May 7, 2018 / 9:43 AM / in a year

REFILE-PRECIOUS-Gold dips as dollar index climbs back towards 2018 peak

 (Refiles to remove repeated comment)
    * Dollar index edges back towards Friday's four-month high
    * Specs cut net long positions in gold in week to May 1
    * GRAPHIC-2018 asset returns:

    By Jan Harvey
    LONDON, May 7 (Reuters) - Gold fell on Monday, snapping
three days of gains as the dollar index rose back towards its
2018 peak and last week's soft U.S. jobs data did little to
dampen optimism about the world's largest economy. 
    That left traders betting the Federal Reserve would press 0n
with lifting U.S. interest rates this year. Higher rates
typically weigh on gold, as they increase the opportunity cost
of holding non-yielding assets such as bullion.   
    Spot gold        was down 0.2 percent at $1,312.03 an ounce
by 1135 GMT, while U.S. gold futures         for June delivery
were 0.2 percent lower at $1,312.70. 
    The market was thinned by a national holiday in Britain,
which closed trading desks in London. 
    The dollar index rose back towards Friday's peak for the
year on Monday after U.S. jobs and wages data did little to
alter perceptions of strength in the U.S. economy and
consequently expectations for more Fed rate hikes.       
    Meanwhile, a surprise drop in German industrial orders
served as a reminder that softer economic data could encourage
the European Central Bank to delay the unwinding of its
extraordinary stimulus measures.          
    Commerzbank analyst Carsten Fritsch said gold was still
primarily driven by the dollar, and the widening interest rate
differential between the United States and Europe. "This all
boosts the U.S. dollar and weighs on gold," he said.
    Investors were therefore tempering bets on higher gold
prices, he said, adding speculators had cut their net long
positions to the lowest since July 2017 with a "massive
reduction" in the last few trading weeks.
    "Most speculative investors have thrown in the towel
already," he said.
    Speculators cut their net long positions in COMEX gold by
62,378 contracts to 51,985 contracts in the week to May 1, data
from the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) showed
on Friday.             
    Holdings of the world's largest gold-backed exchange-traded
fund, New York-based SPDR Gold Shares      , fell 0.17 percent
to 864.13 tonnes on Friday.             
    Meanwhile silver        was down 0.3 percent at $16.43 an
ounce, while palladium        was 0.7 percent higher at $973.90.
    Platinum        was up 0.7 percent at $911.90 an ounce,
having earlier hit its highest since April 25 at $918.70.
Friday's positioning data from the CFTC suggests the metal may
be due a bounce, analysts said.
    On platinum, Societe Generale said money managers increased
their short positions by 8,813 contracts, taking their short
positions as a percentage of total open interest to 41.9
percent, the highest level since July 2017.
    "With prices near the bottom of the recent one-year range,
platinum is now in the oversold box," the bank said in a note.

 (Additional reporting by Apeksha Nair in Bengaluru
Editing by David Goodman and Edmund Blair)
0 : 0
  • narrow-browser-and-phone
  • medium-browser-and-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser
  • wide-browser-and-larger
  • medium-browser-and-landscape-tablet
  • medium-wide-browser-and-larger
  • above-phone
  • portrait-tablet-and-above
  • above-portrait-tablet
  • landscape-tablet-and-above
  • landscape-tablet-and-medium-wide-browser
  • portrait-tablet-and-below
  • landscape-tablet-and-below