RTTNews - Gold prices moved slightly lower Wednesday as traders collected profits on yesterday's rally to a two-month high. The losses were minimized as the dollar remained near long-term lows against its European rivals, boosting gold's hedge value.

August gold dropped $964.20 per ounce, down $3.30. Prices had jumped more than $10 in the previous session as the dollar fell to long-term lows.

Gold's losses were limited as the dollar remained weak against its European rivals. The greenback slipped below 1.7000 versus the sterling for the first time since since October and traded in a range near a 7 1/2-month low versus the euro.

In economic news, ADP said non-farm private employment fell by 371,000 jobs in July following a revised decrease of 463,000 jobs in June. Economists had been expecting a decrease of about 350,000 jobs compared to the loss of 473,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

Initial jobless claims data is due on Thursday and the Labor Department's employment status report is expected on Friday.

The Mortgage Bankers Association's Market Composite Index increased 4.4 percent last week on a seasonally adjusted basis from the previous week as the contract interest rates for 30- and 15-year fixed rate mortgages fell slightly, according to data released on Wednesday.

Later in the morning, government data was released showing factory orders rose 0.4% in June, compared to the 0.8% decline expected by economists. Orders jumped 2.3% excluding transportation.

Separately, the July ISM non-manufacturing survey came fell to 46.4. Economists expected the index to show a reading of 48 after having increased to 47 in June.

The run of employment data continues as initial jobless claims data is expected at 8:30 a.m. ET. First-time applicants for unemployment benefits are expected to fall to 580,000 in the week ended Aug. 1, compared to 584,000 reported a week earlier.

For comments and feedback: contact editorial@rttnews.com