Gold fell below the key $1,900 threshold on Friday pressured by gains in the dollar and Treasury yields. The yellow metal had little reaction to the bad employment news released this morning.
Jobs growth dropped steeply in December as COVID-19 restrictions wreaked havoc on virus-sensitive industries such as bars and restaurants, which lost nearly half a million positions for the month. The Labor Department reported Friday that nonfarm payrolls fell by 140,000, far above the expected 50,000.
Gold had been headed for a second consecutive weekly gain on speculation of additional U.S. stimulus measures in the Democratic Congress which will take power on Jan. 20, when President-elect Joe Biden is sworn in and Harris can break the tie in the Senate.
Front-month gold futures rose 0.3% Thursday to settle at $1,913.60 an ounce on Comex. The February contract has advanced 1% so far this week, adding to December’s 6.4% rally. The yellow metal climbed $372 — or 24% — in 2020 because of uncertainty about the economy and the coronavirus pandemic. Currently, the February contract is off by $34.30 an ounce to $1,874.10 and the DG spot price is $1,884.90.
U.S. President Donald Trump pledged Thursday to ensure a smooth transition of power to Biden a day after insurgents encouraged by him stormed the Capitol and disrupted Congress’ official tally of electoral votes. The session resumed after law enforcement regained control and legislators confirmed Biden’s win. But calls in Washington mounted Thursday for Trump to be removed from office or censured after the riot.
Uncertainty over the political situation provided support to precious metals, as did the COVID-19 pandemic and questions about the state of the global economy.
The COVID-19 virus has killed almost 1.89 million people worldwide and sickened about 87.4 million. About 24% of the cases — and 19% of the deaths — are in the U.S. The country has more than 21.3 million cases, more than any other nation.
Front-month silver futures gained 0.8% Thursday to settle at $27.26 an ounce on Comex, and the March contract advanced 3.2% in the first four days of the week. Silver surged 17% in December and 47% in 2020. The March contract is currently is down by $0.761 an ounce to $26.50 and the DG spot price is $26.13.
Spot palladium slipped 0.2% Thursday to $2,438.00 an ounce and lost 0.5% in the first four days of this week. It rallied 2% in December and 26% in 2020. Currently, the DG spot price is down by over $22 to $2,419.50.
Spot platinum rose 1.7% Thursday to $1,125.10 an ounce and advanced 4.8% in the first four days of the week. The metal added 11% in December and 11% in 2020. The DG spot price is currently off over $20 an ounce at $1.098.20.
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