Gold recovers from five-week low after U.S. jobs data | Reuters
By Marcy Nicholson and Jan Harvey | NEW YORK/LONDON NEW YORK/LONDON Gold recovered on Friday from an early drop to five-week lows after a U.S. non-farm payrolls report for February failed to meet elevated expectations, prompting a drop in the dollar and Treasury yields
By Marcy Nicholson and Jan Harvey
| NEW YORK/LONDON
NEW YORK/LONDON Gold recovered on Friday from an early drop to five-week lows after a U.S. non-farm payrolls report for February failed to meet elevated expectations, prompting a drop in the dollar and Treasury yields. The Labor Department data, which showed U.S. non-farm payrolls rose 235,000 last month, beat official forecasts but was not enough to satisfy those whose expectations had been boosted by a strong private payrolls number earlier in the week.The U.S. dollar .DXY fell against a basket of currencies amid disappointment that wages were only growing gradually. The figures shored up prospects for the Federal Reserve to hike interest rates this month, however. Anticipation of a March hike has put gold on track for its biggest weekly loss in four months this week. Spot gold XAU= was up 0.1 percent at $1,202.36 an ounce by 2:56 p.m. EST (1956 GMT), after falling to $1,194.55, its weakest since Jan. 31. U.S. gold futures GCv1 for April delivery settled down 0.2 percent at $1,201.40."Whisper estimates for job growth were probably a bit higher after the strong ADP (private payrolls) number," Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch told the Reuters Global Gold Forum. "Jobs growth was stronger than expected, but wage growth remains subdued, so the last link to higher inflation is still missing." Gold is sensitive to rising U.S. interest rates as these increase the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding bullion, while boosting the dollar, in which it is priced. The metal remains vulnerable to signs real interest rates are increasing, analysts said.
"All eyes are now on Wednesday's rate hike and what will happen when it actually comes to fruition," said Miguel Perez-Santalla, vice president of Heraeus Metal Management in New York, adding that precious metals prices were holding ground."Many expect this as a bullish signal but many traders are going to the sideline, preferring to be flat over the weekend." Pointing to softening investor appetite, holdings of the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Shares (GLD), fell 2.7 tonnes on Thursday, bringing the outflow for the week so far to 6.5 tonnes. [GOL/ETF]
Silver XAG= was up 0.04 percent at $16.95 an ounce, after hitting its lowest since Jan. 27 at $16.78. It was on track to close the week down 5.6 percent, its weakest in four months.
Palladium XPD= was down 0.1 percent at $745.90, after falling to $739.43, the lowest since Feb. 3. Platinum XPT= was up 0.6 percent at $937.80. However, platinum has fallen nearly 6 percent this week, having touched its lowest since Jan. 4 at $928.50. (Additional reporting by Arpan Varghese in Bengaluru; Editing by Dale Hudson and Diane Craft)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.