Crude Oil Prices Extend Recent Losses

India: Tonnes of ammonium nitrate moved to Hyderabad

But environmentalists say no amount of the explosive chemical is safe when stored in large quantities.

Authorities in the south Indian city of Chennai have moved hundreds of tonnes of explosive chemical ammonium nitrate to Hyderabad.

That is after customs officers fast-tracked the process following last week’s massive explosion in the Lebanese capital, Beirut.

The chemical was stored in Chennai since it was confiscated upon arrival five years ago.

Al Jazeera’s Elizabeth Puranam reports from New Delhi, India.

Here's what happened to the stock market on Friday

The Dow rose 34.30 points, or 0.1%, to 27,931.02. The S&P 500 was flat at 3,372.85. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.2% to close at 11,019.30. Stocks waffled around the flatline for most of the session as the S&P 500 failed once again to reach its all-time high.

Mixed retail sales data and stimulus latest

Retail sales for July rose 1.2%, the Commerce Department said. That's below a Dow Jones estimate of 2.3%. Excluding autos, however, retail sales rose 1.9% to top a forecast of 1.2%. In Washington, lawmakers seem unable to move forward with a coronavirus stimulus bill. This could drag on for weeks as the Senate is in recess until after Labor Day and Hose members have already left for the rest of the month. 

Cruise operators rise

Carnival and Norwegian Cruise Line advanced more than 1% each.

What happens next?

The Empire State Manufacturing index is set for release on Monday.

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Gold Prices Continue To Slide

Gold prices skidded on Friday and headed for a weekly loss in the wake of a firmer dollar and rising U.S. yields following tepid demand in a long-dated U.S. government bond auction on Thursday.

Spot gold dropped $19 or 0.98 percent to $1,941.00 an ounce and headed for a weekly loss of about 4 percent, marking its first weekly fall since early June and its biggest weekly percentage fall since early March.

The dollar steadied today as upbeat figures on U.S. employment and lackluster economic data from China put the brakes on a selldown of the world’s reserve currency.

Official data showed today that China’s industrial production grew 4.8 percent on a yearly basis in July, the same rate of growth as seen in June and weaker than the expected rise of 5.1 percent.

Retail sales dropped 1.1 percent from last year, confounding expectations for an increase of 0.1 percent.

During January to July period, fixed asset investment decreased 1.6 percent versus a 3.1 percent decrease in January to June.

Elsewhere, the euro area economy contracted at a record pace in the second quarter, as initially estimated, due to the containment measures taken by member countries to control the spread of the coronavirus, flash estimate from Eurostat showed.

Gross domestic product fell 12.1 percent sequentially in the second quarter, following a 3.6 percent drop in the first quarter. This was the sharpest decline seen since the series began in 1995.

Year-on-year, GDP was down 15 percent versus a 3.1 percent decline a quarter ago. This was also the sharpest decrease since 1995.

SBI’s Kisan card clients can revise limit via YONO

HDFC Bank offers loan card for forces

The State Bank of India (SBI) had introduced Kisan Credit Card (KCC) review option for YONO Krishi, the recently-unveiled platform that caters to farmers’ needs.

With this, farmers would no longer need to visit the branch to apply for a revision in their KCC limit.

“KCC review option on YONO Krishi will help farmers apply for the same in just four clicks from the comfort of their homes without any paperwork,” SBI said. This facility is expected to benefit over 75 lakh farmers.

Rajnish Kumar, chairman, SBI, said, “We believe that they (farmers) will now be experiencing hassle-free application process for their KCC limit revision.”

Separately, HDFC Bank unveiled ‘Shaurya KGC Card,’ a loan product for the armed forces personnel.

Targeted at 45 lakh Indian armed and paramilitary forces, this product comes with unique features and eligibility criteria specially crafted for people posted far away from their homes, HDFC Bank said.

Through the card, agriculture loans will be given to the personnel based on their land holdings and requirements. The product comes with a life cover worth ₹10 lakh against ₹2 lakh for other cards.

“With this, we have an equally good product for armed forces brethren as we have for farmers,” said Aditya Puri, managing director, HDFC Bank.

Crude Oil Prices Extend Recent Losses

Oil prices trimmed its losses on Friday despite retail sales and industrial production numbers for July continuing to point to weak recovery in China.

Benchmark Brent crude dropped 22 cents or 0.49 percent to $44.83 a barrel after dipping as low as $44.66 earlier in the day. It’s still heading for gain of more than 1 percent for the week on optimism about the pace of oil demand recovery.

West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 25 cents, or 0.60 percent, at $42.07 but headed for a gain of over 2 percent for the week.

Official data showed today that China’s industrial production grew 4.8 percent on a yearly basis in July, the same rate of growth as seen in June and weaker than the expected rise of 5.1 percent.

Retail sales dropped 1.1 percent from last year, confounding expectations for an increase of 0.1 percent.

Oil prices fell on Thursday after the International Energy Agency (IEA) cut its forecast for global oil demand for 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.