Gold settled higher on Friday as U.S. equities slipped, but gains were limited by fears over deflation after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said U.S. labor markets remain hampered by the effects of the Great Recession.
In a speech at a central banking conference in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Yellen said the U.S. central bank should move cautiously in determining when interest rates should rise, as economic disruption of the last five years has left millions of workers sidelined, discouraged, or stuck in part-time jobs.
U.S. gold futures for December delivery settled $4.80 lower at $1,280.20 an ounce, down about 2 percent on the week—the biggest drop since the week ended July 18.
Spot gold rose 0.2 percent to $1,280 an ounce, not far from a two-month low of $1,273.06 hit on Thursday.
Bullion has dropped about 3 percent in the past five sessions, underperforming U.S. Treasury bonds, which are considered the preferred safe-haven investment, traders said.
``I see no reasons to own gold, which is likely to trend lower with rallies being sold. The Treasury yields at under 3 percent and crude oil prices showing signs of a recession are significant headwinds for precious metals,'' said Jonathan Jossen, COMEX gold options floor trader in New York.