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Gold near two-year low; heads for fourth week of decline

by FP Staff  Apr 19, 2013 07:00 IST

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SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Gold was little changed in cautious trade on Friday, heading for a fourth week of losses after this week's historic sell-off shattered investors' confidence in the typically safe-haven asset.

Gold investors are waiting for the release of U.S. CFTC commitment of traders data at 1930 GMT for more trading cues after funds dumped their holdings on global exchange-traded funds.

FUNDAMENTALS

* Spot gold added $1.60 an ounce to $1,392.35 by 0022 GMT, still within sight of a 2-year trough touched earlier this week. The metal recorded its biggest ever daily fall in dollar terms on Monday, catching gold bulls, speculators and veteran investors by surprise.

* U.S. gold futures were also little changed at $1,392.70 an ounce.

* Premiums for gold bars in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo were at multi-months highs after the drop in prices ignited a spate of buying in gold coins, nuggets and bars.

* Investors in U.S.-based funds pulled $2.7 billion out of commodities and precious metals funds in the latest week as gold suffered a sharp selloff, data from the Thomson Reuters Lipper service showed.

* The largest exchange-traded fund (ETF) for bullion saw less money outflows than during the 2009 selloff, according to funds tracker Lipper.

* The euro zone will slow its budgetary belt-tightening to help reinvigorate economic growth, a top EU official said on Thursday, highlighting a policy shift the United States has long been pressing for.

MARKET NEWS

* Worries over global growth capped Asian share prices on Friday as more soft U.S. economic data and mixed U.S. earnings results further undermined investor sentiment already hit by a broad sell-off that started earlier in the week.

* The euro and yen started Asian trade on Friday in familiar territory having steadied from wild swings in a week that took a heavy toll on commodity currencies such as the Australian dollar.

* U.S. crude futures extended declines towards $86 a barrel on Thursday, hurt by a stronger dollar and lingering concerns over global demand for oil.

DATA/EVENTS (GMT)

0600 Germany Producer prices

0800 Euro zone Current account

0800 Italy Industrial orders

1930 U.S. CFTC commitment of traders data

N/A European Central Bank Governing Council Member Jens

Weidmann and German Finance Minister Wolfgang

Schaeuble hold press conference ahead of IMF Spring

Meetings in Washington

PRICES

Precious metals prices 0022 GMT

Metal Last Change Pct chg YTD pct chg Volume

Spot Gold 1392.35 1.60 +0.12 -16.85

Spot Silver 23.30 0.06 +0.26 -23.05

Spot Platinum 1424.50 2.00 +0.14 -7.20

Spot Palladium 663.47 -3.03 -0.45 -4.12

COMEX GOLD JUN3 1392.70 0.20 +0.01 -16.89 4474

COMEX SILVER MAY3 23.28 0.03 +0.13 -23.01 528

Euro/Dollar 1.3054

Dollar/Yen 98.28

COMEX gold and silver contracts show the most active months

(Reporting by Lewa Pardomuan; Editing by Richard Pullin)

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