Gold Eases Below $1,800 On Firm Dollar

Gold prices slipped below the key $1,800 level on Tuesday and the dollar held firm as the coronavirus continued to spread and diplomatic tensions between the U.S. and China escalated.

Spot gold dropped half a percent to $1,793.30 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures were down 1.1 percent at $1,794.70.

Growth worries persist as Covid-19 cases continue to spike in the U.S. and some other parts of the world.

Hong Kong reimposed social distancing measures to combat a sudden spike in coronavirus infections and Singapore's economy plunged into a recession last quarter, fueling worries about the economic recovery.

Singapore's economy contracted by a record 41.2 percent from the previous three months and 12.6 percent year-on-year in the April-June quarter. It was the worst quarterly figure for gross domestic product ever recorded in the country.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director of the World Health Organization, warned that the pandemic is worsening globally and that "there will be no return to the old normal for the foreseeable future."

His remarks came as Florida shattered the national record for a state's largest single-day increase in new confirmed cases.

California on Monday banned indoor dining and shuttered movie theaters and bars as coronavirus infection spread beyond the Sun Belt.

Indoor religious services, gyms and hair and nail salons are again off-limits in most of the state to head off surging coronavirus cases and hospitalizations.

Apple has told its employees in the United States that it does not anticipate a full return to physical offices before the end of the year.

Meanwhile, U.S.-China tensions intensified after the Trump administration rejected China's expansive maritime claims in the South China Sea, a move that Beijing criticized as inciting tensions in the region.

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