Gold falls as dollar, equities edge higher

Deal to avoid US govt shutdown lifts dollar

Gulf News

New York

Gold prices fell on Monday amid thin trading as the dollar firmed as the chance of a US government shutdown receded and as stronger equities dampened demand for non-interest paying bullion.

Spot gold dropped 0.4 per cent to $1,262.51 per ounce, as of 0900 GMT.

US gold futures also eased 0.4 per cent to $1,263.90 an ounce.

Many financial markets in Asia and Europe are closed on Monday for the Labour Day holiday.

Asian stocks shook off a sluggish start and edged up on Monday, with Japan outperforming on upbeat earnings, while the dollar regained traction as the US government looked likely to avoid a shutdown.

The dollar index rose 0.1 per cent to 99.098.

US congressional negotiators hammered out a bipartisan agreement on a spending package to keep the federal government funded through September 30, thus averting the first government shutdown since 2013.

“Interest around $1,262 restricted further declines to keep the metal within the recent range and we are likely to see this theme continue today with the UK on holiday,” said Sam Laughlin, a trader with MKS PAMP Group.

Last week, gold fell by 1.3 per cent, the biggest weekly percentage decline since the week of March 10. But the metal ended the month about 1.5 per cent higher.

“We see gold maintaining a relatively higher trading range in May as tensions with North Korea will command more attention now that the bearish impact of the French election is out of the way,” said INTL FCStone analyst Edward Meir.

North Korea suggested on Monday it will continue its nuclear weapons tests, saying it will bolster its nuclear force “to the maximum” in a “consecutive and successive way at any moment” in the face of what it calls US aggression and hysteria.

Meanwhile, hedge funds and other money managers increased their net-long position in COMEX gold for the sixth straight week to April 25, lifting it to a 5-1/2-month high, US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) data showed Friday.

Money managers again cut their bullish stance in silver futures and options.

Spot silver dropped 0.6 per cent to $17.09 an ounce. It hit an 1-1/2-month low at $17.025 early in the session.

Platinum fell 0.7 per cent to $937 an ounce. It earlier touched a near three-week low of $934.50.

Palladium was steady at $823.48 an ounce. It rose to an over two-year high at $831.50 on Friday.

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