Metals

Gold gains as gloomy U.S. economic outlook dents dollar

Key Points
  • Spot gold was up 0.2% at $1,945.45 per ounce by 0236 GMT. Gold is up 0.2% so far this week, having shed 4.5% in the week to August 14, its worst in five months.
  • U.S. gold futures rose 0.4% to $1,953.80.
  • "A deterioration in U.S. labor market data, falling bond yields and continued geopolitical tensions continue to support gold," said National Australia Bank economist John Sharma, adding that gold could trade between $1,920 and $1,980 in the near term.
A man handles gold bars and coins.
Akos Stiller | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Gold prices rose on Friday after bleak U.S. jobless claims data reinforced fears of a slower recovery from the coronavirus-induced economic crisis, denting the dollar and U.S. Treasury yields.

Spot gold was up 0.2% at $1,945.45 per ounce by 0236 GMT. Gold is up 0.2% so far this week, having shed 4.5% in the week to August 14, its worst in five months.

U.S. gold futures rose 0.4% to $1,953.80.

"A deterioration in U.S. labor market data, falling bond yields and continued geopolitical tensions continue to support gold," said National Australia Bank economist John Sharma.

"We see gold trading between $1,920 and $1,980 in the near term," he said, adding that factors such as rising risk sentiment and progress on the coronavirus vaccine front could dent demand.

A technology stocks-fueled rally on Wall Street drove Asian markets higher on Friday, limiting gold's advance.

Data on Thursday showed the number of Americans filing a new claim for unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly back above the 1 million mark last week, a setback for a struggling U.S. job market crippled by the coronavirus pandemic.

This sent the dollar index and benchmark 10-year Treasury yields lower, making gold an attractive investment for holders of other currencies.

Adding to doubts over a swift U.S. economic rebound, Federal Reserve officials on Wednesday warned that a recovery faced a highly uncertain path, helping gold recover from a more than 3.5% slump earlier this week.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration declined to acknowledge any plans to meet with China over the phase one trade deal after the commerce ministry in Beijing said bilateral talks would be held "in the coming days."

Elsewhere, silver gained 0.3% to $27.30 per ounce and was poised for a weekly rise of about 3.5%

Platinum climbed 0.4% to $921.12, while palladium eased 0.2% to $2,177.88.