July 30, 2020 / 4:15 PM / 6 days ago

CORRECTED-PRECIOUS-Gold set to break longest winning streak since end-2017

(Corrects first paragraph in July 30 story to say investors holding ‘long’, not ‘short’, positions)

* Gold posted gains in the previous nine sessions

* Q2 U.S. GDP contracts at steepest pace since Great Depression

* Trump raises possibility of delaying the Nov election

* Interactive graphic tracking global spread of coronavirus: open tmsnrt.rs/3aIRuz7 in an external browser

By Nakul Iyer and Swati Verma

July 30 (Reuters) - Gold prices dipped on Thursday as investors holding long positions took profits after nine straight sessions of gains, although the outlook remained bullish with prices hovering near a record peak.

Spot gold dipped 0.9% to $1,952.30 per ounce by 2:31 p.m. EDT (1831 GMT), set to break its longest winning streak since December 2017. U.S. gold futures closed 0.6% lower at $1,942.30.

“We’ve seen gold’s positioning has started to bloat not only from the institutional side, but more recently we have really seen a surge in retail flows,” said Daniel Ghali, commodity strategist at TD Securities.

“All of this suggests that this is probably as good as it’s going to get for gold for the time being.”

Bullion traded close to Tuesday’s record high of $1,980.57 per ounce in the last session after U.S. Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged, while pledging to use its full range of tools for as long as necessary to recover from the pandemic.

The non-yielding metal, which benefits from low interest rates, is up over 28% so far this year, supported by strong investment demand.

“In the short-term, the market could’ve been considered overbought and due for a correction,” said Kitco Metals senior analyst Jim Wyckoff, adding gold right now is seeing profit-taking by shorter-term futures traders.

On the longer and intermediate term basis, the market is trending higher and still in a bullish posture, Wyckoff added.

Meanwhile, a historic plunge in second-quarter U.S. GDP and President Donald Trump’s tweet about delaying the U.S. November presidential elections triggered a sell-off in U.S. stocks and lower Treasury yields.

“People are panicking and fleeing the equity markets and you’re seeing that weighing on metals prices,” said Phillip Streible, chief market strategist at Blue Line Futures in Chicago.

Other metals were also lower, with silver shedding 4.9% to stand at $23.22 per ounce, platinum down 3.1% at $895.20 and palladium dropping 4.4% to $2,061.96.

Reporting by Swati Verma and Nakul Iyer in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Diptendu Lahiri; Editing by Tom Brown and Steve Orlofsky

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