Gold prices are pushing ahead as a new report revealed that the U.S. economy had only added 266,000 jobs in April, which was far less than the 1 million economists had predicted. The precious metal is holding onto strong gains above $1,800 an ounce. Some analysts report that the disappointing jobs data will be a significant tailwind for gold prices as it relieves a lot of market pressure for the Fed to tighten monetary policy sooner than expected.

 

Kitco News/Neils Christensen
Gold prices pushing higher following weak jobs gains in April

Gold prices are holding on to strong gains above $1,800 an ounce as the U.S. economy was unable to meet the high bar set for the labor market, creating significantly fewer jobs than expected in April.

Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said 266,000 jobs were created in last month, economists were expecting to see job gains of around 990,000.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate ticked slightly higher to 6.1%. Economists were expecting to see a reading around 5.8%.

After breaking $1,800 an ounce Thursday, gold market was seeing some strong technical gains ahead of the jobs report data. The precious metal has managed to push higher in initial reaction. Spot gold last traded at $1,833.90 an ounce, up 1% on the day.

According to some analysts the disappointing jobs data will be a significant tailwind for gold prices as the it relieves a lot of market pressure for the Federal Reserve to tighten monetary policy sooner than expected.

Continue reading, here.

 

CNBC/Hugh Son, Natasha Turak
Goldman Sachs unveils new cryptocurrency trading team in employee memo

Goldman Sachs has formally kicked off the cryptocurrency trading era on Wall Street.

The bank informed its markets personnel on Thursday that a newly created cryptocurrency trading desk had successfully traded two kinds of bitcoin-linked derivatives, according to an internal memo obtained exclusively by CNBC.

The crypto team exists within the firm’s global currencies and emerging markets trading division, reporting to Goldman partner Rajesh Venkataramani, who authored the memo, and is part of the bank’s overall digital assets effort led by Mathew McDermott.

Goldman Sachs, a dominant global investment bank for trading fixed income and equities, had been mulling the creation of a bitcoin trading desk since at least 2017. The firm tabled those plans initially and restarted the crypto trading team in March, Reuters reported earlier this year. The Thursday memo was the first time New York-based Goldman officially acknowledged its involvement in crytpo-currency trading.

Under CEO David Solomon, Goldman is seeking to broaden its market presence by “selectively onboarding” crypto trading institutions to expand offerings, the bank said. The firm also said it launched a new software platform this week that provides the latest cryptocurrency prices and news to clients.

Read the full memo, here.

 

CNBC/Lucy Handley
Bank of America warns strong economic data could hit stocks by causing the Fed to dial back help

A so-called taper tantrum could be looming as central banks reduce fiscal stimulus, Bank of America has warned.

Tapering is when governments reduce financial stimulus or quantitative easing (QE), often causing stock prices to fall. The phrase taper tantrum was coined in 2013 when the Federal Reserve said it would gradually reduce — or taper — the financial stimulus put in place after the 2008 financial crisis, causing soaring Treasury yields and stock market jitters.

In a note Friday, the BofA strategists said this tapering had already begun and was “bad news” for stocks, in particular “FAAMGs”: Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, and Alphabet’s Google.

But they also highlighted some “good news” on the horizon.

This good news, according to the strategists led by Michael Hartnett, was that the Federal Reserve is “determined to stoke Wall St exuberance & Main St inequality.”

“Fed has been tech’s best friend for past 10 years,” they added.

However, they noted that the recent sell-off in technology stocks is “reminiscent of 2000/01 post-bubble price action,” while some commentators think the market is close to its peak.

Read the full story, here.

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