Gold slides below $1,150 as dollar strengthens
Gold fell more than 1 percent on Friday, breaking below chart support at $1,150 an ounce, as the dollar hit a four-year high against a currency basket after upbeat U.S. retail sales data.
The Commerce Department said U.S. retail sales rose 0.5 percent in October; a sign American consumers were spending with more gusto and could help keep the economy growing at a brisk pace.
Spot gold hit a session low of $1,146.64 after the report and was down 1 percent at $1,149.95 an ounce at 1402 GMT. U.S. gold futures for December delivery were down $12.50 an ounce at $1,149.00.
Gold, which is priced in the U.S. unit, has struggled to recover from last week’s 4-1/2-year low of $1,131.85.
“We have dollar strength triggered by the stronger retail sales numbers from the United States, and on the investment side we see ongoing outflows from physically backed gold products,” Julius Baer analyst Carsten Menke said. “This is clearly an environment which is weighing on prices.”
Gold, set to fall for a third week in four, has suffered from perceptions that the U.S. recovery is outpacing that of other economies.
That has led to bets that U.S. interest rates will rise faster than others. Rising rates weigh on gold as they lift the opportunity cost of holding non-yielding assets.
“We maintain a view of lower gold prices based on the progressive economic recovery and the outlook for higher interest rates next year in the States,” Menke said.
Holdings of the world’s top gold-backed exchange-traded fund, SPDR Gold Shares, fell 2 tons on Thursday, an eighth straight day of outflows, to a six-year low of 720.62 tons.
Buying interest in Asia picked up this week, though Japanese consumers sold gold jewelry and bars as yen-priced bullion hit three-month highs.
Silver was down 1.7 percent at $15.33 an ounce, while spot palladium was down 1.4 percent at $755 an ounce.
Spot platinum was down 1.1 percent at $1,178.50 an ounce, having earlier touched a five-year low at $1,172.80.