February 5, 2018 / 1:30 AM / 4 months ago

PRECIOUS-Gold dips on firmer dollar after positive US jobs data

    Feb 5 (Reuters) - Gold prices inched down early on Monday on
a firmer dollar after robust U.S. jobs data late last week, but
a fall in equities cushioned losses.
    
    FUNDAMENTALS  
    * Spot gold        had dipped 0.1 percent to $1,331.80 per
ounce by 0051 GMT.
    * Spot gold on Friday fell 1.2 percent, its biggest one-day
fall since Dec. 7. Last week, the metal saw its largest weekly
decline since the week-ending Dec. 8.
    * U.S. gold futures         were down 0.1 percent at $1,336
per ounce.
    * Non-farm payrolls rose by 200,000 jobs in January, the
U.S. Labor Department said, beating expectation of 180,000 and
their largest annual gain in more than 8-1/2 years. Average
hourly earnings rose and boosted the year-on-year increase to
2.9 percent, the largest rise since June 2009.             
    * Futures markets         reacted by pricing in the risk of
three, or even more, rate rises from the U.S. Federal Reserve
this year. 
    * The Fed  last week held interest rates unchanged, but
raised its inflation outlook and flagged "further gradual" rate
increases.             
    * Against a basket of currencies, the dollar was steady at
89.176        having climbed 0.6 percent on Friday for its
biggest single day gain in three months.
    * Asian share markets stumbled on Monday as fears of
resurgent inflation battered bonds, toppled Wall Street from
record highs and sparked speculation central banks globally
might be forced to tighten more aggressively.            
    * Hedge funds and money managers raised their net long
position in COMEX gold contracts in the week to Jan. 30 to their
highest level since late-September, while they also raised their
net long position in silver contracts, U.S. Commodity Futures
Trading Commission (CFTC) data showed on Friday.        
    * All the miners who were trapped underground for more than
24 hours after a storm knocked out powerlines supplying
electricity to the Beatrix gold mine in South Africa have been
rescued, operator Sibanye-Stillwater SGLJ.J said on Friday.
            
    * Demand for physical gold improved this week in India as
jewellers resumed purchases after the government kept import
taxes on the precious metal unchanged, while buying remained
subdued in most other centres in Asia.             
    
    
     
    DATA AHEAD (GMT)
    
    0145  China         Caixin services PMI                  Jan
    0850  France        Markit services PMI                  Jan
    0855  Germany       Markit services PMI                  Jan
    0900  Euro zone     Markit services PMI final            Jan
    0930  Euro zone     Sentix index                         Feb
    1000  Euro zone     Retail sales                         Dec
    1500  U.S.          ISM non-manufacturing PMI            Jan

 (Reporting by Nallur Sethuraman in Bengaluru
Editing by Joseph Radford)
  
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