MTECHTIPS;-Gold Prices Fall as Dollar Held Steady After U.S. Job Data

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MTECHTIPS;-Gold Prices Fall as Dollar Held Steady After U.S. Job Data

MTECHTIPS-Gold prices slipped on Monday as the dollar held steady after data showed the U.S. added larger-than-expected number of jobs in February. Gold futures for April delivery on the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange fell by $1.50, or 0.11%, to $1,322.60 a troy ounce by 1:10 am ET. February job data came in better than expected on Friday while inflation concerns faded, as nonfarm payrolls surged by 313,000 jobs. Annual growth in average hourly earnings however slowed to 2.6%, tempered speculation that the Federal Reserve would project four rate hikes this year instead of three. Inflation concerns generally lift gold prices, which is usually considered a safe-haven asset. However, expectations that the Fed would raise interest rates to fight inflation could potentially make gold less attractive because it is not interest-yielding. The dollar was also under pressure earlier in the day on news of an alleged cronyism scandal in Japan that involved the sale of a state-owned land. The US dollar index that tracks the greenback against a basket of six major currencies slipped 0.011% to 90.01 at 9:21 pm ET. The dollar plunged last week to as low as 89.41 but rose again after signs of a global trade war initiated by U.S. president Trump’s tariff plan on imported steel and aluminum receded

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