s down from the 180,000 that closed at the very beginning of the pandemic. However, it actually shows a 23% increase in the number of closures since mid-July.

In addition to monitoring closed businesses, Yelp also takes into account the businesses whose closures have become permanent. That number has steadily increased throughout the past six months, now reaching 97,966, representing 60% of closed businesses that won’t be reopening.

“Overall, Yelp’s data shows that business closures have continued to rise with a 34% increase in permanent closures since our last report in mid-July,” Justin Norman, Yelp’s vice president of data science, told CNBC.

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Red Rock Secured/Sean Kelly
Don’t Wait for Long Lines to Buy Gold!

It happened earlier this year in Germany.

Now it is happening in Turkey.

As the financial system unravels, people in Turkey are standing in long lines to trade their paper and digital money for gold.

Across the country, dealer’s phones are ringing non-stop.

Demand is so strong that mint employees are working overtime, weekends, and holidays.

The Wall Street Journal reports that gold has produced the highest returns in Turkey over the past 10 years, outperforming the dollar, real estate, bonds, and equities.

What’s the problem in Turkey’s economy?  Unemployment is high, over 13 percent. Like our own, Turkey’s central bank has pulled out all the stops to suppress interest rates.  That means money-printing.

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Market Watch/Mark DeCambre
Gold prices rise ahead of Fed’s policy statement

Gold futures were edging higher on Wednesday, with commodity investors positioning ahead of a Federal Reserve statement that is likely to prove mostly bullish for long-term metals investors.

Investors are expecting the Fed to indicate continued support even if the central bank isn’t expected to change interest rates Wednesday from a range between 0% and 0.25%. The Fed’s statement will come about a half-hour after metals settle on Comex.

Against that backdrop, December gold GCZ20, +0.59% GC00, +0.59% picked up $6.10, or 0.3%, at $1,972.40 an ounce, after rising 0.1% on Tuesday and marking the highest most-active contract settlement since Sept. 1, according to FactSet data.

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Kitco/Neils Christensen
Gold price holding steady following disappointing U.S. retail sales numbers

The gold market is holding on to its overnight gains  as fewer U.S. consumers went shopping in August.

U.S. retail sales rose only 0.6% in August following July’s revised rise of 0.9%, according to the latest data from the U.S. Commerce Department, released Wednesday; the data missed expectations as economists were forecasting an increase of 1.1%.

July’s data was revised lower from its initial estimate of 1.2%

Meanwhile, core sales, which strips out vehicle sales rose 0.7% last month, following July’s rise of 1.9%. Economists were expecting to see a 1% rise.

The control group, which excludes autos, gas, building materials, and food services fell 0.1%. Economists were expecting to see a 0.3% increase.

The weaker than expected data has seen gold prices push a few dollars higher in initial reaction. December gold futures last traded at $1,977.10 an ounce, up 0.55% on the day.

The weaker than expected consumption data came a month as U.S. government’s $600 a week enhancement to  unemployment  benefits ended. Many economists noted that the extra benefits was a critical factor in strong sales numbers during the early summer.

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