Saudi King sacks joint forces commander, refers him along others for investigation: State TV

U.S. isolated as it vetoes U.N. resolution on foreign militants

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The United States on Monday vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution on foreign militants fighting with groups like Islamic State because it did not address repatriation, an issue that has long-pitted Washington against its European allies.

The remaining 14 council members voted in favor of the resolution drafted by Indonesia, isolating the United States.

Crude Oil Futures Settle Lower

Crude oil futures retreated after early gains and settled lower on Monday amid a bit of uncertainty about outlook for energy demand due to continued rise in coronavirus cases.

Investors were also weighing the likely impact of OPEC-led production cuts on crude prices, and this presumably helped limit oil’s downside. Data showing continued expansion in China’s manufacturing activity, and a surge in Japanese industrial production helped as well.

Still, the likelihood of a drop in crude imports by China due to the fairly huge stockpiles in the country prevented traders from creating any significant long positions in the contract.

West Texas Intermediate Crude oil futures for October ended down $0.36 or about 0.8% at $42.61 a barrel.

WTI futures had a fairly good month, with the contract gaining 5.8% in August, extending gains for a fourth successive month.

Brent crude futures were down marginally at $45.79 a barrel.

According to reports, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company has stated that it will reducer supplies by about 30% in October, up from a 5% cut in September, in order to meet its commitment on the recent OPEC+ agreement.

Macron Says Lebanon Visit Draws Line Under Old Political Era

French President Emmanuel Macron said his visit to Lebanon will help turn a page in Beirut as the city struggles to recover from the port explosion earlier this month.

“The objective of this visit is clearly to mark an end to a political chapter,” Macron said in televised comments after arriving in the country, insisting that it was the Lebanese political institutions that were responsible for the emergence of Mustafa Abid as prime minister-elect earlier on Monday. He urged the next administration to pursue wide-ranging reforms to get the economy back on its feet.

Read More: A Little-Known Diplomat Will Become Lebanon’s New Premier (1)

Gold Futures Settle Higher As Dollar Drifts Lower

Gold prices edged higher after a weak start on Monday. Although the most active gold futures contract closed the day with a gain, they posted a modest loss for the month.

A weak U.S. dollar and a mixed trend on Wall Street supported gold’s uptick.

The dollar turned weak following Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell outlining an accommodative policy change last week, which could result in inflation moving slightly higher and interest rates staying lower for longer.

The dollar index, which slipped to 92.37 from around 93.00 on Friday, dropped down to a low of 91.99 by late morning today before recovering to 92.13, still trailing its previous close by over 0.25%.

Gold futures for December ended up $3.70 or about 0.2% at $1,978.60 an ounce, off the day’s low of $1,962.30 an ounce.

Gold futures shed about 0.4% in August.

Silver futures for December closed higher by $0.804 at $28.594 an ounce, while Copper futures for December settled at $3.0615 per pound, gaining $0.0420 for the day.

Data from China showing continued expansion in the country’s manufacturing activity contributed a bit to gold’s uptick. The latest survey from the National Bureau of Statistics said China’s manufacturing PMI came in with a reading of 51.0. That was lower than an expected score of 51.2 and down from July’s 51.1, but was still fairly good.

The non-manufacturing index came in with a score of 55.2, beating forecasts for a reading of 55.0. In July, the index came in with a reading of 54.2.

GameStop shares soar 27 percent on Chewy.com founder’s stake

Shares of GameStop shares jumped more than 27 percent on Monday after it emerged that the founder of pet food company Chewy.com took a stake in the video game retailer.

Ryan Cohen, whose Chewy.com was scooped up in 2017 for $3.35 billion by PetSmart, has taken a 9-percent stake in struggling GameStop via his RC Ventures fund, according to a government filing.

RC Venture wrote that GameStop’s shares — it acquired 5.8 million shares — were “undervalued and represented an attractive opportunity” in the Securities and Exchange filing.

GameStop has been struggling as more gamers migrate to digital downloads rather than buying videos and consoles from the chain even as the pandemic boosted online sales for the Grapevine, Texas-based retailer.

By one estimate, GameStop’s online sales soared by as much as 1,500 percent at the beginning of the pandemic, according to Earnest Research.

RC Ventures became the third largest investor in GameStop behind Blackrock and Fidelity, according to Bloomberg data.

The investment comes shortly before a wave of new consoles from Nintendo, Microsoft and Sony are set to come out this fall.

Shares of GameStop traded up 27.85 percent, or $1.50, to $6.89 in mid-day trading.

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Saudi King sacks joint forces commander, refers him along others for investigation: State TV

CAIRO (Reuters) – Saudi King Salman sacked on Monday the joint forces commander by placing him into retirement and referring him for investigation, Saudi state TV said.

The king also relieved, in a royal decree, the deputy emir of Al-Jouf region from his post and referred him as well, along with a number of officers and civil servants in the ministry of defense, for investigation for corruption, state TV added.