Gold ends lower, logs second straight weekly loss

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Gold ended near six-week lows on Friday, logging a second straight weekly loss as an improving U.S. economic outlook lifted the dollar and bolstered appetite for risk.

Bullion has dropped about $100 an ounce from a six-month high in the last nine trading sessions on declining geopolitical tensions, strong U.S. economic data and comments by Federal Reserve chairman Janet Yellen that interest rates could rise in the first half of 2015.

Low interest rates, which cut the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion above other assets, had been an important factor driving bullion higher in recent years.

Chart: Precious Metals

U.S. gold futures for June delivery settled 50 cents lower at $1,294.30 an ounce, down 3.1 percent on the week.

Meanwhile, spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,293 an ounce, after falling to its lowest since Feb. 13, on Thursday.

The dollar rose 0.1 percent against a basket of currencies, while European and U.S. shares also moved higher.

The U.S. currency was aided by data on Friday showing U.S. consumer spending rose in February, in the latest sign that the economy was regaining strength after a setback caused by bad weather.

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