Gold: Gold prices rose slightly on a weaker dollar; set for fall weekly

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September 24: Gold prices edged up on Friday after falling more than 1% in the previous session, helped by lower prices, although the Federal Reserve’s plans to cut stimulus from the US economy kept the bullion on track for a third straight week of decline.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold rose 0.2% to $ 1,746.84 an ounce at 0102 GMT, after hitting its lowest level since August 11 at $ 1,737.46 on Thursday. Prices fell 0.4% over the week.

* US gold futures fell 0.1% to $ 1,747.80.

* The dollar index languished near a one-week low on Thursday, making gold cheaper for those holding other currencies.

* The number of Americans filing new jobless claims rose unexpectedly over the past week, but the underlying trend has remained consistent with a steadily recovering labor market.

* Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said the process of cutting spending could end around the middle of next year, as long as the recovery remains on track, after the bank’s policy statement Central this week suggested it might hike interest rates sooner than expected.

* Gold is often seen as a hedge against higher inflation, but a Fed rate hike would increase the opportunity cost of holding gold, which earns no interest.

* Global equity markets rallied on Thursday as concerns about contagion from cash-strapped China Evergrande faded, undermining gold’s appeal as a safe haven.

* Holdings of SPDR Gold Trust, the world’s largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, fell 0.8% to 992.65 tonnes on Thursday from 1,000.79 tonnes on Wednesday.

* Silver rose 0.5% to $ 22.61 an ounce and is up 1% for the week so far.

* Palladium rose 0.5% to $ 1,992.67, but was on track for a third straight week of decline.

* Platinum slipped 0.8% to $ 980.67. However, the metal was heading for a 4.3% weekly gain, the highest in six weeks.

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