On Friday, gold prices inched a little higher in abbreviated trade ahead of the holiday weekend, but the precious metal still announced its 7th straight weekly drop as expectations for higher U.S. interest rates in the months ahead considered.
Delivery of gold for February on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange add on $2.90, or 0.26%, to end the week at $1,133.60 a troy ounce, not far from an 11-month decline of $1,124.30 hit on December 15.
During the week, gold futures fell $3.80, or 0.33%, the seventh straight week of dropped, its longest weekly losing streak in over 12 years.
Prices of the yellow metal have dropped suddenly since Donald Trump was elected president as a increasing U.S. dollar, increasing Treasury yields and a record-breaking rally on Wall Street have damped its appeal.
On Friday, the dollar lost some steam, slipping from its 14-year-peak compared to a basket of currencies as investors took profits ahead of the end of the year.
The dollar index plunged 0.1%, to settle at 103.00 by close of trade Friday. On Tuesday, the index increased to 103.62, the strongest level since December 2002.
Market analysts advised that the outlook for gold stays cloudy in the short-term, given expectations for higher U.S. interest rates in the months onward.
The Federal Reserve hiked interest rates for the first time in a year earlier this month and expected three more increases in 2017.
On Friday, on the Comex, delivery of silver futures for March shed 11.2 cents, or 0.7%, to settle at $15.75 a troy ounce, within sight of an eight-month low of $15.67 logged on Tuesday. During the week, silver lost 29.6 cents, or 2.8%.
Temporarily,platinum declined 1.55%, to $893.20, marking a weekly drop of 3.7%, whereas palladium fell 0.3% to $654.85 an ounce, notching a weekly loss of 6.1%.
Somewhere else in metals trading, delivery of copper for March plunged 2.0 cents, or 0.82%, on Friday to end at $2.479 a pound, booking a weekly slip of approximately 3.5%.
In the week onward, trading volumes are projected to remain light because of the Christmas holiday and as many traders already closed books before the year end, decreasing liquidity in the market and increasing the volatility.
The U.S. is to post reports on consumer confidence, pending home sales and unemployed claims, as traders look for additional signs on the strength of the economy and indications on the future path of monetary policy.
On Additional News
On December 26, stock markets in Australia, New Zealand, Europe, the U.K., Switzerland, Canada and the U.S. will stay closed, to make up for Christmas Day falling on a Sunday.
All floor trading for precious and base metals options will be close for the Christmas holiday.
On December 27, for Boxing Day, Markets in the U.K. and Canada will stay closed.
The U.S. is to publish private sector data on consumer confidence.
On December 28, the U.S. is to post data on pending home sales.
On December 29, The U.S. is to generate data on weekly jobless claims, wholesale inventories and the trade deficit.
On Friday, December 30, the U.S. is to gather up the week with data on manufacturing activity in the Chicago-region.
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