Gold jumped to its session highs at around 10 a.m. EST when the Institute for Supply Management's manufacturing index declined to 49.5 in November from 51.7 in October. A number less than 50 suggests contraction in the manufacturing sector. A consensus of economists had expected a reading of 51.3.
The HSBC PMI manufacturing index for China posted a reading of 50.5, which was a bit higher than economists' expectation of 50.4. The news was the first improvement in operating conditions there in 13 months, according to
Talks on the so-called fiscal cliff -- when tax relief measures and deep spending cuts will automatically go into effect at the beginning of 2013 -- continued through the weekend as U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner reiterated to
that there wouldn't be a deal unless Republicans agreed to raising tax rates on the wealthiest Americans.
House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) said Sunday in an interview with
that he believed raising tax rates would hurt the economy, and questioned if there was a better way to raise revenue.
Gold mining stocks were mixed Monday. Shares of
(GFI - Get Report)
were losing 3.8%, but shares of
(RGLD - Get Report)
were jumping 2.4%.
Among volume leaders,
(ABX - Get Report)
was dipping 0.61%, and
(NEM - Get Report)
was down 2.1%.
SPDR Gold Trust
was up 0.10%, and
iShares Gold Trust
was inching higher by 0.12%.
-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.