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Gold dips 1% as strong global markets weigh

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Gold dropped 1 per cent on Thursday as upbeat sentiment on equities and positive US growth data dented the appeal of the safe-haven asset, though the metal was still stuck in its narrowest monthly range in 12 years.

[NEW YORK] Gold dropped 1 per cent on Thursday as upbeat sentiment on equities and positive US growth data dented the appeal of the safe-haven asset, though the metal was still stuck in its narrowest monthly range in 12 years.

Silver dipped to an eight-week low, falling in tandem with other industrial metals, traders said.

The US dollar, in which gold is priced, held firm after US jobless and consumer spending data, taking support from Wednesday's uplift on third-quarter U.S. economic growth.

Spot gold was down 0.7 per cent at US$1,274.51 an ounce by 1.53pm EST (1853 GMT), having earlier hit its lowest since Nov 14 at US$1,270.11.

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The price is up 0.3 per cent this month, though it has been stuck between US$1,265 and US$1,300 throughout November.

US gold futures settled down US$8.90, or 0.7 per cent, at US$1,273.20 per ounce, closing the month up 0.2 per cent.

Silver dropped to US$16.30 an ounce, its lowest since Oct 6 and was last down 0.7 per cent at US$16.41, headed for a 1.7 per cent drop over last month.

"Silver is being sold off as part of the industrial complex," said John Lawrence, senior metals trader for Heraeus Precious Metals in New York.

Global equities were on course to finish November with a 13th consecutive monthly gain, though a dive in US technology stocks left investors wondering whether the longest global equity bull run in living memory might be starting to splutter.

"Optimism (in equities) is at record highs, so it should come off a bit, which would be reasonably positive for gold. But the stronger dollar will cap any gains that come on the back of (that)," said Martin Arnold, strategist at ETF Securities.

Early in the session a stronger US dollar weighed on gold, but the greenback reversed as investors added bets that the US central bank will continue to unwind its stimulus plan, helping gold to move off its lows.

The US economy's growth will warrant continued interest rate increases amid a strengthened global recovery, outgoing US Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said on Wednesday.

Bullion is highly sensitive to rising US interest rates, which increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding gold.

Palladium fell 0.4 per cent to US$1,009.50, but headed for a 3 per cent monthly rise. Platinum was up 0.6 per cent at US$941.80 an ounce, also poised for a 3 per cent rise for the month.

REUTERS

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