* Four-week jobless claims signal job growth
* Putin offers conciliatory note on Ukraine crisis
* Gold demand fell in 2nd-qtr -World Gold Council
* Coming up: U.S. producer price index Friday
(New throughout, updates prices and market activity)
By Frank Tang and Clara Denina
NEW YORK/LONDON, Aug 14 Gold prices were a touch
higher on Thursday in thin trading, but gains were limited by
U.S. jobless claims data which showed continued recovery in the
labor market and conciliatory comments from Russian President
Vladimir Putin about Ukraine.
The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment
benefits rose more than expected last week. But analysts said
the four-week average of claims remained consistent with solid
Analysts said some recent U.S. economic indicators have fed
investor skepticism about whether the U.S. economy is definitely
out of the woods. Gold prices have been under pressure due to
speculation that a stronger economy could encourage the Federal
Reserve to raise interest rates soon.
"These data releases give gold a boost now and again as they
are seen as restraining the more hawkish Fed governors, though
they haven't ever been enough to change medium-term expectations
for the U.S. economy or gold," Turner said.
Spot gold was up 0.1 percent on the day to $1,313.39
an ounce by 3:07 p.m.
U.S. COMEX gold futures for December delivery settled
up $1.20 at $1,315.70, with trading volume about 35 percent
below its 30-day average, preliminary Reuters data showed.
On Wednesday, a disappointing retail sales report for July
eased fears that the Fed might raise rates sooner than expected.
Bullion gains were also limited on signs of easing tensions
after President Vladimir Putin said Russia would stand up for
itself but not at the cost of confrontation with the outside
So far this year, gold has risen 9 percent, boosted by
political conflict in Ukraine, Iraq and Israel. But in physical
market news, the World Gold Council said global gold demand fell
in the second quarter, as sales of jewelry, coin and bar sales
tumbled from last year's record levels, a factor that outweighed
lower liquidation of gold-backed exchange-traded funds.
Reflecting investor sentiment, holdings in SPDR Gold Trust
, the world's largest gold-backed ETF, fell 0.26 tonnes to
795.60 tonnes on Wednesday.
Among other precious metals, silver was up 0.2
percent at $19.86 an ounce. Platinum edged up 0.1 percent
to $1,461.93 an ounce, while palladium gained 0.7 percent
to $880.25 an ounce.
3:07 PM EDT LAST/ NET PCT LOW HIGH CURRENT
SETTLE CHNG CHNG VOL
US Gold DEC 1315.70 1.20 0.1 1310.00 1321.80 98,395
US Silver SEP 19.906 0.061 0.3 19.785 19.985 34,476
US Plat OCT 1469.20 -0.70 0.0 1465.20 1475.00 6,218
US Pall SEP 886.15 4.55 0.5 877.65 887.25 4,164
Gold 1313.39 1.03 0.1 1309.21 1319.10
Silver 19.860 0.040 0.2 19.820 20.010
Platinum 1461.93 2.03 0.1 1464.50 1470.50
Palladium 880.25 5.95 0.7 879.00 885.00
TOTAL MARKET VOLUME 30-D ATM VOLATILITY
CURRENT 30D AVG 250D AVG CURRENT CHG
US Gold 104,437 162,683 157,479 13.95 -0.48
US Silver 44,857 48,268 58,003 17.63 -0.67
US Platinum 6,294 8,584 12,422 13.11 -0.13
US Palladium 4,824 5,443 5,682 19.78 0.88
(Additional reporting by A. Ananthalakshmi in Singapore;
Editing by William Hardy, Jane Baird and David Gregorio)