* Open interest in US gold futures up after Monday's drop
* Asian physical buying lags despite price decline
* Sentiment among private investors dip in Nov -survey
* Coming up: US international trade, new home sales Thurs
(Adds BullionVault survey, updates market activity)
By Frank Tang and Jan Harvey
NEW YORK/LONDON, Dec 3 Gold rose slightly on
Tuesday, off an earlier five-month low on a crude oil rally and
weaker dollar, and as the previous session's sharp decline
triggered bargain hunting.
Traders said short-covering was seen a day after gold
tumbled almost 3 percent for its biggest daily decline in more
than two months. They also noted that as prices tumbled on
Monday, open interest in U.S. gold futures climbed more than 1
percent, a sign that new short positions were created.
"Despite a small short-covering rally today, gold is
susceptible to further pullbacks. Right now a stronger crude
market and lower dollar are the only things that keep gold
higher," said Frank McGhee, head precious metals dealer at
Chicago commodities brokerage Alliance Financial LLC.
Spot gold was up 0.2 percent at $1,221.64 an ounce by
3:27 p.m. EST (2027 GMT). The session low was $1,215.60 an
ounce, the lowest since July 8.
U.S. Comex gold futures for February delivery settled
down $1.10 to $1,220.80 an ounce, with trading volume about 35
percent below its 30-day average, preliminary Reuters data
RETAIL BUYING WEAK
A survey by online precious metals market BullionVault said
that physical gold buying among private investors fell in
The gauge, which measures the balance of customers adding to
their gold holdings over those reducing them, fell to 54 in
November from October's six-month high at 54.3. A reading of 50
signals an equal number of net gold buyers and sellers.
Dealers said bullion buying from Asian consumers, the
world's biggest market for physical gold, increased after the
sharp overnight drop in prices. However, many remained on the
sidelines hoping for even lower prices.
Philip Klapwijk, managing director of Hong Kong-based metals
consultancy Precious Metals Insights, told the Reuters Global
Gold Forum that a build-up in gold inventory among Chinese banks
are curtailing demand.
Among other precious metals, silver was down 0.3
percent at $19.07 an ounce. Platinum rose 1.1 percent to
$1,352.25 an ounce, and palladium climbed 0.4 percent to
$711.97 an ounce.
3:27 PM EST LAST/ NET PCT LOW HIGH CURRENT
SETTLE CHNG CHNG VOL
US Gold FEB 1220.80 -1.10 -0.1 1214.60 1225.80 107,701
US Silver MAR 19.065 -0.224 -1.2 18.975 19.335 34,311
US Plat JAN 1355.80 9.00 0.7 1341.10 1359.20 9,016
US Pall MAR 714.80 1.40 0.2 709.60 716.35 2,452
Gold 1221.64 1.98 0.2 1215.60 1226.00
Silver 19.070 -0.060 -0.3 18.990 19.330
Platinum 1352.25 14.50 1.1 1344.50 1357.50
Palladium 711.97 3.00 0.4 712.00 712.75
TOTAL MARKET VOLUME 30-D ATM VOLATILITY
CURRENT 30D AVG 250D AVG CURRENT CHG
US Gold 114,886 175,443 187,943 20.12 -0.08
US Silver 39,128 60,117 57,552 28.38 3.34
US Platinum 10,588 9,465 12,889 16.37 0.80
US Palladium 2,681 8,346 5,959 20.76 0.00
(Additional reporting by A. Ananthalakshmi in Singapore;
Editing by Marguerita Choy)