By Gina Lee
Investing.com – Gold was up on Tuesday morning in Asia despite the strong U.S. sales boosted stocks market, investors are monitoring the impact of the omicron COVID-19 variant on the economy.
U.S. retail sales rose 8.5% from Nov. 1 to Dec. 24, according to Mastercard Inc (NYSE: MA ).’s SpendingPulse survey. The survey, released on Sunday, improved investor sentiment and boosted U.S. shares to record highs.
Investors are also monitoring the impact of omicron on the economic recovery. The U.K. will not tighten restrictive measures before the end of the year despite the number of surging cases. France will further tighten COVID-19 measures but will not impose a curfew for New Year's Eve.
The U.S. also cut recommended isolation time for infected Americans to five from 10 days.
In Asia Pacific, the Chinese city of Xi’an tightened curbs on travel on Monday, its fifth day of a strict lockdown. Xi’an reported 150 local cases on Sunday.
The People’s Bank of China also reiterated on Monday that the yuan exchange rate will be more flexible in 2022 and will remain stable overall at a reasonable and balanced level. The central bank added that it will ensure the overall size of credit keeps growing in 2022.
Japanese data released earlier in the day showed that industrial production grew a better-than-expected 7.2% month-on-month in November. The jobs/application ratio was 1.15, while the unemployment rate was 2.8%, in November.
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