PRECIOUS-Gold dips to four-month low as vaccine hopes take centre stage

 (Updates prices, adds context)
    * Gold's break below $1,800/oz could prompt further dip
    * European shares gain on vaccine optimism
    * EU reaches deal with Moderna for vaccine supply
    * Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus:
    * in an external browser

    By Asha Sistla
    Nov 24 (Reuters) - Gold slid to a four-month low on Tuesday,
extending a sharp slide from the previous session as optimism
over the development of COVID-19 vaccines drove investors to
riskier assets. 
    Spot gold        dropped 1.3% to $1,812.81 an ounce by 1218
GMT, having touched its lowest since July 17 at $1,804.70, while
U.S. gold futures        lost 1.5% to $1,810.60.
    European equities rose on a possible easing of COVID-19
curbs and progress on vaccines from the likes of AstraZeneca
       , Pfizer         and Moderna         .                   
    The European Union has reached a deal with U.S. biotech
company Moderna for supply of its vaccine, an EU official told
Reuters on Tuesday.             
    "We had news about the vaccine, saw yields moving higher in
U.S.; even the dollar went lower and gold is not profiting from
that ... This is a very bad sign for gold and means there is
underlying weakness building up," said ABN Amro analyst
Georgette Boele.
    A break below support at $1,800 would trigger further price
declines, Boele added.
    The dollar held close to its lowest in nearly three months,
potentially making gold cheaper for buyers with other
    Equities markets were also supported by clearance for U.S.
President-elect Joe Biden's transition to the White House, even
though President Donald Trump stopped short of conceding defeat
in the Nov. 3 election.                           
    "The acknowledgement of Biden's victory from the Republicans
is likely to reduce the risk of further tensions and represents
a supportive element for stocks, while haven assets such as gold
are suffering," ActivTrades' chief analyst Carlo Alberto De Casa
said in a note. 
    However, central banks will still be forced to print a huge
amount of money, which could revive investor interest in gold
before long, De Casa added.
    Gold is considered a hedge against inflation and currency
debasement that is likely to result from unprecedented global
stimulus to fight the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. 
    In other precious metals, silver        dipped 1.4% to
$23.25 an ounce, platinum        was flat at $925.87 and
palladium        dropped 1.4% to $2,323.13.

 (Reporting by Asha Sistla in Bengaluru
Editing by Mark Potter and David Goodman)


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