Futures & Commodities

Gold ends higher, logs fourth straight weekly gain

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Gold settled higher on Friday, posting its fourth straight weekly gain, as weak U.S. data on consumer spending hurt the dollar.

U.S. consumer spending rose less than expected in May, prompting economists to downgrade estimates for second-quarter growth.

Chart: Precious Metals

The was poised to end the week with a whimper, dropping to a more than one-month low against the yen on Friday after downbeat U.S. spending data gave investors no reason to hope for higher U.S. rates anytime soon.

for August delivery ended the trading session $3.00 higher at $1,320.00 an ounce, up 0.4 percent for the week.

Spot gold, meanwhile, was up 0.1 percent at $1,318 an ounce, undermined by profit-taking and a lack of news. Still, the metal was not far from $1,325.90—its highest since mid April, hit earlier in the week.

"The technical profile suggests potential for a near-term push to the $1,370-72 area," ANZ analysts said. "But this would be seen as a medium-term range-defining move, rather than a reversal in the downtrend."

Traders warned the metal could still see some choppy trading amid concerns over weak imports in top consumer China and the discovery of $15 billion of loans tied to falsified gold deals in the country.

Chinese gold processing firms have used falsified gold transactions since 2012 to borrow 94.4 billion yuan ($15.2 billion) from banks, the country's chief auditor said.

Most commodity-financing deals are legitimate, but revelations of borrowing based on fake transactions in the gold market, on the heels of alleged metals financing fraud at Qingdao Port, may prompt authorities to launch another crackdown on commodity financing. China's gold imports from Hong Kong are already at lower levels, with overseas purchases in May dropping to their lowest since January last year as the pace of buying calms after a record 2013.

--By Reuters. For more information on precious metals, please click here.