(Kitco News) - World stock markets were mostly lower overnight, following Wall Street's sell off last Friday. U.S. stock indexes are pointed toward weaker openings when the New York day session begins.
Gold prices are slightly lower in pre U.S.-session trading, amid a lack of fresh, bullish fundamental news to support the safe-haven metal.
Focus is on this week's FOMC meeting that begins on Tuesday morning and ends Wednesday afternoon with a statement. The Federal Reserve is expected by many to slightly raise U.S. interest rates. Traders and investors are also keen to see if the Fed acts to further reduce its big balance sheet of government securities.
The "outside markets" on Monday morning see Nymex crude oil futures prices higher on short covering. The oil market bears still have the firm overall near-term technical advantage as prices are well below $50.00 a barrel.
Meantime, the U.S. Dollar Index is slightly lower. The greenback bears also hold the firm near-term technical advantage.
U.S. economic data due for release Monday is light and includes the monthly Treasury budget statement. The U.S. report pace picks up speed significantly Tuesday and the rest of this week.
By Jim Wyckoff, contributing to Kitco News; firstname.lastname@example.org