Gold Rallies on November Employment Data

Mike Segar/Reuters

Gold futures rose Friday after earlier losing ground as November jobs data reinforced expectations the Federal Reserve will deliver a rate hike later this month.

Gold for February delivery on Comex  was up $10.70 cents, or 1%, at $1,071.90 an ounce, while March silver  was up 22 cents, or 1.5%, at $14.29 an ounce.

Gold traded sharply higher after initially trimming gains following the jobs report. The Labor Department said the U.S. economy created 211,000 jobs in November, topping forecasts for a nonfarm payrolls rise of 200,000. Revisions also showed the pace of hiring in October and November was much stronger than initially estimated, while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5%.

The U.S. dollar, which fell sharply versus major rivals, particularly the euro, on Thursday, bounced back, with the data underlining expectations the U.S. central bank will raise interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade when policy makers meet on Dec. 15-16. Expectations for tighter monetary policy have pressured gold this year, with the yellow metal slipping to nearly six-year lows earlier this week.

Some analysts said gold may be due for near-term consolidation.

“Straight up isn’t yet in the cards, but a possible upside rally to $1,092 before the Fed meeting may be plausible,” wrote Peter Hug, global trading director at Kitco Metals, in a note. “A break of $1,055 brings in the recent low again.”

In other metals trade, January platinum  rose $18.80, or 2.2%, to $866.30 an ounce, while March palladium  gained $11.45 or 2.1%, to $548.25 an ounce.

March copper  was up 0.8% at $2.077 a pound.

Written by Willian Watts of MarketWatch

(Source: MarketWatch)

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