Gold slipped in Europe on Friday as weaker oil prices and a slightly firmer dollar dampened buying interest, but trading was cautious ahead of key US non-farm payrolls data later in the session.
Platinum dropped up to 2.5% after US economic data came in weaker than expected on Thursday, fuelling fears slowing growth could dent demand for the industrial metal. Gold fell to $909.20/910.20 an ounce at 0932 GMT from $913.45/914.65 an ounce late in New York on Thursday, when it posted a volatile session, trading in a wide $20 range. “I would suspect that we will see (gold) staying around these levels until the data comes out,” Standard Bank analyst Walter de Wet said.
US July non-farm payrolls data is due out at 1230 GMT. Economists polled by Reuters estimated 75,000 jobs were lost in the month, compared to 62,000 in “The US labor market report often leads to wide swings,” Dresdner Kleinwort consultant Peter Fertig noted. The data is expected to have a significant impact on the dollar as well as the broader markets. The dollar moved towards a one-month high against the euro early on Friday ahead of the report. June. “The
Gold is typically pressured by a stronger dollar, which reduces the precious metal’s appeal as a currency hedge, as well as making it more expensive for holders of other currencies. A dip in crude prices is also pressuring gold. New York crude futures slipped by more than $1 on Friday amid fears US demand may fall.
A high oil price is a key precursor of rising inflation, against which gold is often bought as a hedge. A softening of inflation fears in recent weeks has been a key factor pushing prices lower. “The fear of inflation isn’t quite as prominent as it was two months ago,” Commerzbank trader Rory McVeigh said. “People are looking at the global economic outlook, and it appears to be more controlled now,” he added. Weaker oil undermines interest in commodities as an asset class, analysts say.
SOFT PHYSICAL DEMAND
From a demand perspective, call for physical gold has been weak in recent months as high and volatile prices discourage buying, coupled with seasonal factors.
Turkey, one of the world’s top three gold consumers, said its imports of the precious metal fell to 10.7% in July from 45.7 tons a year before, and were down 42% in the first seven months of the year.
Platinum prices slipped 2.5% as softer-than-expected US data out on Thursday fuelled fears of a slowdown in economic growth.
Platinum, a key component in autocatalysts, is heavily reliant on the car industry to support demand. Any slowdown in economic growth, as indicated by Thursday’s soft Q2 US GDP data, tends to pressure the metal.
Spot platinum fell to $1,712.50/1,732.50 an ounce from $1,749.50/1,769.50 late in New York. Earlier it touched a session low of $1,704.50.
Among other precious metals, spot palladium fell to $371.50/379.50 an ounce from $379.50/387.50 late in New York. Silver edged down to $17.50/17.57 an ounce from $17.71/17.77 late in New York. (Reuters)