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Gold set for fifth week of gains as dollar slumps vs euro

Spot gold was up 0.7 per cent at $1,332.17 an ounce by 1253 GMT

Gulf News

London: Gold rose to a four-month high on Friday and was on track for a fifth straight weekly gain as the dollar fell against the euro on an agreement for a political coalition in Germany.

Spot gold was up 0.7 per cent at $1,332.17 (Dh4,893) an ounce by 1253 GMT, having touched its highest since September 15 at $1,333.02.

The precious metal is up 0.9 per cent this week and set for its longest run of weekly gains since April.

US gold futures were up 0.8 per cent at $1,332.90.

The dollar index, which measures the greenback against six major currencies, fell to its lowest since September 11 at 91.308.

The euro jumped to a three-year high after party sources said German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives and the Social Democrats (SPD) had agreed a blueprint for formal coalition negotiations.

“This agreement of a coalition will change that situation of a hung parliament in Germany and that is why the euro is positive, weakening the US dollar, which is one of the reasons why gold is firmer this morning,” said Quantitative Commodity Research consultant Peter Fertig.

The news from Germany helped the euro extend gains made on Thursday after minutes from a December European Central Bank meeting signalled that the European Central Bank could begin to wind down its €2.5 trillion (Dh11 trillion) stimulus programme this year.

A stronger euro potentially boosts demand for gold by making dollar-priced bullion cheaper for European investors.

Physical gold demand remained lacklustre across top Asian centres this week as buyers were put off by a rally in prices, but an approaching Chinese New Year could reignite appeal for the yellow metal.

The dollar was pressured by data showing producer prices in the United States fell for the first time in nearly one-and-a-half years in December amid declining costs for services.

US Consumer Price Index (CPI) data is due later on Friday.

Among other precious metals, spot silver rose 1 per cent to $17.13 an ounce, but was heading for its first weekly loss in five weeks.

Platinum rose 1.1 per cent to touch its highest since September 11 at $994.70, on track for a fifth straight weekly gain.

Platinum is up 2.5 per cent so far this week.

Palladium was up 0.6 per cent at $1,088.60 after dropping on Thursday to a more than one-week low at $1,075.50.