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Gold extends push above US$1,500 in final hours before jobs data
[SINGAPORE] Gold pushed higher into the US$1,500s an ounce as investors ticked off the hours until the key monthly US employment report, which may add to mounting signs of a slowdown and stoke expectations the US Federal Reserve will be driven to reduce interest rates once again.
Bullion is heading for a weekly gain after a slew of data pointed to widening economic weakness, bolstering haven demand. America's service industries joined manufacturing in taking a big step back last month, while in Europe, reports showed the economy stagnated at the end of the third quarter.
Gold has rallied this year as the Fed lowered interest rates, and bets are rising for another cut at the next policy meeting at the end of this month. September's non-farm payrolls data will be closely parsed, as will separate remarks due from Fed chairman Jerome Powell. The trade war, the US House inquiry into impeaching President Donald Trump, and Brexit are among some of the uncertainties that are acting as a tailwind for the precious metal.
"The weak economic data in the US invoked plenty of support for the precious metals sector," Australia and New Zealand Banking Group said in an note. "Investors continue to flood into the gold-backed ETFs, with holdings extending their streak of daily inflows."
Spot gold rose as much as 0.3 per cent to US$1,509.39 an ounce and traded at US$1,508.82 at 10.29am in Singapore, up 0.8 per cent this week. Prices hit a six-year high of US$1,557.11 on Sept 4. Silver is also heading for a weekly gain, while platinum and palladium are down.